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items tagged with Pat Quinn

Swing Districts Create Problems for Quinn
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2014-10-06 15:09:47

I’m going to discuss some congressional races that you might not care about to talk about the governor’s race – which you probably do care about because you’re reading this column.

First, let’s look at freshman Democratic U.S. Representative Brad Schneider, who is leading former one-term Republican U.S. Representative Bob Dold 46-44 with 9 percent undecided, according to a Capitol Fax/We Ask America poll taken September 30.

Millions have already been spent in that north-suburban district, and Schneider barely beat Dold last time in a big Democratic year, so it’s little surprise that this race is so tight. The poll of 919 likely voters has a margin of error of 3.2 percent, and 23 percent were mobile-phone contacts.

Governor Pat Quinn is getting slaughtered in that district by Bruce Rauner 51-39, with another 5 percent going for Libertarian Chad Grimm and 5 percent undecided. That can’t be helping Schneider. There are a ton of anti-gun, pro-choice women in that district, and yet Quinn is losing to Rauner among females 45-42.


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Rauner’s Week of Ills
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2014-09-21 23:41:22

Bruce Rauner reportedly had one of those bugs that were going around last week.

Rauner didn’t take any time off, and it showed. For the first time at his press conferences, he read his statements right off the page, painfully stumbling over his words.

He and his campaign also seemed grumpier last week. “Pat Quinn is not the folksy, bumbling fool he’d like us to think he is,” Rauner growled on Monday. On Tuesday, Rauner’s campaign barred some college journalism students from his press conference, and Rauner refused to even have a word with them afterward. On Wednesday, he turned his head and pointedly ignored a follow-up question from a Chicago TV reporter about the NFL scandals. More on that in a moment.

Maybe the recent Chicago Tribune poll that showed him trailing Governor Pat Quinn by 11 added to his physical misery. But it was Rauner’s personal decision to not flood the airwaves with TV ads during the spring and summer, when Quinn didn’t have the money to adequately respond. Rauner cheaped out, and now it’s gonna cost him a lot more money to win this thing. So he has nobody to blame but himself.


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Holding My Nose for Term Limits: They’re Lazy and Misguided, but They Would Also Solve a Real Problem
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Guest Commentaries

2014-09-04 15:39:38

Bruce Rauner changed my mind on term limits. Probably not in the way he intended, but given my longstanding dislike of them, it’s still quite an accomplishment.

The Republican nominee for Illinois governor has a television ad promoting term limits in which he pings his November opponent, Governor Pat Quinn. “A half-million people signed petitions to put term limits on the [November 2014] ballot,” Rauner says. “Illinois voters overwhelmingly support term limits: Democrats, Republicans, and independents. But Pat Quinn, Mike Madigan, and the Springfield crowd don’t care what you think. They’ll say or do anything to keep power. They let term limits get kicked off the ballot, but come November, it’s our turn to kick them out of office.”

It’s a smart play to emphasize support for an ever-popular reform – and also disingenuous beyond the vague claim of “let[ting] term limits get kicked off the ballot.” Quinn has been a proponent of term limits for decades. And the June court ruling – which higher courts have let stand – removing the referendum from the ballot cited an Illinois Supreme Court decision from 1994, which dealt with a similar term-limit initiative by ... Pat Quinn.

But it was the Madigan reference in Rauner’s ad that got me thinking – and got me re-thinking term limits.


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Quinn’s Best Shot Lies with Minimum-Wage Efforts
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2014-08-24 11:36:33

Some recent Chicago Tribune poll results appear to indicate that support for raising the minimum wage in the state’s largest city may be enough to increase voter turnout for a non-binding November ballot referendum.

The poll found that 84 percent of registered Chicago voters support a city-task-force recommendation to increase the minimum wage to $13 per hour over the next three years. According to the poll, 78 percent of whites and 92 percent of African Americans and even 71 percent of Chicagoans making more than $100,000 a year back the plan.

Democrats have been hoping to use the referendum – which asks about raising the minimum wage to $10 an hour – as a tool to help spur turnout in what is rapidly developing into a big Republican year. And with the Tribune’s numbers backing a much higher minimum wage, it does seem likely that the issue can be effective, particularly among African Americans. Support above 70 to 80 percent is generally seen as having a ballot impact. Get above 90 and it’s sure to drive votes. Then again, the comparatively “stingy” state-ballot proposal, when compared to the Chicago proposal, might garner less enthusiasm.


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Edgar Gives Rauner an Unexpected State-Fair Boost
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2014-08-17 16:30:02

I’m not sure why, but the surprise appearance by former Governor Jim Edgar at the Illinois State Fair’s Republican Day last week didn’t generate much media coverage.

Despite the fact that Edgar is a Republican, this was not an easy “get” for Republican gubernatorial nominee Bruce Rauner. I’m told it took weeks of careful wooing and negotiations through one of Edgar’s cronies. Edgar backed state Senator Kirk Dillard in the GOP primary against Rauner, and he has also expressed public and private concerns about how Rauner is portraying himself on the stump and about how that confrontational attitude could manifest itself if he’s elected governor.

Another reason why I’m perplexed by the lack of coverage is that Democratic Governor Pat Quinn has repeatedly gone out of his way to praise Edgar since Dillard’s Republican-primary loss. Quinn consulted with Edgar before his post-primary budget address, seeking his advice on keeping the income tax at current levels and providing some property-tax relief. Quinn then mentioned Edgar by name during his actual address, saying the former governor was right to keep a tax hike in place.


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