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Debate update

Friday, May 26, 2006

The first debate is in the can.

Gov. Rod Blagojevich and State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka traded barbs Friday over ethics, campaign finance and a host of other issues in a contentious debate, the first of the campaign for governor.

Topinka, a Republican, accused the Democratic governor of breaking promises and proposing empty programs. Blagojevich said Topinka was “against everything” and “not for anything.”

During the taping of the debate for WMAQ-TV’s “City Desk” program, Topinka repeatedly hammered Blagojevich about state and federal investigations into his administration’s hiring practices.

“I still have a name; you’re Public Official A,” Topinka told Blagojevich. […]

Topinka assailed the well-funded Blagojevich about accepting money from people who get state contracts. The governor countered that Topinka takes campaign donations from banks that handle the state’s deposits.

“Her hypocrisy is breathtaking,” Blagojevich said.

Topinka again dismissed Blagojevich’s newly announced $10 billion education plan, calling it a “gamble.” When asked if she had an education plan of her own, Topinka promised she was working on one and would produce it this summer.

She didn’t miss the chance to take a jab at Blagojevich by saying she’s “not in a rush to buy off someone.”

UPDATE: From a reporter friend:

You oughta track down a copy of the debate…after a slow start, she blistered him. From pillar to post.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - heet101 - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:08 pm:

    Round 1 - Topinka.

  2. - TB&T - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:15 pm:

    I hope they have 10 debates; it would be good to see. Nonetheless, it appears to me, based on the small synopsis, that Ms. Topinka “still” does not offer any ideas or anything “concrete” that makes her credible in what she will do “should she be governor.” In addition, I think the Governor would be wise to accuse her of “slander” and force her to substantiate her inuendo and wild accusations. I hope the Governor “presses” her on what her agenda is, other than be against everything.

  3. - TB&T - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:22 pm:

    “I still have a name; you’re Public Official A,” Topinka told Blagojevich. […]
    Slander-#1.Law. Oral communication of false statements injurious to a person’s reputation.
    #2. A false and malicious statement or report about someone.

  4. - anon - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:28 pm:

    I think we can all guess what Topinka’s polling is saying. If this is all she’s got to campaign on, this campaign is over and she is unemployed. How can she honestly run for the top office in the state and produce nothing of substance? Does she think the voters are going to buy this garbage?

    By the way, rumor has it that her fundraising is abysmal.

  5. - DOWNSTATE - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:30 pm:

    TOPINKA WINS.Blago maniacs cry foul and slander.She is putting her platform together while he is hiring lawyers to cover his butt.Oh the federal prosecutor named him public offical A.

  6. - Anonymous - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:48 pm:

    Didn’t the Governor just spend millions on almost non-stop negative TV advertising? So when JBT goes negative, it demonstrates a lack of substance?

    It’s all a matter of perspective, I suppose.

  7. - Phil Thee - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:49 pm:

    what a hypocrite. she is under investigation for using state employees to do campaign work on state time. she accepts contributions from banks where she invests tax payer dollars. she is part of the republican machine that has driven this state into the ground for the last three decades. She will lose this election because: first, she never wanted to run in the first place. She practically begged Edgar to do it and then, only after being promised RNC money did she get in. Second, her attacks on ethics will be thrown right back in her face ten fold in TV ads — something that people actually see (nobody will watch this debate). Third, she brings nothing to the table. She has no ideas. Other than giving state employees a pay raise and increasing the size of the state bureaucracy, she has said nothing of substance.

    Her trouble will be compunded when the next fundraising report is public. She isnt raising money right now. When the combine sees her trailing in the polls, floundering in debates, and not raising money, any potential money will dry up. She is done.

  8. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:13 pm:

    At this stage of the campaign, the opposition wins exposure and press against an incumbant.

    As to charges leveled:
    Topinka is “against everything”
    Blagojevich is “Public Official A”

    No one is against everything, thats a silly comment. Zero points

    We are seeing government corruption at Chicago, and Illinois levels. It is in the news. We all know that Blagojevich is Public Official A. So, Topinka’s charges carry a much greater weight.

    What if Judy said that Rod is the most corrupt governor in history? That kind of comment wouldn’t be believed anymore than the idea that Judy is against everything.

    Sorry Rod, Judy nailed you more than a few times. While you might have bought off Meeks, it is becoming obvious that your Lottery Scam was nothing more than another Blagojevichian PR stunt with no teeth and no sincerity.

  9. - Anonymous - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:37 pm:

    I just have to laugh at how every time someone criticizes Blago’s phony PR stunts such as selling the lottery or rocking the system the response is always… “Well, what are Judy’s programs? She has no substance!”

