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Here it comes, campers - The Scott Lee Cohen debacle

Thursday, Feb 4, 2010

* Another Illinois political meltdown. This time, it’s about the Democratic nominee for lt. governor, Scott Lee Cohen…

The newly minted Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor said Wednesday he doesn’t think a 2005 domestic battery arrest should hurt him in the fall general election, although records in the case raise questions about his version of events.

Not gonna hurt him, eh? OK. Read on

But the official police and court records show that the woman alleged Cohen put a knife to her throat and pushed her head against the wall.

In their October 14 arrest report detailing the complaint from the 24-year-old woman, Chicago police noted they observed “mild abrasions from knife wound” on her neck. They also noted “minor scars on her hand from her trying to defend herself against the arrestee swinging the knife at her.” The report notes the woman was seen by ambulance personnel but not taken to a hospital. […]

Also, public records show that the alleged victim, Scott’s 24-year-old girlfriend at the time, was a prostitute. Six months before the October 2005 incident, she had been arrested after a police investigation of a Glenview massage parlor. She later pleaded guilty to a charge of prostitution.

That’s just… I dunno… I… Sheesh.

The charges were dropped against Cohen when the woman failed to pursue the case, but this is obviously not a good thing

“It was a difficult time in my life. I was going through a divorce, and I fell in with the wrong crowd,” Cohen said. “I was in a tumultuous relationship with the woman I was dating. We had a fight, but I never touched her.”


And Sen. Link was not the only one who tried to warn both Quinn and Hynes

State Sen. Terry Link (D-Vernon Hills), one of the unsuccessful candidates for lieutenant governor, and representatives of the other candidates met a month before the election with representatives of the Quinn and Hynes campaigns to warn them about Cohen, Link said.

“We tried to warn the governor beforehand and they didn’t want to listen to it,” Link said. “He and Dan should have issued a joint statement denouncing this guy.”

And the governor, as usual, dodged responsibility

Asked Wednesday night on WTTW’s “Chicago Tonight” if Cohen should step down from the ticket, Quinn replied, “I think he should come forward and tell us everything about his background. But anything dealing with that has to go through the [Democratic] state central committee. I want to see what Mr. Cohen has to say. I don’t give opinions until I hear all the facts from the person involved.”

Chairman/Speaker Madigan does bear responsibility. He’s the party chairman. But Cohen is the governor’s official running mate. He can’t just hide behind Madigan on this.

…Adding… One of the governor’s people says the guv was talking about the process of appointing a new nominee for lt. governor and not the process of kicking Cohen off the ballot.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - LINK - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:08 am:

    This is starting to sound like the old TV series “Soap” when Burt ran for sheriff….

  2. - IrishPirate - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:09 am:

    Madigan and Quinn both are responsible for this.

    Hopefully, Cohen will do the honorable thing and leave the ticket.

    I wouldn’t bet on it though.

  3. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:22 am:

    People, it’s not just the Trib. The CS-T had it as well. The problem was that by the time the stories were coming together, they were killed because the brass didn’t want to break anything like that so close to the election.

    There’s no conspiracy to “get” MJM or Quinn. Take a breath. Next one who dons the tinfoil hat is banned forever.

  4. - Will County Woman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:23 am:

    i’m so glad quinn won. in that trib article quinn also praised cohen. i would love to know from link when he told hynes and quinn. i suspect that he did so BEFORE quinn’s praise of slc.

    lest anyone think otherwise, i’m actually very happy that quinn-slc won. ;)

  5. - Chicago Cynic - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:24 am:


    Thanks for acknowledging that Madigan bears some responsibility. There’s a lot of blame to go around on this one - especially of the other candidates - but clearly the absence of a real state party is a major factor.

    One thought I had tonight. If the media wouldn’t do their job on this story before, why didn’t any of the candidates start beating the drum?

    Even something as simple as posting on their Facebook pages a message like, “____ wonders why nobody is asking Scott Lee Cohen about his 2005 arrest for Domestic Battery with his hooker girlfriend.” Candidates usually have plenty of journalists registered as “fans” who would have clued in.

    Oh well.

  6. - TJ - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:28 am:

    Every other Dem Lt. Gov. candidate is responsible for this mess, as they didn’t take the guy seriously and didn’t try to get the word out about this.

    The media is responsible for this mess, as they didn’t do their job and report the freaking criminal background of a candidate for statewide office until it was far too late.

    Quinn is responsible for this mess, as he did nothing against him during the campaign and is now potentially either stuck with this guy or has to deal with the disaster of trying to boot someone that won a statewide primary.

    Hynes is responsible for this mess, as he did nothing during the campaign and came within a few thousand votes of being stuck with the guy.

    Most importantly though, Madigan is responisble for this mess, as he’s the one that’s supposed to be in charge of the party, controls the purse for dozens of candidates statewide, and is effectively supposed to be the voice of reason for the State Democratic Party and could have easily, easily put his weight behind another candidate or, at the very least, shouted from atop his South Side mountaintop about the history of the guy when it was becoming clear that he had an excellent chance of winning following his very effective job fair radio ads.

    All in all, a colossal screw up with plenty of blame to go around. Regardless of what happens, if Cohen stays on the ballot or is removed, you’d better believe that the guy will be just another albatross hanging around the collective Dems’ necks when they’re already dealing with public repulsion from Blagojevich, Stroger, fiscal mismanagement, and the increasingly noticed and reviled Madigan Machine.

    As an Illinois Dem, this just another body blow a mere year and change after we elected one of our own to the White House.

    heh…. sorry for the minor rant there.

  7. - Anonymous - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:28 am:

    Sorry. I misspoke. CFL, Teamsters and the teachers union will demand that Quinn cleans house unless SLC drops out. They expect the same from the Hynes camp.

  8. - Dirt Digger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:34 am:

    “Unless SLC drops out.”

    A man who cuts his hooker girlfriend and thinks tax liens are no big deal is going to drop out why?

    Odds are higher he will find Jesus.

  9. - Will County Woman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:42 am:

    wow, tj. so you’re mad because slc got off his rear and actually campaigned for his office? then you hold his being successful at campaigning against him or view it as a fault? gee, i guess he could’ve just gone to funerals and pandered for votes, but no. slc had to do things the old fashioned way: he made his pitch directly to the people, and bypassed the il dems. he owes the il dems nothing here and shouldn’t step down.

    why should he quit for the il dems? he’s a self-made man, not a party hack waiting to take orders.

