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*** UPDATED x2 *** Pritzker’s money, pros and cons

Thursday, Dec 14, 2017

* Brian Mackey has a story today about some local react to JB Pritzker’s wealth

“I don’t begrudge people being millionaires,” [Linda Green] says [during the Sangamon County Young Democrats’ Obama-Simon Breakfast].

But there are those, like Daniel Coultas, who think Democrats ought to be led by someone a little closer to the working people who are supposed to be the party’s base.

“It seems like it’d be hard for that person to relate with the challenges that a lot of ordinary people face from day to day,” Coultas says.

But I ask him: Isn’t there a benefit to having a candidate who can support not only himself, but other Democrats, too?

“You could frame that as a benefit or maybe you could frame it as a problem,” Coultas says. “And too much power concentrated in one individual’s hands, I think that’s, you could argue, what we’ve seen on the Republican side.”

And therein lies the promise — and peril — of the J.B. Pritzker candidacy.

I would only caution people that personal anecdotes are not data. Remember all those Alabama US Senate campaign stories about how African-American voters weren’t enthused about the Democratic candidate and then they turned out in droves?

* Anyway, it appears that the Pritzker campaign is trying to turn this story a bit into how he’s using his money for the public good. Bernie

Pritzker, a billionaire, is worth more than Rauner, who is at least a several-hundred millionaire. And the activity of their foundations reflects the holdings. The Rauner foundation made donations of more than $7.8 million from 2013 to 2015, tax records show. In the same period, the Pritzkers’ foundation gave away more than $50 million.

“J.B. and M.K. are proud to have supported numerous charities throughout Illinois and the United States,” said Pritzker campaign spokeswoman GALIA SLAYEN, “particularly those that focus on early childhood education, mental health, and expanding the availability of health care.” […]

— More than $2.7 million to the Jewish United Fund of Chicago, whose work includes a variety of social services for Jews and others in need, as well Jewish community building, advocating for Israel, and supporting Jewish life on campuses and elsewhere.

— Nearly $3.4 million to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.

— More than $390,000 to the Erikson Institute in Chicago, which helped bring a program, created with designers of an organization called Calm Classroom, to Chicago Public Schools to better meet needs of children dealing with high levels of trauma and toxic stress, according to the Pritzker campaign.

The full list is here. It’s really long. Some, however, can certainly be seen as strengthening “elite” institutions, like the $2 million to the Latin School.

*** UPDATE 1 *** This was actually reported to the State Board of Elections on Tuesday night, but it’s become so commonplace that nobody wrote about it until today

Billionaire Democratic governor candidate J.B. Pritzker is up to $42.2 million in self-funding his campaign after his latest $7 million deposit was reported to the State Board of Elections.

Pritzker has made six contributions of $7 million each to his campaign — in April, June, August, October, last month and now Dec. 6, records show.

An heir to the Hyatt Hotel fortune, entrepreneur and investor, Pritzker broke the self-funding record for a Democratic candidate in Illinois with his Nov. 3 donation. That topped the $28.6 million that Blair Hull put into his failed 2004 Democratic primary bid for the U.S. Senate.

Rauner put $27.6 million of his wealth into his 2014 victory over Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn. In December, he gave his re-election bid $50 million.

*** UPDATE 2 *** Biss…



- Posted by Rich Miller        

81 Comments
  1. - Actual Red - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 9:44 am:

    There is no doubt that the Pritzker family is very generous towards charities, and that’s commendable.

    But I share Mr. Coultas’s concern about (further) concentration of power.

    A question I have for JB/his campaign — is his support for Democratic candidates contingent on him winning the primary?

    If it is, isn’t he essentially asking voters to sell him the win?


  2. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 9:46 am:

    “But there are those, like Daniel Coultas, who think Democrats ought to be led by someone a little closer to the working people who are supposed to be the party’s base.”

    I’m getting past tired of purist types. African-Americans and others in Alabama voted for a Democrat who’s reportedly a centrist. Context matters also, such as Roy Moore being so toxic, but still, voters stepped up and did a great job for a special election.

    A billionaire governor in Minnesota helped pass laws that strengthened the state, including raising taxes on the highest earners. The personal wealth issue is so far less important to me than policy and character issues. Pritzker I believe would pass a progressive income tax, minimum wage hike, marijuana legalization and other policies many favor.


  3. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 9:49 am:

    ==A question I have for JB/his campaign — is his support for Democratic candidates contingent on him winning the primary?==

    He’s said he’s in for a penny, in for a pound regardless of the outcome of the primary. Take that for what you will.
    One thing I like is that he very early on talked about needing to build a separate apparatus from DPI. And you can already see that taking effect, DPI has no digital media, almost no rapid response, etc., while JB’s team pretty much has a hand up in Rauner’s face every day. But, importantly, JB’s operation isn’t *hostile* to DPI. It’s not trying to supplant DPI. And that cuts both ways; if you’re worried about Madigan, you’d probably rather it be more hostile. But, if you’re worried about JB running roughshod over the rest of the party the way Rauner did in ILGOP, that’s certainly not how he’s starting out.


