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Ministers want black replacement, but not Emil Jones

Monday, Nov 24, 2008

* This was inevitable

A group of Chicago clergymen is urging the governor to appoint an African-American to the Obama seat. They’re not endorsing any candidate but say the person the governor picks should be electable and carry on a progressive agenda.

* There are at least two African-American congressmen vying for the seat - Danny Davis and Jesse Jackson, Jr. - so the ministers say they won’t choose between the two.

The reverends did make one other interesting demand

But they don’t want a short-term fill-in, which Emil Jones, the retiring 71-year-old state senate president, would likely be.

At least that’s some progress. Choosing Jones would be a huge outrage and likely political suicide. It would be political insanity, which is why I won’t rule it out.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Bill - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 9:52 am:

    Who better than former Senator Jones to bring the Rod Blagojevich agenda to DC? Jones has been a loyal supporter and he has helped the Governor get things done for people without raising sales or income taxes. He understands the legislative process and knows how to operate. If I don’t get appointed, Emil Jones would be the next best choice.

  2. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 9:55 am:

    Bill, didn’t I advise you to keep your trap shut? lol

  3. - Confused 2B - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 9:56 am:

    You can’t ALWAYS get what you want! Look at what we have as Gov-PLEASE! Why shouldn’t it be the BEST person for the job?! Do we forget what these people need to be representing the STATE of Illinois-that includes ALL of the people-not just some of the people!

  4. - Bill - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 9:56 am:

    Oh, yeah, I forgot.

  5. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 9:58 am:


  6. - My Opinion - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:02 am:

    LOL. That was funny.

  7. - Wumpus - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:04 am:

    What if white people had demanded a white replacment for Bush? Obama got a promotion to the highest elected position in the land. The reason this seat is open is not tragic or sad, he moved up!

    This is silly

  8. - Levois - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:05 am:

    The seat should be filled by the best candidate for the job. It might be great to see another black in the Senate, but I hope that person might be able to win a full term in their own right. Either way it shouldn’t matter what the race of the new Senator should be.

  9. - Six Degrees of Separation - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:11 am:

    There have been 5 African American and 6 Hispanic U.S. Senators since the founding of the country. Not in favor of “quotas” here and we should really hope for the best person for the job without regard to how they were born, but it’s a little disproportionate if you think Congress should look like America.

    Ironically, IL has produced 2 of the 5 previous black U.S. Senators. And once again, IL is being asked to pull our weight for the rest of the country.

  10. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:13 am:

    I agree it is wrong to demand the Senator be black but why isn’t there any blacks in the Senate now? Someday we will fully grasp the color of skin vs. the content of character principle and we will all be better off.

  11. - wordslinger - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:16 am:

    They can ask, and they might get it here, but I think history has turned a corner. The time of the ministers — Jesse, Al Sharpton — is over

    Obama. Colin Powell. Condi Rice. Deval Patrick. Eric Holder. John Rogers. All successful because of the content of their character, not the color of their skin.

    Heck, Stan O’Neal was a true pioneer. He wrecked Merrill Lynch a year before any other Wall Street CEO.

  12. - Plutocrat03 - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:16 am:

    It would be interesting to see a non politician appointed to that position. There are thousands of people of all hues and genders who would be good representatives.

    Trying to logically predict who the Gov. will choose will not work since we are not privy to the calculation the Gov. will make on what is best for him.

  13. - GOPlanner - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:18 am:

    Jones is the best choice for Blago! He awards his biggest supporter and it leaves open the seat for the 2010 primary and general. This would be the best way for the Gov to split his opposition. A Senate seat is pretty appealing for some of our younger Democratic office holders. He would keep the African American vote and water down the competition. Where would Lisa go? How about Danny? Or our Young banker? Jones helped Obama and The Treasurer is Obama’s guy maybe that puts him in the Senate race. Lisa would have trouble trying to run for Gov now because of the open warfare between The Speaker and Gov, she’s young why not take the sure thing? She can always come back in 12 or so years and run for Gov. Who will the GOP put up for Senate?

  14. - Dan S, a Voter and Cubs Fan - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:19 am:

    I know this may sound radical but what if the person chosen was the most qualified and would best represent Illinois in the US Senate regardles of race, creed or color? Just sayin…..

  15. - Rob_N - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:21 am:

    Richy Rich sez: “Choosing Jones would be a huge outrage and likely political suicide.”

    Wasn’t sending the legislature into a record-busting summer-long overtime session for no apparent good reason political suicide?

    Wasn’t lining up big-dollar donors and putting together all the appearances of quid pro quo political suicide?

    Wasn’t being a belligerent loudmouth and vindictive sob on even the littlest things, like slashing the Illinois Arts Council budget, political suicide?

    I swear, Blago’s a cat.

  16. - Cassandra - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:23 am:

    I still think that Luis Gutierrez is the smartest pick from a political standpoint. I don’t know much about him but Blago would get a huge bounce in the Hispanic community for appointing a Hispanic to the US Senate–not only locally but nationally. And, as I’ve said, African Americans will support Blago or not depending on who else runs. But Hispanics are likely still making up their minds re our Blago. The Gutierrez appointment will be visible assuming Gutierrez runs again in 2010, so this appointment would be very much present in the minds of Hispanics when our Blago, as seems inevitable, goes up for a third term in the 2010 primary. He can start calling himself the “Hispanic” governor!

