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Raoul utterly perplexed at story

Friday, Jul 18, 2014

* Sneed

In the wake of Cook County Board Chairman Toni Preckwinkle’s hasty exit as a possible mayoral contender, Sneed is told there is a move to fill the void with two male contenders in the black community: State Sen. Kwame Raoul and former Illinois Senate President Emil Jones Jr.

Some folks might actually be pushing this, but it’s ludicrous on its face. For instance, buried way down

On Wednesday, the Sun-Times reported that Raoul had taken himself out of the running.

I called Kwame today and he said he’d been asked by a Sun-Times reporter if he was interested and he categorically declared he was not. And he was not amused with today’s story. He didn’t put himself out there and he’s not interested in running, so he couldn’t have “taken himself out of the running.”

So, forget that story.

* And Emil? Really?

Sneed also hears a movement to draft former Illinois political powerhouse Emil Jones Jr., into the high-stakes race against Mayor Rahm Emanuel is in the works.

“Our intent is to tamp down support for CTU President Karen Lewis for mayor because there is no way she can bring the black community together on the schools issue to develop a black consensus,” said a major supporter of Jones supporter who asked not to be identified — but is well-known in the political structure of the African-American community.

“We need someone who can win,” the source said. “Emil was prominently mentioned in the mayoral election. He just needs to be cajoled and convinced.”

The man is 78 years old. He’s an old school politico. His time is long past.

If they do run him it will solely be to split the black vote against Lewis. And that’s what this is all about. Reelecting Rahm.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - OneMan - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:20 am:


  2. - Under Further Review - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:28 am:

    Has Sneed gone completely gaga?

    Emil Jones? Has she missed any of the lawsuits directed against “Emil Jones, Sr., State University” also known as “Chicago State University” in some quarters? Jones and his madcap gang of patronage workers, plagiarists and poltroons have been looting that university for years.

    Imagine what this group could do at City Hall.

  3. - Bored Chairman - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:32 am:

    Would love to see a three-way debate between Rahm, Emil, and Lewis.

  4. - Gator - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:33 am:

    “And that’s what this is all about. Reelecting Rahm.”

    Bingo. I feel bad for the laypeople who read that article but can’t read between the lines.

  5. - Team Sleep - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:33 am:

    Senator Raoul would make a good Attorney General.

  6. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:34 am:

    What about Roland Burris and Carol Moseley Braun?

  7. - lake county democrat - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:34 am:

    Is this a good election for “the left” to win anyway? Like I wrote with Lewis - it’s a lose-lose situation. If the race turns into a referrendum on CTU and/or city worker unions and they lose, they hand Rahm a mandate. If they win, they face a horrible financial crisis, arguably worse than the state’s, where they would wear the collar for anything that goes wrong (and you suspect some of Rahm/Daley’s corporate interests would be happy to help out in that). The lure of power may be too great and I’d hardly be surprised to see Bob Fioretti run, but sitting this one out and waiting for things to be even worse for Rahm (if he’s even interested in more than two terms) isn’t a dumb play.

  8. - Richard - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:35 am:

    Boy, Sneed comes up with some wacky stuff, but this takes the cake. She obviously doesn’t read her own paper given Kwame’s Sherman-like statement from a day earlier. Emil??? Who in God’s name is her source?

    Having said that, if Lewis doesn’t run, there will be a big push to find a “name” African-American candidate.

  9. - A guy... - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:40 am:

    The debate should be outside and sponsored by Kool.

  10. - walker - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:41 am:

    Literally laughed out loud.

    Who fed this to her, and why? Someone just to scare off Lewis? Was it a Rahm ally wanting to muddy the waters?

  11. - Norseman - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:41 am:

    Rich nails it!

  12. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:42 am:

    Yeah, I imagine the Emanuel camp gave it to Sneed. What does she care if it makes no sense? She has to feed the elephant.

    Pretty nasty, though, putting Raoul out there as a stalking horse when he was already on the record as a “no.” You’re messing with the dude’s standing in the community.

    And Emil? How could anyone take that seriously?

    If Emanuel wants a stalking horse, like 47 said, I’m sure Burris is available.

    Plus, he has experience. I think for Blago’s first run, the price was a $1 million campaign “loan,” (never repaid).

    The price is probably higher now, but I imagine Griff and Emanuel’s other pals could cover it.

