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Debate coverage roundup

Wednesday, Oct 19, 2022 - Posted by Isabel Miller

* If your Tuesday night didn’t include watching the debate, here is a thorough roundup from Tina Sfondeles

Gov. J.B. Pritzker blasted his Republican challenger as an “extremist” and a “threat to democracy” who “shouldn’t be let anywhere near the governor’s office,” — as state Sen. Darren Bailey countered the Democratic incumbent was the extreme one, and his “arrogant leadership is killing people.” […]

But Bailey accused Pritzker of pushing “woke ideology” in schools across Illinois.

“His gender issues are so extreme,” Bailey said. “Gov. Pritzker is perfectly fine injecting his gender curriculum, the first of its kind in the nation, into our schools. Woke ideology. I think that’s extreme.” […]

Pritzker accused Bailey of having no plan to address crime, beyond criticizing Chicago. The governor took credit for increasing the number of police officers, eliminating the rape kit backlog and funding violence intervention, mental health and substance abuse treatment programs in the state to help combat crime.

* Here’s the debate in full…

* Also from Sfondeles

With early voting underway and Election Day just three weeks away, Pritzker defended his record and deemed Bailey’s policies to be too “dangerous” for Illinois. And Bailey, with a smile, baited the governor repeatedly, frequently interrupting his answers.

The interjections, mostly by Bailey, were met with stern warnings from WGN-TV moderator Micah Materre. There was also an exasperated, “Shh” as Bailey tried to talk after a buzzer went off.

* Patrick Keck

It was the last scheduled televised debate between the candidates and possibly the last time they shared venues, giving Bailey perhaps his last chance to cut into Pritzker’s lead in the polls. Recent polling conducted by The Chicago Sun-Times/WBEZ found the Democrat with 49% of voters supporting him compared to 34% for Bailey.

That same poll, when broken down to Chicago voters, found Pritzker’s lead grow to a substantial 66 points with 78% supporting him and 12% backing Bailey.

The Republican has been campaigning heavily in Chicago, even renting an apartment in the Hancock Center to “immerse himself in the culture” as he put it and also to win some votes in the state’s largest city. Challenging that connection, however, potentially are past comments and legislative action from Bailey regarding Chicago.

* CBS with something sweet….

After some other heated questions, the moderators asked Pritzker and Bailey each to identify one thing they admire about their opponent. Each man did find an answer.

“Governor Pritzker, I’m going to be honest with you – you look awesome,” Bailey said. “I like your suits. You look good in them.”

Bailey said he hoped Pritzker would take him suit shopping when the race was over.

To Bailey, Pritzker said, “I admire the fact that you married your high school sweetheart; that you’ve been together for 30 years. That shows deep commitment. That’s something that I feel strongly about as well.”

* The candidates on abortion. WIFR

Meanwhile, the senator was asked several times about his stance on abortion protections in Illinois. During a debate on Oct. 6, Bailey said he couldn’t change the state’s abortion laws if he wanted to. Bailey was endorsed by all of the state’s anti-abortion groups earlier this year. The Illinois Federation for Right to Life, Illinois Citizens For Life, and Illinois Family Action said Bailey has shown a strong commitment to life and is unafraid to speak about his opinions on abortion.

Bailey has recently pulled back on his strong stance against abortion. Political insiders feel that he may be trying to gain support from moderate Republicans in the Chicago suburbs, although it may distance him from public opinion downstate. Bailey deflected Tuesday night and critiqued Pritzker for repealing the state’s parental notification of abortion law.

“Let’s talk about extremism,” Bailey said. “Gov. Pritzker is perfectly fine with our children getting abortions without their parents knowing anything about it. I think that’s extreme.”

Yet, Planned Parenthood Illinois Action said decades of research and experience showed that forced parental involvement laws hurt young people and served no valid purpose. PPIA Vice President of Public Policy Brigid Leahy said PNA was antiquated, harmful, and did not help young people in dangerous situations.

Pritzker noted that Bailey opposes abortion in all cases except saving the life of a mother. The Democrat said Illinois must continue to be a safe haven for women and others who can become pregnant.

