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Quinn endorses Berrios, early voting doubles, and a big roundup

Friday, Jan 29, 2010

* 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.

* Roundup…

* Link battles for lieutenant governor spot in state

* Will County Mayors Endorse Cook for Lt. Governor

* Orland Park native hopes to add Lt. Gov to name

* Murphy discusses his bid for lieutenant governor

* Plummer writes open letter to the county GOP chairs

* Comptroller race: Dodge challenger fights back

* Comptroller’s race focuses on finances, Burr Oak

* Stroger’s tax returns show 2008 was better than 2007

* Stroger releases tax returns for the past two years

* Stroger’s County Board allies face challenges

* Recommendations for Cook County Board

* Veterinarian challenging Shimkus for Congress

* Four Republicans vying for 11th District nod

* Democrats take campaigns into neighborhoods across 18th District in bids to challenge incumbent Schock

* Left-wing groups attack Hultgren

* Law Enforcement backs Rodriguez in 8th CD

* State court says Hebda votes should count

* NRA confirms Sente is not a member

* State rep race shows Chicago politics in all its glory

* General Assembly elections lacking attention, not importance

* GOP candidates debate death penalty stances

* ‘Ghosts’ out to scare voters in 36th District?

* Two familiar faces vie for Democrat nomination for 114th district House seat from Illinois

* Jackson gets thousands from politicians, unions in race against Officer, McGaughey

* Rochester man challenges Brauer for GOP nomination

* 25th Senate candidates sticking to the truth

* Video gaffe slips past DuPage Co. board chair candidate

* Short-time incumbent Laesch faces challenger

* Commitment issue in Kane 5th District

* Kendall GOP newcomers say it’s time for change

* [McHenry Co.] District 6 hopefuls debate water, open space

* DuPage sheriff candidates debate finances

* Judge candidate admits license suspension

* Current sheriff, 2 others face off in Ford Co. sheriff primary

* Attorney’s candidacy worries county Democrats

* The Eagles, Magic and Train Cash - The Morning Trough

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - OdysseusVL - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 1:55 pm:

    I sure wish Brown would focus more on her current job, and less on what people say about her during a campaign. I just got a print out of case activity on a pending suit, and found at least 25 mistakes. Her office can’t do the basics.

  2. - True Observer - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 1:58 pm:

    “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.”


    So why can’t the month be September.

  3. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:00 pm:

    I think Quinn is trying to get the Chairman off his u-know-what and pump up the hispanic vote.

  4. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:03 pm:

    I got a Berrios mailer yesterday and noted the Quinn endorsement. Glad to see they got their stories straight today. Any idea if this was in the works for some time or whether the mail piece forced the issue?

  5. - SweetLou - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:17 pm:

    “Brown’s suit doesn’t ask the court to halt the ads.”

    No, instead she’s threatening to include any television stations that continue to air the ad to the lawsuit. The woman is ridiculous. The Tribune was right when they called her and “unsuitable option”.

  6. - The Doc - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:32 pm:

    That was quick.

    And so officially ends, once and for all, the notion that Quinn is a gadfly, nudnik, outsider, reformer, or crusader.

  7. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:37 pm:

    I must admit, at a time when reform seems in style and change is in the air, Quinn, the king of reformers seems to have no qualms about removing his crown.

    And Hynes, a member by birth of the insider club has been allowed to paint himself as a reformer.

    I’m sure there are a lot of people much smarter than myself planning strategy, but if I were running Quinn’s campaign it is not how I would have played it.

    I am 100% behind Pat Quinn but I think I will need to change the oil in my brain after this election.

  8. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:38 pm:

    Agreed Doc,

    The complete transformation of Pat Quinn is now complete. I don’t recognize him anymore. He has embraced in one year the elements in our party he despised and fought against during the last 30 years of his public life.

    Quinn endorses Berrios. Goodbye irony, you will be missed.

  9. - Patriot - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:41 pm:

    I’m going to miss the blue jumpsuit if Dorthy doesn’t win. Maybe she can exchange it for an orange IDOC suit soon though.

  10. - Bill - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:47 pm:

    Quinn would endorse Todd Stroger if he thought that would help his own personal agenda and get him re-elected. It has always been all about himself and everybody who knows him knows it. At least now everybody else also knows he is a complete sellout. If bring governor is worth that much to him we should probably all vote for the other guy.

  11. - Will County Woman - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:51 pm:

    PJW, I agree. I think Quinn did himself a huge disservice and injustice by not staying true to himself, truthfully he should have never ran in the first place.

    He’s been looking like any other old typical politician these days, and that’s not good. This is going to be a tough year for incumbents, and an especially tough year for (regular) democrats. Moderate dems will not support Quinn on Tuesday, neither will independents. If he makes it to November he won’t get mod dems or indepedents and has no chance in heck of picking off any moderate republicans.

