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Oppo dump!

Thursday, Apr 27, 2017 - Posted by Rich Miller

* As Mary Ann Ahern reported last night, JB Pritzker supported Hillary Clinton for president in 2008 and then said this in the spring of 2012 when he was asked if he was supporting President Obama’s reelection


Ahern admitted during the press conference, by the way, that the quote was pointed out to her by one of Pritzker’s primary opponents.

* Pritzker’s response to Ahern yesterday

My opponents will suggest a lot of things, I’m sure, that aren’t true. Here’s the thing, I’m a Democrat. You’ve heard what my progressive values are. I’ve stood for those things. I’ve fought harder than anybody that’s running in this race against Donald Trump.

He also pointed out that he backed Obama after the 2008 primary and supported him in 2012.

Even so, those 2012 comments will make for a heck of a TV ad or ads on Chicago black radio stations.

* Meanwhile

“He was down on the ground with us regular folks when we were out there knocking on doors for the democratic party,” [Ald. Walter Burnett] said. “J.B. was there too and his wife was there also – who I met before he even married her. He knows how to feel people.”

And Pritzker was expressing some of those feelings on the South Side. Pritzker announced his campaign kickoff in Alderman Michelle Harris’ South Side ward, and Harris said the enthusiastic turnout was well earned.

“Out of every candidate, his concepts, his ideas and his vision for this state really connects with the African American community,” Harris said.

Harris admits another major fact is the fact that Pritzker is worth billions and has the money to run against wealthy incumbent Republican Governor Bruce Rauner.


  1. - Perrid - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:44 am:

    People are too polarized. I’m fairly liberal on just about every subject, but I could see voting for a fairly moderate republican. Hasn’t happened yet on the national level, but I’m open to the idea. I don’t understand people who vote for parties instead of individual candidates

  2. - Chicagonk - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:45 am:

    That’s a big ouch.

  3. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:50 am:

    ===that the quote was pointed out to her by one of Pritzker’s primary opponents.===

    Great. Very helpful. Thanks.

    But this is very thin gruel. And it takes money to advertise, even on black radio stations.

  4. - wordslinger - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:50 am:

    I imagine Ricky could do something with that.

    Then again, I thought the Hynes’ negative spot against Quinn featuring Harold was a slam-dunk winner (Rauner tried it, too). That got nothing but backlash, both times.

  5. - Ron - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:51 am:

    Yeah, I’m liberal on every social issue but moderate on economics. And public employee unions should be abolished.

  6. - Juvenal - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:57 am:

    From today’s Chicago Defender

    On criminal justice, Pritzker has worked with Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle on some of these efforts. “The Child and Family Justice Center is another one I endowed and that’s focused on juvenile justice and detention, getting kids out of that system and keeping them out. Also, both of those organizations are focused on changing public policy,” he explains.

    That is just a snippet. Read the whole thing.

    Unless Kennedy or Biss thinks that Obama is going to be endorsing them, this is a dead end road.

  7. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:59 am:

    This is a “ugh” moment, but this continued, in April mind you, attacking each other in the Dem primary, all the while leaving Rauner, again, out of the spotlight.

    I just don’t understand how not focusing, in April, on Rauner is even wise. No matter who may win the nomination, going after Rauner later and later only makes it worse.

    To this oppo dump,

    Unless you (the campaign) can land President Obama to speak for you, and/or against Pritzker, this has a window to backfire.

    So, good job, Dems! Keep the early attacking each other and ignoring Rauner as the plan. Keep letting Rauner see where he can go after each of you too… in your own Primary.

    Do y’all want to beat Rauner or be satisfied you won a nomination only to get pummeled by, arguably, the least popular sitting governors in America? This is how you get to the latter.

  8. - JoeMaddon - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:01 am:

    For those of you who say this isn’t a big deal…

    You aren’t running for Governor. You aren’t trying to win a Democratic primary.

    The fact that in 2012 Pritzker couldn’t say that he was voting for Obama? That is a big deal in a state that still loves Obama. And especially in a state where Democratic primary voters still ADORE Obama.

  9. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:14 am:

    Hey JoeMaddon,

    J.B.’s sister was in President Obama’s cabinet. This quote is one big “meh” because there is nothing else out there to suggest anything other than J.B. was proud to support Barack Obama.

    It’s weak sauce and will never make it into an ad unless Bruce Rauner decides to make it into an ad. And if that happens, my guess is that Obama himself will endorse J.B. once he wins the nomination.

    I’m not running for Governor, but that doesn’t mean I don’t know what I’m talking about.

  10. - BuckinIrish - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:24 am:

    The nominees at that point in March 2012 were Romney, Santorum Paul and Gingrich. If you even slightly consider yourself a democrat or liberal, you would never vote for these people. JB wasn’t waiting to see if there was a generic moderate Republican, he was waiting to see if it was one of those guys that won. For a person to claim his “progressive” values drive him, voting for any of those guys seems like a strange track to follow.