  4. - Honeybear - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 9:58 am:

    Conversely I’ve seen many many who are “closer” financially to those they represent totally change when they gain power and financial means. They become more bougouis then the 1%
    I see people like Rauner who are vulture capitalists who only donate for short term self centered gain.
    Then I enjoyed on my trip several Pritzker philanthropies. I enjoyed immensely the Pritzker gallery at the art Institute. As well as the Pritzker garden.
    I see it as a blessing.
    Rauner seems to give mostly so he can say he gave.
    Id also like to say that Biss is not closer to me
    When he votes against
    Collective bargaining
    And is the chief sponsor of
    Sb1 Pension Theft
    Blaming and punishing
    The victim
    Workers did not create
    The pension problem
    They are the victims of it.
    Read McKinney


  5. - Pundent - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:00 am:

    The further concentration of power is an issue particularly if your view of the issues is informed by Bruce Rauner. But I’d also suggest considering what Mark Dayton has done for the State of Minnesota as an example of how wealth does not preclude effective leadership in government.


  6. - Actual Red - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:07 am:

    Arsenal –
    Good to know. I’ll take his word for it. I agree about it cutting both ways. I think there is a benefit to having an apparatus that’s viable and at least slightly more distant from Madigan. On the other hand, I think there’s potential for this kind of thing to backfire long term, even if there isn’t hostility — Obama’s relationship with the DNC might be taken as a warning. Obama ran extremely effective campaigns, but did not build up the party apparatus, leaving his successors holding the bag once he stepped back. I’d be concerned about something similar if Democrats end up relying too heavily on an independent Pritzker campaign for the modernized campaigning DPI seems incapable of.


  7. - Anon0091 - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:07 am:

    “A question I have for JB/his campaign — is his support for Democratic candidates contingent on him winning the primary?”

    To judge what he’s likely to do, consider this. JB has been one of the top Democratic donors nationally for nearly two decades. Not really much question of whether he’ll follow through on this one.


  8. - Montrose - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:09 am:

    I don’t think we can use a person’s wealth as a litmus test for whether or not they will be a good leader. I think Pritzker has the potential to be a very good governor, and I intend to support him.

    I do worry about good leaders not having any chance to be competitive because they are not wealthy. We need some fundamental campaign finance reform to make sure that those without wealth still have a shot at being heard.


  9. - Chicagonk - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:09 am:

    Not really all that impressive of a list considering his wealth and that the money cam from a inherited trust.


  10. - DuPage - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:12 am:

    Pritzker is the only candidate with the resources to counterattack Rauner, period.


  11. - So_Ill - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:13 am:

    “From 2013 to 2015, the J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Foundation, named for the candidate and his wife, gave more than $4.2 million to the Ounce, an organization dedicated to early childhood education.

    In the same period, the Rauner Family Foundation gave $600,000 to the organization.”

    That was the most interesting part of the article to me.


  12. - Annonin' - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:15 am:

    Not sure wealth makes a big difference or if it is even realistic to hope Larry Lunchbucket heads a ticket.
    Might look at how money was made. GovJunk was a salesman and worked the wealthy and pension funds to put their cash with him or with the group he joined. No clear record of accomplishment for running a business. He was involved with that GA bank that led the nation in collapse at the head of Bush-Cheney Depression. Then there was nursing home.
    The Pritzkers had some bumps too.
    GovJunk seems generally clueless on the impact of his actions. The daycare cuts was the most stunning.
    Pritzker seems to get it.


  13. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:17 am:

    To the Post,

    For me it comes down to the matrix I had for Rauner and wealth and intent and actual.

    The intent was to gain power and be the inside person for Raunerism, using leverage and crisis to get Democrats to yield, not compromise, to break, not bend.

    In actual, Rauner was who I thought he was. He held hostage two caucuses, vetoed budgets, tried to close universities passively, cut the safety net of social services.., and even if labor remained intact, those desires of destruction were possible, by owning caucuses, and forcing conflict.

    I say all that to preface the challenges of Pritzker.

    One challenge will be supporting a party and electeds that will still be independent to him when it would come to voting on HIS agenda. Another challenge will be what Pritzker has tried to do, be human, with a story of his mom, and have partners and friends vouch for him in 1871 for example.

    It’s seeing what the intent is, it’s understanding the intent to want to do good, and understand 60 and 30, but work collaboratively, and Pritzker can show that these 12 weeks of so left by how welcoming he and the campaign is, abc how open minded outside their own ideas they will be willing to go.

