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Bailey’s claim of an electrical brownout in his district doesn’t check out

Thursday, Aug 25, 2022 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Sen. Darren Bailey at yesterday’s Farm Bureau candidate forum

But here’s the topic especially on my mind: Skyrocketing energy costs and the fear of brownouts. Illinois [garbled video transmission] but with our power situation the way it is, it’s starting to look like that. I had several counties in my district two weeks ago that went through a three-hour brownout. First time ever. It’s coming. It’s preventable. And it’s got to be addressed.

* Sen. Bailey talked about that alleged brownout earlier this month

GOP gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey slammed Gov. J.B. Pritzker and his allies for laughing off the idea that residents of Illinois might experience brownouts.

On Saturday afternoon, this is exactly what residents of rural Wayne and White Counties had to deal with as they endured a three-hour brownout on July 30.

Brownouts are described as “a period of reduced voltage of electricity caused especially by high demand and resulting in reduced illumination.”

“We were warned brownouts could be a possibility this summer and those warnings have come true,” Bailey, a state senator from Xenia, said.

Bailey said what is happening is a failure of leadership.

“These brownouts are the direct result of poor leadership and bad policies. JB Pritzker has prioritized his far-Left agenda over the energy needs of Illinois residents. Because of the policies at the federal level and radical initiatives in states like Illinois, there is no incentive for investments in existing power plants and this has resulted in the early closure of power plants, which in turn has resulted in a strain on the power grid. There simply is more demand for power than the amount of power available,” he said.

* So, I asked my associate Isabel Miller to go through the Wayne-White Counties Electric Cooperative’s Facebook page and look for any posts about brownouts. She scrolled back to June and found nothing. Isabel then called the electric coop and spoke to Kandras Kunkel, who said the two counties have not experienced any brownouts this year. Kunkel attributed any power outages to storms or falling trees.

Kunkel also said that the Bailey campaign had called earlier today to ask the very same question.


I’ve asked the Bailey campaign for a response.

* Also, from Capitol News Illinois

Bailey said that [CEJA] has led to a threat of brownouts in areas of downstate Illinois that are part of the MISO regional transmission organization that purchases energy capacity for 15 states. MISO representatives, however, testified at a committee hearing earlier this year that the early retirement of out-of-state fossil fuel plants, not the passage of CEJA, led to higher downstate energy prices and warnings of potential brownouts. [Emphasis added]


* Natalie Edelstein at the Pritzker campaign…

From claiming we don’t need any more laws, to falsely hypothesizing about an apocalyptic transition to green energy, it is abundantly clear Darren Bailey lacks the policy knowledge to lead this state. In addition to incorrectly suggesting there were brownouts occurring across the state, Bailey also repeatedly disparaged the city of Chicago, and misquoted Abraham Lincoln. This is not someone who can lead Illinois. Period.

From Bailey’s presentation

Abraham Lincoln told us that If we ever falter and lose our freedoms, it won’t be from outside forces, it’d be cause we allowed it to happen from within.

Lincoln’s actual quote

At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.

Close enough.

…Adding… Bailey campaign…

We all want a cleaner planet but not at the cost of unaffordable utility bills for families and wrecking our energy grid. Pritzker’s plan is too extreme and is putting communities at risk for brown and blackouts.


  1. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:16 pm:

    ===Kunkel also said that the Bailey campaign had called earlier today to ask the very same question.===

    Lol. In my experience, fact checking your candidate is best conducted before he speaks, not after. But hey, at least somebody over there is interested in cleaning up after Bailey.

    *golf clap*

  2. - Fixer - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:17 pm:

    Bailey campaign, some free advice: if you’re going to make spurious claims, at least make sure their less easily debunked than this. A simple phone call was enough to show you’re lying.

  3. - Fixer - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:18 pm:

    They’re, not their. That one hurt.

  4. - Ok - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:20 pm:

    Yea, that whole threat of brownouts and blackouts turned out to be a whole lot of nothing.

  5. - JT11505 - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:21 pm:

    Obviously the Wayne-White Counties Electric Cooperative is part of the conspiracy to make DB look like an idiot. /s

  6. - cover - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:22 pm:

    = misquoted Abraham Lincoln =

    Didn’t Lincoln say “don’t trust anything you see on the Internet” or something like that? /s

  7. - Firepants - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:23 pm:

    That Lincoln quote is also the intro to the best album written about the civil war and being bullied in New Jersey (A more perfect Union by Titus andronicus on their album the monitor)

  8. - fs - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:24 pm:

    To be fair to Bailey (can’t believe I’m saying that), his paraphrasing of the Lincoln quote was pretty much what Lincoln was saying. From his (Lincoln’s) Lyceum speech, I believe. Which was early in his career, but eerily accurate about what was coming, with some pretty good historical analysis on what causes such things. That is unfortunately starting to show itself as true these days as well.

