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Bunker pics and Madigan audio

Saturday, May 31, 2008

* Here are a couple of photos courtesy of Metro Networks‘ Ben Yount from the tunnel under the Capitol Complex during last night’s tornado evacuation

* Bethany Jaeger had this onsite report….

We all had to head to the basement of the Statehouse, where tunnels connect buildings on the Capitol complex. Amanda Vinicky, reporter for WUIS public radio station out of the University of Illinois at Springfield, caught up with House Speaker Michael Madigan in one of the tunnels. We listened to her audio file. She asked the speaker about the status of the budget, the leadership style of the governor and the lack of trust plaguing the democratic process.

Madigan’s advice for others was to consider the past five or six years — and to “prepare for the worst.”

* Bethany’s photo….

* Listen to Amanda’s recording of the impromptu Speaker Madigan interview by clicking here.

* The governor stayed in his office during the evacuation

Blagojevich joked about staying in his office during the tornado warning saying, “Well, with all those lawmakers downstairs, I was a lot safer up here.”

The governor was actually in a safe area when the tornado warning occurred, said his spokeswoman, Rebecca Rausch.

* And some complained

Rep. Bill Black, R-Danville, announced that he was glad everyone was safe.

“But if we are to use the tunnels in the future for an evacuation because of severe weather, I would urge those responsible to study what went on tonight. It was extremely hot down there. … There was no water, there was no ventilation,” he said.

“I appreciate the fact that we were safe, but I was concerned about some people being overheated. No water. No automatic external defibrillators. No nurse. No medical attention if it’d come to that, and quite frankly, I’m not even sure who was in charge,” Black added. “I think we can prepare a little better than what we were today.”

* Related…

* Tornado sirens halt lawmakers in Springfield

* State Capitol evacuated due to tornado threat

* Storm sweeps through Ill.; lawmakers run for cover

- Posted by Rich Miller        

13 Comments
  1. - Give Me A Break - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 6:33 am:

    In my area of the tunnel two hopes were dashed when the all clear was sounded.

    1. The “Rat” remained untouched, we were hoping for at least some type of damage which would force the old dump to shut down and a new option for eating be created.

    2. The Stratton Building was untouched by the storm. But then again, if twister did hit the place would anyone notice?


  2. - bluedog demo - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 7:14 am:

    God sure missed a chance !


  3. - Bookworm - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 7:54 am:

    Looks like Blago was more afraid of the crowd in the tunnels than he was of the storm (gee, I wonder why)


  4. - IDOT Lifer - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 9:19 am:

    ===I think we can prepare a little better than what we were today.===

    These folks couldn’t prepare a bowl of ramen noodles.


  5. - GOP'er - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 9:53 am:

    The whole place spared? Doesn’t God now owe Soddam and Gamorrah an apology?


  6. - Disgusted - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 10:11 am:

    LOL at IDOT Lifer and GOP’er. Of course, his majesty wasn’t in the tunnel. He would’nt want to mix with the riff-raff or breathe the same air.
    He might catch something. Did he even come back after the storm or was the plane running and waiting?


  7. - Capital Bill - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 11:13 am:

    Blagoof should have headed for the tunnel. He could had that meetings Madigan won’t give him. Would have been his best media stunt of the year


  8. - Little Egypt - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 11:39 am:

    Speaking of reporters, did anyone see the segment by Catie Sheehan on Blago the other night on Channel 20 in Springfield? It ended with her shaking Blago’s hand. Any bets she’s going to replace Rebecca? The State of Illinois seems to be the dumping ground for former Channel 20 reporters and my bets are on Catie.


  9. - wordslinger - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 11:44 am:

    By “Rat” do you mean the Rathskeller in the basement? That’s still open? It was a dump 20 years ago.


  10. - Levois - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 1:34 pm:

    That was a good interview of Madigan and never mind the background noise. I still call him the only adult down there. Why meet with someone who just won’t play fair?


  11. - anon - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 2:36 pm:

    Vinicky’s interview was pretty good. The Speaker’s responses, especially in using last year as a model for what to expect, made me laugh, as did a couple other of his answers. I really liked the questions, too.


  12. - Rich Miller - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 3:10 pm:

    ===Any bets she’s going to replace Rebecca? ===

    I’ll take that bet.


  13. - cover - Saturday, May 31, 08 @ 10:04 pm:

    Rep. Black made a very fair point about the lack of available resources. Admittedly, this incident happened after normal business hours on the next-to-last day of session, just about the worst possible time for an evacuation. Was there a nurse or other first aid responder on official duty?

    And yes, the Capitol complex ought to have AEDs. Maybe Lt. Gov. Quinn could encourage Public Health to use some of that AED tax check-off money to remedy this glaring problem.


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