    The actual? More testimonial commercials, more “others” telling the “JB” story. Friends, associates, those JB made a difference with, in life, in business, in “philanthropy”, but why get a “snooty” word in there, the difference in making society better than how he found it… for others.

    The rest? The rest is going to be the measure of “us” and how we are told these things and how we will embrace these narratives. A solid Comms Crew and Media folks can find these sweet spots. They should, otherwise they may be way over their heads.

    The money and the man are defined by the man showing that money makes the man better and tries to better his fellow man.

    I’ve seen the money and the man be a lonely, angry fellow, frustrated he can’t hurt who he feels needs hurting, so he takes it out on the weaker of our society, and the learning of our people.

    I’ve seen the bad.

    Show me, show me the intent and actual. Show the man whose money is about inclusion and the best in people, and have others tell me that story.


  14. - Anonymous - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:17 am:

    Lots of money going to the Ounce. Looks like several million dollars plus millions more for other early childhood education organizations like Erikson.


  15. - Angel's Sword - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:18 am:

    Actual Red,

    Pritzker as well as some of his family members have been major donors and fundraisers for Democrats across the country for a long time. His sister even served in Obama’s cabinet. It seems pretty obvious to me that he’s a real Democrat, and will continue to give money to Democrats and liberal causes in the future regardless of what happens in this election.


  16. - Anonymous - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:19 am:

    The one thing that the Rauners have done that attracts little attention is funding a YMCA branch in Chicago, which actually is named for them.

    I liked the fact that his wife took on the task of saving the long neglected Governor’s Mansion too.


  17. - Bored Chairman - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:21 am:

    Honey bear, Rauner has been an active philanthropist for decades. He donates much, much, more to a variety of worthy charities than does JB, who is far wealthier than Rauner. And those Pritzker amenities you cite were not donated by JB, but by others in his family. It is galling to see the absolute phoniness of those on this blog who decried Rauner’s self made fortune, but see virtues in JB’s inherited wealth. I don’t agree with Rauner on a number of issues, but he sees problems with how one party rule has been ruinous for Illinois, while Pritzker wishes to continue down that road.


  18. - Not a Billionaire - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:22 am:

    What Hineybear said. Also can’t compare investing Rauner is almost a no lose asset stripper and JBP invests in start-ups. That said as a democracy we need more sunlight on the 15 trillion in investment partnerships and the people making over a million dollars who control them and who are so involved in public policy.


  19. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:25 am:

    I think we also need to recognize that we live in a very partisan age, and very few co-partisans are likely to break from their Governor regardless of his finances. I know we talk a lot about House Republicans and Rauner, but he was their first Governor in 12 years, even if he didn’t have a dime to his name they were going to give him every chance to succeed.


  20. - Montrose - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:25 am:

    “He donates much, much, more to a variety of worthy charities than does JB.”

    Do you have data to back up this claim?


  21. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:27 am:

    ===more to a variety of worthy charities===

    Illinois Policy Institute? /s


  22. - Lucky Pierre Bot - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:30 am:

    The chief sponsor of Senate Bill 1 would be a Senator by definition, not the Governor. In the spirit of bipartisanship, he said he would support the Democrats bill, his bill would not have been as generous to state employees.

    Senator Cullerton understands math and the unsustainable pensions that are bankrupting Illinois and starving our government. Speaker Madigan also believe the pensions are unsustainable but will not work to fix the problem.

    Cullerton and the majority of the Senate are looking out for the entire state not just Democratic special interests. Wish I could say the same for Speaker Madigan and the House Democrats he controls, whose main concern is maintaining power, not fixing Illinois for future generations.

    Governor Rauner has also donated tens of millions of dollars to charities for decades. But you say he mostly gave so he could say he gave. He was a private citizen for most of those years. How can you pretend to know his motivation? Only liberal billionaires are virtuous?


  23. - Pundent - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:31 am:

    = I don’t agree with Rauner on a number of issues, but he sees problems with how one party rule has been ruinous for Illinois, while Pritzker wishes to continue down that road.=

    If only this were true. Raunerism isn’t about favoring one party over another (Leader Radogno can provide a better narrative on that). It’s about hijacking a party to implement a narrow very personal agenda. Bruce Rauner is very much in favor of one party rule, the party of Raunerism. And that’s why he accomplished nothing over the course of the last 3 years.


  24. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:34 am:

    ===… Rauner has been an active philanthropist for decades. He donates much, much, more to a variety of worthy charities than does JB, who is far wealthier than Rauner===

    … and yet, where are these “others” with a word of thanks… and business partners, leaders in philanthropy praising Rauner? Like with the “jobs” Rauner created, is it all window-dressing in the end?