  9. - Rudy’s teeth - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:27 pm:

    This famous nugget—-It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt—I’m talkin’ to you, Darren Bailey.

  10. - Langhorne - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:32 pm:




    (Insert your own exclamation)

  11. - illini - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:37 pm:

    I’m still trying to figure out where and how he would get 16,000 tons of chicken manure and how he would spread it over his farmland when it needed to be applied.

  12. - vern - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:37 pm:

    It’s probably generous to call this an easily disproven lie, because the alternative is that Bailey has no clue what’s happening in his district. Either way, this campaign is becoming an ugly look in the mirror for a guy who thought he was chosen by the Punisher God to save the state

  13. - JS Mill - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:42 pm:

    =We did not have to wait long for the Governor to try to spin things and misrepresent the situation.
    Hat tip to the good reporting that pointed out the Governor’s misrepresentation of the facts in this case. That was some good coverage of this whole issue.=

    This was among the comments on a Pritzker gaff.

    I am thinking that the reason some pounced on Pritzker for his false statement is they are fairly rare occurrences. Whereas Rauner’s penchant for telling tall tales was so prolific, we have come to expect them for gop candidates. Bailey simply continues the tradition of fibbing and creating stories out of whole cloth much like his favorite ex-president.

    The silly part is how easily debunked the stories are yet they keep telling them with gusto.

  14. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:45 pm:

    ===This was among the comments on a Pritzker gaff.===

    We might have to wait long for a similar take?

    To the post,

    Easily disprovable “victimhood” issues are what failed campaigns hope can be ignored but populate social media as a “truth”

    It’s a sad way to run a railroad, Bailey Crew

  15. - Homebody - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 2:57 pm:

    == Whereas Rauner’s penchant for telling tall tales was so prolific, we have come to expect them for gop candidates. ==

    Rauner is a prominent IL example, but this goes back decades. I’m at the point that if someone with an (R) after their name makes a factual assertion of any kind, my default assumption is it is at best a half-truth that I need to personally research, but just as likely a complete fabrication.

    Not only do they not get any benefit of the doubt, the entire party is always presumptively lying in my mind.

    If they want to change that perception, they need to start working on it immediately. However no major GOP candidate seems to have any desire to do so.

  16. - Dysfunction Junction - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:00 pm:

    I think the most applicable Lincoln quote in this situation - and in Bailey’s campaign generally - is this gem:
    “You can fool all of the people some of time; you can fool some of the people all of the time, but you can’t fool all the people all the time.”

  17. - cover - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:00 pm:

    To the post, Bailey didn’t claim to be quoting Lincoln, his paraphrasing is in fact “close enough” as Rich says. There may be many reasons to have a complaint about Bailey, but this isn’t one of them.

  18. - Lucky Pierre - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:04 pm:

    You don’t have to hypothesize about the “apocalyptic” transition to green energy, you could just look at what has happened in California

  19. - Norseman - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:05 pm:

    Insert the Captain Renault: I’m shocked, shocked gif.

  20. - Back to the Future - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:08 pm:

    That Isabel is doing a great job.
    Bailey should be more careful.

  21. - thisjustinagain - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:09 pm:

    “Beware mangled quotations, lest your partial quotation be ridiculed on Cap Fax in full”
    – Ah Choo.

  22. - Huh? - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:12 pm:

    “my associate Isabel Miller”

    Isabel is now an associate. High honors.

  23. - Manchester - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:13 pm:

    JT11505, Beetle Bailey doesn’t need any assistance looking like an idiot. He has that ground covered all by his lonesome.

  24. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:13 pm:

    ===Bailey should be more careful.===

    lol, “ok”

    The digging by Isabel is what “sound bite campaigns” fear.

    The thing about chasing down phony, it’s a race as to how quick it can stick before there needs to be a fix

    Rauner, and Rod too, was good at such things.

  25. - Bruce( no not him) - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:17 pm:

    Now the power company is in on the cover up.
    JB controls everything.

  26. - Dotnonymous - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:33 pm:

    It’s gettin’ dark…too dark to see.

  27. - Northsider - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:46 pm:

    == At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide. ==

    Today’s Republicans are hemlock. Vote accordingly.

  28. - Demoralized - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:48 pm:

    ==You don’t have to hypothesize about the “apocalyptic” transition to green energy, you could just look at what has happened in California==

    Please. Texas is hardly a green energy mecca and they can’t seem to keep their power grid up and running.

