Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan is backing Ald. Howard Brookins against veteran U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush in the March 15 Democratic primary.
The powerful speaker — who also is chairman of the state Democratic Party — customarily supports the party’s incumbents. But Brookins is listed as the preferred candidate of Madigan’s 13th Ward Democratic Organization on the newly printed “sample ballots” sent to voters in the speaker’s Southwest Side power base. […]
Rush said he did not know why Madigan would support a challenger against him.
“In 23 years, we haven’t had any reason to have any major differences,” Rush said.
As explained in the story, Brookins asked Madigan for help with his petitions and Madigan complied. Madigan’s 13th Ward has just two precincts worth about a hundred votes two years ago in that district, so it won’t mean much, anyway.
* But, c’mon. There’s no big mystery here. At the same time Brookins made his pitch to Madigan, Congressman Rush’s son Flynn was running against Madigan’s House Majority Leader. He ended up dropping out, likely because of serious defects in his petitions.
* And speaking of the Speaker’s 13th Ward, this is from the Chicago Board of Elections Commissioners…
Dear Assignment Editors & Political Writers,
Preliminary/unofficial numbers suggest the best Early Voting start yet for a Presidential Primary with more than 11,000 ballots cast in Chicago. That’s a number more in line with a first day before a November Election.
Unofficial ward-by-ward data are below.
On the first day of early voting, 1,003 people voted in the 13th Ward, by far the most of any ward and almost ten percent of the citywide total. Second place went to the 19th Ward, with 419.
That Madigan primary race is fascinating.
* Madigan challenger Gonzales faces uphill climb to unseat speaker