  13. - OldSmoky2 - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:50 am:

    ===If they do run him it will solely be to split the black vote against Lewis. And that’s what this is all about. Reelecting Rahm.===

    That’s exactly what I thought when I read this story this morning. And, willingly or unwittingly, Sneed took the bait hook, line, and sinker. What would be more interesting than this purported “scoop” would be to know which of Emanuel’s backers fed this to her.

  14. - Almost the Weekend - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:52 am:

    With Preckwinkle out, I hope Lewis runs just to get a couple laughs, her debating Rahm for instance, she doesn’t stand a chance.

    Lake County Democrat at 10:34. I couldn’t agree more with your statement. If Rauner wins in November, Lewis (the public employee) candidate getting shellacked in early 2015 would be the icing on the cake.

  15. - Sbarro McArby's - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 10:54 am:

    When she reports that there’s a ‘movement’ for something, how many people does that require? 1? 2? 3?

  16. - forwhatitsworth - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:12 am:

    Sounds like a typical strategy to divide the Black vote.

  17. - Century Club - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:15 am:

    You have to hand it to the Chicago Machine - even if it looks different than the old days.

    Raoul’s name helps freeze the people who like Preckwinkle, and Jones gives cover to machine African Americans who would be under pressure to choose between Rham and Lewis. Doesn’t matter if the Raoul part is ludicrous, as long as his name ends up in a bunch of stories, it serves the purpose. And with Jones, he runs or he’s a placeholder name to create time to find someone. Again, the story serves its purpose regardless.

  18. - yo - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:16 am:

    Yup. Which is the way Rahm won the first time. Remember the “black community” choosing a “consensus candidate” at Rainbow Push headquarters??? I still shake my head at that. CMB went out and did what she was supposed to do, which was give Rahm the black vote. Then he closed a ton of schools, in their neighborhoods. Oops. But JJ, and CMB and everybody else got theirs, and the people got nothin. the USA in 2014. incredible.

  19. - Goooner - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:19 am:

    When I saw the story, I didn’t pay close enough attention and assumed they were discussing Threemil, which, I thought, would be pretty ridiculous.

    But Emil? That’s genuinely as ridiculous as a CMB run.

    Regarding Fioretti — he’s got no chance in his own ward, so why not? Nothing to lose. He’s not raising money like he should, but he performed as alderman like he should, so that’s nothing new. I assume he’s in it, and that he will lose by 40.

  20. - Levois - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:27 am:

    Robert Shaw is running in this race too and I believe the same age as Emil Jones. They’re both of the same generation but unlike the former state Senate Prez Shaw is looking for his last hurrah.

    Also Rahm is fielding fake candidates to split significant blocks of votes?

  21. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:31 am:

    –Shaw is looking for his last hurrah.–

    If “hurrah” is a synonym for “payday.”

  22. - Chicago Publius - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:37 am:

    Upshot: Sneed trying to stay relevant.

    Backshot: unknown sources trying to denigrate Karen Lewis and split the vote at Rahm’s behest.

    Slapshot: Sneed’s already become a shill for the Burkes, so now she’s shilling for Rahm?

    Hotshot: Watch Karen Lewis use this bloc-fracturing strategy to build a larger coalition.

    Buckshot: Sneed and her un-named divisive sources can scurry home with their tails between their legs.

  23. - Robert the Bruce - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:38 am:

    ==Regarding Fioretti — he’s got no chance in his own ward, so why not? Nothing to lose. He’s not raising money like he should, but he performed as alderman like he should, so that’s nothing new. I assume he’s in it, and that he will lose by 40.==
    Yup, I imagine he’s just in it to take some shots at Rahm, and perhaps 2% of the vote away from Rahm. He’s one of the few who don’t vote the way Rahm wants.

  24. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:44 am:

    Sen. Raoul is keeping his powder dry.

    That is the only “thing” of significance here, including a possible belief that Sneed is still relevant outside breaking US Attorney news, which she is THE official “unofficial” word on what could be going on with “the guys down the street”.

  25. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:52 am:

    – Sneed is still relevant outside breaking US Attorney news, which she is THE official “unofficial” word on what could be going on with “the guys down the street”. –

    I think those guys are gone. Their names used to pop up in a positive way in the column, but not anymore.