  11. - JoeMaddon - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:26 am:

    JB’s sister isn’t running for Governor. JB is. And that family was split in 08 on Obama vs Clinton.

    A candidate, trying to win a Dem primary in IL, who couldn’t commit to voting for Obama in 2012? And you don’t think thats a problem?

    As for you not running for Gov… my point wasn’t that you don’t know what you’re talking about. My point is those that say “I’m a moderate too don’t and would vote for a moderate Republican” don’t quite get that they’re not actively trying to win a Dem primary.

  12. - Cubs in '16 - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:28 am:

    It’s ridiculous and sad that the Dem candidates can’t or won’t see the obvious disadvantage of going after each other as opposed to focusing solely on defeating Rauner. Never have the stakes been higher. ALL campaign messaging should be reasons not to re-elect Rauner. May the best candidate win and then throw all of your support behind the nominee. It’s as if the Dem candidates don’t feel the same sense of urgency.

  13. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:32 am:

    ===who couldn’t commit to voting for Obama in 2012? And you don’t think thats a problem?===

    No, I don’t.

    If he endorsed Romney, yeah, that’d be a problem. If there were more stories where he was quoted expressing doubts about Obama, yeah, that would be a problem.

    But one quote? Against a mountain of tangible proof and years of history? I give the Democratic primary voters more credit than you do, I guess.

  14. - walker - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:34 am:

    This little piece has already drawn attention to Pritzker’s positive ties in the Chicago AA community. Good team working for him.

  15. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:34 am:

    The back and forth between - 47th Ward - and - JoeMaddon -, right now this so very early in the campaign is what Rauner and his own $10 million or so to influence the Dem Primary dream about.

    After State Fair, once petitions are on the street, separate yourselves. Now? This is just highlighting things Rauner will poll and insert to take himself out of the big picture for Dems and allow fractures, very early on, to tramp down a needed high turnout to be him (Rauner)

    April to August should be about positive intros if each other and “… we all need to realize, we all want Rauner defeated”

    Rauner ran against every person ever when he ran in 2014, attacking everyone not named Rauner, but… it always was “Pat Quinn failed”. Always.

    These items like this against Pritzker, today, now, yikes.

  16. - Rocky Rocky - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:39 am:

    This is a big deal. He can buy support from AA officials but with everyday passing AA elected officials are losing support from their community.

  17. - Ron Burgundy - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:39 am:

    –The nominees at that point in March 2012 were Romney, Santorum Paul and Gingrich. If you even slightly consider yourself a democrat or liberal, you would never vote for these people.–

    Though 5 years later Romney looks pretty freakin’ great.

  18. - wordslinger - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:51 am:

    For crying out loud, candidates from the same party always pound each other relentlessly in the primaries.

    When was the last time that made a difference in a general election?

  19. - Ducky LaMoore - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 9:54 am:

    Oh my gosh! Someone from a political party might have the ability of independent thought?! Oh no! Seriously… Is this the best his opponents have? Lame.

  20. - AC - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 10:09 am:

    If general election voters paid much attention to what was said in or just before the primary, Rauner never would’ve received the votes of 4 out of 10 union households.

  21. - Chicagonk - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 10:18 am:

    @Rocky - Exactly. Pritzker is getting the support from the AA aldermen because his wallet.

  22. - Anon0091 - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 10:49 am:

    Is that how this is going to go? If someone signs on with Pritzker than they must have been paid off? Will you make the same accusation of others in the race? And essentially aren’t you just accusing black elected officials of being for sale? If that’s where you guys are going this is going to simply help elect Rauner. Get a grip.

  23. - don the legend - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 11:33 am:

    I said it yesterday. Every speech, comment, reaction and reply given by a democratic candidate needs to begin with: “Bruce Rauner has failed and continues to fail…

  24. - W Flag - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 11:41 am:

    Sheesh! J.B. is going to take a huge hit on this! At the time of the response Obama was the incumbent president and was running unopposed for the 2012 Democratic nomination. Pritzker’s comment is inexplicable. His spin is as graceful as a man tap dancing in cement shoes.

  25. - W Flag - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 11:43 am:


    Who was Obama’s primary opponent in 2012?

  26. - @misterjayem - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 11:44 am:

    On a scale of 1 to 10?


    – MrJM

  27. - lake county democrat - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 12:08 pm:

    I don’t know if it will be a problem or not. I do know it says VOLUMES about Pritzker - seriously, you claim to be a Democrat or liberal and lived through the Tea Party years and thought that any of the Republicans running (at a time when the GOP controlled Congress and there was a 5-4 split on the Supreme Court) might get your vote? Nice try.

  28. - lake county democrat - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 12:11 pm:

    One reason this MIGHT make more of an impact than it would otherwise: Pritzker’s opposition is a Kennedy and I think that still carries a little weight with some African-American voters.

  29. - City Zen - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 12:21 pm:

    Shouldn’t everyone respond the same way?

