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Question of the day

Tuesday, Jan 30, 2018

* Greg Hinz thinks Gov. Rauner needs to start attacking Rep. Jeanne Ives

Content in the extent of his wealth and the power of his incumbency, Gov. Bruce Rauner this winter has effectively ignored his primary election foe, conservative state Rep. Jeanne Ives of Wheaton. Instead, he’s been acting like Republicans already have re-crowned him as their champion, concentrating all his fire and energy on Democratic frontrunner J.B. Pritzker

The events of the past 24 hours show the limits of that strategy.

First, in the only debate they’re likely to have, before the Chicago Tribune editorial board, Ives gobbled him right up, seemingly scoring points at will. The Tribune’s coverage echoed that, and its editorial today broadly hinted that an Ives endorsement may well be on the way.

Then, news emerged that Ives finally has found the moneybags she’s needed, as ex-Rauner backer Dick Uihlein sent her a check for $500,000 that may be the first of a series.

Those twin developments have changed things. If nothing else, Ives’ name recognition probably has doubled. Rauner remains the favorite. But he could well just stagger across the finish line in March. And given the volatility of the electorate in the age of Donald Trump, an Ives win is not out of reach.

You want to avoid that fate, governor? Then quit whining about Mike Madigan and start acting like you would against any Democratic foe: Attack. Engage. Contrast your views and record with hers.

I can definitely see the reasons for firing back.

The other side of this coin is that Rauner has a huge lead; Ives is almost totally unknown and still doesn’t have the cash to make this a real race; attacking someone on his right flank could further alienate his party’s “base” voters; and she’s a woman, which makes things trickier (remember my admonition that just because Donald Trump got away with doing something doesn’t mean others can do the same).

* The Question: Should Rauner retaliate against Ives? Take the poll and then explain your answer in comments with your own suggestions, please.


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:36 pm:

    Yes. Ives needs to be boosted in the media and more name recognition. I’d love to see her land some counter-shots and anger social conservatives and others who voted for Rauner before but might not now.

  2. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:37 pm:

    I wish Rauner would attack Ives, because it would only help her.

    But, no, the longer Ives remains “almost totally unknown,” the better for Rauner.

    Rauner would be wise to avoid any actions that would raise her name recognition.

  3. - Ron Burgundy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:39 pm:

    No, unless polling starts to show her gaining traction.

  4. - Reality Check - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:39 pm:

    From his perspective, I don’t think he can. But it’s a very real possibility that he’s damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t.

  5. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:39 pm:

    Retaliate against who?

    I voted no, but wish there was a “not yet” option. Let’s see what she does with the $500K first. There is a decent shot she blows it all on direct mail to send a fundraising pitch to the Pro Life community simply to reinforce her positives among that crowd.

    If I was advising the Governor, I’d tell him that all is well. He’s doing fine. Nobody saw that debate, nobody knows he got whooped by Ives. Stay the course.

    T’is but a flesh wound.

  6. - Nah - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:44 pm:

    No, he is fine in the primary. Do not engage. Stay focused on JB and Madigan. Love it or hate it, it is his only shot at victory.

  7. - Mongo - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:44 pm:

    I voted no. By sitting back and waiting he is giving her time to explore without worrying about defense. I do acknowledge that like a leopard, she won’t change her stripes, so the notion of her appealing to moderates just isn’t gonna happen…IMO.

  8. - no_rauner - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:45 pm:

    I wish i had $500,000.00 to give her. You will have to look long and hard to find a worse Governor than Bruce Rauner. This is coming from a citizen of Illinois that has endured a long list of terrible Governors.

  9. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:46 pm:

    Voted “No”, but that’s for today…

    Ives polling dictates today you leave her be. No reason to elevate her in a conversation with a sitting governor as a challenger worthy of the time.

    The reality is Rauner can’t hold a candle to Ives on understanding their own campaigns, records, even what they stand for in Republican politics.

    Rauner 100% can’t let conservatives and pro-life voters that Jeanne Ives exists, as Ives will try to let Republicans know ok those circles she exists and they all together need to take Governor Rauner down.

    If Ives hits my Number 37.5%, that means she would lose by 25 points, which is an absolute blowout, but that 37.5 is also large fur someone running against any sitting governor in their own primary.

    Rauner, right now, should win handily, why even acknowledge her?

    You don’t.

  10. - annoying - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:46 pm:

    It would be silly for Rauner to give Ives visibility. On the conservative social issues, he has no way of explaining that away. Post-primary, the social conservatives aren’t key to Rauner’s victory in November.

  11. - Commonsense in Illinois - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:47 pm:

    I voted no. In this environment? He’d be nuts to go after her.