    “Decades”… lol

    That’s my favorite phony measure “since Rauner”

    ===The one thing that the Rauners have done that attracts little attention is funding a YMCA branch in Chicago, which actually is named for them.===

    Gov. Rauner refused funding for some programs offered at that Y, programs never getting his signature through any Rauner budget.

    A building starved of programs, thanks to Bruce Rauner.

    “Aw, you’re welcome”


  25. - FDB - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:35 am:

    FWIW Rauner and Ken Griffin are also very generous to charities. Not like JB stands alone in donating to charities.


  26. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:38 am:

    ===Cullerton and the majority of the Senate are looking out for the entire state not just Democratic special interests. Wish I could say the same for Speaker Madigan and the House Democrats he controls, whose main concern is maintaining power, not fixing Illinois for future generations.===

    For the 6,738th time.

    Show me the 71 House Members on the stairs, behind Rauner, who stands at the podium with microphones.

    Rauner can’t get 71. Rauner got his votes for the School Funding, but as Ms. Avery Bourne made clear, Rauner wasn’t involved in process.

    So stop.

    Embarrass Madigan, get the noses counted, then your ridiculousness makes sense. The rest is proving again, Rauner isn’t in charge, and only a weak and feeble Governor, lacking the skill to be a governor would say tgatZ


  27. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:41 am:

    It is up to the opponent to make this an issue. Rauner says that JB’s lucre wasn’t earned - that he’s a trust fund baby without portfolio of creating wealth without family first seeding a billion dollars into JB’s enterprises. That has enough truth to it to have legs, but Rauner must make the case.

    If Biss or Ives is running against JB, it will become a bigger issue - if they make it an issue, that is.

    The .01%ers like Pritzker don’t experience life as the 99% of voters experience it. He never live a day as a mope without a buck as everyone else has. That’s a spot for an opponent to use well in a campaign.

    Don’t listen to the party ready to nominate a billionaire, because they aren’t seeing what the rest of the voters base is seeing. Democrats have convinced themselves that Pritzker is for them, so facts be damned that contradict that belief.


  28. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    ===Only liberal billionaires are virtuous?===

    First, no one said that. Ever. And no one is disputing that Rauner has a history of being very generous to charities.

    But do you, LP, think there is any significance to the fact that Bruce Rauner has a history of contributing to Democrats like Mayor Daley, Rahm, Forrest Claypool, etc.?

    Does that trouble you, at all? Does it make you question Rauner’s commitment to the Illinois Republican Party?

    I first met J.B. in 1991 when he was a donor to the legislative race I was managing. He’s been giving money to Democrats since before then. While it is possible he’s given some money to GOP candidates, I’d argue that what J.B. GOP money total is, it pales next to Rauner’s political contributions to Democrats. And the reason is simple: Rauner gave money to Democrats because he wanted public business. J.B. gives money to Democrats because he wants Democratic majorities.


  29. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    ===Don’t listen to the party ready to nominate a billionaire, because they aren’t seeing what the rest of the voters base is seeing. Democrats have convinced themselves that Pritzker is for them, so facts be damned that contradict that belief.===

    Polling has Pritzker is leading…


  30. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    ==but he sees problems with how one party rule has been ruinous for Illinois==

    Nah, he loves the idea of one-party rule, he just wants himself on top.


  31. - City Zen - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:45 am:

    ==FWIW Rauner and Ken Griffin are also very generous to charities.==

    Ken Griffin isn’t running for office. More importantly, he’s not running towards Florida, yet…


  32. - Lucky Pierre Bot - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:46 am:

    Embarrass Madigan? Impossible, If he is not embarrassed by his legacy of financial wreckage of Illinois already he will never be.

    Can you name one instance where more than 3 or 4 Democrats crossed the head of the Democratic party in Illinois? Of course you can’t because it never happened.

    Can you name one time he voted against trial lawyers or union interests for the good of the entire state in the past 5 years? Speaker Madigan controls Illinois, as well as Oswego’s loudest voice, and has for decades


  33. - Henry Francis - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:51 am:

    How much has Rauner donated to charity in the last 4 years?

    Now compare that amount to how much Rauner has donated to his campaign fund, the ILGOP and IPI during the last four years.

    Priorities.


  34. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:53 am:

    Mike Madigan and the Oswego Willys he controls?


  35. - Chris Widger - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:54 am:

    ==Priorities.==

    That’s a wild standard. It all seems like a bit of a non sequitur–if it were shown that Rauner were excessively and wildly generous to charity and that Pritzker refused to give a dime to any charity (which is not at all the case), I’d say it doesn’t reflect at all on who should be governor. I don’t blame Pritzker for pushing the issue, it’s a good response to concerns about concentrated wealth, but it feels like we do ourselves a disservice by focusing on it. This election is about whether Illinois will be devastated by poor planning soon or very soon, and I intend to vote accordingly.


