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Tribune: “Dear Leader” Madigan’s members “marching in subservient humiliation as his dupes”

Wednesday, Jul 9, 2014

* From today’s Tribune editorial

We keep wondering when Democrats in the Illinois House — forlorn little mushrooms on whom Speaker Michael Madigan regularly dumps his putrid embarrassments — will decide they’ve had enough of self-serving-antics-by-Mike.

Maybe never. Maybe they’re breathlessly seduced by the campaign money he gives to them and the cozy district lines he bestows on them. Or maybe they draw perverse pride from hobnobbing with clout, even if that means marching in subservient humiliation as his dupes.

Then again, maybe the sorry consequences for Illinois citizens of Madigan’s 44 years in Springfield — witness your broke and broken state — are sparking some dim awareness within his caucus: Even as his legislative giveaways to cronies drove Illinois toward financial ruin, Dear Leader still obsessed on rigging government decisions to help his political toadies. Have we all, um, been chumped?

The editorial then goes on to discus the Metra patronage story we talked about yesterday.

“Dear Leader,” by the way, was the title assumed by brutal North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il.

Thoughts?

- Posted by Rich Miller        


79 Comments
  1. - William j Kelly - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:45 am:

    Rahm’s supporters will print anything to shift attention away from Rahm’s “new (murder capital) Chicago. “


  2. - MOON - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:45 am:

    Nothing new here.

    Just a re-hash of the same old B.S.

    I am willing to bet that the Trib in the not too distant future will call upon Madigan with all his perceived”influence/power” to push his “mushrooms” to come up with a fix.

    The Trib loves Madigans perceived “influence/power” when it serves their purpose but not when it is used for other issues.


  3. - Percival - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:50 am:

    Overdone, but not off-target. Madigan has had boatloads of help from both sides of the aisle over the years, but if there is one face to the sorry State of Illinois and it’s decline, it is his. Another dirty little secret is that the electorate has voted for his cronies and puppets for a generation. We have seen the enemy and he is us.


  4. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:50 am:

    ===We keep wondering when Democrats in the Illinois House — forlorn little mushrooms on whom Speaker Michael Madigan regularly dumps his putrid embarrassments — will decide they’ve had enough of self-serving-antics-by-Mike.

    Maybe never.===

    And there … is where the victimhood begins.

    So now it’s up to Elected House Democrats to “save us all”?

    What ever happened to the brilliant GOP “Fire Madigan”? The Trib now wants the HDems to start wearing the Pat Brady t-shirts?

    Attention HDems,

    You are now the new ILGOP. Your charge, according to the Trib is first “play victim”, but the rub is you House members can “Fire” your greatest ally when you need him most.

    ===Maybe never.===

    As “Bruce Rauner” says, “and they’re right. Exactly right.”

    The way to beat Madigan is 60 HGOP votes. That’s it. Daniels did it. Then MJM beat Daniels four straight, with a GOP map, but I digress…

    Placing the “Fire Madigan” Dopiness, on the Trib described “Dupes” is just making sure space is filled, and the Madiganistan lemmings are fed and kept in the dark…not unlike Mushrooms?


  5. - Lord Stanley's Cup - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:51 am:

    Following up on MOON, he wasn’t Dear Leader when they wanted him to muscle the Spring 13 version of Sb1 over the top in the Senate.


  6. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:51 am:

    …marching in subservient humiliation as his dupes.

    As the Tribbies do to the Koch Bros.


  7. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:51 am:

    You got me, Rich.

    Based on the headline, I assumed the Chicago Tribune would be chiding rank and file Democrats for falling into line behind Madigan to pass pension reform.

    Because, to chide Democrats for their loyalty to Madigan one day and demand Madigan leverage that loyalty the next day to pass pension reform would be hypocritical.

    Kinda like questioning Madigan’s ethics in a story based wholly on illegally released documents.

    LOL

    Sorry, I haven’t had my fourth cup of Joe yet. I am a little peevish.


  8. - Mike - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:53 am:

    The most inaccurate part of the accompanying Stantis cartoon is that even MJM’s Members wouldn’t dare call him ‘Mike’…it’s ‘Mr. Speaker”.


  9. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:54 am:

    Are they letting VanillaMan write their editorials now?


