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*** UPDATED x2 - ILGOP plays Madigan/Blagojevich cards *** Pritzker files paperwork to form exploratory committee, will contribute $200K for “day to day operations”

Tuesday, Mar 14, 2017

* Press release…

Please see statement below from J.B. Pritzker regarding today’s filing of a D-1 with the State Board of Elections establishing the “JB for Governor Exploratory Committee”:

    “As I’ve traveled across Illinois I’ve listened to people express their deep concerns about the direction of our state. It is clear that having a Governor who’s unwilling to address our state’s challenges is having a real impact on people’s lives. Today, I will take the next step in this process by filing an exploratory committee. I look forward to continuing my conversations with people across Illinois who are currently being forced to pay the price of failed leadership from Governor Rauner.”

Pritzker will also contribute $200,000 to cover day to day operations associated with the exploratory committee.

Lee Rosenberg will serve as Chair and Treasurer. He currently serves as Chief of Staff to JB Pritzker at The Pritzker Group.

Megan Brengarth will provide compliance and serve as custodian of records for the committee.

Megan Brengarth appears to have extensive experience with handling campaign finance compliance.

Chris Kennedy has not yet reported any contributions, despite announcing his own bid a month ago. Ameya Pawar, who just sent out a press release demanding that Gov. Rauner denounce Iowa Congressman Steve King’s racists statements, has reported raising $31,010.15 since January 30th. Bob Daiber has reported raising $28K in the past month, including $20K from himself.

* People have been asking me for a while now if I thought Pritzker was serious about running. Barring any oppo issues, I believe he is. But it is a very long time to the December filing deadline. Lots can happen.

*** UPDATE ***  The predictable ILGOP press release

A Member of Mike Madigan’s Inner Circle Announces Exploratory Committee
J.B. Pritzker - Longtime Madigan Insider

Today, longtime Madigan insider J.B. Pritzker formed an exploratory committee for a run for Governor. The Illinois Republican Party issued the following response:

“Political insider J.B. Pritzker is a longtime member of Mike Madigan’s inner circle, having funneled over a million dollars to Madigan in the last year alone to help Madigan stop reforms. Pritzker was also one of Rod Blagojevich’s closest associates. He worked behind the scenes to bankroll his campaigns and was at the center of Blagojevich’s criminal scheme to sell Illinois’ Senate seat.”

“J.B. Pritzker is a tainted political insider who would only make Mike Madigan and the Chicago Political Machine stronger.” – Illinois Republican Party Spokesman Steven Yaffe

He was at “the center” of RRB’s criminal schemes? That’s a bit much even for them. Click here for their “evidence.”

*** UPDATE *** Pritzker campaign…

“This is just the same old tired playbook from a political party whose Governor isn’t getting the job done.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

35 Comments
  1. - A guy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:19 pm:

    == will contribute $200K for “day to day operations”==

    He’s right. That’s 2 day’s worth.


  2. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:22 pm:

    After that press release tying Governor Rauner to Steve King I sure Alderman Pawar can raise another 150 dollars.

    Now that Mr Pritzker is in the race what are his solutions to Illinois problems?


  3. - Mr. K - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:25 pm:


    Now that Mr Pritzker is in the race what are his solutions to Illinois problems?

    Actually, the better question might be:

    Now that Mr. Rauner has been the Governor for two years what are his solutions to Illinois problems?


  4. - Seats - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:31 pm:

    Was hoping he would just financially fund Kennedy. I guess that was too much wishful thinking.


  5. - Amalia - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:42 pm:

    oh boy, mr. personality is in!


  6. - William j Kelly - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:42 pm:

    Does this mean the caps are off and the governor’s race?


  7. - Jeb! - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:42 pm:

    *ponders if money even matters anymore*


  8. - The Captain - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:42 pm:

    If I was J.B. I’d insist on having Shimmer as my compliance account rep.


  9. - Shytown - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:44 pm:

    == Now that Mr Pritzker is in the race what are his solutions to Illinois problems? ==

    He’s not in the race if it’s an exploratory committee, but I’m guessing his solutions - or any dems for that matter - are better than what we’re getting from Rauner.