  10. - TJ - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:49 am:

    uh….. no offense, WCW, but you should reread my post. I never faulted the guy for campaigning effectively or pandering, nor did I suggest that he should quit. If anything, a whole lot of the candidates could learn a thing or two about getting a good message out.

    However, considering that someone brought battery charges against the guy not even a decade ago and none of the people I mentioned above did anything in an attempt to affect the race means that they are stuck with the guy as his alleged criminal record will become the focal point of not only the Lt. Gov’s race, but also become a laughing stock issue for Dem’s state wide.

    I’ll take a party hack over an accused felon any day of the week…. though I suppose the two kind of go hand in hand in Illinois eventually….

  11. - Reality - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:00 am:

    I am amused by the comment linking Plummer and Cohen made by Rep Fritchey above. Cohen is a Democrat mess. The Republicans are quite happy with Plummer. Don’t try and even put the two in the same class. Weird comment.

  12. - Steve Downstate - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:02 am:

    Rich, in some states (Michigan, for instance), the Lt Gov spot is not on the primary ballot; instead, the gubernatorial nominee names his/her own running mate, much like presidential nominees do. Do you think the SLC fiasco, coupled with the lesser quandry of the GOP being saddled with a 27-yr-old (not to mention A. Stevenson almost getting stuck with a LaRouche supporter back in ‘86), might provide momentum for a change to the state constitution regarding how the Lt Gov gets picked? Or is there more momentum for just eliminating that office? Thanks for your thoughts.

  13. - True Observer - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:13 am:

    The perfect storm:

    Quinn and Hynes are close so neither is going to do anything to alienate Cohen supporters.

    Under the Dem quota system, it was time for an african american. So naturally, two prominent blacks split the black vote.

    The media, in the Dems pocket, doesn’t want to soil them by mentioning anything about Cohen because, after all, Cohen didn’t have a prayer.

    Unlike Clooney, Cohen sailed through.

  14. - dznuts - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:15 am:

    It’s a constitutional convention issue, not something Quinn can unilaterily do on his own (hold the Blago jokes). This is something that won’t go away for another 9 years. If - and a big if- Cohen decides to quitely fade away off the ballot - Lisa Madigan would be next in line to take over in the event Quinn was unable to fulfill the duties of office. That, in itself, is an interesting angle.

  15. - T.J. - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:16 am:

    Weren’t Ted Kennedy and Joe Biden in their late twenties when they waltzed into their Senate seats? And Democrats all of a sudden object to the same thing for Lieutenant Governor?

    How old was Dan Hynes when he first won for Comptroller?

  16. - shore - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 2:41 am:

    biden was 29 when he was elected. but was able to do it because he turned 30 before he was sworn in.

    teddy was 31 when he was sworn in.

    no comment on how many democrats who are of age act like children.

    the media geta a 15 yard penalty for missing this. BEFORE THE ELECTIOn.

  17. - really? - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 5:57 am:

    This guy is a pawnbroker, a legitimate business, but people have to be naive to believe a pawnbroker would not have some contact with less upright citizens. On a more humorous side, at least he did not deny the whole thing.

  18. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 6:01 am:

    I heard an Art Turner radio spot last weekend that warned vaguely about a pawnbroker in the race, but it was too obscure to be effective.

    This brings back memories, none good for the Dems. If I recall, Madigan was the big heat behind Adlai at the time of the LaRouche fiasco.

    Madigan took a lot of blame back then. Of course, some thought it was a diabolical “chessmaster” plot to keep the guv’s office GOP….

    I was covering Hartigan HQ that primary night. He was laughing with tears in his eyes when it became apparent that Adlai was saddled with a LaRouchie.

    With a little help from Fox, Cohen could become the new star of the national Illinois freak show.

  19. - Hank - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 6:29 am:

    With a little help from Fox, Cohen could become the new star of the national Illinois freak show.

    It’s already started. Cohen, Alexi the mob guy and quivering Quinn
    Sit back and enjoy the show

  20. - Quinn T. Sential - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 6:55 am:

    The Fun-Times “Bright One” does not disappoint with its usual blazing front page headline.

    This political joke is ripe for a punchline contest.

    A pawnbroker and a hooker walk into the State Board of Elections to file his Democrat nominating petitions for Lt. Gov.

    The Democrat State Party Chairman says to the pawnbroker; thanks for coming, but I am sorry we have no time for you right now, we are too busy focusing our time,attention, and resources on another critical matter in this election;

    Barnes, Hendon v. Turner

    Any time we would spend scrutinizing your petitions would only serve as a distraction to the really important business at hand.

    The pawnbroker says to the State Party Chairman; well okay, thanks, I really appreciate it, but if for some reason you decide to change your mind, I’ll leave my card, and if anyone has any questions or concerns, they can just stop by the shop and I’ll be happy to answer any questions they might have.

    The State Party Chairman says; thanks agin for coming Mr. Cohen. Now as I said, we are quite busy with other more important matters, so please, please move along now so our people can get to work here.

  21. - Cindy Lou - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:03 am:

    Oh my. So everybody knew except the voters? We got ads of early release, dead people talking and other deceased people being tossed about, but nobody thought it might be a good idea to let the voters know we also had a possible woman assulter running?

    –”The problem was that by the time the stories were coming together, they were killed because the brass didn’t want to break anything like that so close to the election”–

    So the thinking all around was it’s better to break the news to the voters after the voting is over? Would it not be better to have informed the voters and let the voter decide if they still wanted to vote for SLC?

    Republicans will have a field day with this, a running Gov with a DOC director that let violent offenders out (and didn’t hire the director) and a running Lt Gov who might be a violent woman assulter.

  22. - vibes - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:08 am:

    Dz nuts, see my comment on the last post. GA can put an amendment abolishing the job on November’s ballot.

  23. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:15 am:

    Based on the LaRouchie experience, there’s no way Cohen can be forced off the ballot. Adlai and Madigan tried, but no go. They, like Cohen, were elected.

    Adlai kept rambling back then about “purging” the party like they did in “The Weimar Republic,” which didn’t resonate as much as you might think among the inter-war European history buffs in the Dem GA caucuses.

