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Because… Madigan!

Tuesday, Jan 30, 2018

* Kass on yesterday’s Tribune editorial board forum

Jeanne Ives crushed it so hard, way up into the upper deck, Rauner’s re-election dreams bouncing up there all alone, echoing desperately, and all the governor seemed to be able to say was “Mike Madigan” again and again. How many times did he say Mike Madigan? You couldn’t keep count.

Just for snicks, I Googled “‘John Kass’ Madigan” and got 36,800 results.

* The Tribune’s editorial

We said at the top of this editorial that the governor is eager to run against a Democrat, not another Republican. He made clear Monday he thinks his greatest adversary is Madigan, whom the governor attacked for being a property tax attorney in a state where many property owners challenge their assessments. “We need to focus on Speaker Madigan and his corruption,” Rauner told us. He then connected dots from Madigan to J.B. Pritzker, one of the Democrats running for governor. “Pritzker is Madigan’s handpicked candidate for governor. He’s in effect Madigan’s bagman for funding that whole corrupt culture.”

One comment about such incendiary talk: We don’t see how it convinces employers such as Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, who values a stable culture of governance, to invest money and hire in Illinois.

From a September, 2017 Tribune editorial entitled “How Chicago can win Amazon’s 50,000 jobs”

Can Illinois improve its reputation in time to snag all those jobs? House Speaker Mike Madigan, Senate President John Cullerton, we’ve suggested that you step down from leadership and, like former Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno, make way for fresh leadership. Gentlemen, your combined 86 years in the legislature have left Chicago and Illinois weakened for this competition. Show Amazon and others in the most convincing way possible that this state’s future holds more promise.

* One of the arguments made by JB Pritzker and his defenders is that Democrats attacking Democrats only helps Bruce Rauner. The governor made the same sort of argument in reverse yesterday

[Rep. Ives] went on to contend that Rauner broke a “strong tenet” of the GOP after promising during his initial campaign that he had no social agenda.

“He sure did have an agenda, it happened to be his wife’s agenda, socially progressive agenda from his wife in a state that is broke,” she said, referring to Illinois first lady Diana Rauner.

Rauner replied, “This is more false, vicious attacks.”

“It’s not false. It’s not vicious,” Ives said. “I said it nicely. It’s the truth.”

Rauner responded, “And Madigan loves everything that you’re saying, everything that you’re doing. Social issues are divisive. We need to be united.”

* And from the Sun-Times

“And the bottom line is Speaker Madigan would like nothing more than Rep. Ives to be the primary victor and to have a run against Pritzker,” Rauner said.

“He would love nothing more because I am on the only person at this table that can beat Pritzker in November. And we will beat Pritzker in November because we are fighting for everyone. This is not about Republicans versus Democrats. This is about taking power away from Madigan, giving it back to the people of Illinois, and we will win.”


Rauner says he’s been blocked by Madigan — speaker for more than three decades. […]

Ives says there are ways to work around Madigan to accomplish goals. She says Republicans don’t trust Rauner because he signed a law providing for publicly funded abortions and one friendly to immigrants.

* AP

Rauner called the longest-serving state House speaker in U.S. history a “crook” who has enriched himself through politics. […]

Madigan spokesman Steve Brown said he wouldn’t “dignify” Rauner’s “crook” remark with a statement and said it appears the governor is running a campaign against Madigan because he has alienated his Republican base.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:34 am:

    The troncs lack of self-awareness is something else. I imagine that’s the only way they can get through the day.

  2. - Chris P. Bacon - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:36 am:

    Pretty rich coming from John Kass, who along with most all the other troncers, has been a Rauner enabler from day 1.

  3. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:38 am:

    Funny how every Democratic candidate for Governor except JB, who claims to be”independent” ,are also running a campaign against Speaker Madigan.

    Does JB think Illinois residents approve of Speaker Madigan?

    Combined 86 years in Springfield? I think they have had enough time to leave their mark on Illinois and step aside for Leaders who are “change people”.

  4. - People Over Parties - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:38 am:

    If Republicans in Illinois truly seek to implement their vision for the state, they should understand that Jeanne Ives denies them that opportunity due to her electability. In order to do something, you have to win.

  5. - @misterjayem - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:39 am:

    Ives called the primary election a “referendum on what Gov. Rauner’s done, and he’s got nothing done.” She also said the election represents a vote about Rauner’s “character and courage.”

    Rauner should be thankful that most of the press is fixated on the “I said it nicely” exchange.

    – MrJM

  6. - DarkHorse - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:40 am:

    If you didn’t like Rauner to begin with, The Trib’s comments give a person cover to consider voting for Ives. If she can get more money from the Uihlien’s of the world, she can make this competitive.