  12. - Last Bull Moose - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:47 pm:

    Rauner needs to ignore Ives an hope she fails. Attacking her strengthens her in the primary and weakens him in the general.

    Ives needs to take positions that get her favorable free press. She needs to be for something, not just against Rauner.

  13. - Nick Name - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:49 pm:

    “No” may be fine for now but sooner or later it’ll backfire on Rauner. Anything can happen between now and March 20.

  14. - WSJ Paywall - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:51 pm:

    No. Would just boost her name recognition.

  15. - PJ - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:52 pm:

    === She needs to be for something, not just against Rauner.===

    And therein lies her problem. Her actual positions are all extreme right, and she’s never actually accomplished anything. You could summarize her policy platform as “go back to 1963″.

  16. - Ryan - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:55 pm:

    Why? She isn’t going to matter in the long run.

  17. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 1:58 pm:

    Make her earn her visibility.

  18. - Ste_with_a_ven - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:01 pm:

    Let everyone else who doesn’t like her do it.

  19. - Responsa - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:03 pm:

    I think to the extent possible Ives should just be treated with quiet respect from afar by the governor while he focuses on the Dem field. That is the best way for him to handle her ill-conceived candidacy and prepare ground for the general.

  20. - #UnionVoter - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:06 pm:

    I voted Yes because really at the end of the day it would be awesome to see. Other than the wacky base of the GOP that already loves Ives everyone, and I mean everyone else would love to see someone, even Uncle Bruce, totally shut her down.It could very well be the only good thing to come out of 4 years of Uncle Bruce.

  21. - don the legend - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:13 pm:

    I voted no. Rauner has to hope, among other things, that after the primary her supporters can’t or won’t for the democrat and will hold their noses and vote for him.

  22. - hisgirlfriday - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:16 pm:

    Any retaliation by Rauner is self-defeating. The majority of people who voted for Rauner last time want an alternative. Attacking Ives just lets them know one is there.

    On another note, I know yard signs don’t vote, but have been seeing a few Ives signs out in yards in the last couple weeks, including paired with signs for my local state rep who has not endorsed her. Have yet to see anything for Rauner.

  23. - Arsenal - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:17 pm:

    I voted yes because I dislike Rauner and want to see him make bad political decisions.

  24. - DuPage Saint - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:19 pm:

    Voted no don’t give her the press. And if he did go after her wouldn’t that remove her from the “fringe candidate” and make him have to really debate her on real t v?

  25. - Lunchbox - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:22 pm:

    Rauner has all the money in the world and he’s running ads to meddle in the Democratic primary. Why not mix it up with Ives? I understand it will raise Ives’ profile but what is the cost of doing nothing? Rauner will be taking incoming fire from all sides for the next 40 days. During the Trib editorial session, we saw what grinning and protesting being interrupted got him.

  26. - Gooner - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:24 pm:

    He can’t go after her, because he already has problems with his base. Any attack against her reminds the base that she’s more in line with the base than he is.

    On the other hand he really does need to up his game. He needs to start looking like a real leader. Given his claim that he’s not in charge, that’s difficult. Still, he has a lot of money and with it can create something that he is not.

    He’s got to do something though. If he continues down the current path, the only question is whether he will lose in the primary or general.

  27. - Cheryl44 - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:27 pm:

    I said yes because it’ll be fun to watch. Also, what Arsenal said.

  28. - New Slang - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:28 pm:

    Voted no. It would make people actually have to maybe acknowledge that their participation in elections would be advisable. Just sit there, you millionaires, and attack each other with more negative ads and make the middle class roll their eyes at your petty accusations toward each other.

  29. - Robert the Bruce - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:31 pm:

    No, because he’ll either overstep or get caught in a lie, and ultimately will give her a free news cycle of name recognition.

  30. - blue dog dem - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:48 pm:

    Voted no. Save your money. By the way. Save the money in the general as well. You have no chance. And I mistakenly voted for you. Thought you were a conservative. Me dumb.

  31. - Political Animal - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:53 pm:

    Most of the yes votes seem to be sarcastic, based on the comments.

    Ives biggest problem is name ID. If primary voters knew about her, she’d crush Rauner. It would be a horrible idea for him to help her name ID.

  32. - Bogey Golfer - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:55 pm:

    Voted ‘no’ as he is out of his element trying to debate her. Also agree with Gooner. He needs every Republican to vote in November.

  33. - SweetLou86 - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 2:58 pm:

    My “no” is more so a “not yet”. This is likely to be the most press Rep. Ives gets for the rest of the cycle so I wouldn’t worry about it too much. If anything, I’d start running some positive ads to gin up Republicans without naming Rep. Ives. That’s if he can think of anything positive to say that Republicans would like to hear.

