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Zorn encourages Raoul to run

Wednesday, Aug 14, 2013 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Eric Zorn agrees with me that state Sen. Kwame Raoul has a legitimate path to victory if he seeks the Democratic gubernatorial nomination

Raoul’s profile, record of accomplishment and available seed money make him a plausible foe for two candidates who aren’t generating much enthusiasm among Democratic base voters.

Labor, which is sorely disenchanted with Quinn and Daley, would likely form a core of support for Raoul, as would African-American voters and the same of bloc of white liberals who backed Obama — perhaps enough, all told, that he would win a three-way primary.

Working against him, if he chooses to run, will be his lack of experience as an executive — by day, he’s a partner at a LaSalle Street law firm — and as a big-time candidate — he’s never contended on the statewide stage.

His role in attempting to resolve the pension crisis could also backfire on his ambitions. The Tribune has editorialized against Raoul’s “exasperating … slow walk” of the process so far this summer, and if too little gets done in the end, he’ll end up lumped in with Quinn and the legislative leaders labeled as part of the problem, not part of the solution.

Raoul has been demurely declining to reveal his plans and saying that his sole focus right now is coming up with a pension reform bill. It’s exactly what he should be saying under the circumstances, and offers no clue as to what he might do after Labor Day, when the political season begins in earnest.

It’s his time, though. And the Caucus of Meh! is growing impatient.

Raoul’s State Fair event last night was packed. He’s not there yet, but he is seriously considering this thing.

       

26 Comments
  1. - OneMan - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 9:34 am:

    Think he needs to run, not just because it will make the Deomocratic primary more interesting but because I think Quinn and Daley are too alike in many ways (besides the obvious).


  2. - Stones - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 9:43 am:

    It would be great to have a fresh name in the mix. I question though if Raoul joining the race just ensures a PQ victory.


  3. - Let me get this straight - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 9:45 am:

    Run Kwame Run!! Dems need a credible candidate.


  4. - dupage dan - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 9:48 am:

    Harold Washington pulled it off, why not Kwame Raoul? I’m not being snarky - Raoul would have a tuff nut to crack with some constituencies. The Tribune editorializing against him would not be a problem if we believe the numbers on just how few folks read that page, and how few actually buy what is written.


  5. - Jake - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 9:53 am:

    Seldom does such a window of opportunity get opened up for any politician by a confluence of events outside his control. It is not coming on his schedule, but must be almost irrestible.


  6. - Lobo Y Olla - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 9:54 am:

    Will it hurt his chances that he’s not a former federal prosecutor?


  7. - Norseman - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 9:57 am:

    This is his opportunity, but the pension issue will be a drag on him. If he supports a plan too onerous, the public worker unions will not jump on his bandwagon. Supporting anything but a draconian plan will result in constant criticism from the right wing media, i.e. the Trib and Crains of the state.


  8. - walkinfool - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 10:17 am:

    Cook Co Dem slating starts tomorrow, and no one is pushing for Kwame yet, as far as I’ve heard. Of course, that slating might not mean much for state races.


  9. - Jaded - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 10:23 am:

    I agree with Stones. I think Kwame helps Quinn.


  10. - Boone's is Back - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 10:33 am:

    How? The polls all show that with Kwame in the race Quinn’s support among blacks is cut drastically. How exactly does that help him?


  11. - None of the Above - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 10:40 am:

    Another media darling. We will never learn?

    This is so reminiscent of 2004 and 2008. . .

    Illinois and the USA need candidates with actual track records, credentials and accomplishments.


  12. - Wensicia - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 10:48 am:

    Zorn’s timing with this column is perfect. I hope Raoul gets in the primary. I think he’ll take votes away from Quinn and gain votes from Democrats who might sit out the primary, unhappy with the other choices.


  13. - Will Caskey - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 10:58 am:

    Well, that’s it. Raoul had a good run.

    Pity really, I kind of like him.


  14. - Soccermom - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 11:02 am:

    Walking Fool — Quinn will be slated by the Cook County Dems. no question.


  15. - Loop Lady - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 11:08 am:

    see None of the Above…Ditto…


  16. - Jake - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 1:38 pm:

    With the pension issue, it could cut both ways. On the plus side he could get credit for brokering the best possible agreement given the diverse views and interests involved, which is what a Governor should do. On the minus side, he could wear the jacket for all the features that anybody does not like. In a rational world the plues would outweigh the minuses. In the real world it will depend on how well he presents it–simultaneously his greatest challenge and greatest opportunity.


  17. - Steve - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 2:10 pm:

    The guy should run. His big advantage is: he’s not Bill Daley or Pat Quinn. He’s a fresh face.


  18. - dr. reason a. goodwin - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 2:21 pm:

    The hard line on concealed carry will hurt him badly “downstate.”


  19. - Charlatan Heston - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 3:12 pm:

    @ Steve: I’m with you. He may not have the experience but I’d love to see him run.

    @ dr. reason: CCW will hurt him less than Quinn’s position and Daley probably gets painted with his brother’s view


  20. - dave - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 3:18 pm:

    **The hard line on concealed carry will hurt him badly “downstate.”**

    Who’s hard line? Kwame’s? Or Quinn’s? Or Daley’s?

    They’re all pretty much indistinguishable on gun issues, except Kwame actually worked hard to find a compromise on concealed carry, which is much more than the other two can say.


  21. - dr. reason a. goodwin - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 3:42 pm:

    Fair points. So, I guess it’ll be tough for the voters in my neck of the woods to pick any of the Dems. I don’t like single issue voters, but this is a big one for many of the people I know.


  22. - BobInPeoria - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 5:45 pm:

    Non-Chicago area Democrats may be so ticked off at this Chicago area gubernatorial trifecta, that they may stay home.

    I can’t see much Downstate primary enthusiasm for any of this troika.


  23. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 6:41 pm:

    –Well, that’s it. Raoul had a good run.

    Pity really, I kind of like him. –

    Will, for the younger or more sensitive viewers, you want to give them a heads up on who is bankrolling you or who you are pitching and stroking with free media?

    –Well, that’s it. Raoul had a good run.

    Pity really, I kind of like him. –

    Bloody ‘ell, Harry, maybe some should hire Hermonie, Ron and you for real money.

    Seriously, you get paid real money? Outside of the Berrios thing?


  24. - Steve - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 6:46 pm:

    If Kwame wins the primary: he’d have a good shot of winning the general election. Illinois is a Blue state.


  25. - Southsider - Wednesday, Aug 14, 13 @ 11:05 pm:

    Raoul should run for Comptroller. He does not have the money or organization to truly compete.


  26. - KurtInSpringfield - Thursday, Aug 15, 13 @ 7:16 am:

    I agree with Steve (@6:46 pm). The next Gov will be the Dem who wins the primary. I would vote for Raoul in both elections.


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