  10. - Wumpus - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 8:54 am:

    Whenever you address me, I want to be addressed as “Dear Reader”. This includes Mr. Miller, all the interns and all of you commenters.

    As long as they admit to being tongue in cheek as Kim Jong Il did some horrible things.


  11. - facts are stubborn things - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:00 am:

    There have been two huge miscalculations in regards to MJM over the years. One, that he can do anything he wants when he puts his mind to it. Two, when people underestimate his power. He is powerful, but he recognizes that his power comes from keeping a majority which at times limits what he can do and when he can do it. Lets say he has been in it for the long hall and understands that timing is everything.


  12. - William j Kelly - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:00 am:

    Last time I checked the Metra train still runs on time, what part of “MURDER CAPITAL” doesn’t the tribune understand?!!


  13. - anon - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:02 am:

    ==Last week the Illinois Supreme Court declared that the state constitution says public retirees’ health benefits can’t be cut — essentially ruling that taxpayers are stuck with the financial debacle that Madigan and several governors and Senate presidents have imposed on the people of Illinois. That debacle is Madigan’s legacy. That and a shabby culture of government-as-patronage-machine for the friends of Michael Madigan. ==

    Actually, this is one you can’t entirely pin on Madigan. The state offered these retiree healthcare benefits before Madigan was elected. All most all of the pension giveaways were the result of collective bargaining handled by GOP governors eager to please.


  14. - DuPage Moderate - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:03 am:

    WJK: Point of clarification….the Metra rarely runs on time.


  15. - facts are stubborn things - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:06 am:

    Elections matter….MJM knows how to keep a majority and members much prefer to be chairman of committees and not ranking members of those committees. He has members back and he understands that some members have to vote in certain ways on somethings, and he allows that because that protects that member and therefor retains the majority.


  16. - lake county democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:06 am:

    What confuses this Capitol Fax reader is where the Tribune-bashing, much of it deserved, ends and where any outrage for Speaker Madigan begins, if it even exists among most of the non-Republican posters. Maybe it’s just so much inside baseball that nobody seems troubled by the attacks on small-d democracy or sympathetic to the victims of patronage.

    What is the Tribune saying here that’s incorrect? Districts *aren’t* drawn to ensure as few competitive races as possible? Madigan *doesn’t* use the limits on political contributions in the primaries or deploy his resources for incumbents to the extent it takes a perfect storm to defeat his picks? That structural changes that are favored by voters 60-15% aren’t blocked from appearing on the ballot either by consensus of the representatives or by cases launched by sham litigants on behalf of the Speaker? That - and this should be beyond disturbing but gets little press - Madigan and his faction controls who becomes a judge in Chicago, and that those judges will hear cases pitting campaign contributors against non-contributors?

    When the Speaker can do favors for men who steal $100,000 from schools ( http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2010-05-05/news/ct-met-madigan-admissions-20100505_1_relatives-28-applicants-law-school ) without fear of meaningful blowback, there’s something profoundly wrong in the state.


  17. - Commonsense in Illinois - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:09 am:

    The Tribune certainly has taken off the gloves although the hyperbole is beneath them in this instance. Although I’m not a fan of the Speaker, referring him to “Dear Leader” is beyond the pale. Shame on the Tribune.


  18. - Try-4-Truth - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:10 am:

    I prefer to pronounce it Hyper Bowl.


  19. - CirularFiringSquad - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:10 am:

    Very classy.
    Now they are making the preteens screaming in the halls of the junior high seem mature.
    Usually when the Tribbies have this much name calling the tune everyone out.
    Remember the day when a Tribbie endorsement meant something?
    That was before they got caught on the Blagoof wiretap looking for their $100 million.
    Fire, Aim, Ready!
    P.S. The LIG found no violation of state law


  20. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:11 am:

    Somebody mentioned yesterday that today’s Tribbie edit page seems like an Onion parody. That’s about right.

    It’s curious to see the Tribbies continually act as some sort of passive victims, though.

    Not anymore, but not long ago, and for decades, the Trib was the biggest power-broker in Illinois. They shaped Illinois politics and government more than anyone. They are as responsible as anyone.

    The Trib endorsement was highly coveted, especially for GA canddiates. All you had to do to get it was hire Paul Lis, a Tribbie lobbyist.

    I’m sure that was all on the square.