  10. - Cassandra - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:45 pm:

    Illinois is experiencing a wave of zillionaire politicians who are absolutely convinced that they can come in and save us. Don’t ask too many questions. They are superior beings and we should just wait to be saved.


  11. - NoGifts - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:49 pm:

    Rod would be disappointed to hear HE was not at the center.


  12. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:50 pm:

    Diana Rauner is helping finance ridiculous attacks about JB Pritzker, but had The Ounce do a press release fawning over the Pritzker Foundation and their $5 million donation…

    “Business Decision”

    Wonder how The Ounce and Diana Rauner feel about this ILGOP attack?


  13. - DuPage Saint - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:50 pm:

    Where has he traveled in Illinois?


  14. - Earnest - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:54 pm:

    11 lines, 7 have “Madigan” in them. Not likely a strong enough message to win a gubernatorial election and pick up seats, unless you’re running against a state party with shockingly pathetic messaging skills.


  15. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 2:56 pm:

    Hmm… Press Release…

    http://prn.to/2nq8L7m

    ===”More than three decades of experience have led us to identify some big bets that have the potential to transform early learning. We are so grateful to the J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Family Foundation for sharing our belief in these innovations,” said Diana Rauner, president of the Ounce of Prevention Fund. “By developing strong leaders and programs, empowering parents and strengthening early learning systems, together we can change lives for children and families.”===

    Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?


  16. - Henry Francis - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:00 pm:

    By the ILGOP’s logic, I guess prior to becoming Guv, Rauner was a long time Daley insider.

    Can’t believe a woman as fine as Diana Rauner took so much tainted money from such a dirty, dirty man.


  17. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:00 pm:

    The $200,000 is needed to put out his Twitter fires.

    JB - the political center is behind you - try to show up in it occasionally between now and next November.


  18. - AtsuiTX - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:01 pm:

    Unfortunately,due to Trump 2018 will be a blood bath. Dems to win all statewide offices + 2/3s in both chambers and pass the largest increase of taxes since IL was founded. Get out of IL while you can…


  19. - Liberty - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:01 pm:

    A Member of Mike Madigan’s Inner Circle Announces Exploratory Committee
    NAME HERE - Longtime Madigan Insider

    Today, longtime Madigan insider NAME HERE formed an exploratory committee for a run for Governor. The Illinois Republican Party issued the following response:

    “Political insider NAME HERE is a longtime member of Mike Madigan’s inner circle, having funneled over a million dollars to Madigan in the last year alone to help Madigan stop reforms. NAME HERE was also one of Rod Blagojevich’s closest associates. He worked behind the scenes to bankroll his campaigns and was at the center of Blagojevich’s criminal scheme to sell Illinois’ Senate seat.”

    “NAME HERE is a tainted political insider who would only make Mike Madigan and the Chicago Political Machine stronger.” – Illinois Republican Party Spokesman Steven Yaffe


  20. - West Wing - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:04 pm:

    Too bad the Democratic Party can’t clear the way for Kennedy, who’s been working it around the state for several months. Democrats aren’t that smart and organized to do that - we want to have a big, messy, expensive primary. Was hoping we might be smarter than that.


  21. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:07 pm:

    ===clear the way for Kennedy===

    I don’t think any candidate has done anything yet to deserve the party stepping in to clear the way. The Republicans had a somewhat messy primary in 2014, but it worked out OK for them.


  22. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:12 pm:

    Also, “the party” is run by Mike Madigan. Are you sure you want Madigan clearing the field for your guy in this climate? Seriously?


  23. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:18 pm:

    ===Can’t believe … Diana Rauner took so much… ===

    My point is this;

    You have Yaffe and DeGroot saying ridiculous things to try to curry favor with the Frat Boys and the Raunerite Think Tank.

    That Crew is funded, in part, by monies as described to the Illinois Board of Elections from Diana Rauner. Her name, donating to Bruce or the ILGOP.

    The rub is you have low level underlings thinking this is swell and getting clearance, but in reality, the Pritzkers have been pretty good to The Ounce and Diana Rauner, especially when The Ounce needed an influx during this state budget issue.