    A key element of his base liked him for his moxie and not being part of the establishment, but that key element of his base will now be looking very closely at the republicans should quinn win on tuesday.

    I’m glad that this has turned into somwewhat of a high-stakes primary for the dems, because that means they can’t really afford to have demoracts pulling republican ballots in an attempt to push the election outcome on the republican side.

  12. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:54 pm:


    Early voting is up in Cook County suburbs because there are more locations to vote at. Pretty simple.

    And Todd has already endorsed Dan. He’s on the 8th ward palm card.

  13. - Wizard of Ozzie - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:58 pm:

    Pat Quinn as the insider, ha!

    Dan Hynes would have taken anyone’s endorsement gladly. Especially the Chair of the Cook County Dem Party. I remember reading in an article Berrios was working at the Bd of Review when Quinn was a commissioner 25 years ago.

    Dan couldn’t get the insiders to endorse him b/c they know he’s a loser in the general. Instead he has to tout his list of endorsers, which reads like a collection of losers, has-beens, and never was. When you have commercials featuring Adalai Stevenson (who I didnt know was even alive until I saw him in Dan’s commercial), Dock Walls (who is certifiably nuts) and LaShawn Ford and Jack Franks (Springfield bottom feeders), you know have some issues with endorsements.

  14. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 2:59 pm:

    Bill, putting aside all your Quinn venom, I just don’t think this Berrios thing helps his campaign right now and that is what puzzles me. If I thought it was good for his campaign, I would be all for it.

  15. - Hank - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:01 pm:

    Stroger’s “busboy” has announced that the toddler came on to him. So courageous of him to hold it in until the 11th hour!
    Gotta love Crook County politics!

  16. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:05 pm:

    Phineas, do you think Joe Berrios, who is surely polling and politically very smart, would trumpet Pat Quinn’s endorsement 4 days before an election unless he had some poll numbers to indicate to him that it’s helpful? Highly doubtful. This is a guy with access to everyone’s numbers.

    Hynes’ changing his ad buy and Berrios thinking Quinn helps him in Cook County adds to the mounting evidence that Quinn’s numbers are better than are coming through in the polls.

  17. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:05 pm:

    Yeah, Hank.

    Rich: WLS Radio just reported this and played the audio from Tony Cole. Not saying there is any truth to it, but it’s out there.

  18. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:07 pm:

    The Berrios endorsement came from a BERRIOS press release. Quinn accepted Berrios’ endorsement months ago with other latinos. Again, there is probably a very good reason for the polling.

  19. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:07 pm:

    LL, that is why I said I think there are people a lot smarter than me planning strategy. I hope you are right.

  20. - Hank - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:10 pm:

    Also heard a professionally done ad for Hynes on WVON where a baritone voiced black man condemns PQ for trying to blame Burr Oak on Hynes. Also says that Washington speaking is what it is, about incompetence
    I wonder if Cliff Kelly will allow it to be played during his show?

  21. - Anonymous - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:17 pm:

    Isn’t Hynes having a press conference this afternoon with African American ministers? Can’t find any coverage…

  22. - perspective - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:19 pm:

    I think it is beyond ironic that Pat Quinn is giving/getting these types of endorsements. Absolute power corrupts absolutely?

    I honestly can’t wait for this election to be over regardless of who wins the Dem primary. I wouldn’t really mind Pat Quinn as Governor but I sure would like him to be delivered a loss so his pompous state legislative staff (and special babysitter to the IDOC) and campaign communications team get a little reality check.

  23. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:21 pm:

    There are, by definition, no “political outsiders” holding public office.

    In fact, the minute anyone decides to run for office, they become a part of the game.

    Complain about Quinn endorsing Berrios all you want, but the candidate endorsed by the Chicago Tribune is a former Alderman and Democratic Committeeman. Some outsider.

    Moreover, while the Tribune’s all up in arms about Berrios raising money from property tax attorneys — a practice I don’t favor either but which IS completely legal — the candidate that the Tribune chose to endorse would make the Assessor’s office appointed by the Cook County President, and thus subject to MORE backroom dealing and LESS transparency.

  24. - Will County Woman - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:24 pm:

    Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:05 pm:

    Actually I wonder the opposite. I wonder if Berrios is using Quinn as cover? And Quinn is allowing it, which means he in fact supports Berrios.

    People aren’t exactly clammoring for Berrios. So to allay fears and re-shape his image he goes for and gets the Quinn endorsement to allign himself and get some heat off his back?

    Quinn is the lipstick and Berrios is the pig?
    (And berrios don’t send anyone around my house to physically attack me, ok.)

  25. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:34 pm:

    My point remains, why did announce Quinn’s endorsement unless he thinks it helps him? You’ve conceded my point, and then Palin-ized it. Impressive work.

    Your tortured logic is amusing.

