Good Tuesday morning, Illinois. We’re on Veepwatch. Several media outlets are reporting that Joe Biden’s getting close to announcing his running mate and chatter has kicked into high gear.

BREAKING: The speaker list for the Democratic National Convention next week is out and the VP nominee — whoever that may be — is scheduled to make an address Wednesday, Aug. 19. Sen. Tammy Duckworth will be a featured speaker on Aug. 20.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx talked on the phone after pointing fingers Monday as they tried to explain the rioting that engulfed downtown Chicago after a police-involved shootout.

The mayor and Police Superintendent David Brown blamed Foxx’s prosecutors for not clamping down on looters who had been arrested in protests after the George Floyd killing. Foxx, in a separate press conference, said City Hall needs to get its facts straight and referred to “dishonest blame games.”

By afternoon, Lightfoot and Foxx were on the phone. During the conversation, they agreed to work together to come up with solutions for moving forward to avoid another night of destruction. It was “a very productive call,” Lightfoot said in a statement.

“They both have to navigate this really complex terrain — with intense scrutiny from every direction — and find a way to get the unrest and violence under control while still executing on the reform agendas they ran on,” Joanna Klonsky, a comms consultant with close ties to both women, told Playbook.

While their relationship is frayed, the city was torn apart.

“Two people were shot and more than 100 people were arrested as hundreds of people looted dozens of high-end shops from the South Loop to Lincoln Park, leaving heaps of shattered glass and empty storefronts in their wake,” writes the Sun-Times in a story with several bylines and contributors.

The looting drew national attention. Political consultant Frank Calabrese, who lives in River North, videoed rioters breaking into the Portillos on Clark Street. His tweet of the scene was picked up by broadcasts across the country.

Lightfoot, meanwhile, issued a video statement on Twitter to call the violence “enraging” and “shocking” and said police were deploying a special team to identify suspects and “to assure our neighborhoods are safe.” Regarding Foxx, she said, “I have confidence that we are united in our commitment to making sure that people who commit the kinds of criminal acts we saw overnight are brought to justice.”

That’s welcome news to Jack Lavin, who heads the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. “We need unity. We need to work together,” he said, ticking off the mayor, state’s attorney, judges and police needing to be on the same page “to get control” so the central business district can get back to work.

By day’s end, the streets had quieted, and though Lightfoot and Foxx have returned to a working relationship, tensions are simmering on another from: the City Council.

Ald. Brian Hopkins, whose 2nd Ward encompasses much of the area that was hit by looters, accused the mayor of offering “nothing but rhetoric and blame.” And Ald. Gilbert Villegas, the mayor’s floor leader, called on Lightfoot and Gov. J.B. Pritzker “to start treating the violence, unrest, crime and lawlessness that’s plaguing the city with the same vigilance and seriousness that they have given to the Covid-19 pandemic.”


Man shot by police in Englewood charged with attempted murder, by Sun-Times’ Tom Schuba and Sam Charles

‘There’s gonna be looting going on’: Long night of unrest follows Englewood shooting, via the Tribune

BLM to Lightfoot: Unrest won’t end until ‘the safety and well-being of our communities is finally prioritized’, by Sun-Times’ Tom Schuba and Mitch Dudek

Lightfoot dismisses Republican calls for federal intervention, by Capitol News’ Raymon Troncoso

FIRST IN PLAYBOOK: Betsy Dirksen Londrigan’s campaign is releasing its first TV ad, as the Illinois election season finally seems to be getting into gear.

Dirksen Londrigan is in a rematch with incumbent Republican Rep. Rodney Davis for the 13th District. Davis, who is self-quarantining after testing positive last week for Covid-19, beat Dirksen Londrigan in 2018 by a mere 2,000 votes.

This time, Dirksen Londrigan says she’s got a better ground game, such as it is amid a pandemic. She’s already outraised Davis and has $2.25 million cash on hand compared to Davis’ $1.85 million.

In her ad, called “Personal,” the Springfield Democrat discusses her son’s past hospitalization and her focus on affordable health care.

The 60-second ad will air in the Champaign-Springfield-Decatur media market as part of a district-wide buy that includes broadcast, cable and digital platforms.

Cook Political Report rates the IL-13 Congressional race as a toss-up.

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The Illinois Department of Public Health reported one death on Monday due to Covid-19 and 1,319 new confirmed cases. That’s a total of 7,637 deaths and 195,399 cases in Illinois. The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total test from Aug. 3 – Aug. 9 is 4.1 percent. Chicago’s positivity rate is 5.1 percent.

Could massive numbers of nursing home deaths have been prevented? “One system — California’s Veterans Affairs Department — has dramatically reduced death rates through organization, access to PPE and full staffing,” by POLITICO’s Maggie Severns

Blame game in high gear as Covid relief talks stall:The impasse comes as more than 160,000 have died and the economy continues to stumble,” by POLITICO’s Marianne LeVine and John Bresnahan.

NOW LIVE — THE FIFTY: Governors have never mattered more to the future of the nation. They are making decisions that shape our everyday lives. The Fifty is a new series from POLITICO that examines the roles mayors and governors are playing amid pandemic, economic crisis and a national reckoning on race. See the page here.

CPS unveils $8.4B budget plan that relies on more relief from Congress: “The district plans to cut its controversial tab for school police at least in half,” by Chalkbeat’s Mila Koumpilova.