  30. - Downstate Dem - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 1:46 pm:

    Love the double standards here. Yesterday, some of the same people were having a field day criticizing Chris Kennedy and saying it’s time for a new campaign mgr and his campaign is falling apart, etc. Today, when there’s a hit on Pritzker it becomes “Hey, let’s all get along and quit criticizing our fellow progressives.” Consistency isn’t a strength with some folks here — not all folks, but some folks.

  31. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 1:53 pm:

    - Downstate Dem -

    Being a “victim” here never plays well.

    Pritzker also didn’t embarrass himself, all but dismissing his own endorsements, like Kennedy did.

    Kennedy’s was a self-inflicted amateur mistake, also taking on a no win idea of attacking an endorsement. Ugh.

    I’ve said, often, Democrats should hold their powder against their fellow Dems until State Fair. That hasn’t changed.

    Who is Kennedy a victim of, his own press shop, lol

  32. - downstate dem - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 2:22 pm:

    No victim role playing here, just pointing out double standards … cries of “let’s get along” with someone like pritzker is on the firing line … by the way, i like your idea of dems holding their powder against fellow dems until at least state fair - good ideal to aim for, difficult to execute but worthy idea for sure

  33. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 2:28 pm:

    ===by the way, i like your idea of dems holding their powder against fellow dems until at least state fair - good ideal to aim for, difficult to execute but worthy idea for sure===

    It’s not difficult. It’s a choice. If Dems want to continue to make it about, in April mind you, about dinging each other instead of laying the groundwork to defeat Rauner, they choose to miss the messaging.

    ===cries of “let’s get along” with someone like pritzker is on the firing line … ===

    Pritzker didn’t self-inflict himself. Kennedy had no reason to first respond, then respond by diluting his own endorsers now and in the future. Kennedy is a victim of poor Crew work.

  34. - W Flag - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 2:48 pm:

    It could move a few votes in Chicago where Obama has demonstrated that he has political coattails. Chicagoans have an unpopular two term mayor who has managed to be elected twice by leaning heavily upon Obama;s endorsement to gain black votes. Pritzker’s clumsy comments may not be a game changer, but if it’s a tight race it could hurt.

  35. - Anon0091 - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 2:49 pm:

    “cries of “let’s get along” with someone like pritzker is on the firing line”

    NO. NO. NO. They’re cries of people who want to win. I don’t know whether our nominee is going to be Kennedy, Pawar, Pritzker or Biss. I do know the more we brutalize them this early in the process, the uglier the race will become.

    Launching an oppo dump to distract from the Summers endorsement (which let’s face it, is exactly what happened here) in April is a stupid, self-defeating exercise. I want to win and will get behind any Democrat who can take us to the promised land (other than Tio or Pat Quinn). Why is that so difficult to understand?

  36. - downstate dem - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 3:13 pm:

    Anon0091 - points well taken. Agreed. I want a Democrat to run an effective campaign and a winning campaign - all the way. OW- I agree that self inflicted wounds aren’t the path to victory. So it was Summers who did an “oppo dump” on Chris Kennedy by saying he doesn’t have the abilities or sensitivities to relate to the poor among us. Really? What a bunch of BS from a guy (Summers) who’s popularity in the African American community is extremely mediocre. I get the memo - tell Summers to cut out the cheap shots. They’re going to boomerang on him - they won’t hurt Kennedy. The other point - campaigns are marathons not sprints.

  37. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 3:20 pm:

    === So it was Summers who did an “oppo dump” on Chris Kennedy by saying he doesn’t have the abilities or sensitivities to relate to the poor among us. Really? What a bunch of BS from a guy (Summers) who’s popularity in the African American community is extremely mediocre===

    You just don’t “get it”.

    This isn’t helping your argument. Again, read what I wrote and how you countinuing this is bush league amateur hour.

    Honest, no snark, you aren’t helping.

    Keep helping Kennedy like this, you are just aiding in the amateurish campaign image.

  38. - Responsa - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 4:06 pm:

    ==I want to win and will get behind any Democrat who can take us to the promised land==

    OK, that made me laugh. Did you momentarily forget this is still Illinois with Illinois’ problems no matter who wins the governorship in 2018?

  39. - Boone's is back - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 4:17 pm:

    ===He knows how to feel people===

    I thought that was Mel Reynolds’ campaign slogan?

  40. - Anon0091 - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 4:42 pm:

    “So it was Summers who did an “oppo dump” on Chris Kennedy by saying…”

    Huh? That’s not an oppo dump. That’s just a snarky comment made by someone who is not a candidate. I wouldn’t bet a lot, but I’m guessing Pritzker didn’t know he was going to say that. So far, Pritzker seems like he’s honoring the principle Willy and I keep talking about. He hasn’t spoken ill of any other candidate. Who knows how long that will last.

  41. - Forty-Four - Thursday, Apr 27, 17 @ 8:36 pm:

    JB Pritzker just needs to reach out to President Obama and match the $400,000 speaking fee the ex President is receiving from Cantor Fitzgerald, a Wall Street firm. President Obama could then make a speach supporting Pritzker and all will be fine.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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