* First, Pat Quinn sought and received the endorsement of the Cook County Democratic Party, then his campaign borrowed $250,000 from Ald. Ed Burke, and now he’s endorsing Joe Berrios for Assessor. The transmogrification is complete. From a press release…
Gov. Pat Quinn endorsed Joseph Berrios for Cook County Assessor in next Tuesday’s Democratic Primary.
“I am proud to have Gov. Quinn’s endorsement and thankful for his friendship over many years,” Berrios said today. “I look forward to making the Cook County Assessor’s office the most responsive it’s been to taxpayers.”
An A-1 filed by Quinn’s committee this week shows that Billy Marovitz catered a Quinn fundraiser. Who’s next? Dick Mell? Oh… wait.
…Adding… Oops. Forgot about this, with a hat tip to Progress Illinois…
By day, Joseph Berrios is the longest-serving member of the three-man board that holds the power to cut the property tax bill for any parcel in Cook County. By night, Mr. Berrios is a master fund-raiser, bringing in about $3 million in political contributions over the last decade from the same lawyers who ask him and the board to give tax breaks to their clients.
* Speaking of Cook County, the talk for months has been about extremely low voter turnout because of the February primary, but suburban Cook’s early voting is way up from the 2006 campaign, according to the clerk’s office.
This year’s early voting totaled 34,839, more than double the 15,609 before the March, 2006 primary. It’s off from two years ago, of course, because that was a presidential year with Obama at the top of the Democratic ticket. 2006 was the first year for early voting, so it’s natural there would be an increase, particularly after so many people voted early in ‘08.
There also doesn’t appear to be any significant movement towards either party this year, apparently. From the clerk’s office…
During Early Voting, 68 percent of suburban Cook County voters selected Democratic ballots, 31 percent voted Republican and less than 1 percent voted Green Party or Non-partisan.
In the 2006 and 2002 gubernatorial primaries, 67 percent and 65 percent, respectively, voted Democratic (including early voters in 2006). […]
Voters age 65 and older represented about 44 percent of all early voters… More suburban women than men were early voters. About 54 percent of all early voters were women and 46 percent were men.
Early voting percentages by party are not available from the clerk’s office for 2006, I’m told.
The busiest four sites — Orland Park Village Hall; Centennial Park in Wilmette; Northbrook Village Hall and Wheeling Township Hall in Arlington Heights — accounted for about 10,000 of the total votes cast during Early Voting. The downtown Chicago site, 69 W. Washington, was the fifth most popular location with more than 1,600 voters.
There’s that 10th CD primary up North, which is surely driving some of the turnout. Not sure what’s driving early voting in Orland Park, other than all the hot races on the ticket, including a legislative primary down there.
* Zorn has changed his mind about the early primary…
Wasn’t a fan, at first. Thought it too tightly compressed the campaign season (which, really, for all practical purposes, didn’t start until after New Year’s Day when people started paying attention) and didn’t give enough time for citizens to get to know particularly unknown candidates.
Now I’m all for it. Have come to believe that a month is plenty of time for anyone who cares even a little bit about politics to get familiar with the candidates, weigh their positions and their ads and cast a sensible vote. And that, if anything, shorter campaigns help level the playing field by giving less of an advantage to those with enough cash to bombard the airwaves with messages for months.
* Dorothy Brown is suing Terry O’Brien…
On Thursday, Dorothy Brown — claiming her reputation has been stained — filed a $1.25 million slander suit against opponent Terry O’Brien for a television ad declaring “ethically challenged Dorothy Brown forced employees to give her cash gifts.”
Brown, clerk of the Cook County Circuit Court, has raised eyebrows after published stories about accepting cash birthday gifts from employees, something she has not denied.
But there has never been an allegation that employees have been coerced, said Brown’s attorney Adam Lasker. […]
Brown’s campaign has also sent a letter to television stations asking them to stop airing the commercial. O’Brien, head of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District, sands by the ad.
Brown’s suit doesn’t ask the court to halt the ads.
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* Stroger releases tax returns for the past two years
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