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Kennedy’s “next phase”

Friday, May 26, 2017

* Remember yesterday when I posted that Chris Kennedy piece on property taxes and education funding and when asked what his plan was they said we should “stay tuned”?

Rick Pearson

Ending what the campaign considers to be an introductory phase, Democratic governor candidate Chris Kennedy is set to speak Tuesday to offer his vision for the state.

The early afternoon speech Tuesday at the Harold Washington Cultural Center will take place the day after the 100th birthday of Kennedy’s uncle, the late President John F. Kennedy.

Campaign aides said Kennedy will talk about how the state “needs a complete break from the status quo” and will try to distinguish his candidacy, announced in February, from his Democratic rivals, namely J.B. Pritzker. […]

Kennedy also is expected to call for property tax and education funding changes. He has been hitting his rival, Pritzker, over a controversial tax assessment reduction for a mansion he purchased next to his own Gold Coast mansion. He also has been seeking to tie the issue of the state’s property tax system to the unfairness of education funding.

* Meanwhile, Kennedy’s campaign manager Brendan O’Sullivan sent out a fundraising e-mail this morning with the headline “Rauner doesn’t want a budget”…

Last week, Illinois Senate Democrats called for a vote on a budget deal. Then, that same day, Governor Bruce Rauner’s billionaire pal Ken Griffin put $20 million into Rauner’s campaign coffers.

Why the same-day timing?

As Politico reported yesterday, “if Republicans weren’t already clear on the message to stay in line during those votes, that probably did it.”

Rauner doesn’t want a budget. And Griffin’s money showed up just in time to serve as a threat to Illinois Republicans not to vote against his interests.

Let’s show Bruce Rauner and Ken Griffin that we won’t let their money bully or intimidate us. Please contribute now to invest in electing new leadership in Illinois.

As we approach the two year mark without a budget, Rauner is reportedly spending his time trying to recruit candidates to run against Comptroller Susana Mendoza and Attorney General Lisa Madigan in 2018.

He’s also trying to silence members of his own party through financial bullying and economic intimidation. And he’s doing it to try to tear down the very programs, institutions and policies that we, as Democrats, have dedicated our lives to building up.

Rauner threw a million people out of state programs in the first 18 months, and he has not asked any of his fellow billionaires to make a single sacrifice.

Some Democrats believe that best way to combat Rauner’s campaign war chest is with another billionaire who self-funds his campaign. But we should not elect a candidate to represent our party who does not need our money, our ideas or our support.

Instead, the path to fixing our state lies in building a movement of thousands of Illinois residents committed to restoring the American Dream.

O’Sullivan, by the way, used to run Senate President John Cullerton’s campaigns. I’ve been told, however, that Cullerton is not taking sides in the governor’s race. One of his own members, Daniel Biss, is also in the contest.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

32 Comments
  1. - A Jack - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 9:48 am:

    Very good. This is what I want to hear about, visions for the future instead of ripping on primary rivals.


  2. - About time - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 10:00 am:

    Wow! I am impressed.


  3. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 10:03 am:

    === I am impressed. ===

    With what?


  4. - Hit Em With the Hein - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 10:07 am:

    Could his next phase be dropping out?


  5. - Arsenal - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 10:09 am:

    Seems pretty early for a reinvention.


  6. - JS Mill - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    Maybe Chris should focus on something besides the governor’s race. He doesn’t have the horses.


  7. - Anon0091 - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 10:48 am:

    Why announce that you’re going to begin a “next phase?” It’s weird. Just campaign.


  8. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 10:49 am:

    To the Post,

    Having a plan or whatever this “is” still doesn’t negate the continued confusion and strategic decisions as a campaign they are using as their foundation.

    Are the for endorsements, or not?

    Do they want regular Democratic support, or not?

    The property tax reduction they got…

    Kennedy isn’t the Bernie guy, the Labor guy, the endorsement seeking guy… who exactly is Kennedy and what do Kennedy supporters look like as a base?

    Maybe we’ll see this happening today… I dunno.


  9. - Downstate Dem - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:20 am:

    Check out the media coverage from Kennedy’s visit to Western Illinois last night … Kennedy spoke to the McDonough County Democrat’s 31st Annual dinner in Macomb and Democratic Chair Lee Trotter told the TV, radio and newspaper covering that it was the largest crowd of Democrats in the dinner’s 31-year history. Effective speech with humor that went over very well with the 250 in attendance. Trotter said the second largest crowd ever was 180 - for Sen John Sullivan’s going away party.


  10. - Anonymous - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:24 am:

    Wow! He bested John Sullivan’s going away party!!! Amazing.


  11. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:27 am:

    - Downstate Dem -

    I hope Kennedy did to ask for an endorsement from the politicos out there. Kemnedy made perfectly clear; Kennedy does not want political establishment support.

    An odd thing, showing up at things with all those Democratic elected officials, partisan political Democratic operatives.

    Who is Kennedy’s base for operational campaigning?


  12. - Downstate Dem - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:33 am:

    Oswego - The base appears to be a diverse coalition of young and old; black, white and brown; rural and urban; rank and file labor; people who love education including higher education and hate to see what Governor Rauner is doing to that and to the American Dream …


  13. - Grand Avenue - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:34 am:

    I want to see a new poll!

    I get it’s Memorial Day but we’re almost a month into the Pritzker air blitz.

    I’m sure it moved the needle but if it’s not a big move, it shows either the property tax story has salience or people just aren’t buying what Pritzker’s selling.


  14. - Grand Avenue - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:35 am:

    Plus, we still haven’t seen a poll with all 5 declared candidates


  15. - Anonymous - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:37 am:

    Kennedy’s father - most historians agree - gave advice to his brother that was taken, and likely avoided a thermonuclear war 53 years ago. He was heroic, and we can’t imagine what difficulties that presents to a son of such a man. But trying to meet impossible expectations isn’t the way. Take pride in your own successes and take comfort in that Chris.