    Lis could be reached on session days in the Trib bureau under The Dome. Reporters, like the current Tribbie edit page editor, would act as his secretaries, taking and relaying his phone messages from his clients.

    No ethical issues there, I guess.

    Even today, I’d bet a majority of General Assembly members were endorsed by the Tribbies. Yet they still play the victim card.


  21. - William j Kelly - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:14 am:

    You Dupage moderates have too easy, you wouldn’t last one day in “Rahm’s murder capital!”


  22. - Try-4-Truth - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:14 am:

    Here is why the Speaker is successful and the Tribune is failing; Madigan knows how to win. He knows the rules, plays within them and wins. You don’t like it, you want rules that favor your side (term limits, draw maps differently?) then figure out how to win. How long did the Speaker have to deal with a Republican Governor? Republican State Senate? Republican maps? And, he figured out how to win. Because kids, that’s what the point it in our adversarial republic, one side wins and one side loses. And I can’t tolerate the loser talk coming from the other side that can’t figure out how to win tries to change the rules. Get over yourselves.


  23. - Bogey Golfer - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:17 am:

    @WJK - last night’s 5:32 BNSF was delayed 10 minutes as they had to manually operate a switch. Of course the train was filled with DuPage County residents who all vote Republican, so if you have to cut back somewhere…………..


  24. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:19 am:

    ===You Dupage moderates have too easy, you wouldn’t last one day in “Rahm’s murder capital!”===

    Those Metra trains from DuPage, are carrying workers into… into Chicago. They last, on average 245 days …in Chicago.

    ===one day===

    Dope.


  25. - Democrat Grrl - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:21 am:

    Sun-Times editorials continue to take more thoughtful, reasoned positions on issues–prime example is today’s S-T editorial about Madigan & Metra. Compare it to the “dear leader” blather in the Trib. Tribune is a parody of a paper, as today’s screed so effectively illustrates.


  26. - OneMan - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:22 am:

    One of the many interesting things Rod said at various times comes to mind.

    He talked about when he was in the state house members would talk after hours all the time about ’standing up’ to Madigan and how it would never happen.

    When it comes down to it being a state rep is kind of a sweet gig, you get power and influence, people generally return your calls, you can parlay it into other opportunities and you are an important person in your community.

    To get one of these gigs in some parts of the state, you have to go through Madigan. It is the way things work and if he is responsible in part for you having that sweet gig and can reduce your chances of keeping that sweet gig if you don’t play along, you play along.


  27. - William j Kelly - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:28 am:

    My definition of a dope has always been someone who can’t take (or even recognize) a joke. Being able to laugh makes life in “Rahm’s murder capital” bearable. But I must admit having people who don’t know me call me a dope gets a little old.


  28. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:36 am:

    ===Being able to laugh makes life in “Rahm’s murder capital” bearable.===

    Using “murder capitol” in a joke is Dopey. I don’t have to know anyone when a classless joke speaks for itself.

    I fed you. You’re fed. “Now I haveta turn my back on ya.”


  29. - Arizona Bob - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:37 am:

    @OW

    =Those Metra trains from DuPage, are carrying workers into… into Chicago.=

    You probably don’t work, OW, but increasingly workers are doing a “reverse commute” FROM Chicago to the burbs like Schaumburg and Naperville.

    Many companies are setting up shuttle busses from the Metra stations to the offices.

    Most Chicagoans prefer to drive, however. Check the outbound traffic on the Ike sometime in the morning rush hour.


  30. - From the 'Dale to HP - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:39 am:

    Trib Ed Board continues to do more harm to Illinois than Madigan. And it’s not even close.


  31. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:40 am:

    ===increasingly workers are doing a “reverse commute” FROM Chicago to the burbs===

    Yep. Meaning they prefer to live in the city. Kinda undercuts some of your other remarks.


  32. - Joe Bidenopolous - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:42 am:

    =That and a shabby culture of government-as-patronage-machine for the friends of Michael Madigan=

    Madigan invented that culture? That’s some selective memory right there. No patronage under Big Jim, Little Jim and GHR? No prisons as a downstate republicans jobs program? Ok. Have they even been to Springfield? For decades, to get a state job you had to go through Cellini and the Republican party.


