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*** UPDATED x1 *** Frerichs wants Cross to sever ties to ALEC

Thursday, Sep 25, 2014

* From a press release…

Downstate Democrat Mike Frerichs, candidate for State Treasurer, is calling on his Republican opponent, 22-year incumbent Republican Tom Cross, to cut his ties with American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and renounce their agenda. This week Google, Facebook, and Yelp joined a long list of companies that have cut ties with ALEC. The national right-wing think tank is accused of undermining efforts to address climate change and spearheading anti-environmental legislation nationwide.

Frerichs, a Certified Public Finance Officer, notes that the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) called on all states to incorporate sustainability practices into their investment standards in 2012. GFOA represents 18,000 public finance experts across the U.S. and Canada. Frerichs has pledged to bolster efforts in the Treasurer’s office to improve sustainable agriculture if elected. Frerichs says the Ag Invest program, which partners with local banks to provide discounted loans, has been underutilized.

“Tom Cross and Bruce Rauner embrace a philosophy of maximizing profits at any cost that has been firmly rejected not just by public finance officers, but also by leading Illinois businesses like Caterpillar and John Deere,” says Zach Koutsky, Frerichs’ campaign manager. “Mike Frerichs has called for a renewed effort to invest in sustainable agriculture that would support farmers looking to purchase the latest green technology and grow our economy. Tom Cross says we should only be focused on maximizing interest rates.”

Frerichs was recently endorsed by the Illinois Sierra Club in his race against Cross, who has a history of anti-environmental votes in the legislature.

Cross is an Identified Leader of ALEC, a rightwing think tank that denies global warming

Cross is a leader within the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a rightwing corporate think tank, according to nonpartisan watchdogs at The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD). In 2011, Cross participated in an ALEC conference aimed at restricting the rights of women, racial minorities, gay Americans and older workers in all 50 states to sue for wrongful termination, workplace discrimination and sexual harassment.

    Cross Voted Against Legislation Sponsored By Obama To Protect Lake Michigan
    Tom Cross voted against a measure co-sponsored by state Sen. Barack Obama to block sludge treatment facilities from being built near Lake Michigan. Cross was one of only 20 No votes in the Illinois House against the bipartisan measure (SB 1003).

    Cross Voted Against Legislation to Warn Parents of Contaminated Drinking Water
    Cross led House Republican opposition to legislation notifying the public about contaminated drinking water. Cross voted No and was joined by nearly all of his GOP colleagues in opposing the measure. (HB 3264)

That first bill became law - 11 years ago. The second bill was never called in the Senate after passing the House three years ago.

*** UPDATE *** The Cross campaign flatly denies that he attended that 2011 ALEC conference. ADDING: They also point to this story which shows he was in his own district during the ALEC conference.

They also rightly point out that HB 3264 was sponsored by Rep. Naomi Jakobsson, who represents half of Sen. Frerichs’ district. Yet, Frerichs did not pick up the bill in the Senate as a co-sponsor. The bill status shows no Senate sponsors at all. So, if the legislation was that important, they say, why didn’t Frerichs pick it up?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

32 Comments
  1. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:01 pm:

    ===Downstate Democrat Mike Frerichs, candidate for State Treasurer, is calling on his Republican opponent, 22-year incumbent Republican Tom Cross ===

    Dick Durbin
    Mike Madigan
    Jesse White
    John Cullerton
    Pat Quinn
    Heck - Lisa Madigan

    How do feel Sen. Frerichs about all those above and their careers?

    Maybe Frerichs should be running WITH Rauner of he wants to go “22 year incumbent”

    As a “Yale-ie” I am sure Mike Frerichs knows Tom Cross isn’t a 22 year incumbent Treasurer…right?

    Again, Mike Frerichs is by far the most annoying statewide candidate, and this Dopiness, all it does is reinforce it.

    @FakeMikeFrerichs - I stand tall, annoying all the long-time Democratic incumbents do I can glom on to Bruce Rauner’s narrative. It’s about me, always me #ShrinkingVioletCantHideDopiness


  2. - Dirty Red - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:02 pm:

    Did they test “Downstate Democrat” somewhere before including it in press releases?


  3. - Angel's Sword - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:04 pm:

    I agree with Frerichs, but lets face it, this is insider baseball.


  4. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:04 pm:

    Wow.
    This is stupid.
    What office is this guy running for?

    This has nothing to do with ALEC. This is about having a lot of campaign money and polls showing you losing, and needing to do something in order to win.

    Frerichs has attempted to inject other non-related issues into this race in order to find a foot hold against Cross. He failed each time to find something relevant to the office he seeks.

    I know ambitious party hacks just want to climb the ladder. We’ve got a governor who was one over the past forty years. He even ran for the same office and won. So, we all know the game here.

    But Frerichs needs to understand that for every Judy Barr Topinka who gets a run of decades in statewide office, and subsequent runs for governor, there are a dozen Loleta Didricksens who do a great job for one term, then return to private life after they lose a campaign.

    You just don’t inject crap like the nonsense he has been injecting into a treasurer’s race.