    In the end, he got a royal thumping by the GOP and the state was stuck with the Illinois Solidarity Party, which was the source of electoral mischief for many years thereafter.

    Cohen is a really big problem for the Dems. I don’t think they get it yet.

  24. - soccermom - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:34 am:

    I wasn’t taking Cohen seriously until election day. I handed my husband his “palm card” — my list of people he should vote for. He looked at it and said, “Oh, I was gonna vote for Scott Lee Cohen.” I thought he was joking. then he said, “Cohen holds job fairs.” And I thought, “Oh, no.”

  25. - Righto - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:34 am:

    You can’t force the guy from the ticket–he won. He has baggage. Who’s to blame? If Madigan starts trying to force every Dem from the race who files the required number of signatures, has lots of personal bucks, runs a campaign by the numbers (TV, mail, radio, web) but has some baggage that may get used against him/her in the general, we might as well call him Commissar and the office on Pulaski, Vladivostok. My bet? Cohen stays.

  26. - Amalia - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:41 am:

    Terry Link, you were running for Lt.Gov. and YOU did not see
    fit to tell the voters something about a candidate against whom
    you were running? that’s not on Hynes and Quinn, it’s on you.

    no slated candidate, right? so you can’t blame Madigan on point. but the party operation is woefully inadequate. it is
    way past time that someone else has the spot as party chair. there is both an absence of leadership and a conflicts of
    leadership. don’t you have enough to do as speaker Mr. Madigan? please let someone else take the reins as party

  27. - Oneman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:45 am:

    It’s the signs of defensive wounds that are the killer here. That’s bad…. So if he does not step down and this is bad or worse than it seems is this kill Quinn’s chances?

  28. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:46 am:


    The repubs are NOT “quite happy with Plummer”. His inexperience and his ridiculously thin resume put together by his dad scares the bejesus out of the repubs. The reality, “Reality is that repubs are pleased that SLC is on the Dem side because ANYONE looks better than SLC at this moment.

    “Reality” - Plummer and SLC are BOTH good reasons to either dump the LG office, or have GUV candidates have to run with an LG partner so there is a “vetting” of these clowns and if they don’t vet them & we find out that they have horrible backgrounds (SLC), or are not duly qualified to be running (Plummer, he isn’t even old enough to be a US Senator for cripes sale!)then we all can rail on the Guv nominee.

    Just do not say the repubs are plaeased with a Plummer LG nominee. They are not, its just a different set of “dislikes”

  29. - train111 - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 7:52 am:


    Somehow, for Quinn, the Democratic Party of Illinois, MJM, the taxpayers, and SLC himself–unlike any of those massages–this just doesn’t have a happy ending.

  30. - Will County Woman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:03 am:

    tj , actually not all of that was written in response to you e.g., slc quitting.

    amaila, why are you looking for someone to blame? hynes and quinn were told too. if hynes had won I suspect you’d be all “oh well, so sad too bad hynes”.

    it may be cliche, but it’s true: things happen for a reason. and the slc couldn’t have happened to a better person: pat quinn.


  31. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:06 am:

    Yeah … on the “other” hand,

    Maybe MJM wouldn’t mind going back to a GOP Guv.

    As long as it doesn’t hurt Lisa or his house races … we have seen this playbook too.

  32. - cassandra - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:13 am:

    Is there a process, arcane or not, for kicking a cadidate off the ballot? I guess we’re about to find out. An interesting little drama while the Republicans decide who their cadidate will be. Dems too maybe, although I suspect Hynes will concede. Wish he wouldn’t.

    Perhaps Dems, if they have to keep Cohen, should be cheered by the fact that virtually everybody I’ve talked to or listened to says Brady is too
    conservative to win in Nov. Everybody. So it doesn’t matter who the Repub is. Quinn, after all, looks to be bursting with health. And he only has to last four years. Presumably even the Dems who brought us this disaster wouldn’t do it twice. Or would they….

  33. Pingback The wisdom of the electorate shows itself once again « Peoria Pundit - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:17 am:

    […] ALSO: Commenters at The Capitol Fax Blog are saying it might be time to just do away with the lieutenant governor’s office. My two cents is that the solution is for voters to not not vote for bad people. Filed under Politics Tagged 2010 Elections, Scott Lee Cohen Comment (RSS)  |  Trackback  |  Permalink […]

  34. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:22 am:

    Man, the people on this blog can throw stones.

    He is a pawn broker-so what. As far as I know, he is quite successful and hasn’t been accused of any wrong doing in that business which is an easy business to get in trouble with. A neat trick.

    His personal life needs to be exposed, but as far as I know, nobody was hurt, charges were dropped and he no longer has the girlfriend.

    If things go south with the guy they can do something like Fritchey suggest like dump the office. Or maybe this is a great time to pass something like Quinn suggests called recall.

    This is NOT a Larouchie thing. Cohen announced he was a canidate with trumpets blaring, espoused his positions and was elected by the voters who thought he had ideas. Let him be vetted, okay. I predict he’ll end up being an asset.

  35. - Anonymous - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:22 am:

    If cohen were to withdraw what is process for filling Lt.Gov spot on the ticket?

  36. - Michelle Flaherty - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:26 am:

    Wanna make sure I’m clear on some comments above.
    Madigan needs to be more powerful and be more direct in deciding candidates for public office and how much money they’ll get?

  37. - Gambling Gabe - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:27 am:

    Odds of being Dem LG Nominee:
    Cohen 1:1 (seems like he’ll stay today, but wait til they interview his ex)

    Turner 2:1 (finished 2nd, Madigan’s a fan, doesn’t help w independents)

    Hynes 5:1

    Hamos 7:1 (bright, good campaigner, gender balance)

    Krishnamoorthi 10:1 (downstate, fundraising)

    Jesse White 15:1 (might as well get popular name on ticket)

  38. - JonShibleyFan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:29 am:

    Perhaps instead of asking the Gubernatorial candidates –who were in their own heated race– to speak out, Link might have considered speaking out on his own, maybe even…what’s that word you do when you’re trying to get an elected office…campaigning.

    This dude is a disaster.

  39. - cassandra - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:30 am:

    The folks who should be really annoyed if Quinn and Hynes were warned and failed to act are African Americans, who had, according to many, a good candidate in Art Turner.