  33. - William j Kelly - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:45 am:

    Oswego, I highly recommend you NOT read gulag archipelago by some dope named Solzhenitsyn. It’s kind of a how to guide for surviving “Rahm’s murder capital.” I am sure you wouldn’t get it!;)


  34. - From the 'Dale to HP - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:46 am:

    Chicago is on the brink. Rahm appears to have gone out of his way to run the city into the ground: done nothing to fix the city’s finances, crime is worse than when he started, the kind of a mess schools are now a a complete mess. But the Trib writes daily editorials comparing MJM to “pick your brutal 20th century dictator” and why not allowing illegal signatures to be legal is a crime against democracy.

    These guys on the Ed Board have failed the city and the state. Time to look in the mirror and write an editorial about that.


  35. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:46 am:

    ===You probably don’t work, OW,===

    Are you seeing what I am doing way out in Arizona? And I was worried about the Feds spying on me.

    ===..,but increasingly workers are doing a “reverse commute” FROM Chicago to the burbs like Schaumburg and Naperville.===

    Rich hit that point pretty hard against the rest of your argument. Chicago ain’t Detroit. It’s the 3rd largest city in America, so people seem to “be” in Chicago.


  36. - Angry Chicagoan - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:49 am:

    If the Trib continues to be this off-base editorially, they’ll continue to be part of the problem. Madigan has a deeply reactionary and lemming-like element in his caucus, and I think part of the problem is that he’s not — for good reasons as well as bad — willing to boss them. You need some people who get out a bit more, who don’t have their mind shackled to their home town or home neighborhood or their professional organization or union, but actually have some broader life experience.


  37. - Arizona Bob - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:50 am:

    @Rich
    =Yep. Meaning they prefer to live in the city. Kinda undercuts some of your other remarks.=

    I don’t believe I ever said that certain parts of Chicago aren’t GREAT places to live. Young people without families absolutely love the dining, night life, shopping, and parks. The lake is spectacular.

    That’s the biggest tragedy here. When we had friends from Europe and South America in Chicago, the beauty and excitement took their breath away.

    Chicago and Illinois have all the assets to be a paradise; prosperous, beautiful, mostly good people.

    The biggest problem is the political cesspool running it and the dopes who keep supporting the crooks in charge. That’s the real tragedy.


  38. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 9:58 am:

    Lake county Democrat:

    You left out a few morsels:

    1) all of this whining about the map ignores the fact that Madigan beat Republicans on their own map. He did it by recruiting less liberal candidates. Republicans are taking the opposite approach: kowtowing to party extremists on issues like marriage equality and the budget.

    You can argue about whether it should be a majority or a supermajority, but it is hardly shocking that in a state as blue as Illinois, democrats are in the majority in the legislature.

    My brain ain’t what it used to be, but I don’t recall Republicans or the Tribune complaining when Madigan passed a gerrymandered Congressional map in 2002 designed to protect GOP Congressmen, especially Mark Kirk.


  39. - Brass - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:05 am:

    Madigan should be asked to release his tax returns.


  40. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:09 am:

    ===Madigan should be asked to release his tax returns.===

    Ok, and what is your rationale? Do you live in his House District? Are you a member of the GA, and have a vote for Speaker? Do you have evidence of some sort of ….I don’t even know.

    Maybe you should show his property tax bill compared to his neighbors and compared to the neighborhood, then get back to us.

    BTW. - YDD -, great stuff there explaining to - LCD -. Well done.


  41. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:25 am:

    Are they letting VanillaMan write their editorials now?

    I consider the editorial to be unprofessional and an embarrassment. My comments yesterday reflected on the report issued as unsurprising and shouldn’t be surprising in that Mr. Madigan’s mode of operation was perfectly acceptable back when he began his political career. I don’t dislike Mr. Speaker for doing what works for him and had been working for generations.

    I believe I balanced my comments by chiding those who are surprised. Those who wish to believe that those in powerful offices that predate the 21st Century, ought to have somehow changed their political behavior in order to accommodate their nice little ethic reforms, are naïve - not because Mr. Madigan is evil, but because they believed that the way they dreamed about how government works didn’t find acceptance by our state’s most successful politician.