  17. - wordslinger - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:27 am:

    Hispanics are not monolithic. I don’t know that Luis, as a Puerto Rican, gets you as much that much in the ‘growth sector,” voters of Mexican origin.

  18. - Wumpus - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:36 am:

    Bill, do some digging and see if you have any Black ancestors. Many old timers still abide by the silly one drop rule.

  19. - Crystal Clear - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:50 am:

    Because there is no logic with this Governor, the dark horse that everyone has stopped talking about is Punkin’ Haid.

  20. - Speaking at Will - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:52 am:

    == A group of Chicago clergymen is urging the governor to appoint an African-American to the Obama seat. ==

    This really angers me when I read this kind of stuff. Why is a black man or black woman more qualified? Why does it matter? Are white people not capable of representing blacks or hispanics in a proper fashion? All of these “clergymen” need to take a hike and maybe look for the most qualified person before we start waving the flag for a candidate based on the least important factor of all, the color of thier skin.

  21. - ArchPundit - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:55 am:

    ==Choosing Jones would be a huge outrage and likely political suicide. It would be political insanity, which is why I won’t rule it out.

    A feature, not a bug.

  22. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 10:56 am:

    A reminder for some commenters.

    If you think that because we’ve elected a black president that racism no longer exists, or that making sure at least one black person is in the otherwise black-less US Senate is completely unimportant and an idea to be derided, you probably should take a breath and think things through a bit more carefully.

    In other words, tone it down, please.

  23. - Who Knows - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 11:18 am:

    Picking Gutierrez would NOT be a smart move. He would alienate the entire African American political base while not really bringing anything to the table. It will be Emil Jones, Jr. Mark my words.

  24. - Bill Baar - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 11:30 am:

    I’m betting on Jones. Seat should go to an AA and Jones would bring back bucks to Illinois.

  25. - Anon - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 11:53 am:

    even though Jones has played here, wouldn’t he be a joke in the pedigreed “big leagues”? I don’t see him negotiating well with the others to bring anything back to Illinois - anything that makes its way here will be from Durbin and our ties to Obama…

  26. - 2ConfusedCrew - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:03 pm:

    Let’s see black ministers are against The President. That should speed the Jones appointment along. Maybe Deputy Gov. Head Bump could send Eddie Reed out to hustle some new support for The President too

  27. - Cynic - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:04 pm:

    I don’t think the Gov will appoint a white male, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll appoint a black candidate either.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if the Gov was trying to broker a deal with Mike Madigan. He appoints Lisa (who would likely be his strongest Dem challenger for re-election) and in return Madigan agrees not to support an opposition candidate (I don’t think Madigan would agree to support the Gov).

    Duckworth would also be a nice choice - disabled, vet, Asian, female - it fills a lot of “quotas” and she seems relatively competent too.

  28. - Little Egypt - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:04 pm:

    Why are we still talking about a replacement for Obama? I thought Bill had the appointment all wrapped up.

  29. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:06 pm:

    ===It wouldn’t surprise me if the Gov was trying to broker a deal with Mike Madigan.===

    That assumes MJM would return the guv’s phone call.

  30. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:08 pm:

    LE, your mouth to Rod’s ears.

  31. - Big Mama T - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:16 pm:

    I just hope if a Black man is appointed he has an economics background and is not a lawyer, or career politician.

  32. - Carl Nyberg - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:39 pm:

    How much overlap is there between this group of Black ministers and the Black ministers who lobbied for Com Ed to raise electricity rates?

    Here’s my take on JJJ and DKD.

    JJJ is on the House Appropriations Committee. He’s stuck there for the good of Chicago and Illinois. Such is the fate of people who successfully lobby to get on the Appropriations Committee at a young age.

    Danny K. Davis. He’s nice. It’s hard to argue he’s an effective legislator. Constituent service isn’t a strong suit either. He’s completely ignorant on technology issues. There’s nothing that says to me he’s U.S. Senate material.

    If we’re gonna have a Black U.S. Senator, has Roland Burris been considered?

    What’s Michael Jordan doing these days? Jordan doesn’t know as much as these guys do about policy and politics, but the dude has drive to improve himself.

    I’d wager that in two years Jordan would have more legislative accomplishments than Davis would have in his first two years in the Senate.

    But, I’m OK with Emil Jones in a caretaker role. Or Blagojevich. Or Valerie Jarrett. Kwame Raoul is cool too.

  33. - Conservative Republican - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:47 pm:

    Regarding the Ministers’ demand: so much for the age of Obama being “post-racial”. Hope Illinois Obamaniacs are enjoying this “new era”. Particularly those who are Hispanic…talk about being taken for granted…

  34. - Little Egypt - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 12:51 pm:

    We should not be looking for black, white, red, or yellow to replace Obama. If we are truly color blind, then we will soon hear the announcement we have all been waiting for - Bill is the Chosen One.