  36. - Demoralized - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 10:58 am:

    ==Can you name one time he voted against . . . union interests==

    I can name two easy ones:

    Tier II pension

    Specifically failing to fund back pay owed to AFSCME workers

    ==Speaker Madigan controls Illinois==

    If you believe the current Governor is inept then maybe you should tell him to get out of the way so someone who doesn’t whine all the time can step in. Always the constant victim. Never taking any responsibility for anything.


  37. - Demoralized - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:06 am:

    ==Democrats have convinced themselves that Pritzker is for them==

    No, Democrats have determined that they have to fight money with money.


  38. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:08 am:

    Insofar as voting against unions, Rauner also vetoed the AFSCME arbitration bills. He’s in court battles instead of working to find common ground with his employees because he wants to bleed unions of money. Meanwhile his income increased greatly while being governor: $279 million in the last two years. He implied strongly at a presser that he made his $188 million in 2015 from the very types of people he’s fighting, public employees.


  39. - Anon0091 - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:08 am:

    “He donates much, much, more to a variety of worthy charities than does JB, who is far wealthier than Rauner.”

    You clearly don’t have a clue what you’re talking about. Read Bernie’s story and, more importantly, click on the link. There are hundreds of grants he’s made including millions to early childhood education, millions to hunger issues and hundreds of thousands to good government groups. So please spare me with any notion that JB’s not incredibly philanthropic.


  40. - Bigtwich - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:08 am:

    “But there are those, like Daniel Coultas, who think Democrats ought to be led by someone a little closer to the working people who are supposed to be the party’s base.”

    What do you have against Franklin D. Roosevelt?


  41. - Blue dog dem - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:10 am:

    Neither Pritzker or Rauner can relate to the 99%. Its just campaign rhetoric. When its all said and.done the working poor and.middle class do the heavy lifting. Under both, union.mbership will drop..one faster than the other, but drop none the less. The pension.problem will continue to grow under both. Property taxes will continue to rise under both. And the exodus of people will continue under both.


  42. - WasAnon - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:10 am:

    I’d like to see Rauner and Pritzker both go broke funding their own campaigns for a job they can’t do, won’t do, hate doing, or all the above.


  43. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:17 am:

    I truly do enjoy the irony coming from a bunch of conservative mopes who voted in 2014 for a mega-millionaire with a history of donating tons of money to liberals, and who then voted in 2016 for a faux-billionaire with a history of donating tons of money to liberals all of a sudden rushing to Capfax to tell dems not to vote in 2018 for an actual billionaire with a history of donating tons of money to liberals.


  44. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:17 am:

    - Dred Pirate Roberts -

    The past “Lucky Pierre” commenters were less pointed and wrote far differently than…

    ===Speaker Madigan controls Illinois, as well as Oswego’s loudest voice, and has for decades===

    Do yourself a solid, look back and read their tone and tenor or just change the name.

    ===Embarrass Madigan? Impossible, If he is not embarrassed by his legacy of financial wreckage of Illinois already he will never be.===

    So.. won’t look for 71?

    - Dred Pirate Roberts -, Rauner used the stairs and microphones before. Now he won’t? This makes no sense. Feeble governors give up.

    ===Can you name one instance where more than 3 or 4 Democrats crossed the head of the Democratic party in Illinois? Of course you can’t because it never happened.===

    Asked and answered…


  45. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:18 am:

    ==Can you name one time he voted against trial lawyers or union interests for the good of the entire state in the past 5 years?==

    Workers’ comp reform and pension reform.


  46. - Lucky Pierre - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:37 am:

    Lester, Claypool, Daley and Rahm are not liberals, they are a dying breed- pro business democrats whose first inclination is not to raise taxes. If they were, true liberals like Karen Lewis and Troy whatever his name is would support them.


  47. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:43 am:

    ===whose first inclination is not to raise taxes===

    Daley’s refusal to raise property taxes a little bit to pay for pensions has resulted in forcing his successor to raise property taxes a lot.

    He’s no hero. He’s no fiscal conservative, either. He was an irresponsible spender.


  48. - cdog - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:45 am:

    Don’t defend Rauner.

    He is not worthy of that effort.


  49. - City Zen - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:45 am:

    Is NKOTB aware Senator Biss has co-opted their Step by Step plan?


  50. - Anon221 - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:46 am:

    Anonymous -@ 10:19 am:
    “The one thing that the Rauners have done that attracts little attention is funding a YMCA branch in Chicago, which actually is named for them.”

    I think you forgot the /s at the end of that statement.

    Just a reminder of Rauner’s now famous act of “one hand giveth, the other taketh away”-

    http://abc7chicago.com/politics/budget-impasse-shuts-down-program-at-rauner-family-ymca/902782/

    From that report:

    “Governor Rauner’s name is on the building, but we don’t necessarily have a direct pipeline,” says DeWana Williamson of the Rauner Family YMCA. “We’re like any other non-profit agency who receives funds from the state.”