    Freak, first it was about Israel and now it is about global warming? Please - just lose nicely and give it another try later, OK?


  5. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:04 pm:

    ===They also rightly point out that HB 3264 was sponsored by Rep. Naomi Jakobsson, who represents half of Sen. Frerichs’ district. Yet, Frerichs did not pick up the bill in the Senate as a co-sponsor. The bill status shows no Senate sponsors at all. So, if the legislation was that important, they say, why didn’t Frerichs pick it up?===

    @FakeMikeFrerichs - look Cross Crew, I only glom on things I can tweet about, or be wrong about in my remembering of my own record. I couldn’t make it about me, that’s why. #HistoryAndRecordsAreHardToRemember


  6. - tonya harding - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:05 pm:

    who is ALEC?? Are they talking about my nephew?? Good Grief Charlie Brown. Peter Gammons wouldn’t even understand this Inside baseball hit.


  7. - Barney - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:06 pm:

    Yet another gaffe by Frerichs. He should really just stay out of the press


  8. - Ducky LaMoore - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:07 pm:

    Frerichs: Look, they misspelled “bungler.”
    Frerichs aide: No, that’s bumbler.
    Frerichs: Oh, ok, he got it right.


  9. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:09 pm:

    I understand why he’s piggybacking on the corporations dropping support for ALEC.

    I’d turn next to the organization’s pivotal role in voter suppression efforts across the country. Could resonate with voters he’ll really need.


  10. - Parising Around - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:10 pm:

    Rich, as a Democrat I really object to all the coverage on Frerichs, can’t you give at least some focus to the Republican also-rans as well? Webster, Schimpf and Oberweis have to be just as incompetent as Frerichs.


  11. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:10 pm:

    VMan, if you haven’t noticed over the years, treasurer’s races are always chock-full of issues that have nothing to do with the office.

    What else are they going to talk about?


  12. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:16 pm:

    ===Webster, Schimpf and Oberweis have to be just as incompetent as Frerichs.===

    Oh, jeez.

    Webster and Schimpf are not in competitive races. Frerichs is. And I have posted plenty of Oberweis stories.


  13. - Spliff - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:31 pm:

    Is Koutsky trying to get a job with Cross in the Treasurers?


  14. - Spliff - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:31 pm:

    office


  15. - Team Sleep - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:31 pm:

    VMan - true, but Wordslinger is also right. I remember when Leader Radogno ran for Treasurer. Social conservatives were upset at her social stances. Really?! I never knew how much influence the state treasurer has over social policy.


  16. - A guy... - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:51 pm:

    He needs to more than “want” it. He needs to “demand” it. Yikes.


  17. - Precinct Captain - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:52 pm:

    ==- VanillaMan - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 1:04 pm:==

    And Tom Cross isn’t injecting crap like prosecutions and lawsuits (which if they occur shouldn’t come from the Treasurer, but Comptroller)?


  18. - Abe the Babe - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:06 pm:

    What’s ironic about this is Frerichs was hoodwinked into passing an original version of fracking regulations that was based on the ALEC “model” for chemical disclosure.

    It was the House that rightly demanded business and enviros beef it up.


  19. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:08 pm:

    And Tom Cross isn’t injecting crap like prosecutions and lawsuits (which if they occur shouldn’t come from the Treasurer, but Comptroller)?

    What am I supposed to say to that?
    OH. OK.
    Cross does it so that makes it OK?
    When Cross decides that Frerichs needs to denounce his membership in a group that questions the status quo on a controversial issue - then Cross will feel my sting!

    Today, Frerichs is being silly and that is what we are commenting on.


  20. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:20 pm:

    Wordslinger -

    Actually, the Treasurer’s office oversees hundreds of millions of public dollars in public spending.

    There are some “social issues” that are more on the periphery, but environmental policy is pretty squarely in the Treasurer’s office.

    Vanillaman, if it weren’t important to voters, Cross wouldn’t be denying that he is a climate change denier.

    Which, come to think of it, he never did. He only claims that he didn’t attend the conference.

    Interesting. Maybe he is polling to find out how voters feel about global warming?


  21. - Parising Around - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:27 pm:

    YDD -

    Is Frerichs a climate change denier for passing fracking and not sponsoring HB3264?

    He must be in my opinion if he supports more fossil fuels and less disclosure on drinking water contaminated drinking water. It makes him no different than Cross.

    Maybe next time we can get a real Democrat to win this office.


  22. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:30 pm:

    BTW, since the just endorsed Cross, here is the most recent position i could find from the Illinois Chamber of Commerce on climate change:

    “Therefore, the Illinois Chamber does not support the adoption of individual state or regional regulations on private industry that purport to address global climate change or greenhouse gas initiatives aimed at reducing carbon emissions. It is the policy of the Illinois Chamber than such law or regulation authority is appropriately reserved for the federal government. However, state and local governments may be appropriate forums for incentive programs that stimulate behaviors by individuals or companies to reduce their carbon footprint.”