    Bill, can I be your press secretary?

  35. - Bill - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 1:04 pm:

    Little e,
    Sorry that job is taken. We will definitely find something for you. Maybe you can be executive assistant to Chief of Staff Miller.

  36. - Who Knows - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 1:07 pm:

    Carl Nyberg needs to read the papers more often. Valerie Jarrett has publicly stated she doesn’t want the interim job and has been appointed to be a senior advisor to the president. Michael Jordan? Dude, please.

  37. - Amy - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 1:44 pm:

    Chicago and Illinois seem to be the capital of whose group gets what position, unless, of course, it comes to women who are not nearly represented per the percentage of the population. and the Irish have elected officials way out of proportion to the percentage of the population.

    maybe we should just look at the qualifications of the person who is going on to be President. well educated, a lawyer, served in other elected office, and a good communicator.

    that’s the group from which the successor should be selected.

  38. - GoBearsss - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 3:12 pm:

    How astonishing that a Governor would make a move so blatantly political.

  39. - Little Egypt - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 3:12 pm:

    Bill, many thanks for the confidence you have in me. I will serve you admirably. And being Executive Assistant to Miller will be a plub job. I’ve heard that he doesn’t want to be away from home overnight and wants to live with his family in Illinois.

  40. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 3:15 pm:

    GoBearsss, I find it astonishing that a governor actually took some decisive action.

    Just sayin… Get off the dime, dudes.

  41. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 3:16 pm:

    LE, I also don’t want the job if I have to show up for it or do anything to earn the paycheck. lol

  42. - Little Egypt - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 3:18 pm:

    Guess I should learn how to spell.

  43. - Redbright - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 3:42 pm:

    Forget people the Gov would want to pick if his political life was really the way he pretends it is, who would the DNC/next-White House want to be the choice?

    Their single objective is to keep the seat in the Dem column in 2010. How does that happen?

    [I continue to believe it is via respectable caretaker Jesse White.]

  44. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 3:59 pm:

    I thought I was a genious last week when I suggested Judge Tim Evans-but didn’t read a peap pro or con from fellow bloggers. Boy I’m getting old. I remember when he was the man in the black community. Oh well, now Blago’s the man.

  45. - VanillaMan - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 4:39 pm:

    The Democratic Party has been catering to their constituencies based on their historical victimizations. After decades of demanding quotas and affirmative action based on race, it is understandable that the Party is at a stage where they simply cannot walk away from this ridiculous tradition.

    So if a office holder can be considered a minority, their replacements have to be of similar minority? Wow - that’s insulting!

    We are all human beings capable of empathy. We don’t have to be something in order to empathize with one another. It is sad to consider that these individuals making this political demand/suggestion consider themselves reverends. Here I thought reverends would best understand our commonality, as I was taught in church as a child, not our appearance.

    But when we witness Senator Barbara Boxer suggest that Secretary Rice is incapable of empathizing with mothers of war because Secretary Rice is not a mother, one has to wonder where we lost our humanity, let along our political decency.

    When President Bush is admonished for not being the mother of a fallen soldier to counter the war politics of Cindy Sheehan, we have to wonder how far we have fallen in our beliefs that we can feel one another’s pain and suffering.

    But that is becoming the mode of operations for the Democratic Party, isn’t it? We must hear from an actual victim tell us how to proceed with our political priorities on specific issues, because non-victims no longer have less credibility?

    This is a bad situation. As a librarian I quickly learned that the student or professor lost among the stacks is the last person to understand why they are lost. All they know is that they are lost, not how to extract themselves out of their situation. Yet, we have been allowing our politics to become hostage to a belief that being a victim enobles or enlightens the victim’s stands on an issue, while evidence only proves that they are merely an unfortunate victim.

    We can empathize. That is what makes us human. The ministers are wrong to even make this suggestion. We cannot move towards a post-racial America under similar terms that created the racial one we struggle to free ourselves from.

  46. - Chicago Cynic - Monday, Nov 24, 08 @ 6:54 pm:

    I don’t know why people have so much difficulty understanding why it would be a good thing to appoint an African American to Obama’s seat. Not required. Not a quota. Simply a good thing.

    Look, I’m white. I’m very white. But I’d have to be a blind man to not recognize why it’s important to replace Barack Obama, only the third black person to sit in the US Senate, with a competent, qualified, capable African American.

    It’s not reverse racism. Frankly, if there were more black people in the Senate or if their had been some, it wouldn’t be such a big deal. But there haven’t been. And that’s a reality Rod should take into account.

    Of course the more important point is that African Americans are the only remaining base of support for Rod (if you consider 33% a base of support) so he’d be wise to do it. Okay, okay, I know…”wise to do it” and “Rod” don’t fit in the same sentence….

  47. - Beowulf - Tuesday, Nov 25, 08 @ 7:33 am:

    The fact that they would speak out against bringing back Emil is “refreshing”. Then again, if they didn’t it would be similar to Andy McKenna saying that Republicans should choose George Ryan as his replacement when George finally gets out of federal prison. Then again, perhaps I had better not rule out that possibility either?

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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