* Center Square

The candidates discussed several topics, including crime, Chicago, and the performance of the Department of Child and Family Services and its director Marc Smith. The department has had significant issues despite budget increases in the past three years.

Bailey said the department needs to be addressed at all levels to succeed.

“We are going to start finding and taking applications for all of these agencies,” Bailey said. “I will tell you this, DCFS must be rebuilt from the ground up because it is failing our children all across the state.”

Gov. J.B. Pritzker stood behind Smith, who has been held in contempt of court nine times for failing to find suitable placements for children in DCFS care.

“Governors firing the head of the agency does not solve anything,” Pritzker said. “You actually have to go in and fix the problems. Governors for twenty years did not do that. We are doing that.”

* Fox 32

State Sen. Bailey has said he could cut state spending by 10 to 15 billion dollars, about one-third, saying everything should be on the table, including state aid to local schools.

“Our children here in Chicago receive $29,000 per student. Yet Chicago schools — they’re failing our children,” Bailey said. “More money is not the problem. Accountability and transparency is the answer.”

Gov. Pritzker was quick to respond.

“I’ve increased education funding by $1.3 billion. And that really is improving our schools. U.S. News & World Report has named us number one among the top 10 most populous states in the nation for pre-k to 12 education,” Pritzker said.

* NBC Chicago

The candidates also traded barbs over immigration policy, as thousands of migrants and asylum-seekers have arrived in Chicago on buses from Texas in recent weeks.

“We need to get rid of this sanctuary state status, so law enforcement can do their job and start reining this gang activity in,” Bailey said. “We need to deal with our southern border and we need to get that under control and stop the inflow of illegal activity.”

The city of Chicago’s “sanctuary city” policy has made it a target of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who has ordered migrants to be bused here, as well as New York and Washington, D.C.

Pritzker has declared a state of emergency, activating 75 members of the Illinois National Guard to provide state resources to asylum seekers.


During the debate, Bailey was asked if he would support Trump if he ran for president in 2024. He dodged the question, saying Trump hasn’t announced he will run.

“Nobody’s announced their run for presidency yet, so I’ll tell you that when they announce,” Bailey said. […]

In response, Bailey said if re-elected governor, Pritzker will use his position to make a presidential bid in 2024.

During the first debate, Pritzker said he intends to serve his full term if re-elected and would support President Biden’s campaign in 2024.

* Some tweets…


  1. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 10:29 am:

    We have now lost two hours plus of our lives that can never be recovered. Bailey missed another chance to offer an actual example of zero based budgeting might mean. Most know the term and that it is a fraud. Kept thinking ‘what did he mean by finding bright people to run agencies’? Guess we would see Big Words, TwoPiece and CommandoIves at the helm. Yikes.

  2. - Leap Day William - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 10:38 am:

    “Governor Pritzker, I’m going to be honest with you – you look awesome,” Bailey said. “I like your suits. You look good in them.” Bailey said he hoped Pritzker would take him suit shopping when the race was over.

    To Bailey, Pritzker said, “I admire the fact that you married your high school sweetheart; that you’ve been together for 30 years. That shows deep commitment. That’s something that I feel strongly about as well.”

    Bailey goes for a vanity answer that sounds like what the resident middle schooler here would come up when forced to be nice. Meanwhile, Pritzker gives a meaningful and deep answer that speaks about Bailey as a human. They could not be operating on more different levels.

  3. - Big Dipper - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 10:45 am:

    ==Bailey goes for a vanity answer==

    It’s because although he touts his Christianity he is unable to see any good in Pritzker and demonizes him in a childlike manner.

  4. - Benjamin - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 10:49 am:

    Doubling down on cutting money for schools? I’ll say this for Bailey–he’s consistent.

  5. - The Velvet Frog - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 10:57 am:

    I don’t know why it didn’t come to me earlier but I thought of the perfect song for JB.

  6. - ArchPundit - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:13 am:

    I’d give Bailey a bit of a break on the answer about the suits. It wasn’t super serious, but it was light hearted and fun and even a bit self-effacing.