  40. - Righto - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:31 am:

    You are right on, WCW. SLC will fit right in on that ticket. The only way I can see him being removed from the ticket is if some unforseen legal problems arise that would force him to withdraw to “spend more time with this family.” That’s as far down the tinfoil hat road I would dare to go.

    Cassandra. I don’t see any provision in Article 7 for removing a duly nominated candidate once the results are certified. Cohen doesn’t have to go quietly unless he wants to.

    Cohen-Quinn, Phineas, will be fun as a package.

  41. - soccermom - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:33 am:

    So is Link saying he brought this personally to Quinn? Or did he see somebody wearing a Quinn button and say, “Hey, if you say the Guv, tell him to give me a call”?

  42. - TimB - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:33 am:

    Quite amusing to watch the Dems spin this against Plummer.
    “Inexperienced and Thin Resume’” equals “hooker girlfriend, knife to throat and arrested for a potential felony?”??????
    Not so much.

    I’ll take Plummer. It’s the Lt Governor’s chair. Until a year ago, nobody even knew who held the spot, or cared.

  43. - Will County Woman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:34 am:

    The dems need to stop with the (attempted) manuvering here, as I think they’ve used up those all of those play cards when they hastily and unwisely removed blago from office; should have thought things through and all the repercussions out. This slc thing is payback on many levels. the dems made their bed here, so they all ought to just sleep in it.

    slc won his race because he worked harder and/or better than the other lt guv candidates on the dems side. and in this instance I completely agree with quinn when he says that the people have spoken.

    you guys can’t have it both ways and this is very similar to the roland burris flap over whether he should have been appointed or elected. cohen was duly elected here, so there is no need to try to change the law(s) now. beyond that there is no real reason to. if we learned nothing from blago removals it should have been that we cannot and should not use law against one person simply because we do not like him or her, or create law in an effort to hurt someone simply because we do not like the person. slc would is on firm legal ground here, and the dems should not try to tempt fate again (that’s how they got here in the first place, remember?).

    quinn has advocated vigorously in favor of keeping the lt. guv’s office. :)
    Besides, quinn likes slc because slc is big on jobs. quinn should just playup slc’s positives while addressing his negatives head-on, and just make the best of the situation. slc’s past doesn’ t have to be his future and voters can decide for themselves if his past is more important than jobs.

  44. - Angry Chicagoan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:37 am:

    Oswego, you’ve got the right point. We have what’s looking like a dreadful LG candidate on the Republican side and worse on the Democratic side. So why do we persist with this routine of having primary voters conduct an arranged marriage between the governor and the running mate? It’s idiotic. Either have the governor choose the running mate, or do away with lieutenant governor altogether.

  45. - LF2 - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:37 am:

    G. Ryan…Blago…Cohen…perhaps, its time for another way:

  46. - dupage dan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:39 am:

    Oh, Prunella, what a state! I can’t wait for what’s next. Maybe the candidates could mud wrestle to decide who should be lite gov.

  47. - OneMan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:39 am:

    Is there a process, arcane or not, for kicking a cadidate off the ballot?

    Unless it has been added recently, no. You don’t have to be that old to remember Mark Fairchild..,4_4_JO17_EDIT_S1-100117.article

  48. - Cindy Lou - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:41 am:

    Anyone have an idea as to how many undervotes statewide on the Lt. Gov. (or Gov for that matter, I’m just being curious)? Looking at my own county/city totals I can view total votes and also # of undervotes, # of early votes ect at Peoriavotes. Is it up statewide online yet somewhere?

  49. - Will County Woman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:42 am:

    cassandra, i can’t and don’t speak for african americans, but art turner isn’t all that great.

    he’s pretty typical so far as politicans go. and given all the talk about dead people during the primary election season, they may have taken offense to Art Turner’s blatant campaigning at a recent funeral, which did get press. While giving a eulogy for some guy, Turner turned it into an opportunity to pitch for his lt. guv candidacy.

  50. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:43 am:

    TimB -

    I am a Repub, so not spinning for Dems, but I will say, if in the discussion of someone being “qualified” especially for LG, …NEITHER are qualified

    One has an extremely seedy past, pawn broker or not. The “news” for SLC is only going to be worse before it ges beter.

    The other has the an incredibly thin resume put together by his dad, laced with inexperience and a lack of any personal success story that does not begin “my family, or my dad”

    They are the same - that neither are their party “perfect” choice and it would only help their running mates if they were NOT there …

    But, there THEY are.

    There is more than one way to be unqualified. Don’t by myopic in thinking that,

  51. - ZC - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:44 am:

    Agreed about the party, but I want to know a bit more about the news media too before I let them off the hook.

    The whole story is a police report, a court record, and then a comment by Cohen. Assuming that stuff is in the public sphere and doesn’t take a FOIA to get, I do not understand why this story would take months and months to put together. Cohen has been campaigning since last summer.

    I can see why the brass wouldn’t want to break a story like this and be accused of influencing an election with what is, after all, an allegation. But why the heck did the story not come together until the election eve? Rich, can you provide any more info here?

  52. - Responsa - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:45 am:

    –Cohen is a really big problem for the Dems. I don’t think they get it yet.–

    Agree completely. Republicans are not going to be the only voters worried about SLC being a heartbeat (or an impeachment) away from the Governor’s chair.

  53. - JoJo - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:49 am:

    I was getting 20 e-mails a day from someone named Scott Lee Cohen. I thought they were some kind of bad joke/scam and never opened them. I’m not in the political loop so I had no idea the man was running for Lt. Gov until I got into the polling place and saw my ballot. Other than a mess of spam, I never heard of this guy. How do candidates expect your vote when they don’t campaign in your area? I’d never vote for this man knowing what I know now.

  54. - Honest Abe - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:50 am:

    What if Cohen held a jobs fair for underemployed hookers and massage therapists? He could also parley his considerable business skills into a “Cash for Gold” program to replenish the Illinois State Treasury. Perhaps, he could get Alexi to free up some of the lost property languishing unclaimed in the Treasurer’s office.
    Money for all.

  55. - Anonymous - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:53 am:

    As was pointed out above, this really all goes back to the absence of state party leadership. The Speaker seems concerned about 2 things — his majority and his daughter — ok, maybe also Cook County Assessor and the Tax Appeals Board, and there is no state party for any other purpose. That left the Dems with Alexi — a very, very flawed candidate — for the Senate seat, and this fiasco.