  26. - DeepBlue - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:56 pm:

    I’m thrilled to see someone going after Hultgren and McAloon. I don’t want any Glenn Beck wanna be representing Illinois. They are anti-choice and want to bring the country back to 18th century.

  27. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:58 pm:

    Just got an e-mail from Jim Houlihan endorsing Dan Hynes.

    Not sure which came first, but given that Houlihan is also with Berrios’s opponent, its not surprising to see the Quinn-Berrios team.

  28. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 3:59 pm:

    ===but the candidate endorsed by the Chicago Tribune is a former Alderman and Democratic Committeeman. Some outsider.===

    Agreed. Figueroa leaves a lot to be desired. Not that I’m comfortable defending the Tribune’s endorsement, but c’mon YDD. Were they going to go with Berrios or Robert Shaw?

    Between Berrios and Shaw, Figueroa is like the second coming of Paul Simon. Talk about a race that ought to include a “none of the above” option, Cook County Assessor is one to be skipped over. At least if Figueroa could somehow win that one, then we’d probably get better candidates in four years. As it stands, once Berrios gets in, we’ll be stuck with him for a decade.

    But I hope everyone remembers, that when it counted for Berrios, Pat Quinn was standing by his side.

  29. - JonShibleyFan - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:03 pm:


    Just because Berrios thinks Quinn will help him doesn’t mean Quinn is winning. Quinn still has reformer/liberal credibility, which is not Berrios’ strong suit.

    And Berrios’ campaign ends at Cook County’s borders.

  30. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:19 pm:


    Orland is pushing huge for Terry O’Brien, could be a factor in turnout …

  31. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:24 pm:


    If he thinks Quinn helps him in Cook County, which is 65% of Democratic vote, then he’s probably in good shape in the polls that Berrios is looking at. I think that’s a pretty reasonable conclusion to draw.

    Outside of Cook County, no one care about Joe Berrios, beeeeeeecause he doesn’t represent them.

    I could be wrong, but Berrios putting out this press release shows pretty clearly how he thinks Quinn is doing. Pretty much every Dem in Cook County has endorsed Berrios.

  32. - wordslinger - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:27 pm:

    Has Ed Burke ever kicked in 250K to anyone? The fact that it’s Quinn is pretty remarkable. Wouldn’t have been my guess.

  33. - Quinn T. Sential - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:28 pm:

    The early vote in Orland is being driven in large measure by Sherriff Sheahan (Ret-Knottingham)and his Irish Mafia pressing the 15th Judicial Sub-Circuit race; again, as always.

  34. - Little Lebowski Urban Achiever - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:29 pm:

    Just went back to check the vote totals from Berrios’ last race to see how he did along the Lakefront running against a resident of the 43rd ward who spent over a million against him.

    Berrios wasn’t under 43% in any ward, winning by 20 points. The idea that the connection to Berrios somehow really hurts Quinn is a figment of the collective Cap Fax imagination.

  35. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:31 pm:

    ===The idea that the connection to Berrios somehow really hurts Quinn is a figment of the collective Cap Fax imagination.===

    Did you go back and check RRB’s totals too?

    Obviously, things change, man.

  36. - Quinn T. Sential - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 4:56 pm:

    This Just In………..

    Quinn T. Semtial has endorsed Hollywood Hendon for Lt. Governor saying;

    “He’s Always Been a Person Who’s Honest and One of Integrity”

    Oh; wait, haven’t we heard that somewhere before?

  37. - Let the Big Dog Eat... - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 6:26 pm:

    Which came first today - Quinn endorsing Berrios or Houlihan endorsing Hynes?

  38. - track - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 8:21 pm:

    Yes. But 2006 was the first year of early voting in Illinois.

  39. - rudy - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 8:33 pm:

    Berrios is the most qualified candidate for this particular office. He has administered the Board of Review for more than 20 years. He has a trained, knowledgable, professional staff that can hit the ground running.

  40. - Peggy SO-IL - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 8:39 pm:

    Apparently 2 women are vying for the GOP nomination to run against Jerry Costello in IL CD 12. One doesn’t live in the district. Their platforms are not well fleshed out.

    Also, Gateway Pundit reports that Adam A-ski will be in O’Fallon IL for a rally Sunday 3-5 pm. This is near Scott AFB. I’ll just post GP’s main URL. This particular link is too long for a combox.

  41. - Chicago Cynic - Friday, Jan 29, 10 @ 10:29 pm:

    This was the final nail in the Quinn coffin for me. I have tried, tried, tried to give Pat Quinn the benefit of every doubt. Rationalized bad judgment and compromises. But this is it.

    I’ve really been on the fence about this race. But if there’s no reform left in Pat Quinn (and supporting someone like Joe Berrios would seem to suggest not) then I give up. Pat has sold his soul. I’m voting for Hynes.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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