    That said, I’m still amazed about how far down the rabbit hole Bailey and the conservative base is on gender issues. It’s like saying that means something to someone who isn’t in the conservative information bubble.

  7. - New Day - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:21 am:

    If the first debate was close to a draw, last night was a smackdown of Bailey by JB. OMG, it was a thing of beauty. He smacked Bailey up one side and down the other. All bailey could do was Zero Based Budgeting, Pritzkerville and a whole boatload of lies. JB called him out for his lack of any plans whatsoever. “I’m gonna fire all the cabinet secretaries and then do a zero-based budget” is not a plan and it was clearly revealed as such. The fact that Uhlein liked Bailey’s performance so much that he gave him another two mil just shows that Bailey was playing to an audience of one, not the audience that votes.

  8. - Ducky LaMoore - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:25 am:

    “Post debate: Billionaire liked what he saw, donates another $2M to @DarrenBaileyIL”

    JB really wants everyone to hear what Darren Bailey has to say. /s

  9. - regnaD kciN - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:29 am:

    I have watched both debates. Can’t say I’m a huge JB fan but at least he partially answers some of the questions. Rarely did Bailey ever directly answer a question. And I agree with Annonin’ that zero based budgeting is not the be all-end all that Bailey makes it out to be. In some respects, each agency goes through a zero-based budgeting process each year when they present their budget to GOMB. I thought Bailey missed an opportunity to hammer JB on taxes by pointing out that all of the tax relief JB touted ends at the end of this year and their implementation was nothing but a cynical ploy to get votes. In any event, as with most political debates, I doubt that it moved the needle for anyone.

  10. - Boomer remover - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:29 am:

    Jb in a rout, 1600 next

  11. - low level - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:37 am:

    I rarely agreed with Thompson, Edgar or George Ryan. However, they never interrupted their opponents or stood there laughing like a 3rd grader. They were gentlemen.

    Its still incredible to me how far and how fast the IL Republican party has fallen.

  12. - The Velvet Frog - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:41 am:

    Not to mention that the GOP would actually have a shot at a number of offices if they could nominate someone like Thompson, Edgar, or Ryan. The dems are hardly unbeatable with some of the issues going on, but it’s going to take candidates who are serious and fairly moderate in this state, not extremists who can’t even be taken seriously.

  13. - MoralMinority - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:42 am:

    I agree with ArchPundit about Bailey’s comment about Pritzker’s suits. I think the question was probably intended as an opportunity to inject some civility, if not a chance for lightheartedness, into an otherwise acrimonious occasion. Pritzker and Bailey do seem to share a sense of dress fashion. I wish they would both ditch the blue jeans and suit coat combinations. It might be a fashion trend, but I don’t like it.

  14. - Jocko - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:44 am:

    ==Gov. Pritzker is perfectly fine with our children getting abortions==

    While I’m perfectly content to kick kids out of the house and let them fend for themselves. Who knows, maybe they’ll join the armed forces or find a trade.

  15. - Huh? - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:51 am:

    “Its still incredible to me how far and how fast the IL Republican party has fallen …”

    as they were lead by their dear leader.

  16. - Jerry - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:55 am:

    So Darrell thinks schools should be teaching that women take Home Ec classes and work at the cosmetic counter at the drug store…as long as they are home before school lets out to serve milk and cookies.

    Meanwhile Dad works at the factory and goes out for beers with guys after work, then comes home to sit on the couch and watch TV, works on the car, coaches little league, buys GI Joe dolls for the boys.

    Are these traditional gender roles correct?

  17. - Dotnonymous - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 11:59 am:

    “Nobody’s announced their run for presidency yet, so I’ll tell you that when they announce,” Bailey said. […]”

    Bailey refers to his endorser and co-signer Trump as “Nobody”?

  18. - Last Bull Moose - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 12:21 pm:

    I remember another Christian farmer with an accent who touted zero based budgeting. Jimmy Carter was a good man but a terrible president. I don’t think Bailey is even up to the Carter level of competence.