  7. - Grand Avenue - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:43 am:

    Maybe Ives should announce she is airing the best 15 minutes of that Tribune forum on TV stations across the state - then after getting all the press buzz, only spend $11,000 to put it on the air Saturday morning on 4 stations

  8. - Generic Drone - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:43 am:

    I wonder should Ives wins the primary will Rauner be haunted by “but that Ives”

  9. - Stones - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:44 am:

    This Governor is a one-trick pony who has painted himself in the corner. It’s hard to fathom how an incumbent with those kind of resources could be in the political pickle he has put himself into.

  10. - Probably blocked by Rich - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:46 am:

    Is the Trib trying to be like the WSJ. Decent reporting and crackpot E-board?

  11. - Colin O'Scopey - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:47 am:

    Why does the Tribune give John Kass page 2 space when he clearly belongs on the op-ed pages? At least with Royko, you had the occasional public interest story, but Kass is so far over the edge, with his Queeg-like obsession over Madigan & Rahm that you’d think they were a brand of strawberries and not the Speaker and Mayor respectively.

  12. - Anon221 - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:49 am:

    Rauner responded, “…. Social issues are divisive. We need to be united.”

    Social issues are divisive, and Rauner has pulled many tricks out of his many hats and helmets to make sure they were divisive during the budget impasses. And that damage continues, dividing families and communities along the way.

    Easterseals Closing Day Program for Autistic Adults (Sun-Times)

    Bruno blames state government.

    “This program wouldn’t be dying if not for the lack of attention and funding from the state,” he said.

  13. - Anon - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:50 am:

    Beware the Ives of March!

  14. - Louis G. Atsaves - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:52 am:

    ===”One comment about such incendiary talk: We don’t see how it convinces employers such as Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, who values a stable culture of governance, to invest money and hire in Illinois.”===

    You would think that Bezos is smart enough to do his own homework about the state of politics and the current financial state of Illinois and where Illinois ranks in comparison to other states on various issues from education to taxes to business regulations, just to cite a few, without listening to politicians when choosing his next site. He certainly has the ability to hire all kinds of consultants and researchers to assist him here.

    I for one thinks he is that smart.

  15. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:58 am:

    Rauner not only failed to find a working relationship with the majority party in the legislature, look at what happened to Rodogno and Rauner’s failure to find a working relationship with his own party in the legislature. Rauner’s failure with the GA is multiple-not singularly Madigan. Rauner was a failure all around legislatively-speaking. It was so bad that we’d still be in a stalemate if other GOP members didn’t give up on him.

    So, take away MJM, and Rauner still fails. Legislatively, that is.

    Yet Rauner also failed to be in charge of the executive branch too. He’s the governor, but his administration repeatedly failed to seal any electoral mandate he might have had in 2015. He failed to effectively staff his own posts. He went through administrative staffers like someone not in charge. He never led on governing issues. He never tried another approach to get around his legislative disasters. He failed to be the head of the executive branch where Madigan wasn’t a factor.

    Ives is correct. Madigan only matters to a certain point. The Speaker doesn’t rule anything beyond the GA. That still leaves GOVERNING. Rauner has repeatedly and clearly failed to do the simple tasks of governing.

    Rauner never figured out the job. He still doesn’t. Yesterday, Rauner flailed like a frat student who tried to take an exam without studying. Ives showed up to speak, but Rauner just showed up without a clue. His ego is enormous and his knowledge as shallow as can be.

    Bad governor. Get out now.

  16. - @misterjayem - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:11 am:

    “Is the Trib trying to be like the WSJ: Decent reporting and crackpot E-board?”

    For at least the last 25 years.

    – MrJM

  17. - Big Joe - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:16 am:

    Well said, V-Man, couldn’t agree with you more. A failed governor that has no business trying for re-election based on his record and refusal to govern and be the person in charge.

  18. - Jack Kemp - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:17 am:

    “[This is] a referendum on what Rauner’s done, and he’s got nothing done.”

    Says the representative touting her 5 year tenure in the House, in which she has passed 6 bills. Whew. What a record.

  19. - People Over Parties - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:22 am:

    Do Ives supporters actually care about these conservative issues, or just candidate purity? I think if they cared, they would know that Jeanne Ives makes these issues even more difficult to accomplish by electing a Democrat in November..

  20. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:22 am:

    Rauner since jump street has been a Raunerite.

    Nothing in an overall has Rauner as a Republican.

    Rauner doesn’t want to talk social issues because Bruce made the ILGOP take on Diana Rauner’s uber-left, costal limousine liberalism… having a social agenda of accomplishments hard-left Democratic governors only dream about.

    The phonies that aided and abetted Rauner have all spring session to show who they are.