    Folks, this ain’t gonna change (at least) until MJM decides its time to move on.

  56. - cassandra - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 8:57 am:


    I would think the issue is more that the leading candidates had enough information to suggest a full assessment of Cohen’s vulnerabilities was needed and they apparently either failed to do so or knew and decided not to come out publicly against his candidacy. They should have.

    African American politicians frequetly speak of
    the need for more African Americans in high-level political positions. The Democratic powers
    failed them in this instance.

    And where were Rahm and Axe by the way. They have been meddling nonstop in this Illinois election.
    How did they miss this?

  57. - Anonymous - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:01 am:

    Cassandra - part of the problem is that Rahm and Axelrod didn’t meddle enough. They saw that Alexi was weak and tried to get Lisa to run to head him off. After they failed, they turned their attention elsewhere. When Lisa decided to stay put, the state party (MJM) stayed out of most races. Nobody’s minding the store.

  58. - Will County Woman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:02 am:

    Quinn is the guv who signed video gaming into law, so he and slc should get on just fine.

    and, isn’t there a house dem currently pushing legislation that would try to force municipalities to accept video-gaming or risk losing money for infastructure needs? now that the silly season is over, or is it? does the silly season ever really end in illinois politics?

    but seriously, we need to focus on what the dems are trying to ram through, and why.

  59. - zatoichi - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:05 am:

    With all the news about how Palin became McCain’s running mate you would think the vetting process for any major elected spot would be fairly intense. If SLC’s background was not known by the party leaders, that is their problem. He is not exactly hiding anything and if no one asks questions, he is under no obligation to explain his past activities. At the same time SLC apparently self funded much of his effort and he was successful at his task. He legally won. Since all voters know that every other elected official has a clean, pure background, this’ll be fun to watch.

  60. - Carl Nyberg - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:08 am:

    How is the responsibility of Quinn and Hynes to expose a flawed candidate for Lt Gov more than the candidates for Lt Gov?

    BTW, Thomas Castillo denies knowing about Cohen, so the meeting Link referred to didn’t include Castillo. Was it Link, Turner and Hendon, or some subset of the field?

    Somehow, I don’t think Rickey Hendon would be too shy to out SLC. And would Turner and Hendon cooperate on something like this?

    So, what do we know about Terry Link based on this story?

    1. Link lacks courage. Why didn’t he out SLC himself?

    2. Link lacks sense. Why did he expect Quinn or Hynes to disrupt the momentum of their campaigns to deal with SLC?

    3. Link lacks sense. Why did he give the media a version of the story that makes Link look like a jerk?

    4. Link lacks media savvy. Why couldn’t he have gotten the info out through a third party?

    And congratulations goes out to the Chicago media for missing the story. Top notch guys.

  61. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:09 am:

    –I’m not in the political loop so I had no idea the man was running for Lt. Gov until I got into the polling place and saw my ballot.–

    He was on TV and radio much more than any other lt. gov. candidate in the Chicago broadcast market. I got three or four pieces of mail from him, too.

  62. - JoJo - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:21 am:

    I don’t live in Chicago, Wordslinger. I’m just a little ol’ downstater. I never heard a peep on Lt. Gov.

  63. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:23 am:

    This is what the Democrats have to do regarding Cohen - go with it! There is nothing to do.

    Spin BABY!

    Get Cohen doing a press tour with his parents and have him accompanied by a nun, and a “girlfriend” who is homely and works for a non-profit homeless shelter. Make her limp - no - better yet, put her in a wheelchair. Make her speak a foreign language at all times and claim she is a patriotic atheist.

    Put Cohen in argyle sweater vests and bow ties and have him wear broken reading glasses. During interviews have him ask the host if he took Cohen’s stapler. Cohen has to wear brown shoes at all time - vinyl ones. Untied.

    During interviews he needs to admit that he had an argument with a customer he had at one time dated. Don’t mention any kids he had with her. Have him look down at his brown vinyl shoes as he tells his sad story. He can look up at some points of his story to look at his sad mother, who comforts him. Have Cohen’s mother pat her son on his dandruffed shoulders and tell the camera that her son was a really good boy.

    Have his father sit with his arms folded with a scowl on his face and have him interrupt Mommy Cohen during her defense by pointing a finger at their son and warning that he’s going to “get it”, when they get home.

    The nun will follow the Cohens with her rosary.

    Yeah - it can work!

  64. - Team Sleep - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:25 am:

    If this has been said, I apologize.

    In a world of Google, Yahoo!, BING, Smartphones, Blackberries, iPhones, Comcast high-speed intertubes, HughesNet - well, we all get the picture - there is NO excuse for an uninformed electorate to prop up a candidate with a sordid past. And the people who vote for a candidate because of signs is just as bad. Information is readily available to anyone who wants it. Even senior citizens can call a county clerk office to find information on candidates’ contact information. There is no reason people should have voted Mr. Cohen as their nominee when this damning report was made public by the two largest in-state newspapers - and possibly other internet/alternative news outlets.

    My question to Mr. Link is why he did not “warn” the public with this “revelation”. So, Senator Link, are the only people deserving of Mr. Cohen’s rapsheet the two Democratic gubernatorial hopefuls and their staff members? Why not raise a little extra cash and run some radio and newspaper ads? It’s all fair game.

    I hope the Dems get stuck with Cohen. If their party leadership and party faithful - which is in play here due to the super-low turnout - weren’t able to catch this development, good luck.

  65. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:30 am:

    I look at the bright side. While the Repubs are getting all the free press coverage with their recount fight the Dems can get equal time with the Cohen hooker hunt. I’ll bet in about a month everybody in the state will know more about Cohen than we ever wanted to know. And if he is a drag on the ticket he will get off.

    Ya see, he is not a Larouchie and anybody that compares him to one has never dealt with Larouchies. They are absolutley out of their heads crazy.

  66. - You Kidding Me? - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:30 am:

    Can you see the Republican ads:

    Vote Republican! Why?
    The Democrat ticket is led by the incompetent, 2 time running mate of impeached governor Blago, who wants to raise your taxes and his running mate a pawn broker, who beats up women….enough said.