    DCFS keeps being discussed with little light added. The number of Directors cited is misleading. When a Director leaves early a Deputy Director becomes Acting Director. But that appointment can only last 6 weeks.

    DCFS is also an example of the failure of zero based budgeting. Much of the DCFS budget ties to court decisions on children in care. Most of the rest ties directly to Federal law. The discretionary portion is tiny.

  19. - Jerry - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 12:24 pm:

    Is it wrong for a man to compliment another man on his suit?
    (Kevin Matthews doing Raymond Burr impersonation)

  20. - Give Us Barabbas - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 12:34 pm:

    The suit comment wasn’t a compliment; it was a dig at JB’s wealth, that he can afford nice suits. Bailey is positioning JB as wealthy and out of touch, and himself as homespun and a man of the people with that remark.

  21. - sal-says - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 12:40 pm:

    Beetle has about the same level & understanding & interest in policy as his buddy TFG has/had.

  22. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 12:52 pm:

    =They could not be operating on more different levels.=

    Mic drop.

    =I don’t think Bailey is even up to the Carter level of competence.=

    Maybe unintended,but mentioning bailey and Carter In the same sentence is an insult to Jimmy Carter.

    Billie Carter and bailey maybe.

  23. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 12:55 pm:

    =Gov. Pritzker is perfectly fine injecting his gender curriculum, the first of its kind in the nation, into our schools.=

    Right, wrong, or indifferent Illinois adopted the NATIONAL standards. They are optional for schools that do not teach a specific “sex ed” class.

    They standards are not the first of it’s kind in the nation. Bailey is a liar and the bible is against that.

  24. - JoanP - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 1:03 pm:

    = Jimmy Carter was a good man but a terrible president. =

    I’ve seen worse. And his post-presidency has been one of the best.

  25. - Leap Day William - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 1:12 pm:

    == The suit comment wasn’t a compliment; it was a dig at JB’s wealth, that he can afford nice suits. Bailey is positioning JB as wealthy and out of touch, and himself as homespun and a man of the people with that remark. ==

    This. It’s a backhanded compliment at best, given at a time when he just had to show he could say something genuinely nice. The fact that JB didn’t sink to that level and said something very humanizing sets him ahead even more.

  26. - Sue - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 1:28 pm:

    No doubt JB got all of his 50 million or so spent in the primary worth plus more. Bailey is likely the worst czz as ndidate in the country running for a major office. JB should do us taxpayers a favor and cease all css as Spain spending and donate his remaining funds to the State

  27. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 1:32 pm:

    ===No doubt JB got all of his 50 million or so spent in the primary worth plus more.===

    - Sue -

    Your beef is with the 56%+ voters who voted for Bailey with FIVE other choices available.

    Good try.

    Even Pritzker asked and answered in the same.

    If Pritzker has such powers over a party, Pritzker should get these “GOP Zombies” that vote as he pays to merely vote for Pritzker now and skip any primary dollars going forward, lol

  28. - Streator Curmudgeon - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 1:47 pm:

    Even way down in Streator, I can hear Richard Irvin banging his head against a wall.

  29. - Sue - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 2:11 pm:

    OW - I have no beef other then Dems messing with the other party’s primaries- truth be told their actions in AZ is going to blow up on them big time as zLake looks likely to be the next Governor out there and will oversee the 2024 election count

  30. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 2:17 pm:

    ===I have no beef===

    Apparently you do, I can show you even here where that beef exists.

    To AZ, are you rooting for the GOP nominees in AZ to win? You think that’s good for democracy?

  31. - The Velvet Frog - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 3:00 pm:

    It’s true that dems made an effort to help out some more extreme GOP primary candidates, thinking that they’d be easier to beat in the general. That may have helped in some states, like here. But it is sure looking like it backfired in Arizona.

  32. - Fivegreenleaves - Wednesday, Oct 19, 22 @ 4:33 pm:

    I could seriously see the governor’s election called at 7:00pm, before any votes are actually counted. Pritzker is about to take Darren Bailey’s career to the woodshed. I actually feel sorry for Bailey a little bit.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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