    The likes of Misters Barickman and Oberweis will do all they can to help Rauner, because standing up for what you think you believe comes second to appeasing Diana and Bruce Rauner.

    The debate? How this all ties?

    Rauner will indeed get over 60% but probably less than 72ish percent over Ives.

    The feign “anger” at Rauner will be warm welcomes by Raunerites “coming home” after April.

    The real question, the only question, the biggest question is can Rauner put up his “in the only wall to Madigan” when Rauner is universally seen by Dems and some Republicans as a colossal failure, seen nationally as the worst Republican governor in America, and “not in charge”… but does Rauner deserve a second term… given his first term is an abysmal failure brought on by a vindictive man, willing to hurt any and every person to destroy labor.

    Yesterday was a marker, but Rauner knows, “I just need to win the Primary. The bought ILGOP and the Raunerites in the GA know I own them… now I just have to convince people my failure has been a good thing, and I will fight for Janus, RTW Zones, and to defeat AF-Scammy… or I’ll keep hurting Illinois until I win.”

    The map? Raunerite map would sink Illinois.

    If you think it’s about trying fur a GOP map or holding off Madigan, whew.

    The map will be a chip to hold Illinois hostage again. Don’t be fooled.

    Ives ain’t wrong, but Ives can’t compete. She’s down dozens of points to Rauner. She can’t compete, she can only educate in hopes Rauner loses in November. Yesterday was a good step in that thinking.

  21. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:25 am:

    The Speaker doesn’t rule anything beyond the GA?

    He is the leader of the Democratic party in Illinois and has secured virtually all of the money and interest groups behind JB.

    Except for that, zero influence outside the GA

  22. - Skeptic - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:26 am:

    “Whew. What a record.” Well, give her some props, she’s not claiming credit for a bill she vetoed.

  23. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:32 am:

    Jeff Bezos can read all about the decades of Illinois political dysfunction in his own newspaper.

    No political spin from Democrats will pull the wool over his eyes.

  24. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:33 am:

    ===He is the leader of the Democratic party in Illinois and has secured virtually all of the money and interest groups behind JB.====

    Chris Kennedy, that you?


  25. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:36 am:

    ===Jeff Bezos can read all about the decades of Illinois political dysfunction in his own newspaper.===

    What will be different in a Rauner second term?

    The first term was a colossal failure, the worst Republican governor in America, and this worst governor says…

    Janus, RTW Zones, destroying Af-Scammy… it he’ll again hold Illinois hostage.

    That’s what Rauner says when asking what a second term looks like.

    Rauner continuing his destruction of Illinois.., that’s what Rauner is selling.

  26. - Boone's is Back - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:37 am:

    ===Just for snicks, I Googled “‘John Kass’ Madigan” and got 36,800 results===

    LOL- I googled Daley + John Kass and got 1.1 million.

  27. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:43 am:

    No OW, it has been Democrats who have been continuing the destruction of Illinois finances since 2002.

    Less influence is not destruction, don’t be so overdramatic.

    Do Wisconsin and Indiana have unions hiring at a better pace that Illinois?

    Remember they are not change people. What would be different if JB won? Higher taxes on employers, higher property taxes on middle class people, zero reforms of state government, continued population loss. No change in the trajectory of Illinois.

  28. - Chris P. Bacon - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:46 am:

    The fact John Kass hasn’t continued his usual tedious shtick yet regarding Rauner by making up some cutesy nickname for him tells you that the powers-that-be at tronc haven’t yet decided for sure whether they’re going to stop propping-up their boy Bruce. My guess is that in the end, in some painfully priggish, windbaggy chronicle, the Tribune will end up endorsing Rauner again.

  29. - Politically incorrect - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:49 am:

    He doesn’t need right to work zones. Janus will be settled by Summer

  30. - Arthur Andersen - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:50 am:

    I Googled “John Kass Combine” and my iPad locked up.

  31. - A guy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:52 am:

    It’s not like the political scene in Washington State is so pristine.
    I think Bezos has a list, and if the political thing is on it, it’s not at the top.
    He’s the richest guy on the planet. I think he could deal with most challenges if everything else lines up.

  32. - George - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:54 am:

    In fairness, Kass is almost always wrong. So maybe Rauner won after all?

  33. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 11:55 am:

    ===Less influence is not destruction, don’t be so overdramatic===

    No, “Af-Scammy” and Rauner’s own words are the drama. Don’t make it about me, lol

    ===What would be different if JB won?===

    Rauner is the incumbent this time.

    Rauner is a colossal failure, the worst Republican governor in America, I wouldn’t worry about J.B., we know with Rauner we have failure, just like Pat Quinn failed.

