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Kennedy: Endorsements are bad, except when they’re not

Wednesday, Apr 26, 2017

* From Chris Kennedy’s reaction to the endorsement of JB Pritzker by Kurt Summers and four black Chicago aldermen

“I made it clear where I stand when I spoke to the Cook County Democrats in March. This race is not about politicians endorsing other politicians or what might be happening behind closed doors.”

* OK, that’s great. But if you go to Kennedy’s campaign website and click on the “Press releases” tab, this is currently at the very top

March 1, 2017

First major endorsement in the governor’s race goes to Chris Kennedy two weeks after announcing his campaign

Chris Kennedy, Democratic candidate for governor, received the endorsement of the Southern Illinois Democratic County Chairmen’s Association yesterday. This is the first major endorsement in the Democratic race for governor. […]

“I am honored to accept the endorsement from the Southern Illinois Democratic County Chairmen’s Association. Across Illinois, voters are ready for a change in Springfield and ready for Illinois to again embrace the American Dream — the notion that we are a country and a state where anyone can make it and where unlimited opportunity is the promise of our country,” Kennedy said.

* Related…

* Mark Brown: Summers’ floating of own candidacy could buoy Pritzker: Perhaps more helpful to Pritzker was Summers’ brushoff of candidate Chris Kennedy as someone who doesn’t have “a true understanding of the needs of the underprivileged and communities of color in particular.”

* Summers won’t run for governor, endorses J.B. Pritzker instead: But, the mayor’s closest business advisor and biggest campaign donor, Michael Sacks, is with Pritzker. Now, so is Summers, who once worked for Sacks at Grosvenor Capital Management.

* City Treasurer Summers backs Pritzker for governor, jabs Kennedy: Asked if any promises were made about a future role in a Pritzker administration or the campaign — governor candidates must find lieutenant governor running mates — Summers said no.

* City Treasurer Summers Announces He Will Not Run for Governor: The endorsement for Pritzker is seen as a blow to Chris Kennedy, who is polling well in the African American community.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Saluki - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:49 pm:

    Kennedy is running a terrible campaign.

  2. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:53 pm:

    The Kennedy Kampaign is lacking in so many ways, like understanding how to respond, and when not to respond, and the comments here, at times, asking for people to “look at this”, with spin that is half-baked with more explaining and less substance…

    … today is another clear example of a bunch of amateurs thinking “we need to say something! Four whole Chicago Aldermen and the City Treasurer endorsed someone else”…

    This is not how a good campaign goes about its business.

  3. - walker - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:56 pm:

    Could be that all Democratic organization endorsements are good, except Cook County’s. That’s a suburban/downstate card to play.

  4. - ArchPundit - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:57 pm:

    Let’s be careful out there with the double Ks

  5. - Curl of the Burl - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:57 pm:

    Kennedy is running a lackluster campaign - except when he’s not.

  6. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:59 pm:

    - ArchPundit -

    Understood. There is no need to create another.


  7. - The Captain - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:01 pm:

    It’s very early, he’s well ahead in current polling and voters aren’t paying attention yet. Having said that, Biss, Pawar and Pritzker are all running better campaigns than Kennedy right now.

  8. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:03 pm:

    Has Kennedy earned the support from so many in the black community or is it the name? Honest question

  9. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:10 pm:

    Is Sheila Simon running Kennedy’s campaign?

  10. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:12 pm:

    ==It’s very early, he’s well ahead in current polling and voters aren’t paying attention yet. ==

    Unfortunately, we’re in the part of the cycle where the only people paying attention are the ones most likely to be worried by all of these nagging errors.

  11. - don the legend - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:26 pm:

    As Willy has said. Up until the State Fair, every democratic candidate when asked for any response needs to start their statement with: “Governor Rauner has repeatedly failed ….

  12. - downstate dem - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:31 pm:

    The Kennedy family, including Chris and Sheila and all they’ve done in the nonprofit world, the anti-hunger world, the faith world — they don’t need a lecture from Summers or anyone else who questions a life of commitment to the poor. Give me a break.

  13. - Rocky Rosi - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:32 pm:

    No Dem running at this time has the support of the AA vote. All people running must have a blueprint for the AA community or most AA voters will stay home. Me included.

  14. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:34 pm:

    - don the legend -

    Thanks, and yes, the more intramural back-biting before State Fair, where a collective message against Rauner can grow to help them all is missing, that’s another glaring miss.

  15. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:48 pm:

    ===The Kennedy family===

    Oh boy, tin ear approaching..,

    ===they don’t need a lecture from Summers or anyone else who questions a life of commitment to the poor.===

    This is 1,000% the wrong way to respond to an endorsement by 4 Chicago Aldermen and a city treasurer. You are so lacking any acumen to building and letting the things go that can hurt more than help.

    ===…in the nonprofit world, the anti-hunger world, the faith world…===

    This is “So” Diana and Bruce Rauner. Ugh

    ===Give me a break===

    Do better, stop the amateur hour… then you might catch a few breaks.

    You keep me engaged with Kennedy…

  16. - A guy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:07 pm:

    Everything’s just moving a little too fast for Chris. Except the days when things are moving a lot too fast. Ugh.

  17. - Fax Machine - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:09 pm:

    I wouldn’t say Biss is running a better campaign than Kennedy (taxes please, tax return countdown). He’s talking about nonissues, which is crazy because he’s willing to stake what could be the winning position - the anti Madigan Democrat.