  16. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:38 am:

    - Downstate Dem -

    So… “everybody” is the base, less an organized way to build…

    Hmm.

    Welp… that’s one way to say you have a base I guess, not eliminate anyone, but unable to point to specifics?


  17. - Arsenal - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:45 am:

    ==what do Kennedy supporters look like as a base?==

    This is a really good point; Pritzker’s taking pains to appear with unions as much as possible, Biss and Pawar are both trying to claim The Resistance, but it’s not clear who Team Kennedy sees as their bread-and-butter voter right now.


  18. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 11:49 am:

    ===…but it’s not clear who Team Kennedy sees as their bread-and-butter voter right now.===

    - Arsenal -, then throw in this “endorsement” shaming, saying seeking political endorsements aren’t Kennedy’s goal…

    Who are they trying to attract to Kennedy?


  19. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:06 pm:

    ===it’s not clear who Team Kennedy sees as their bread-and-butter voter right now===

    It’s really everybody. That name gives him a huge advantage this early.


  20. - Responsa - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:06 pm:

    We don’t know who’s anybody’s “base” yet. The Dem primary candidate who recognizes and latches onto the issue that resonates with the most voters and produces what is perceived by voters to be professional, intelligent messaging to back it up will win. Large sums of money always helps but is not a panacea.

    In my opinion all these campaigns right now are suffering mightily from unripe early strategy and too much time to fill in a too long campaign season.


  21. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:13 pm:

    ===We don’t know who’s anybody’s “base” yet. The Dem primary candidate who recognizes and latches onto the issue that resonates with the most voters and produces what is perceived by voters to be professional, intelligent messaging to back it up will win===

    We do know from Pritzker, Biss, even Pawar, who they want as their base, who they are courting, why they are messaging as they are.

    Kennedy? Hmm…


  22. - Grand Avenue - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:15 pm:

    The Pritzker base is the Blair Hull base


  23. - Responsa - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:25 pm:

    OW, You are talking tactics. I am talking results. Both are valid lenses and necessary for retail politicians to consider. Courting contributions/endorsements and courting a hoped for base is one thing. In the long run, though, voting bases are self-identifying.

    Does the pol choose and influence the base or does the base choose and influence the pol. It’s a pretty consistent academic exercise in political science.


  24. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:37 pm:

    ===In the long run, though, voting bases are self-identifying.===

    Um, how do you get a “self-identifying”, wish for it?

    The way you actually get a base is to find where you grab a large chunk of voters to solidify a voting block.


  25. - Responsa - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:45 pm:

    ==The way you actually get a base is to find where you grab a large chunk of voters to solidify a voting block.==

    Yes, and I believe that is exactly what I posited @ 12:06 and 12:25. The voting blocks/bases are essentially unformed and undecided at this early stage.


  26. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 12:53 pm:

    ===We don’t know who’s anybody’s “base” yet.===

    Kennedy with the Bernie folk?

    Biss with Labor?

    Pawar with rural Dems?

    My point is each candidacy begins with a known group(s) that are the natural constituency to build a base. Kennedy? I dunno who is his base, then I got “everyone” is Kennedy’s base.

    Pritzker seems to be courting Labor and traditional Dem operates.

    Pawar and Biss are steering towards Bernie voters

    Kennedy? Downplays the traditional Dem endorsements, kinda waiting Labor, kinda thinking Bernie, kinda saying “my own guy”… where is that base?


  27. - Responsa - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 1:22 pm:

    You may have the last word OW.

    You are arguing with a straw man. Bases are not the result of a a one sided transaction. It’s not only about who the current candidates are steering toward and salivating over and trying to appeal to. It is also about who the voters connect with, steer toward and gravitate to personally. Two different political activities and thought processes entirely. Why this has turned into a back and forth is beyond me.


  28. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 1:35 pm:

    ===You are arguing with a straw man===

    Nope.

    ===Bases are not the result of a a one sided transaction.===

    One side, the candidate’s side, recognizes who they are, where the base of who they are… is.

    ===It is also about who the voters connect with, steer toward and gravitate to personally===

    This is more building from and growing from the original base… not the base, like conservatives as a base, then moderates coming into the fold.


  29. - Arsenal - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 1:36 pm:

    ==It’s really everybody.==

    That seems like one of those “to defend everything is to defend nothing” situations.

    I get that the name is a big help, but as soon as two other serious candidates made the race, it was, by itself, never going to be enough. So what else does Kennedy got?


  30. - Midwestern Independent - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 1:40 pm:

    Based on my conversations and observations, just am not seeing anyone except politicos and union officials supporting or showing enthusiasm for JB. The sense people seem to have is “Meet the New Boss, Same as the Old Boss.”
    It’s a shame because both JB and Chris are qualified. I wonder if there will be a deal to the effect of one getting the governor nomination with the other getting the nod to go after Durban’s seat the next time it’s up.


  31. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 1:59 pm:

    It’s as though his campaign staff is playing not to lose, instead of playing to win.

    A pack of Betas, protecting someone with an inherited legacy won’t try to be bold.

    All you guys - listen up - hire adults, can the under 30 college crowd. Winning next year isn’t about promising rainbows and unicorns. Winning next year is about saving working families, their homes, their jobs and their children.


  32. - Downstate Dem - Friday, May 26, 17 @ 2:54 pm:

    I wish you all could watch the Kennedy speech last night in Macomb (It’s on the Facebook page of the West Central Illinois Indivisible group now). The speech answers some of your questions (VanillaMan) about Kennedy’s speech about saving working families, their homes, their jobs and their children.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Reader comments closed for the weekend
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