    With some of the Chicago “political” columnists, it’s easy to determine who their anonymous sources are for inside dirt. The sources never take a hit, just praise.

  26. - Postman - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:53 am:

    Well, that takes care of that.

    The Chicago Mayoral election of 2015 settled in mid-July 2014.

    I love Chicago! So efficient.

  27. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 11:58 am:

    ===I think those guys are gone. Their names used to pop up in a positive way in the column, but not anymore.===

    Well…there are the Burkes, Jay Doherty…

    I’m glad she’s there for that I suppose…

  28. - Formerly Known As... - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:01 pm:

    Postman - it almost reminds one of the recent Democratic primary for governor, doesn’t it?

    So much speculation and excitment over actually having a choice between Quinn, Daley, Madigan, possibly Raoul and others, then -nada-. Here’s your choice!

  29. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:03 pm:

    Who the heck is Jay Doherty, anyway?

  30. - Chris - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:06 pm:

    “Also Rahm is fielding fake candidates to split significant blocks of votes?”

    Is? Not yet. Will, if needed? Sure, of course he will. He’s DaMare, after all–isn’t that how it’s done?

    Anyone have a *serious* suggestion for someone who would (1) do a good job with the various financial/crime/school messes of the city, (2) could even plausibly get elected (feel free to assume, arguendo, that this person could find a benefactor to raise $$ to keep up with Rahm) , and (3) has even the tiniest interest in getting the job?

  31. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:07 pm:

    Who was Carol supposed to be a stalking horse for in 2011? She wasn’t a very good one. She got less than 9% of the vote.

    Emanuel won big with 55%, Chico was second with 24%.

    In 2002, however, Burris helped Blago a lot in the city against Vallas.

    Final statewide primary vote:

    Blago: 37%
    Vallas: 34%
    Burris: 29%

  32. - wordslinger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:09 pm:

    –Who the heck is Jay Doherty, anyway?–

    He was Teddy Kennedy’s guy in Chicago for a long time.

  33. - LincolnLounger - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:27 pm:

    Forgive my ignorance of ward politics, but is it true that Fioretti cannot get re-elected in his ward?

  34. - Property taxpayer - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:38 pm:

    This is part of the Sun-Times increasingly obvious marketing ploy of trying to sell papers by ginning up a mayoral race controversy, including the publishing of two bogus polls (see Crains for a more accurate and professional recent poll).

  35. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:38 pm:

    ===but is it true that Fioretti cannot get re-elected in his ward?===

    That’s an overstatement, but it will be difficult for him because the newly drawn 2nd ward is on the North Side and snakes its way from Logan Square to the Gold Coast, in some places only a block wide. And he doesn’t live there yet.

    But he is currently representing it, so you never know. Like every other race, it’ll depend on the field.

  36. - roscoe tom - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:42 pm:

    Can you just imagine Emil Jones explaining his double dipping and multiple pensions as he “addresses” pension reform in the campaign?

  37. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:46 pm:

    === but it will be difficult for him===

    I had heard he couldn’t actually run in that ward.

  38. - yo - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:49 pm:

    Word- CMB was a stalking horse for Emanuel. She gave Rahm the black vote. Wasn’t so much about the % she got. remember her “crack head” comment?

  39. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:53 pm:

    I hadn’t heard that Rich, and it seems odd given that he’s representing that area now as Alderman.

  40. - Goooner - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 12:53 pm:


    Fioretti is only technically “representing” the ward. He was annoyed by the re-map and has largely ignored the new turf while focusing on getting himself publicity as he runs for his next office.

    He’s been nearly invisible.

    In contrast, there are two solid candidates who have declared and probably at least one more. But even in a split field, Bob would likely do no better than third in a race.

    When Bob thought he could advance by being Mayor Daley’s lackey, he went that route. Now that he realizes that he’s lost his ward and needs attention, suddenly he’s a thorn in the side of the mayor. It doesn’t matter. Nobody likes the guy and nobody trusts him.

    So I think he’s going to run for mayor, on the hope that “Anybody but Rahm” can do it, but realistically, people will choose Rahm over him. Time for Bob to get back to practicing law full time.