    Pawar - we’ll see if he can make the Indian money rain Raja-style. Otherwise he should get out of the way and let Biss be Mr Progressive

  18. - Anon0091 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:21 pm:

    “- downstate dem - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:31 pm:

    The Kennedy family, including…”

    THIS ^^^^^ is exactly Kennedy’s problem. The “Kennedy family” is not running for governor. Chris Kennedy is running for governor. His Dad was in office and ran for president almost 50 years ago. You don’t just get to surf on that wave. The campaign will be about Chris himself and so far, that vessel is taking on a lot of water such as his bizarrely blowing off the Dupage Dems speech the other night.

    Every campaign has and will continue to make mistakes (Biss with Taxes Please, Pritzker with the video), especially early in the process. But if he wants to see his early lead continue, Kennedy needs to do a lot better.

  19. - Downstate Dem - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:25 pm:

    OW - You just let me get away with anything. do you? My point is not to criticize endorsements but to take issue with Kurt Summers for questioning Chris Kennedy’s understanding of the poor. Much of his life and the life of his larger family has been devoted to improving the quality of life for the less fortunate. Summers is way off base.

  20. - downstate dem - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:29 pm:

    Yes, Chris Kennedy is running for governor and not the Kennedy family. I get that. Chris has spent his life investing time and energy into helping the poor, through the Chicago Food Depository, Top Box Foods and a multitude of other ways of helping the less fortunate. Kurt Summers made a political blunder challenging that - that is the reality of this.

  21. - Arthur Andersen - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:31 pm:

    The Seed Weakens, Chapter 7,416.

  22. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:32 pm:

    ===to take issue with Kurt Summers for questioning Chris Kennedy’s understanding of the poor===

    … by embarrassingly bringing up, very Rauner-like the “how dare you, do you know what he’s done” card?

    You aren’t helping. Honest. No snark.

    ===Chris Kennedy’s understanding of the poor. Much of his life and the life of his larger family has been devoted to improving the quality of life for the less fortunate. Summers is way off base===


    1) Summers. Why are you worried about what he thinks? This is so amateurish. Summers dropped out. Why are you even giving the endorsement any play?

    2) Why are you touting “Kennedy Family” vs. a guy who withdrew from consideration and with 4 Aldermen, in April, endorsed Pritzker.

    Grade school kids do this. Adult campaigns move on and don’t make silly ignorant statements, all but dismissing their own endorsement values.

    Again, you aren’t helping. Stop.

  23. - Fax Machine - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:38 pm:

    Also the bigger the race, the less endorsements matter. People might vote for an alderman or judge based on endorsements but for Governor, like President, people make up their own mind.

  24. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:43 pm:

    ===Also the bigger the race, the less endorsements matter.===

    That’s not true at all.

    Get some Aldermen, county chairs, and if they have a ground game type organization, they matter.

    What doesn’t matter, in April, is embarrassingly say endorsements by politicians don’t matter, all but making your own endorsements… by politicians before and since… now look ridiculous.

    That statement by the Kennedy Crew, that’s borderline malpractice. We’re talking about tainting your own endorsements, Kennedy may want from the 11th and/or the 23rd Wards seem hollow and hypocritical after that.

    Amateur hour to insert themselves where there was NO reason.

  25. - Name/Nickname/Anon - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:49 pm:

    Number of people in Illinois who changed their vote from Kennedy to Pritzker because of the contradictory press release/statement on website:


    Take a deep breath, Willy. None of this matters.

  26. - Ron Burgundy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:52 pm:

    Don’t bash the people who don’t endorse you in the primary, because you just might need them in the general.

  27. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:52 pm:

    ===None of this matters===

    It’s not about the “votes”, it’s about how a Crew continues to make fundamental mistakes.

    The fact you think, or want it framed about votes, in April is either willful to change the subject, or oblivious to how letting little campaign mistakes go lead to bigger problems down the road.

    It’s never been about the votes, I’m guessing you knew that(?)

  28. - Anon0091 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 5:03 pm:

    “It’s not about the “votes”, it’s about how a Crew continues to make fundamental mistakes.”

    Ding. Ding. Ding.

    I still have yet to hear a viable explanation for why Kennedy blew off the DuPage Dems speech. Also haven’t heard why he blew it off and didn’t have staff say anything to anyone. This is exactly what Willy is talking about with “fundamental mistakes.”

    So here you have two big ones. 1) Public humiliation with the Buehler Buehler episode and angered D activists. Dumb dumb dumb. 2) Devalue your current and future endorsements. Now Willy and everyone else will be able to take pot shots at Kennedy endorsements.

    Will it “change votes?” No, but that’s not remotely what this phase of the campaign is all about.

  29. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 5:15 pm:

    (Tips cap to - Anon0091 -)

    Your own explanation to where this is is well said

    The fundamentals of curtesy of letting people know you’re leaving, something so simple to do, and not dismissing things you yourself collect, those fundamentals, in April, either get fixed or are a precursor to other problems down the road(?)

    We’ll see

  30. - Juvenal - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 5:17 pm:

    Kennedy initially plotted his campaign strategy based on the argument that he was the only candidate that could raise the money to beat Rauner.

    That is done.

    Now the question is: how is Kennedy going to beat Rauner? If the answer is supposed to be “by running a really good campaign” then I would say that response got a little more shaky today.

  31. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 7:05 pm:

    Ah, yes! The SIDCA, a group so influential and renowned it has neither a website nor facebook account.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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