  29. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:49 pm:

    Bailey isn’t exactly out in left field when he speaks about this problem - a lot of states very well might be shuttering coal and nuclear plants too quickly to allow for green tech to replace it, which could lead to brownouts or blackouts. MISO warned everyone of exactly that possibility earlier in the spring (luckily it didn’t happen this year, even during the July heat wave). So why not make that argument? Just the possibility of power outages is a huge concern to a lot of people, especially the elderly. Why go out there and tell a bald faced lie that can easily disproven with a simple phone call? Like I said earlier today, far too many rookie mistakes for a campaign that faced a steep uphill climb to begin with.

  30. - SWIL_Voter - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:54 pm:

    “luckily it didn’t happen this year, even during the July heat wave”

    It was always a pure scare tactic. Every industry person I talked to said it was not a real concern and if it was, theyd restrict big industrial users before grandma

  31. - SWIL_Voter - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 3:57 pm:

    Lucky, I notice your article is from May. How many blackouts did California have this year? And was green energy the reason they had blackouts in 2000? Was that the reason for Texas grid failure last year?

    Also found this interesting, from your article, actually the very first words of the article:

    “For the next five summers, extreme heat and other climate change impacts will threaten the reliability of California’s electrical grid, state officials said Friday.

    Available electricity supplies might not be able to keep up with demand if heat waves hit, droughts make hydropower less available or wildfires reduce electricity transmission, staff of the California Energy Commission (CEC) and California Public Utilities Commission advised agency leaders.”

  32. - Lucky Pierre - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 4:16 pm:

    I also found this interesting that California has trouble keeping the lights on now but they have mandated all new vehicle sales must be electric by 2035.

    What will that do to their power grid if they don’t have enough capacity now?

    “The state could be short about 1,700 megawatts this summer — enough power for about 1.3 million homes - and that gap may widen to about 1,800 megawatts by 2025, officials said Friday during a media call. These forecasts don’t include other factors such as extreme regional heat waves or wildfires that can take down power lines, they said.

  33. - Arsenal - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 4:48 pm:

    Awful lot of articles from the spring about how CA may face power outages, but it’s late August now, summer is almost over, so what actually happened?

  34. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 4:54 pm:

    - Lucky Pierre -

    Are we California?

  35. - JS Mill - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 5:13 pm:

    ===You don’t have to hypothesize about the “apocalyptic” transition to green energy, you could just look at what has happened in California==

    Please. Texas is hardly a green energy mecca and they can’t seem to keep their power grid up and running.=

    @Demoralized…mic drop. Texas, the drill baby drill capital of the lower 48 has the same or worse weather related power issues that Cali has. Hmmm…might it be infrastructure and climate change issues?

    I also note that there is not a single peep from LP regarding bailey’s mendacity. Instead LP tries to deflect by dredging up some article that turned out to be…wait for it…false.

  36. - Actual Red - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 5:26 pm:

    Glad someone else recognized the quote from The Monitor. Seriously great album with a lot of quotes and allusions to Lincoln.

  37. - MoralMinority - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 5:41 pm:

    ==Bailey isn’t exactly out in left field when he speaks about this problem==Agreed, Lester Holt’s Moustache. I was worried about this myself earlier in the summer, not because of the hype being put out by anti-green-energy politicians like Bailey and Mary Miller, but because of the cautious warnings coming from MISO. We seem to have gotten through a relatively hot summer unscathed. Darren is grasping at straws to find a single instance to validate his doom and gloom scenario about CEJA.

    Might there be future problems with electric supply? I think it is possible, but not very severe like some would have us believe. All transitions of this magnitude will have some rough patches. This summer was an important test.

    This all reminds me of the great Y2K apocalypse that certain people around here hyped up. It turned out to be much to do over nothing. Hopefully this works out the same way.

  38. - West Side the Best Side - Thursday, Aug 25, 22 @ 8:06 pm:

    Oh no, Bailey’s not talking manure again, is he?

  39. - sal-says - Friday, Aug 26, 22 @ 8:24 am:

    == Kunkel also said that the Bailey campaign had called earlier today to ask the very same question. ==

    So I should vote for a guy who is lying & should already know that. Not likely.

    Same old Beetle, just different day.

  40. - Lucky Pierre - Friday, Aug 26, 22 @ 8:28 am:

    A lot of my peeps get blocked.

    What is so controversial about pointing out Texas is obviously a big oil and gas producer but is also the largest wind generator in the US.

    They have had some issues with reliability in cold weather

  41. - sal-says - Friday, Aug 26, 22 @ 8:43 am:

    == Bailey should be more careful. ==

    Not genetically able ?

  42. - Huh? - Friday, Aug 26, 22 @ 8:47 am:

    Beetle’s brain browns out every time he opens his mouth.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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