  41. - West Side the Best Side - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:00 pm:

    There really is no such person as Michael Sneed. Its just a stock photo and made-up name. Her column is really authored by someone behind the curtain on behalf of the Chicago version of Kass’s “Combine”. If the Burkes or the Daleys or the rich behind the scene folks want to stir up the pot, they’ll get nonsense like that published in the hopes that some people might think its real. I mean, come on, if a writer has to use “Translation” in their stories, what does that say about the quality of the story or the writer.

  42. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:01 pm:

    Thanks Goooner, I wasn’t trying to tout Fioretti, merely saying that he isn’t precluded by law from running for 2nd Ward Alderman if he chooses to (as far as I know). There seemed to be some question about that earlier in this comment thread.

    But thanks for using my comment to pivot on a negative rant against him. Glad I could help you with that.

  43. - Goooner - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:05 pm:

    I actually thought I was answering your question about his efforts in the ward.
    No, there is no legal bar to prevent him from running again.

  44. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:10 pm:

    Except I didn’t ask any question about his efforts in the ward. Leave me out of it please.

  45. - D owntown C ommando - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:23 pm:

    I’d ignore any comment ‘Goooner’ makes on Fioretti. If he is who I think he is he has an almost pathological dislike for Fioretti. It helps when you hang out at the Boss Bar and were on the payroll of one of Fioretti’s aldermanic enemies.

    Any serious candidate not of the obvious hack variety would have a good chance at beating Rahm. He is that hated by most groups in the city. Karen Lewis is just too unlikeable. Jones and the surviving Shaw twin are way too old and way too hackish. Kwame could do it, but apparently won’t. Preckwinkle doesn’t have the fire to take on Mayor 9.5. Dart could beat Rahm, but I wonder if he too lacks the fire to do it.

    I think even Fioretti could beat Rahm. The key will be positioning oneself as the most likely to win anti Rahm candidate and raising 1 million dollars. If a runoff is necessary Rahm’s money isn’t going to mean all that much.

    Now if I were Governor Quinn’s political brain, does he have one, I’d be doing my best to find a viable black candidate to start running against Rahm YESTERDAY along with a huge voter registration drive. Get those folks excited and voting in November prior to the Mayoral election.

    2014 Governor’s Race is shaping up like 2010. Two unlikable candidates enter and one must win. Turnout may be key.

  46. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:25 pm:

    ===Now if I were Governor Quinn’s political brain, does he have one, I’d be doing my best to find a viable black candidate to start running against Rahm YESTERDAY===

    What Quinn needs is Lewis to go all-in and hope the CTU and other unions start soon to register tons of African-American and Latino voters for November, and doing same-day registration on election day. All those newbies will be eligible to vote in February too. He needs a spark in the black wards. Lewis could do it.

  47. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:27 pm:

    === It helps when you hang out at the Boss Bar===

    Take it easy.

  48. - Richard - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:48 pm:

    Let’s say Karen Lewis doesn’t run and Rauner beats Quinn in a super-close election. Wouldn’t it be fun if Quinn — given his paranoia towards Rahm — immediately puts petitions on the street to run for mayor?

  49. - D owntown C ommando - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 1:57 pm:

    ===Let’s say Karen Lewis doesn’t run and Rauner beats Quinn in a super-close election. Wouldn’t it be fun if Quinn — given his paranoia towards Rahm — immediately puts petitions on the street to run for mayor?===

    It’s not necessarily paranoia if Rahm is actually trying to get Rauner elected. Even paranoiacs have enemies.

    That is a delicious scenario. I can’t stand Rauner though so my first choice is Rauner loses by say 10,000 votes after some Romneyesque gaffe.

    Now that I think about it here’s a scenario. Quinn wins in November and puts out mayoral petitions just to stick it to 9.5. It wouldn’t happen, but perhaps Sneed will report on it in a column next week.

  50. - Connect the dots - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 3:12 pm:


    William J. Kelly has already declared. Game on. Kelly vs. Emanuel.


  51. - orzo - Friday, Jul 18, 14 @ 4:31 pm:

    I don’t think this has Rahm’s fingerprints. I tend to agree with those who say it’s her usual shilling for Burke, who tried to beat Rahm in the last election and probably is trying to find someone to run against him this time.

  52. - PrairieFire - Monday, Jul 21, 14 @ 9:31 am:

    Sneed’s source is pretty obvious - it’s Hermene Hartman. She sold-out to Rauner and company, and now, she is desperately trying to stay relevant and out of bankruptcy.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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