    You do what works. Mr. Madigan’s way has worked enough to get him where he is today. Who is going to begin demanding and expecting that he will bow to our ethical niceties, especially when he sincerely believes, and has proven successful at, doing politics his way? Who is being harmed by getting a political favor from our Speaker of the House? If someone is getting shafted, or the public is not being served by the granting of a favor from Mr. Speaker, then focus on how they are being shafted or the public is being served.

    Bottom line - your assumption of my views on this issue couldn’t be more wrong. The language used in this “editorial” was intended to insult and generate controversy. The editorial is flat-out poorly done. I disagree with it.

    There. Get it yet?


  42. - forwhatitsworth - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:30 am:

    Even though I enjoy the Tribune’s attack on Madigan, they continue to propagandize the pension benefits as the source of all of Illinois’ economic woes. State pension retirement benefits are not extravagant, over generous, excessive, profligate, squandering, decadent, reckless, and shameful as the Tribune would want the public to believe, but hard-earned and modest benefits for a lifetime of service and dedication to the people of Illinois. The normal cost of funding the pension systems is very reasonable and manageable. It’s the debt factor due to underfunding and holidays on the part of the politicians that is responsible for this tragedy.


  43. - lake county democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:31 am:

    YDD and OW - those are completely SEPARATE points than either I made or the Tribune editorial! So much so I suspect you are being willfully obtuse. Did I say that the GOP would be in the majority if we had fair maps? Or even unfair GOP-created maps? Let alone that Dem control in such scenarios would be “shocking.” Not at all.

    YDD inadvertantly makes my point: he admits that the mapping might have given the Dems a supermajority. Stop and think about that for a second: by minimizing the principle of “one man, one vote,” a party might have managed to give itself complete power to pass legislation, power it otherwise would have had. (And for the record, I’ve been against gerrymandering since at least 1989 - my first letter on the subject I have a copy of and well before Mark Kirk’s race).

    The point is that gerrymandering is a crime against democracy no mater how inept the losing party is or how skilled the wining power is. Agree with that or disagree or shrug, but don’t conflate the arguments.


  44. - OneMan - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:31 am:

    I do think revelations of outside income for legislators wouldn’t be a bad idea…

    It isn’t ever going to happen however.


  45. - Goooner - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:44 am:

    Reading the remarks of Bill Kelly is like listening to a four year old when he lacks a nap.

    All of Bill’s comments can be summarized as “AACCCK! LOOK AT ME!”

    Sorry Bill, but an insult from Oswego and this comment are all you get.


  46. - steve schnorf - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:45 am:

    I think the ed board at the Trib is losing it, reality starting to fade away, decompensation accelerating. Either that, or they have hired some 5th graders to write schoolyard taunts.


  47. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:46 am:

    I am new here but I find the bickering and snide commentary on this blog amusing and bewildering at the same time. (I know..I don’t have to read it but there is terrific info to be found here) What continues to occur to me is that the blame game is absurd. The condition of our state is not the sole domain of a single party but the conscious efforts of the entire political process. It would be naive to think that one party is less corrupt than the other or that Chicago is more corrupt than downstate. Until the day that the citizens of our state decide enough is enough and wade through the morass of spin little actual change will occur. We have some real problems and there are reasonable solutions but until it is politically advantageous to actually to solve problems it will not happen.


  48. - Anyone Remember - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:46 am:

    YDD -

    Thank you for pointing out Madigan won 4 of 5 elections using the GOP map. Notice the Senate Dems under Emil couldn’t?


  49. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:47 am:

    ===Notice the Senate Dems under Emil couldn’t? ====

    Yeah, but he did come within a few hundred votes in 96.


  50. - Goooner - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:48 am:

    Reading the editorial, I wonder what they are trying to accomplish.

    They lay it on so thick (including “Dear Leader”) that it sounds ridiculous.

    A strong case can be made that the Speaker is not serving the interests of the rank and file.

    That sort of case may sway a few reps.

    But this? People read it and shrug. It is just the Trib being the Trib. Who cares? This will convince nobody. Heck, since it is not behind the firewall, it won’t even sell papers or subscriptions. Why bother?


  51. - Wensicia - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:55 am:

    Dear Leader?!!

    The drama queens on the editorial board have succeeded turning the Tribune into little more than a tabloid rag, a disgrace for the many good reporters and columnists they’ve accumulated over the years. The John Kass virus has rendered them delusional and inconsequential.