  67. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:32 am:



  68. - HiFi - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:37 am:

    I’m thinking we might see a constitutional amendment on our November ballot eliminating the office of Lt. Governor…

  69. - Coach - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:39 am:

    Is anybody else amused that the Trib and Sun-Times are congratulating themselves for unearthing salacious details about Cohen’s past when they apparently didn’t both to check it out prior to the election?

    The reporting of the last two days has been based on public records - police reports. Seems like the media had some responsibility to read those reports a couple months ago, rather than waiting until after he won the nomination.

  70. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:39 am:

    I think it is going to be interesting to get a quote from the Highest Ranking Law Inforcement Officer in Illinois … a female … very popular and well-known … Lisa Madigan.

    “General, as the Highest Ranking Law Inforcement Officer in Illinois, can you comment on sharing a slate with someone who was charged with domestic abuse, but instead of clearing his name, the charges were dropped due to a technicality, specifically a “no-show” by a victim?”

    Follow-up “Have you read the police report filed?”

    And you though Lisa wouldn’t share a stage with Blago … Lisa is now MIA when it comes to Quinn/Cohen

  71. - Scooby - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:41 am:

    So Quinn inherits a running mate he wishes would just go away? The irony.

  72. - educate yourself - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:42 am:

    Wordslinger, it took me 5 minutes to complete the ballot builder available to everyone (political or not) on the tribune website. I did it because I care about the direction of the state I live in, and because voting is not only a right but a privilege (as evidenced by the number of American soldiers that have given their lives to grant that privilege to people in other nations).

    The fact that other people did not take the 5 minutes to learn that this guy only has his GED makes me sick, this should have never happened and the only ones to blame are the people of Illinois. I am appauled that everyone tries to pass the buck to politicians at every turn…this is OUR state…stand up and take control of it! That is the way that the system is designed, giving the power to the people, and we pass the power every time we don’t take an active role in our decisions. Hopefully this will serve as a teachable moment (and a wakeup call) for everyone that blame is not a substitute for personal accountability.

  73. - Pot calling kettle - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:44 am:

    I still don’t understand why the Lt. Gov. candidates didn’t point this out to the media and public. If background didn’t work, put out a short press release!

    Example: “The Link campaign has learned that Scott Lee Cohen was arrested in October 2005 on a charge of domestic battery. While we understand that the charges were dropped, we feel that they are serious enough that Mr. Cohen should explain the situation fully.”

  74. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:44 am:

    PJW, I don’t think anyone’s comparing Cohen to a LaRouchie. But there’s no way you can force him off the ballot, either. He just spent $2 million of his own cash. He’s not going to get talked out of it easily.

    Back in 1986, though, when the LaRouchies appeared at slatemaking in Springfield, they wove a riveting tale of QEII, Henry Kissinger and their control of the world trade in illegal narcotics.

  75. - lake county democrat - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:48 am:

    How many times did I mention that this Lt. Guv thing could be Mark Fairchild light? (and Rickey Hendon, which at the time I thought would be even worse but now I’m not so sure)

  76. - Bill - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:50 am:

    Having the accuser not show up in court is hardly a technicality.
    Having said that, I must admit that I am really enjoying Illinois politics right now, more so than maybe ever before. Just when you think things can’t get anymore bizarre they do. Now I understand why people stop to gape at auto accidents and train wrecks. Illinois politicians make Sarah Palin seem like Winston Churchill and Joe Biden seem like Franklin Roosevelt. Maybe we should just forget the whole thing and annex ourselves to somewhere a little more sophisticated like Kentucky or Indiana.

  77. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:50 am:


    Lyndon is dead by now, right? I’m sure they froze his head or something.

  78. - Just wondering - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:51 am:

    I think the media should take some blame here but ultimately its the fault of the voters. I too got about 3-5 mailers, saw the BAD TV commercials and bad bill boards. It was obvious he was trying to buy the election. I never once saw him at an event and I was everywhere. We had legit choices in this race and SCL was not one of them.

  79. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:53 am:

    You guys do realize that if elected, the Governor can let his Lt. Governor use the Early Release Program, right?

  80. - train111 - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:56 am:

    Lyndon LaRouche is not dead. His people are still out there.

  81. - FTA - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:57 am:

    A state party chairman who actually cared about the well being of the state party could have helped avoid this. I also think if Quinn maintained his big lead and didn’t have to fight for his political life the last two weeks he probably would have gotten involved.

    I also blame the media. Why sit on a story like this? I don’t care if it’s “too close” to the election. It’s news!

  82. - Bill - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:58 am:

    I bet Scott will no longer have any trouble getting the media to attend his press conferences.

  83. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:58 am:

    LL is an 87-year-old lunatic.

  84. - Bill - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:58 am:

    I think the pros call that “earned” media.

  85. - Team Sleep - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 9:59 am:

    Scooby, you are correct. It’s like a redux of 2006!

  86. - Bill - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:00 am:

    ==LL is an 87-year-old lunatic. ==
    Hey, watch it! Someone has to protect us from the British.

  87. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:01 am:

    I just saw Lyndon LaRouche eating a Big Mac with L. Ron Hubbard and Timothy Leary at the McDonalds owned by Andy McKenna’s dad. Yesterday, I think.

  88. - Pat collins - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:03 am:

    Where oh where is Blair Hull when you need him?

    Let’s see the hypocracy meters PEG on this one.

    No charges were filed in his case. Not like our slap happy LG candidate.

  89. - Bill - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:03 am:

    All Scott has to do is pledge $1 million and promise to deliver the hooker vote and Quinn will fall in line.

  90. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:06 am:

    Well done, Bill.

  91. - Will County Woman - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:08 am:

    Re Quinn/Blago

    so if quinn is really unlike Blago, then he will have no problem keeping SLC on the ticket and working with him.

    Hynes is smart. he advocated for the lt. guv’s to be abolished to save the state money. quinn threw a hissy fit at the mere suggestion. if hynes were leading in vote tally and looking like the winner, he’d be innoculated from SLC based on his view that the lt. guv office should have been eliminated. the dems around here who voted for quinn, should’ve just voted for hynes. the man was on point on just about everything.

  92. - anon - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:09 am:

    Scott Lee Cohen won, fair and square, without hiding anything. He ran a full-scale campaign, complete with issue positions and endorsements–check out his website (lots of endorsing elected officials). He earned this win…and all his opponents knew Cohen was going to run strong.