    Whomever wrote that deserves an A+ for dog whistles, obfuscation and buck passing. That is some landmark rhetoric. I don’t think I can improve on it.

    Emphasis is mine.


  23. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:33 pm:

    Parising Around:

    I believe the Illinois Sierra Club supported the fracking bill, which BTW is s’posed to create around 50,000 jobs.

    I don’t think they would have done that if they thought it was going to destroy the planet.

    But yes, Frerichs did play a leading role in passing legislation to create 50,000 jobs.


  24. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:36 pm:

    ===I believe the Illinois Sierra Club supported the fracking bill===

    Go back a year or so, YDD. Mike sponsored his own fracking bill.


  25. - Abe the Babe - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:38 pm:

    “I believe the Illinois Sierra Club supported the fracking bill, which BTW is s’posed to create around 50,000 jobs. I don’t think they would have done that if they thought it was going to destroy the planet.”

    The original senate bill, which Frerichs sponsored, was a bare bones chemical disclosure bill that looked nothing like the final law.

    It was based on the ALEC legislation. I don’t know who supported what versions, but that senate version was BARE bones.


  26. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:42 pm:

    ===It was based on the ALEC legislation===

    Partially, yes.

    http://www.midwestenergynews.com/2012/05/03/alec-backed-disclosure-language-in-illinois-fracking-bill/

    Dan Eichholz, associate director of the Illinois Petroleum Council — a state office of the American Petroleum Institute — said the council consulted with ALEC when negotiating disclosure requirements of the Illinois bill. ALEC did not approach the council first, he added.

    “I don’t think it really makes a difference which group it comes from,” he said, noting that the Illinois bill, introduced by Democratic state Sen. Michael Frerichs, has received support from the oil and gas industry, environmentalists and the Illinois Farm Bureau.

    Jack Darin, director of the state chapter of the Sierra Club, said he supported the legislation as a good starting point to regulate not-yet-blooming fracking action in Illinois.


  27. - Abe the Babe - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 2:58 pm:

    ===It was based on the ALEC legislation===

    Partially, yes.

    Read SAM 1 to SB3280 from the 97th and then read the ALEC model bill. It is identical until the very end where a couple of token testing and notification requirements were tacked on.

    http://ilga.gov/legislation/fulltext.asp?DocName=09700SB3280sam001&GA=97&SessionId=84&DocTypeId=SB&LegID=64455&DocNum=3280&GAID=11&Session=

    http://www.alec.org/model-legislation/the-disclosure-of-hydraulic-fracturing-fluid-composition-act/


  28. - Parising Around - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 3:01 pm:

    I wonder if the Frerichs camp can spell hypocrite correctly.


  29. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 3:27 pm:

    To paraphrase Darin. even a broken watch is right twice a day! LOL

    If you find Frerichs participating in an effort to make it harder to sue employers for discrimination or sexual harassment, let me know.

    Because Cross is not only listed as a member of a national effort to protect discriminators.

    He voted twice against HB 101 to prohibit discrimination against people who are gay.

    And, he voted against the civil unions bill.

    As for sludge factories on Lake Michigan, who cares if it was 11 years ago or last week?

    The Great Lakes are 1/5 of the world’s supply of fresh water.

    The fishing is a vital regional economic resource.

    It is an indefensible vote, and the fact that Cross can only respond it was 11 years ago shows just how indefensible it was.


  30. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Sep 25, 14 @ 7:21 pm:

    ===He voted twice against HB 101 to prohibit discrimination against people who are gay.===

    .,.And a deciding vote in favor of SSM…


  31. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Sep 26, 14 @ 6:49 am:

    Um, how was Cross a “deciding” vote?

    More like an “undeciding” vote until the very last minute.

    Besides, it is kind of hard to give Tom Cross credit for voting to repeal a ban on gay marriage that he voted to pass in the first place.

    Come on Willy. Even you have to admit that Cross was voting for marriage equality because of politics.

    He was basically forced out as leader of his caucus, had nowhere to go but a statewide run, and the vast majority of Illinoisans support gay marriage.

    If that was Tom Cross’ big civil rights moment, that’s pathetic.

    12 House Republicans voted to end discrimination against gays, and Tom Cross wasn’t one of them.

    And even after it passed in Illinois, he was part of a national effort to protect employers I who discriminate.


  32. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Sep 26, 14 @ 7:49 am:

    - YDD -,

    Sorry I was late to respond.

    Are you making me defend Cross…again? It’s a strange cycle.

    Politics or not, the margin of the passage needed GOP votes in the House, they got them, with Cross.

    You could ding him if he didn’t vote yes, so it’s an achievement for the Bill more than Cross, and many others worked for its passage, but to get over 60, the supporters needed all the votes they got, even if it Crossed 60.

    ===He was basically forced out as leader of his caucus, had nowhere to go but a statewide run, and the vast majority of Illinoisans support gay marriage.===

    Votes are flipped for less than that, and some with even trivial reasons. This had more than both.

    Frerichs doesn’t heed Cross to mess up his record, Frericjs cam and has done fine with that all on his own.

    Always good to go back and firth with you, much respect.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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