  52. - lake county democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 10:57 am:

    So if I’m following Anyone Remember, the reasoning of the non-GOP posters here is:

    1) Madigan won control of the state house under a GOP-favorable gerrymandered map.

    2) This should be primarily attributed to his great political skill and any other explanations (like the state was becoming more blue, the GOP was becoming more radical) should be discounted.

    3) Because of this great skill, gerrymandering is a good thing when Madigan is doing it (not sure how they feel when it’s Rick Perry doing it).


  53. - Wallinger Dickus - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:02 am:

    I think the ed board at the Trib is losing it, reality starting to fade away, decompensation accelerating. Either that, or they have hired some 5th graders to write schoolyard taunts. Schnorf

    Take it back, Schnorf. As a fifth grader I resemble those remarks.


  54. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:08 am:

    (Sigh)

    ===1) Madigan won control of the state house under a GOP-favorable gerrymandered map.===

    Four out of five tries. Not once, four times, in a row, and after being in the Minority.

    ===2) This should be primarily attributed to his great political skill and any other explanations (like the state was becoming more blue, the GOP was becoming more radical) should be discounted.===

    - YDD - explained, and to help you, the candidates and issues that best the GOP carried the day with the electorate in swing districts, even as they were turning a shade of “Blue”, the candidates and issues appealed to voters more than the GOP choices they were offered.

    ===3) Because of this great skill, gerrymandering is a good thing when Madigan is doing it (not sure how they feel when it’s Rick Perry doing it).===

    Gerrymandering only works if the candidates offered up to those districts mirror what the voters consider favorable over another choice. Still gotta win, Daniels and his Crew learned that.

    MJM candidates lose in primaries, opposite party of the gerrymandered districts win those districts if they appeal to the district’s concerns.

    Instead of worrying about maps, how about working “Plusses” to win, when turnout is do low that controlled “Plusses” can win the day. Use all that “victim” energy, abc channel it towards recruitment and field ops.


  55. - anon - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:21 am:

    If Emil would have had the patronage army the Speaker has he would have won too! Nothing like door to door during work hours..ha!


  56. - Try-4-Truth - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:30 am:

    ====- anon - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:21 am:

    If Emil would have had the patronage army the Speaker has he would have won too! Nothing like door to door during work hours..ha!======

    What are you talking about? Let’s remember why Lee Daniels went down, ok.


  57. - Goooner - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:31 am:

    The Trib has another editorial referring to certain protestors as the “Drunk Uncle-ization of America.”

    Yes, the people who compare the Speaker of the Illinois House to the leader of North Korea are also complaining about the low level of political discourse.

    Ahh, the irony!

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/huppke/ct-talk-huppke-drunk-uncle-20140708,0,615165.story


  58. - walker - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:33 am:

    When Madigan wins competitive districts drawn by Republicans, it’s political shenanigans. When he wins in competitive districts drawn by Democrats, it’s that darn gerrymandering. When he loses competitive districts, somehow remapping was not the issue.

    When Madigan fails to move teacher pension cost-shifting in the House, it’s because he secretly didn’t want it to pass. When he succeeds in moving pension reforms attacking the unions, he’s the Trib’s hero for a day.

    When House Dems vote against Madigan, and they often do, they must have been told by him to do so, even when the bill fails. When they vote with him, they’re simple mushrooms.

    Sometimes, in the Trib’s mind, he is too much of a boss. Other times too little.

    Such nonsense. Too bad all this babble doesn’t solve or even propose anything.

    Lake Co Dem: Some of your criticisms of Dem and Madigan influence, like on judge-making, are well taken and legitimate. They lead to worse government than we should expect. IMO, criticisms of the failure of the big petition drives fall short, in that the Remapping reform petitions could could easily have passed Election Board review, like the Term Limits petitions did. It probably will succeed next time, after they tweak the language some as well. Hard to lay that failure on Madigan. The Term Limits petition was a disaster because of it’s structure and design, which many called out the first day they saw it.

    As for patronage, it leads to worse than possible government. How we actually end it, even as what many do now is perfectly legal, is a bigger issue than law-changes and enforcement. We have to stop expecting our elected officials to do these things for us, and reject them when they are offered.