    When Mark Fairchild won the Lt. Gov. nomination, and Adlai Stevenson left the ticket to create the Solidarity Party, everybody recognized Fairchild’s entitlement to the ballot spot. Fairchild had not run a full-scale campaign like Scott, so the “equities” are much more in Cohen’s favor (but again, it is a matter of a hard-won right for Cohen, not a question of equities).

    Very seriously, in the days leading to the election, various Democratic legislators (particularly in the African-American community) told me that Cohen could very well win…and none thought that was a bad thing. Lots of political folks know and like Cohen.

    If Cohen can now be seriously questioned, despite having legitimately won, Hynes should consider embracing the same argument: take his case to the State Central Committee — after all, most everyone thinks Hynes (not Quinn) is the stronger general election candidate. The next Quinn screw-up could be greeted with calls to insert Hynes as the standard bearer, election results notwithstanding (and Quinn actively hid the facts with his election season IDOC gag order).

    Team Quinn needs to be careful here…they are playing fire.

  93. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:11 am:

    Cohen can quit.
    He can step down.

    How much do you think that is going to cost?
    As a pawn broker, Cohen knows how much the Lt. Governor’s position is worth. He also knows how much Pat Quinn’s briefcase is worth too, but that is besides the point.

    Cohen is the skunk at the garden party, and is really feeling the “love” today, isn’t he?

  94. - old media reader - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:12 am:

    I might be wrong, but isn’t this a consequence of the staff cutbacks at the newspapers. With fewer reporters we are getting more retyped press releases and less real reporting. I’m thankful for Rich and all of the information I get from his website.

  95. - Dirt Digger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:16 am:

    anon - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:09 am:

    You know what’s worth than “playing fire,” anon? Cutting women.

  96. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:18 am:

    This was so predictable. Much if not all of the blame in my opinion falls on Chairman Madigan. But now it’s Quinn’s problem, and I think there’s nothing he can do but use this debacle to call for a constitutional amendment abolishing the office that, ironically, propelled him into the Governor’s office. He might as well call for merging the treasurer and comptroller while he’s at it (and let’s all watch as the Speaker kills the bill!!!).

    Even if that works, we still have to pay Cohen to do nothing for four years before this takes effect. What a freaking disaster.

    Thanks Mr. Chairman, your neglect of anything other than a House majority has put another nail in the coffin in an already bad year for our party. Who’s side are you on? What part of the job description of State Party Chairman is unclear to you? This is incompetence born out of a parochial worldview. I, for one, have had enough. Please hand the party leadership off to someone who actually cares about the entire state party.

    I almost miss Gary LaPaille. And for the revisionist historians here this morning, Vince Demuzio was Chairman during the LaRouche fiasco and he accepted responsibilty for dropping the ball. Madigan should too.

  97. - TimB - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:30 am:

    ***You guys do realize that if elected, the Governor can let his Lt. Governor use the Early Release Program, right?***

    ***** As a pawn broker, Cohen knows how much the Lt. Governor’s position is worth. He also knows how much Pat Quinn’s briefcase is worth too, but that is besides the point.******

    VanMan– You are at the top of your game today!!!

  98. - Pot calling kettle - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:36 am:

    So Cohen is now guilty?

    You people need to seriously relax.

    I think the biggest question about Cohen should be why would someone spend over $1 million of their own money to be Lt. Gov.?

    The effort to boot Rod and his job fairs seem to be good as does his ability to execute a successful campaign. The Quinn campaign can certainly use the organizational help as well as the cash.

    If this domestic battery charge is the worst thing in Cohen’s past, it should blow over within a week or two. After that, the focus will be back to Quinn and whoever the Republican candidate turns out to be.

  99. - Bakersfield - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:39 am:

    It could very well blow over in a week, but it will be back in the fall. Dude dated a hooker…and admits to it. Again, dude dated a hooker.

  100. - Responsa - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:44 am:

    SLC may be the skunk at a garden party today but he’s also given Illinois a gift if we are willing to take it and learn from it. He has clearly exposed for all to see:

    The total lack of responsible vetting of candidates by party honchos

    The lack of responsible political journalism

    Possible conflicts of interest within TV stations who needed and wanted SLC advertising dollars even if their investigative reporters had to be muzzled

    The ease of buying an election

    The importance/impact of every office on the slate related to the over all ballot’s health

    The possible non-policy reasons a candidate might want to be close to the seat of power in an otherwise non-prestige Lt. Governor position

  101. - Anonymous - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:44 am:

    And police report noted abrasions on neck.

  102. - Bakersfield - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:45 am:

    In all seriousness, give him credit for winning. I must have heard his radio ad 8-10 times and saw the tv ad another 6-8 times just last weekend alone. Clearly no one took him seriously until it was too late (yesterday) and he won fair and square.

  103. - Pat collins - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:45 am:

    If this domestic battery charge is the worst thing in Cohen’s past,

    Maybe it’s just me, but slamming a woman’s head into a wall and putting a knife against her throat DO disqualify you from holding a high office.

    What was Turner and Link thinking????

  104. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:52 am:

    –And for the revisionist historians here this morning, Vince Demuzio was Chairman during the LaRouche fiasco and he accepted responsibilty for dropping the ball. Madigan should too.–

    I covered that fiasco and remember Madigan, along with Adlai, getting most of the blame. Madigan was running Adlai’s show.

  105. - Indeedy - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 10:57 am:

    So money in politics isn’t an issue unless it’s Cohen’s money? The concentration of power among leadership isn’t an issue unless it fails to dispatch with a candidate like Cohen? And someone should have spoken up and made his semi-sordid past a campaign issue? Seems to me every time some lowly candidate brings up the fact that a more powerful, better connected or well-financed opponent has (___fill in the blank___) they are reviled for making it personal and running a dirt bag campaign.

  106. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:01 am:

    You’re right Word, and Bill Filan created the Illinois Solidarity Party almost over night. They replaced the resigning Dem nominees with shadow candidates like Einar Dyrhkopp for US Senate. Dixon, Stevenson, et al, jumped over to ISP.

    But Demuzio was the guy who presided over the debacle. The party slated George Sangmeister and Aurelia Pucinski, who were the two who lost to LaRouchies with more “normal” sounding names, Janice Hart and Mark Fairchild.