    *** So, how much do the Rauners really care about that particular Y??? They could have saved the Teen Reach program there by donating their own personal wealth, but remember Dr. Rauner’s “warning” to us all during the 2014 election season, “Bruce doesn’t have a social agenda,”.


  51. - DeseDemDose - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:58 am:

    Pritzker seems to understand the meaning of and empathy is capable of feeling empathy for those with less than he has. Rauner cut off the agencies who support the poor, handicapped, elderly, and children etc…to show the Koch brothers he will do there bidding.


  52. - SaulGoodman - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 11:59 am:

    **To judge what he’s likely to do, consider this. JB has been one of the top Democratic donors nationally for nearly two decades. Not really much question of whether he’ll follow through on this one.**

    FWIW, this is true nationally, not not locally. Pritzker has NOT really been a big campaign donor in Illinois.


  53. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 12:04 pm:

    ===Pritzker has NOT really been a big campaign donor in Illinois===

    I count about $3.8 million in state and local contributions between 1994 and the end of 2016.


  54. - @misterjayem - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 12:14 pm:

    “I count about $3.8 million in state and local contributions between 1994 and the end of 2016.”

    $173,000 per year beats me by a nose.

    – MrJM


  55. - Dr. M - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 12:17 pm:

    Biss needs to knock it off. He’s helping Rauner more than he’s elevating himself.

    His efforts to cast Pritzker and Rauner as morally and politically equivalent will keep some Democrats home during the general election (in which Biss won’t be a contender). But Rauner’s camp will come out to support him, even those who voted for Ives in the primary, because they are fueled by antipathy to unions, Madigan, Chicago, taxes, and Illinois politicians generally. Republicans know they have everything to lose and they’ll put boots on the ground to defend their turf. It is about time that Democrats in Illinois recognize that they have everything to lose, too.


  56. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 12:42 pm:

    ==Lester, Claypool, Daley and Rahm are not liberals, they are a dying breed- pro business democrats whose first inclination is not to raise taxes==

    Do you even understand English, or do you do this Capfax thing through google translate? You’re exactly the same guy who regularly bashes Emanuel and Claypool as liberal tax-and-spend Madigan puppets and you’ve railed against Daley as the progenitor of Madigan evil and combine politics. But when it’s mentioned that Bruce was a big donor of theirs, they’re just “pro-business Democrats”?

    Look, I know Rich is too nice to ban you over your constantly being so blatantly obtuse and completely disregarding your own previous comments on this site but it’s getting to the point that I can’t tell anymore if you’re a bot, a group of several different libertarian trolls, a nervous Rauner employee trying desperately to save his cushy state job or a liberal doing Stephen Colbert-type conservative performance art.


  57. - Ghost - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 12:49 pm:

    Biss

    Step 1 with a math degree fail to have any large dollar business success.

    Step 2 fail to convince any large donors you are a good candidate, but tout that you can get things done and hope no one notices you can’t even raise your income much less campaign funds

    Step 3 correct your math errors and consider more math classes


  58. - Ray del Camino - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 12:58 pm:

    Let’s see how/if Biss can come around to support the D team after he loses the primary. That will have been a lot of whining/equivocating between now and then. It’s unbecoming, and *never* has been a winning strategy. Doesn’t he have any pros in his shop?


  59. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 1:09 pm:

    ==Biss needs to knock it off.==

    Eh, he can say what he wants, and attacking the frontrunner is just what you do. But he’s going to need to add some Bernie-esque inspiration to his routine.


  60. - SaulGoodman - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 1:14 pm:

    **Step 1 with a math degree fail to have any large dollar business success.**

    So we’re attacking folks for choosing to become a fulltime legislator now rather than making a lot of money?

    **Step 2 fail to convince any large donors you are a good candidate**

    He’s out raised Kennedy. He’s done a helluva’ job raising money. He just can’t outraise a self funding billionaire.

    Ghost - you have to do be able to do better than that for an attack, right?


  61. - PatchAdams - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 1:25 pm:

    Biss should be commended for speaking truth here (for once). I’m a Democrat and I’m voting for Kennedy because he is the only one that can beat Rauner in the general. I think Rauner knows this.


  62. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 1:36 pm:

    ==I’m voting for Kennedy because he is the only one that can beat Rauner in the general==

    He’s the one I’m least confident can pull it off.


  63. - Not a Billionaire - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 1:48 pm:

    Iowa has joined Alabama with the 20 to 30 point swing. What does a swing that size do in Illinois. Biss is irrelevant.


