* Last week, Congressman Jesse Jackson, Jr.’s spokesman told the Associated Press that none of the three African-American congressmen from Illinois would help fund the legal defense of the new district map…
Jackson spokesman Frank Watkins said Illinois’ Democratic members of Congress were asked to donate $10,000 each to help fight the Republican legal challenge. Jackson, Davis and Rush won’t be contributing to the legal defense, he said
* Well, the AP followed up and found that the delegation is not as unanimous as Jackson’s spokesman made it out to be…
Democratic Congressman Danny Davis on Friday backed away from statements made by colleague Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. that he wouldn’t help defend the state’s new congressional map being challenged in court by Republicans.
Davis said he had yet to decide whether he would kick in $10,000, as Illinois’ Democratic members of Congress were asked to do, to help pay to fight the legal challenge of a map that Jackson has suggested may put politics ahead of minority rights.
“I have not reached the point of saying at this juncture that I will not participate in the defense of the map,” Davis told The Associated Press. “I’m actually in the process of deciding whether or not I’m going to participate.” He said he would decide soon.
I checked with Congressman Bobby Rush’s press aide Renee Ferguson and was told this afternoon that no final decision had been made by her boss, either.
In other words, Jackson appears to have gotten ahead of the game here.
*** UPDATE *** It appears that Congressman Gutierrez is not all that happy with Jackson, either…
Other Illinois Democrats — especially Gutierrez — are furious that he’s bringing up these concerns months after the mapmaking process. Jackson’s concerns also play into a Republican lawsuit to overturn the map.
Tension between the two Illinois Members spilled onto the House floor last week when Gutierrez angrily confronted Jackson Thursday during votes. On Friday, one Member described a palpable hostility between Jackson and Gutierrez on the floor. At one moment, Gutierrez walked toward Jackson, who immediately stood up and walked the other way.
Gutierrez didn’t want to comment on the situation with Jackson, declining to make eye contact during most of a brief interview.
“I don’t want to just shoot off at the mouth as some Congressmen do,” Gutierrez said. “I want to carefully consider, otherwise those who speak without carefully considering what they have to say, come off as buffoons, and I certainly don’t want that.”
It’s no wonder that the other two members are backing off.
[ *** End Of Update *** ]
* Speaking of remaps…
Republican leaders have challenged the new legislative map in a federal lawsuit, alleging it discriminates against minorities. They also said it discriminates against Republicans by putting the party’s incumbents together.
[State Rep. Randy Ramey, chair of the DuPage County GOP] said he does not expect the courts to make things easier for DuPage Republicans, because he doubts the suit will succeed.
“The legislative lawsuit, and you have to look at the past history, has never moved forward,” Ramey said.
Ramey adds that if that suit - now in federal court - is bumped to state court, it would face a system dominated by Democrats.
“If it goes through the Democratic courts and gets to the Democratic Supreme Court in Illinois, I don’t see how they change it,” he said.
* In other politics news, considering all that’s happened in the last few years, he might want to drop the middle name…
A source who was there this morning says that Patrick Daley Thompson, the former mayor’s nephew, showed up at a Democratic Party pre-slating meeting this morning and announced that he’s running for a seat on the Water Reclamation District of Metropolitan Chicago.
At least one seat will be vacant next year because incumbent board member and President Terry O’Brien is retiring from that job, multiple party sources told me. (Mr. O’Brien in 2010 ran for president of the Cook County Board, losing to Toni Preckwinkle in the Democratic primary.)
Mr. Thompson is related to Mr. Daley through the former mayor’s sister. He gained fame a few years ago when he bought the Bridgeport bungalow in which Mr. Daley and his brothers were raised by the late Mayor Richard J. Daley and his wife, Eleanor “Sis” Daley.
Mr. Daley’s spokeswoman said she believes he is unaware of his nephew’s ambitions but would check to see if he wants to comment.
* More stuff…
* Judge denies Catholic Charities’ request for reconsideration: The state Department of Children and Family Services can begin canceling its adoption and foster care contracts with Catholic Charities, Sangamon County Circuit Judge John Schmidt ruled this afternoon. Schmidt denied Catholic Charities’ emergency request to stay his earlier ruling that the group had no right to such state contracts. Schmidt also denied Catholic Charities’ motion to reconsider that ruling. Catholic Charities will now ask the Illinois 4th District Appellate court to stay Schmidt’s ruling while it appeals it to that court, according to attorneys for Catholic Charities agencies associated with the Springfield, Peoria, Belleville and Joliet dioceses.
* Schoenburg: Clutter reconsiders open-primary push
* Warren: Fox News’ Cheap Shot at Quigley
* Boone’s Saloon opens
* Illinois Huntley Tea Party to Hold Forum on Concealed Carry
* Seven former Chicago aldermen now lobbying City Hall
* Ramey pleads guilty in DUI case: DuPage County Republican chairman and state Rep. Randy Ramey pleaded guilty Monday to driving under the influence and was fined $1,750 and ordered to perform 100 hours of community service. The six-year state representative, elected to take the helm of the county party in late July, also was placed on one year of supervision and ordered to attend counseling and participate on a victim impact panel.