    Because Blago is so chalk full of substance.

    After the last four years, I have to say I like that Judy isn’t promising everything under the sun and that she is taking the time to come up with policies during her campaign. Maybe this is a signal that she would be a more sensible governor than the current outfit and not make so many kneejerk decisions or proposals with no follow through.

    I don’t think I’m the only voter who thinks this way. Did anyone else see this little tidbit on Blagojevich in this Roskam-Duckworth MSNBC article?

    ““What happened to the state lottery money that was supposed to go to schools?” La Spisa asked Duckworth.

    Showing the anti-incumbent mood that seems to be percolating this year, La Spisa complained to Duckworth about Gov. Rod Blagojevich, a Democrat, who La Spisa accused of making misleading promises about universal kindergarten for the state’s children.”

    The article says this woman voted for Kerry.

  10. - Bubs - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:43 pm:

    Without having seen the tape or text, but from the way the Blago supporters are all squealing like stuck pigs, I suspect Judy did rather well.

    Guess it’s time for a few million more in attack ads.

  11. - Lovie's Leather - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:45 pm:

    So… I believe that government doesn’t fix problems, it creates them…. So if Topinka is against everything, that would be good, correct?

  12. - Reddbyrd - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 4:54 pm:

    Hmmm Judy Bore is still six(6) points down, no money, runs away from Bushie and confines Karl (Public Official A+) Rove to a slow Friday nite in Lake County.
    Yeah I’d say she is really off to a hot start for the summer.
    P.S. Anyone get invited to her big education planning meetings yet? Remember She whined about GRod’s back room deals.
    Have a great weekend!
    Go Cards

  13. - B Hicks - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 4:59 pm:

    She is putting her platform together, yeah, okay.

    She’s just picking her moment, right?

    Be safe all!

  14. - highland - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 5:09 pm:

    Hey, reddbyrd…..hope you have a nice weekend. Are you flying off to meet lakin??

  15. - Old Elephant - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 5:33 pm:

    I agree with anon 3:37.

    I am tired of “promises.”

    I’d like a candidate who admits there aren’t any magic solutions or free lunches. Someone who says that if you want to hold down taxes, you have to spend less and if you want to spend more, you have to increase taxes — your choice.

    Blagojevich insults everyone in the state by acting as though we are so stupid that we think you can give away health care, pre-school education, college scholarships, etc. etc. and it doesn’t cost anything.

    I don’t think the public is that stupid and it may be time for a candidate who says she isn’t going to try to buy votes with a bunch of empty promises — she’s just going to manage state government with the resources the people give her.

  16. - Anon - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 7:47 pm:

    Amen, Old Elephant……Lots of promises for the peoria metro area are unfulfilled, I’m not worried about that with the budget, I am worried about the sheep that believe everything they hear and vote liars into office….

  17. - Limerick - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:42 pm:

    The story of Debate No. 1
    In not in the question “Who Won?”
    To give as much as she got
    Won Judy a lot
    But the brawling is quite far from done.

  18. - JohnR - Saturday, May 27, 06 @ 12:54 am:

    Just so you are clear everybody:

    - Just because you agree with someone, that doesn’t mean they “won” or “lost” the debate

    We all have our minds made up here, primarily because we know what we agree with.

    The debate this year (issues-wise) seems to be boiling down to one of the primary Democrat vs. Republican debates:
    -Some want government to step in to try and help people
    -Some want government to try to help people by not stepping in

    All the other issues that surround this primary debate are just penumbras. They are shields built up that mask or mimic the primary debate.

    “helping people” vs. “living within our means”
    Those are the code words of today.

  19. - Schiznitz - Saturday, May 27, 06 @ 2:31 am:

    It seems to me Blago is a little short on details himself. He is willing to sell his soul for a press conference and sound bite, but absent actually policy.

    The man lacks a soul. I wonder if he and Ryan will share the same jail cell.

  20. - steve schnorf - Tuesday, May 30, 06 @ 12:10 am:

    “helping people” and “living within our means” aren’t mutually exclusive.

  21. - the Patriot - Tuesday, May 30, 06 @ 9:18 am:

    Didn’t see the debate, but I have three comments. Judy must have done ok since the pro-blagos are going nuts.

    Second, the key part of Slander is a false statement. Pressing Judy into forcing public disclosure of his indictment is not a good strategy for the governor.

    three, Rich, you must be doing something right because the number of screaming democrats on the sight are increasing. You had better buy a backup generator to be sure you don’t blow any fuses on this sight in OCT and NOV.

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