  59. - Upon Further Review - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:38 am:

    Emil Jones failed to wrest control of the State Senate under a Republican map, but it is more of an indictment of Lee Daniels for failing to do more with House candidates during the same decade. Pate had a much better Senate campaign organization that Daniels.


  60. - walker - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:41 am:

    Just an observation: The House Republicans vote as a bloc at least as often as the Dems.

    Would the Trib call Republican members “forlorn little mushrooms” and “dupes” of Cross or Durkin?

    I wouldn’t.


  61. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:43 am:

    ===… but it is more of an indictment of Lee Daniels for failing to do more with House candidates during the same decade. Pate had a much better Senate campaign organization that Daniels.===

    Spot on. After Tristano got the gavel for Daniels, it all went south politically during the elections by the Senior Staff Crew, not the Crew running the races on the Ground. Then there is the - Try 4 Truth - point not lost on us all.

    - walker -,

    Very well done. Big props, well said.

    This. “Map” crutch is just a crutch for those unwilling to win in the precincts, or even know how to win it on the streets.


  62. - Soccermom - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:44 am:

    the “Dear Leader” thing was unseemly.


  63. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:48 am:

    Lake County Democrat, your idealism is admirable, however, you would have Illinois unilaterally disarm itself on the matter of redistricting, while scads of red states show no inclination to change their approach in a similar fashion to what you advocate. Given the extremist turn of the national GOP, cannot see how that would possibly be in our state’s or the nation’s best interests. Why don’t you back a plan that if, and only if, states representing 80% of the nation’s population enact non-partisan redistricting procedures, then such a system would go into effect in Illinois?


  64. - Norseman - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:49 am:

    Let me know when the Tribune becomes relevant again. They’ve been so far out there that I’ve ignored them. I think their financial problems drove away any talent with a brain.


  65. - Snucka - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:49 am:

    “Dear Leader” is the new Hitler comparison.


  66. - lake county democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 11:52 am:

    Ack, I just wrote a response to OW and it didn’t seem to post. My short respose is that nobody is arguing “you still gotta win” - I even mentioned the GOP running less centrist candidates in my previous post. By your argument, if the gerrymandering was targeted at African-Americans but somehow they managed to win districts drawn against them, gerrymandering is no longer an issue. Moreover, even if you don’t agree with YDD that gerrymandering may have delivered a supermajority to Madigan, you can’t predict the future: just because it hasn’t played a big role in the past doesn’t mean it won’t in the future.

    I disagree about MJD and the primaries: he rarely loses and the limits on campaign contributions in the primaries/generous cap for the party contributions is enough to discourage many from even trying. The exceptions prove the rule: CTU failed miserably when they tried to go against Madigan notwithstanding their rare victory in the TB/WG “perfect storm” race.

    I was going to say that it’s possible to do both (work for reform candidates and back institutional pro-democratic change) but that’s flip - you’re right that one sucks energy out of the other, but I think the idea that reformers can achieve meaningful change through electing candidates is quixotic at best. Democrats are being told they can either vote for Rauner or stop whining about wanting fair and clean government - I’m not satisfied with those choices.


  67. - Toure's Latte - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 12:01 pm:

    The genius of Madigan confounds his enemies. He allows consensus to form without a “my way or the highway” brutishness the IL GOPers seem to admire. He has a reliable fall-back of GOP dopes so he can grant vote exemptions to fellow Dems as needed. He plays chess where the GOP plays hopscotch. With respect OW, 60 votes is a GOP wet dream never to be realized while Madigan is in charge.


  68. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 12:03 pm:

    ===. By your argument, if the gerrymandering was targeted at African-Americans but somehow they managed to win districts drawn against them, gerrymandering is no longer an issue.===

    How about Ald. Fioretti and his Ward?


  69. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 12:05 pm:

    ===With respect OW, 60 votes is a GOP wet dream never to be realized while Madigan is in charge.===

    Except in 1994? Yeah, except then.


  70. - Upon Further Review - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 12:31 pm:

    Maybe the Tribsters need to depart from the North Shore and Du Page County and relocate to Madigan’s House District and register and vote…


  71. - anon - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 12:48 pm:

    Wait a minute. I thought the justices on the Illinois Supreme Court were supposed to be dupes in Madigan’s pocket on the pension theft scheme. Have to imagine that the strong wording of the Kanerva opinion might have been a reaction to those statements by Madigan.