    I don’t think Adlai and Vince ever patched things up either.

  107. - Irish - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:08 am:

    I agree that there is nothing wrong with Cohen being a pawnbroker. That in itself is not a crime. If something legitimate can be shown where he has used that career for illegal activity then let that information be known. If not then his career is not an issue.
    Whether or not he is a woman assaulter is relevant if those charges are correct even if he was not convicted.
    The fact that his girlfriend was a prostitute I don’t think is a big issue other than it raising the question of Mr. Cohen’s judgement at that particular time.
    The real issue here is that we in Illinois cannot seem to get ourselves to a point where our candidates and elected officials are not tainted by something. It’s no wonder that the rest of the country looks at our State with a bit of disdain and that we are the source of material for all the late night talk shows. I believe Jim Thompson was the only Governor for the last several decades that did not have a cloud of suspicion over their administration for dealings with contracts or other possible illegal behavior. And that is just one office. It is a self perpetuating condition that it appears we are destined to live in for all of the foreseeable future.

  108. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:11 am:

    –Dixon, Stevenson, et al, jumped over to ISP.–

    They stayed as Dem nominees. Sangemeister and Pucinski went over to the new party with the other funny names.

  109. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:22 am:

    No, you are misremembering. Sangmeister and Pucinski lost in the Dem primary. Fairchild and Hart ran as Democrats with the other “appointed” Dems joining them.

    Adlai and Dixon led the Illinois Solidarity Party with, if I’m not misremembering, Jerry Costello, Roland Burris and Neil Hartigan, each of whom resigned their Democratic nomination and were appointed to the ISP ballot. Everybody won except Stevenson and his LG running mate (Grace Mary Stern?).

    Even with all of the ridiculous, costly and time consuming maneuvering by the Dems, Thompson barely beat Stevenson.

  110. - siriusly - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:23 am:

    Tin foil hat removed.

    I agree with team sleep Sen. Link bears a lot of responsibility here. I’m pretty sure that media outlets would have covered it. Scott Lee Cohen = Governor Bill Brady, will be part Link’s legacy IMHO.

  111. - siriusly - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:28 am:

    47 - yes it was Grace Mary Howard Stern who later beat Roger Keats for state sen I think

  112. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:28 am:

    Sorry Word, I’m the one with the bad memory. I think you’re correct, Adlai left and the others stayed on the Dem ticket.

    I do remember how excited Einar was to be the nominee for the US Senate though. He had to be reminded not to campaign and it kind of made him sad.

  113. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:48 am:

    Please don’t exclude Vrdolyak from the Larouchie blame because he was Cook County Dem Chair at the time and was so busy telling everybody how smart he was that he forgot to tell them who the Larouchies were.

  114. - Mountain Man - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 11:57 am:

    Guess we didn’t learn anything in 1986…

  115. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:05 pm:

    Good point about Vrdolyak, PJW.

    Mountain Man, those who forget history’s lessons are doomed to repeat them. Except the Cohen thing isn’t the same: in 1986, Fairchild and Hart spent next to nothing. No ads, no real presence, etc. Unfortunately, neither did the party’s slated candidates, who assumed that the machine was all they needed.

    So this is really like comparing apples to grapefruit.

  116. - Just Observing - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:06 pm:

    How come nobody is blaming the voters? Do your research on candidates. Or at the very least… don’t vote for a guy because he started a website

  117. - And I Approved This Message - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 12:58 pm:

    As someone who worked on the Stevenson campaign in 1986 I have to point out that none of you has it exactly right. Adlai “resigned” the Democratic nomination and then had to form a third party, The Solidarity Party. He picked Mike Howlett to be his Lt. Gov candidate and Jane Spirgel from Will Co. to replace Pucinski as Comptroller candidate. State law required us to field a full slate of statewide candidates, down to the U. of I Trustees. All of those people (except Stevenson,Howlett and Spirgel) joined with the understanding that they would not campaign and at every opportunity we told people to vote for the Dems. When it was over, every single Democrat on the ballot won except for Hart and Fairchild. We went down in flames but didn’t take any other Democrats with us. And we also became the authors of a unique political tactic - the Sore Winner Strategy.

  118. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:28 pm:

    And I, I think you’ve got it right.

    Which brings to mind Fast Eddie’s alleged plan to dump Stevenson by moving State’s Attorney Daley into the vacated governor’s slot in the Dem Party.

    Steve Neal had a banner story in the Trib the day of the Dem State Party convention at a union hall in Springfield. Nothing happened. The LaRouchies got jostled a little bit trying to get in the hall.

  119. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:36 pm:

    “And I Approved This Message” is right.

    Quinn’s problem with the Adlai strategy is that he lambasted Tom Hynes for “quitting the party” to run against Harold Washington. This is a far different situation, of course, but he is on record.

  120. - Veritas - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 1:58 pm:

    Primaries exist so that VOTERS not POLITICAL PARTIES can vet the candidates. Are you all sure that you want party hacks with their own agendas deciding who will and won’t be on the ballot? This is a failure of the media, not of the electoral process.

  121. - And I Approved This Message - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 2:11 pm:

    In no way am I suggesting that Quinn leave the party to get out from under this. I just wanted to get the historical record straight. And the situations are radically diffferent. Based on what we know to this point about Cohen he is a wealthy pawnbroker with a GED and an ugly story from 5 years ago for which he wasn’t prosecuted. The Larouchies were a hateful, hate-filled kind of cult who were anti-Semetic, anti Black, thought the Queen of England ran the world’s largets drug carttel, etc. Quinn may be able to somehow coexist on the ticket with Cohen. No way Adlai could stay on the same Democratic ticket as those people. Never an option.

  122. - T.J. - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 2:46 pm:

    “Just do not say the repubs are plaeased with a Plummer LG nominee. They are not, its just a different set of ‘dislikes’”

    Have you talked to anyone outside Chicago? Plummer kinda sorta dominated everywhere else.

  123. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 4, 10 @ 2:48 pm:

    No way Quinn would leave the party.

    As “And I” noted, Adlai threw himself under the bus for the good of the party with the LaRouchies.

    Quinn would do a spit-take if someone even suggested that to him. He took a lot of bad road to get where he’s at to jeopardize it now.

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