  64. - m - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 1:55 pm:

    I think Biss has something going here. That whole tie ‘em to Rauner or Trump mantra that the D’s have been embracing so hard. It also might work on pritzker. Of Course it also might drive apathy and hurt turnout. But either is potentially better for Biss.

    To the whole “And too much power concentrated in one individual’s hands, I think that’s, you could argue, what we’ve seen on the Republican side.”

    I think some people are missing the best part about JB. He builds an apparatus outside of the D’s. Then everybody has a choice. Few would disagree that Madigan has too much power. But JB provides a real option if there’s a disagreement between him and Madigan. In the end, who can spend more? Probably JB. Who you gonna vote with, Madigan or JB? If anyone can change the outcome of that all-so important first vote of the new house, it’s probably JB. Ironically for R’s, JB might be the best antidote to Madigan, far better than Rauner and his attempts to shore up support on the left.
    But right now as Pritzker is “Madigan’s candidate” that may be a hard pitch to make.
    Of course, if a split does happen, someone will probably eventually win, and then we’ll all be right back where we started.


  65. - wordslinger - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 2:02 pm:

    –But do you, LP, think there is any significance to the fact that Bruce Rauner has a history of contributing to Democrats like Mayor Daley, Rahm, Forrest Claypool, etc.? –

    Meh, that’s when he and Stu were hustling government business. Nothing personal.

    –Ken Griffin isn’t running for office. More importantly, he’s not running towards Florida, yet… –

    Griff told you was think of thinking of that, did he?

    He’s already got a $60M crib in Florida, plus a $200M condo in low-low-tax Manhattan, yet he still slums it in his $30M Chicago condo to run his business.

    You never let facts get in the way of a theory.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2015/10/04/ken-griffin-goes-on-290-million-real-estate-spree.html


  66. - Frankly - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 2:23 pm:

    I’m still shocked nobody here seems concerned that Pritzker has no experience in elected office, especially given our recent experiences with newbie billionaires, and the message it sends to the non-rich about their access to the political system. Does anyone really think he’d be a serious contender if he weren’t so rich? No one would look twice at him.

    Politically inexperienced, grotesquely rich, dodgy about where he gets his money…these are all points that Democrats will lose the ability to use against Rauner in the general. Not to mention Blago and the Golden Toilets.


  67. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 2:24 pm:

    ===I’m still shocked nobody here seems concerned===

    Nobody? C’mon. Argue like a grownup.


  68. - jake - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 2:39 pm:

    A really important iaaue is: Who as governor will have the ability and the motivation to take control of the Democratic Party agenda away from Speaker Madigan? Another way to put it is which Democrat, if he wins, will return us to pre-Rauner and which will move us beyond that? I don’t have anything against JB, but I think that Daniel is the better bet to actually move us forward.


  69. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 2:45 pm:

    ===if he wins===

    First and foremost, you have to win. Daniel, who I like a lot, is not yet showing that he can do that.

    Dawn Clark Netsch might’ve been a great governor. We’ll never know because she lost to Jim Edgar by almost 30 points.


  70. - Lucky Pierre - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 2:54 pm:

    OW, I am not a Red Pirate Roberts or a bot or whatever you want to call me. Just a Rahm, Claypool, Rauner supporting Republican who agrees that unions have far too much power in Illinois and are bankrupting our state and local governments. Any opponent of CTU or other government union is a friend of mine.

    The numbers don’t lie, our finances are a mess because politicians have over promised pay and lifetime benefits to a special interest group that funds their campaigns. Middle class families concerns are trumped by special interests.

    You will defend that corrupt arrangement until you are blue in the face.


  71. - A Pope - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 3:00 pm:

    I don’t think the average Joe Sixpack Democratic voter cares that Pritzker is a rich guy. They probably don’t even know who he is.

    Ask a typical blue collar city-dweller who doesn’t run in political circles like we do what they think of Kennedy, Pritzker, or Biss.

    Ask your waitress or uber driver next time you are out. I’ve been doing this a lot and the response I consistently get is “Who are they?”

    When I tell them these are the Democratic gubernatorial candidates, they assume everybody running for Governor (even Biss) is rich.

    Sorry, but a guy like Biss living in a big home in Evanston is “rich” to a minimum wage employee who sits on a freezing Red Line train every day.


  72. - wordslinger - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 3:08 pm:

    –Any opponent of CTU or other government union is a friend of mine.–

    LOL, long-time Madigan supporter are you?

    That Illinois history class you took at Skopje Bot U has some gaps in it.


  73. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 3:11 pm:

    ===Just a Rahm, Claypool, Rauner supporting Republican who ===

    Nope.

    You pull Dem Primary ballots.

    Sorry, you’re a Raunerite.

    Oh, if you think for a second that the writing and commenting stylings, (formatting included) hasn’t changed and I did g notice, you’re not as good as you think you are.