  72. - Precinct Captain - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 12:51 pm:

    ==Maybe the Tribsters need to depart from the North Shore and Du Page County and relocate to Madigan’s House District and register and vote…==

    LOL, I bet the half of them that have been south of Roosevelt Road have only made it to Hyde Park.


  73. - walker - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 12:54 pm:

    One of the reasons I support a less party-driven remap process, as “independent” as it can be, is that it will become less of a distraction from more important issues, and less of an excuse.

    It’s no silver bullet — it’s more a spitball in the scheme of things.

    It should also become less of a lever to be used versus individual legislators. That’s important.


  74. - Steve - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 1:17 pm:

    “Dear Leader” is funny stuff. Maybe the Trib can go to Mike to get their property taxes cut.


  75. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 1:48 pm:

    I find very little evidence to support that the values of Illinoisans have shifted to the left over the past 20 years. There have been demographic shifts, with populations in rural Illinois declining. Those areas used to be represented both by Republicans and conservative Democrats, and I would say the proportion with conservative Democrats has declined.

    Suburban populations have exploded as Chicago has declined. More and more Chicagoans have moved to the suburbs and exurbs. That makes the complaints against gerrymandering pretty funny. No one objected to Democrats representing these families when they lived in Bridgeport or Orland Park, but somehow when that family moves to Will County or even K3, it is a grave injustice.

    And anyone who denies that Democrats recruited by Madigan became both more fiscally and socially conservative following 1994 simply was not there. See “Jack Franks” and “Kevin McCarthy” for further reference.

    If Durkin wants the majority back, he is going to have recruit candidates who are as liberal as Jack Franks is conservative. Instead, folks like Beth Coulson have been drive out of the party.

    Finally, it is worth noting that the loss of the Secretary of State office in 1998 and subsequent investigation and conviction of George Ryan decimated a GOP patronage army built over decades, and the Republican Party has never recovered. There will never be anything as effective as real people talking to real voters, and Senate Democrats and Senate Republicans enjoy a huge advantage there.

    Speaking of which, I certainly would not slight Senate Democrats. Four year terms and less turnover generally made it much harder to move the caucus to the center. That said, Garrett, Bond, Kotowski…Senate sure has recruited some impressive candidates. Cullerton and his former campaign chief, Jay Rowell, deserve every ounce of praise they have received.


  76. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 1:55 pm:

    - YDD -,

    If you could tell that to My Party for me, and have them actually listen, I would appreciate that.

    Recruitment of mirroring candidates to the strengths of the districts;

    Diversity;

    Ground Game;

    Governing from “middle-right middle”;

    The rest takes care of itself. The hard work, sweat, tears, laughs, and smiles begin with understanding what wins, abc how to win.

    My Party has forgotten, but we’re not “out”, we are just down.

    Great insight, - YDD -.


  77. - Enviros-Anon - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 3:01 pm:

    Both political parties are to blame for the financial problems in Illinois, not one party and certainly not one person. The Tribune editorial is using blame shifting and forgets that the Tribune has a less than perfect financial record.


  78. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 4:29 pm:

    Willy -

    Tempting. Like alcoholics, organizations usually are not capable of transformational change until they hit rock bottom, and I don’t think they think that they have fallen that far yet.

    That said, I think Radogno and Durkin are far better than Pate and Lee. Cross was great with the sound bites, but Durkin seems a better strategist and more committed to his caucus. It is hard to say anything about Frank Watson because he despised Blago so much, long before it was fashionable, and that endeared him the me.


  79. - Anon - Wednesday, Jul 9, 14 @ 4:36 pm:

    Actually, GOP legislators vote as a block more often than Democrats, who have Jack Franks remember. Nekritz voted against Madigan’s rules, while no Republican voted against Daniels’ rules, even tho it introduced the unanimous consent rule they have been complaining about ever since Madigan adopted the GOP policy.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Reader comments closed for the weekend
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* *** UPDATED x5 - Motion approved - Noven to withdraw - $421 million budget hit - One appointee appears to be ineligible - The plot thickens as three new board members appointed *** Controversy expected at TRS hearing today
* React to remap reform ruling
* Divided court kicks remap reform off ballot
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