    It makes Diana Rauner ungrateful. It puts The Ounce in a light they’d, I’m guessing, like to be better.

    For what?

    To say a half-baked charge against someone in an attempt to link him to people these underlings think makes them look smart and winning, all the while… well…

    Speaks volumes about character.

    Politics ain’t beanbag.

    The donation press release was August… 2016.

    Like I said, speaks volumes. Yaffe and DeGroot? Fine work!


  24. - Touré's Latte - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:28 pm:

    Is this rich guys fighting over who gets the vig on state payday loans?


  25. - Veil of Ignorance - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:36 pm:

    To Rich’s point, I think it’s long overdue for IL Dems to have a real gubernatorial primary where candidates are evaluated by their ideas and ability to effectively articulate them. Not who has the biggest bank account or prettiest resume. Our state has very real problems and we need somebody who’ll actually can do the job.


  26. - Juvenal - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:38 pm:

    This does not get Bruce Rauner any closer to 60-30-1.

    If we are still sitting here in 2018, with no budget, $25 billion in unpaid bills, 1 million fewer insured thanks to Trumpcare, it will not matter if JB Pritzker changed his middle name to “Madigan” to appear on the ballot. He will be able to keep pace with Rauner’s spending, every vendor shafted by Rauner will work against him, every undecided who lost services will vote against him, and it won’t be close.

    Governors own.

    And his ham-handed efforts to undermine the Senate negotiations have made sure of that. He should have taken his chances in the House. Whomever decided to meddle in the Senate cost might have cost them the ballgame.

    As for the primaries: please. No one is going to fund a serious challenge to an incumbent governor or his legislative loyalists in a primary.


  27. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:42 pm:

    Isn’t Yaffe the one the governor put in charge of explaining how his proposed budget is balanced?

    Isn’t a spokesman supposed to have a shred of credibility, at least outside the White House?

    –…was at the center of Blagojevich’s criminal scheme to sell Illinois’ Senate seat.”–

    Is there actual malice behind that falsity, that reckless disregard for the truth, with intent to injure a person’s reputation, expose a person to public hatred, contempt or ridicule, or injure a person in his/her business or profession?

    There were a couple of trials that touched on Blago’s attempts to sell the Senate seat. I don’t recall anything entered in the record that put Pritzker at the center of it.

    I’m not a lawyer or a judge, but how is that not libelous?


  28. - Rocky Rosi - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 3:50 pm:

    This is great news! This race will add to the IL economy.


  29. - Macbeth - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 5:07 pm:

    The Madigan thing does nothing anymore to convince anyone who’s not already convinced. Is that it? That’s all the GOP has?

    How about this: a Governor halfway into his tenure who’s not doing his job? How’s that? Better?

    #EmbraceTheMadigan


  30. - train111 - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 5:35 pm:

    Illinois GOP press release:

    A noun, a verb, and Madigan

    Train11q


  31. - Rabid - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 6:29 pm:

    Mr. Yaffe if madigan is a winning strategy why isn’t munger comptroller, poindexter


  32. - sal-says - Tuesday, Mar 14, 17 @ 7:10 pm:

    As others have suggested. Interesting that raunner and or IL repubs could actually consider a statement that some could consider libel? As with ‘wire tapp’, got evidence?

    And as other commentors suggest, IL GOP must be REAL worried.

    Then again, with where raunner has and continues to take IL, EVERY IL Repub should be Really Worried!

    This crap keeps up? Quinn could beat Billionaire Brucie.


  33. - Rabid - Wednesday, Mar 15, 17 @ 4:05 am:

    Gop leadership shoveling dirt hiding in their budget hole


  34. - indep - Wednesday, Mar 15, 17 @ 8:29 am:

    Too many dem candidates will be a repeat of the presidential election. Voters can’t handle choice. They pick who/what they know. Remember old McDs kiddie menu - 2 choices (hamburger/cheeseburger)? Easy to decide. Rauner will win if Dems split the ticket.


  35. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Mar 15, 17 @ 9:47 am:

    ==Too many dem candidates will be a repeat of the presidential election.==

    There were only 2 serious Dem candidates in that primary.


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