    ===Higher taxes on employers, higher property taxes on middle class people, zero reforms of state government, continued population loss. No change in the trajectory of Illinois.===

    … just like Rauner’s first three years as the actual governor?


    You know Rauner is running as a incumbent, right?

  34. - Dirty Red - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 12:07 pm:

    Question of the Day suggestion:

    Per the URL, this is the 44th time a post entitled “Because…Madigan!” has appeared on this blog. What will that number be up to by November 6?

    The management apologizes for this interruption. Please resume commenting as normal.

  35. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 12:15 pm:

    What VM said. Madigan is Rauner’s scapegoat and convenient excuse for refusing to negotiate and compromise. Rauner pulled votes off of the senate’s grand bargain. That had nothing directly to do with Madigan.

    If Rauner only worked in good faith, he might have had some compromises. But he doesn’t want that. He wants to radically transform the state and turn it right wing.

  36. - Pundent - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 12:28 pm:

    =What would be different if JB won?= Rauner (I’m not in charge) has proven that he can’t work with Madigan. JB hasn’t.

  37. - Blue dog dem - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 12:50 pm:

    I know its fun. And thats why we have this forum. But. Rauner is going to lose by double digits..against anybody the Dems offer up.

  38. - anon2 - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 12:51 pm:

    Rauner has been predicting “a very,very high probability” that Madigan will be gone if the governor is re-elected. Is there anyone who believes that? Lucky??

  39. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:08 pm:

    –He is the leader of the Democratic party in Illinois and has secured virtually all of the money and interest groups behind JB.–

    “All of the money” behind JB was his to start with.

    Check your wiring. You’re misfiring.

  40. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:10 pm:

    This Amazon talk is strange. Does anyone think they’d ever pay a dime in Illinois corporate income tax if they came here?

    They’ll be banking tax money, not paying it.

  41. - Rabid - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:12 pm:

    four years looking for corruption, and all he’s got is what tronc handed him

  42. - HangingOn - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:29 pm:

    ==that Madigan will be gone if the governor is re-elected==

    Heck, for all we know Madigan is just waiting to retire until Illinois is safe from Rauner. I highly doubt he would leave if Rauner ended up in charge again.

  43. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:08 pm:

    ==What would be different if JB won?==

    Well, hopefully we wouldn’t have a governor who whined about how nothing is his fault. That would be a giant leap forward.

    Tell us LP, what would be different if the Governor wins? Because all I can see is four more years of whining about how nothing is his fault again.

  44. - Whatever - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:22 pm:

    ==This Amazon talk is strange. Does anyone think they’d ever pay a dime in Illinois corporate income tax if they came here?==

    But their new Illinois employees will pay Illinois income tax. Just don’t count on it being anywhere near 50,000 of them.

  45. - Buford - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:23 pm:

    What would Kass be able to write about if Madigan was gone?

  46. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:26 pm:

    –But their new Illinois employees will pay Illinois income tax.–

    They’ll pay the tax, but with EDGE credits, the state will give the money to Amazon.

  47. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 5:15 pm:

    I am not going to question how John Kass and The Tribune editorial board got where they are, nor chide them for abandoning what one great writer called “a fool consistency.”

    The fact is that whether it is John Tillman or Dick Uhlein, John Kass or the Tribune editorial board, a growing number of GOP thought leaders have tired of Rauner’s lack of results, tired even more with his excuses, and increasingly seem unwilling to abide or defend the carnage?

    Does anyone wanna write an op-ed defending the closure of Easter Seals as the price we pay to “squeeze the beast” and topple Mike Madigan?

    No. Nobody wants to defend the governor anymore, in large part because no one believes the governor any more.

    No one believes Republicans can take back the House. No one believes Rauner can pass a balanced budget that rolls back the tax hike. No one believes Rauner can beat JB Pritzker. Not even Rauner, which is why he is working so hard to influence the Democratic primary.

    Can Jeanne Ives beat Pritzker? I dunno at this point. But when it is the fifth inning of a tight ball game and your pitcher has given up two lead-off singles that were sharply hit to left field, followed by a walk, you don’t ask yourself “how good is my bullpen?”

    You look at the pitch count and his location, the line-up that is coming,

    Well, Rauner is deep into his pitch-count, his location has been all over the place since last summer, and he is a hardball thrower who is potentially facing a heavy-hitter with a unified and energized Democratic Party behind him.

    If this were baseball, that is an easy call.

  48. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 7:42 pm:

    Apologies for the typo 👆👆👆

    “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — ‘Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.’ — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood.”

    - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  49. - Blue dog dem - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 8:16 pm:

    Wordslinger. I would love to buy you a beer.

  50. - Rabid - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 9:28 pm:

    25 seconds of clips of Rauner laughing, followed by ” what’s so funny” clip “I’m not in charge”

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