  34. - NeverPoliticallyCorrect - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 3:12 pm:

    While Rauner may slide into the Republican nomination it won’t be because his numbers are increasing. I believe there is a growing number of Republicans who don’t believe he has any center for his governing philosophy. The “I’m not in charge” statement will be an anchor around his campaign. So get out there and explain why he should be the go to guy.

  35. - Actual Red - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 3:19 pm:

    He either attacks her social positions from the left and alienates the socially conservative part of the pace, or (completely contrary to everything he’s done so far) tries to outflank her to the right and creates even more problems for himself in the general.

    What would be the point?

  36. - Steve Rogers - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 3:24 pm:

    No, because he’s unable to criticize women without looking like a total d-bag. Focus, Jeanne, focus.

  37. - ShaggyDog - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 3:29 pm:

    Voted No. I am tired of the attacking and violating and belittling. I wish candidates could stick to issues and quite with all the meaningless bickering. Elections should not be personal, they should be political.

  38. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 3:36 pm:

    Voted no. Don’t give her anymore recognition than she has. His lead at this point will be tough to overcome. If you portray her as viable then she becomes viable.

  39. - Chicago Cynic - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 3:46 pm:

    Voted yes, but that was just for fun. Of course he shouldn’t take this advice. Stay the course. She doesn’t exist unless you give her oxygen.

  40. - Anon - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 3:54 pm:

    Voted “yes” because I think he’d be making a mistake to do it and I want him to make as many mistakes as possible.

  41. - Pot calling kettle - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:05 pm:

    No. Why broadcast her name or provide any indication that she exists?

  42. - Jocko - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:31 pm:

    No because I suspect 90% (if not more) of Ives supporters will back Bruce in the general election.

  43. - Anon - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:47 pm:

    Why bother? She’s no threat…at least not yet. While she may have damaged the Rauner brand yesterday at the Tribune, she didn’t do anything to establish herself as a viable candidate for Governor. Until that happens, keep the power dry.

    BTW, it’s too bad the GOP has resorted to its old ways of destruction from within. There’s one thing that Rauner said yesterday that was 100% true - Madigan would love to see Rep. Ives on the ballot in November. While she performed admirably, she is way too extreme to win over the moderates in this state.

  44. - The Snowman - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:53 pm:

    I voted no. Maybe if she hits 35% in a reputable poll, then start in on her. If JB starts to pull away, Democrats should consider pulling an R ballot and vote for Ives. Bruce will be out of the picture and Ives in the general would be fun for everyone, both those against her and for her.

  45. - IllinoisBoi - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 4:56 pm:

    I said yes to retaliation because that would hurt him. But the treatment that would help him would be to treat her with politeness and respect, listen quietly to her arguments, and ultimately dismiss her.

  46. - Bobby Hicks - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 5:08 pm:

    Yes, because he is going to have big problems with Jeanne. Maybe not fatal problems, but problems. His big problem is going to be with Sam in a few months.

  47. - CMcB - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 5:24 pm:

    Attacking Ives would be the biggest break Ives could get. Rauner took a pasting yesterday, but as long as she remains unknown he’s an easy winner. Unless he elevates her, unknown Ives will stay.

  48. - Dome Gnome - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 6:13 pm:

    I said no, because he doesn’t seem comfortable matched up against her. He’s out of his depth.

  49. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 6:57 pm:

    I vote yes. Ives needs the free press.

  50. - DuPage Dave - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 8:04 pm:

    I can’t agree with Ives on anything related to policy or legislation, but boy, was it fun watching her rip into Mr. Not in Charge. Wow.

  51. - Flyer - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 9:38 pm:

    Yes if he wants to win

  52. - regnaD kciN - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 9:46 pm:

    I voted no. Steve Baer received 33% of the vote in the 1990 GOP primary against Jim Edgar. Rauner will not (rather, should not) give her the opportunity to share the stage or he risks elevating her status. If she garners more than 33% against Rauner, I would give her credit for exceeding expectations but at this stage, I’d bet against it.

  53. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:08 pm:

    In 1990, Jim Edgar was not a sitting governor.

  54. - Steve Rogers - Tuesday, Jan 30, 18 @ 10:45 pm:

    Edwin Eisendrath almost hit 30 percent in the 2006 primary against Blagojevich.

  55. - The Snowman - Wednesday, Jan 31, 18 @ 12:01 am:

    Ives will at least break 30%.

  56. - Rabid - Wednesday, Jan 31, 18 @ 4:20 am:

    I’d do it, I’d do it, your doing the right thing for the people

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