    ===The numbers don’t lie, our finances are a mess because politicians have over promised pay and lifetime benefits to a special interest group that funds their campaigns. Middle class families concerns are trumped by special interests.

    You will defend that corrupt arrangement until you are blue in the face.===

    No “Roberts”, I know that Raunerism has destroyed too much in Illinois, and like your predecessor “Roberts” you fail to understand that..,

    1) Republicans and Raunerites are two different people.

    2) Not supporting Raunerism doesn’t make me or anyone but a person who knows Rauner is bad for Illinois.

    It’s not all about Madigan.

    You or the other “Roberts”, I find you less amusing, abc far angrier. Kinda like Gov. Rauner, lol


  74. - m - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 3:27 pm:

    =I don’t think the average Joe Sixpack Democratic voter cares that Pritzker is a rich guy. They probably don’t even know who he is.=

    If Biss could put the money behind that message, then they will. He can connect it to all the other Rauner/Trump messaging from the D’s, turn it into Trump/Rauner/Pritzker.

    =Politically inexperienced, grotesquely rich, dodgy about where he gets his money…these are all points that Democrats will lose the ability to use against Rauner in the general.=

    Yes. And he feels a lot like the people that dems keep telling us are destroying the country/state/.

    If your life depended on trying to convince someone that a D gov candidate is just like Trump, which would you pick? Because it isn’t that hard to make enough of an argument to convince people with JB.

    Easy to make the case that Pritzker doesn’t pay his fair share, which goes pretty hard against the D’s messaging momentum.


  75. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 3:30 pm:

    ===If Biss could put the money behind===

    And if the sky was green, grass might be blue. He’s filed two A-1’s this month totaling $8,000. He’s probably holding some checks back, but, man, that’s low.


  76. - m - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 4:08 pm:

    =He’s probably holding some checks back, but, man, that’s low.=

    And everyday when a new establishment endorsement comes in for JB, another group of donors backs away from Biss.

    Pretty soon the responses to his fundraising pitches are going to sound an awful lot like Durbin’s guy in Springfield, “back off Pritzker.”

    He either has to lock down some cash and go for the jugular or back down and take his lumps, because he is going to start alienating himself from the establishment.

    At the corner table of the restaurant, the party is selling, JB is buying, and Daniel is outside handing out flyers on the street corner…


  77. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 4:54 pm:

    ==He’s probably holding some checks back, but, man, that’s low.==

    That’s staggering. He should be able to put more money together. He did that pretty well for a couple quarters, has had a couple pretty good “proof of concept” videos, and doesn’t exactly have to muscle through the other candidates all asking the same donors.


  78. - Arsenal - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 4:57 pm:

    Another one for the “not the money, it’s how you spend it” files: the local Pritzker campaign HQ helped pass petitions for other local Dems, including someone who’s publicly supporting Biss. That kind of thing means a lot to local parties.


  79. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 5:04 pm:

    ===including someone who’s publicly supporting Biss.===

    Interesting. Who was it? You can email me instead, if you prefer.


  80. - Veil of Ignorance - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 5:06 pm:

    I think Actual Red’s first post nails the key question. Yes, Pritzker has donated to Dems, but let’s be honest that the Pritzkers have also benefited from many of those donations. Blago wasn’t dialing up JB on the wiretap for nothing. Is somebody going to ask Pritzker if he’ll donate $50-100 million to the IL Dems to keep the House and Senate regardless if he’s the guv nominee?

    Finally, one line that caught my eye above:
    “[Pritzker’s self-funding] topped the $28.6 million that Blair Hull put into his failed 2004 Democratic primary bid for the U.S. Senate.”

    Just let that sink in please. This coronation isn’t a done deal. Plenty of time.


  81. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Thursday, Dec 14, 17 @ 6:57 pm:

    ==Just let that sink in please. This coronation isn’t a done deal. Plenty of time==

    True, but when are we going to see something from Kennedy or Biss that is going to change our minds? Have either one of them done anything that leads you to believe that they’d be a better candidate against Gov Junk than Pritzker? Or, for that matter, that they would even be a good candidate for any office - let alone governor. Both have run terrible campaigns so far, both can’t raise real money (there’s no excuse for Kennedy’s paltry numbers), both have made major missteps offending certain large groups of dem primary electorate (Biss with socialists, Kennedy with moms orgs), and neither has offered a big idea or central theme. Neither are naturally great orators or inspiring speakers. For gods sake Kennedy won’t even commit to legalization, which is a no-brainer for dems running all around the country next year.

    Literally the only reason Biss or Kennedy have given us so far to vote for them over Pritzker is that Pritzker is rich and that rich guys are bad regardless of the policies they espouse. Like I said the other night unless one of them can prove in the next 3 months that they are a much better alternative, dems have no reason to pass on Pritzker and his billions.


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