Chicago Police unveil plan to catch up on reform mandates: The plan outlines: “how it will try to catch up on its myriad of missed reform deadlines required by a court-enforced overhaul of the department known as a consent decree. It comes after an independent monitor tasked with reviewing CPD’s reform efforts submitted two successive reports to the judge overseeing the case outlining the city’s failure to meet court-imposed deadlines or comply with the majority of the requirements laid out in the first year of the consent decree,” by WBEZ’s Patrick Smith.

Navy Pier’s private operator says pier could be shut down as it deals with $20M loss: “With people staying away even since the popular tourist attraction reopened, Navy Pier Inc. says it’s ‘looking at full closure, partial closure’ but not going out of business,” by Tribune’s Tim Novak.

Trinity Hospital will resume baby deliveries after halting because of the pandemic: “The South Side hospital stopped delivering babies in March, when COVID-19 cases rose, leaving women with fewer choices to give birth in the area,” by WBEZ’s Kristen Schorsch.

McDonald’s sues ousted CEO, alleging employee relationships: “McDonald’s says it’s suing Stephen Easterbrook, the CEO it ousted last year over an inappropriate relationship with an employee, alleging Monday that he covered up relationships with three other employees and destroyed evidence,” by the AP.

— Griffin teams with Gates: Chicago billionaire Ken Griffin and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation commit up to $6 million in funding to bring an online math tutoring program to more students. The announcement comes on the heels of Chicago Public Schools announcing it will move to an online-only school year. In June, Griffin was the lead funder in Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s “Chicago Connected” program to provide high-speed internet service to some 100,000 CPS students in their households. The digital math tutoring program, Saga Education, is expanding in Chicago and New York City.

Storms sweep through Chicago area, with high winds downing trees and utility poles: “Golf-ball-size hail…and ComEd reported that 462,000 of its customers were without power, more than half of them in the Chicago area,” by Tribune’s Robert McCoppin, sydney Czyzon and Michael Phillips.

Illinois’ rock and roll heroes to be inducted into Hall of Fame at new Joliet museum: “Jim Peterik’ The Ides of March will be in the first class inducted into the new Illinois Rock & Roll Museum’s Hall of Fame, along with other musicians from the state including Cheap Trick, REO Speedwagon and blues artists Muddy Waters and Buddy Guy,” by ABC/7’s John Garcia.

Lawsuit aims to stop expansion of mail-in voting: “The Liberty Justice Center filed the suit on behalf of their client, the Cook County Republican Party. This is the third lawsuit filed this year by the center against Gov. J.B. Pritzker,” by Crain’s Wendell Hutson.

Federal prosecutors want to push back R. Kelly’s trial because of Covid-19: “Chicago’s federal court resumed jury trials last week. But the trial of a high-profile defendant like Kelly would create additional logistical issues,” by Sun-Times’ Jon Seidel.

Lawsuit against Madigan, ComEd seeks $450M in penalties over alleged bribery scheme: “A proposed class-action lawsuit filed in federal court Monday alleged House Speaker Michael Madigan and ComEd engaged in a racketeering conspiracy aimed at pushing through state legislation favorable to the power company in exchange for bribes. The suit filed in U.S. District Court on behalf of several Commonwealth Edison customers seeks up to $450 million in damages as well as ‘immediate injunctive relief’ barring Madigan from participating in legislative activities involving ComEd and removing him as chair of the Illinois Democratic Party,” by Tribune’s Jason Meisner.

Notre Dame sees first Covid case, school president apologizes for social distancing error in group photo: “Notre Dame shipped thousands of testing kits to students in late July and only allowed those with negative results to come back. The student who fell ill had tested negative before traveling to campus, according to Dr. Mark Fox, deputy health officer for St. Joseph County in Indiana… Students had barely unpacked by the time the university president came under fire for failing to follow the social distancing guidelines he’d been promoting,” by Tribune’s Elyssa Cherney and Kelli Smith.

Bankers back Biden despite gains under Trump, by POLITICO’s Zachary Warmbrodt

Trump evacuated from briefing, reports shooting outside White House, by POLITICO’s Matthew Choi

Is Lindsey Graham actually in trouble in South Carolina? By Lisa Rab for POLITICO Magazine

Rep. Chuy Garcia calls for a transit lifeline: “The Covid-19 pandemic has hit our public transit systems hard, with many reporting drops in transit ridership between 70 and 90 percent. With plummeting revenues placing our vital transit systems at risk, it’s clear that if Congress does not act now to save public transit, the consequences will be severe and long lasting,” he writes in an op-ed with New York Rep. Jerry Nadler.

Former Gov. Bruce Rauner has joined the board of directors for the Florida-based pro-school choice group ExcelinEd, which was founded by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. “Governor Rauner is a bold champion for students and their success, with a deep commitment to expanding opportunity, fair funding for schools, and 21st-century education to workforce pathways,” Bush said in a release announcing the appointment.

Thursday: Actor Jon Voight and Illinois businessman Gary Rabine headline a golf fundraiser in Woodstock for the Middle Resolution Super PAC, which supports GOP candidates. Details here

Rachelle Jervis, president and CEO of the Executive Service Corps of Chicago, a nonprofit consultancy, and Siddarth “Sid” Chopra, project manager at Sims Lifecycles industrial recycler, were married Saturday — and more than 120 guests zoomed in. The couple met when they were seated next to each other at a fundraising event. They’re both active on the nonprofit scene — Jervis also serves on the board of Aspiritech, an organization with a permanent memorial to her late daughter, Constance. A Zoom wedding seemed natural given much of his family is in India and hers is in the U.K. “It made attending accessible to many more people,” Jervis told Playbook. “It also meant we could focus on having our guests give to our charities instead of paying for travel to the wedding and giving us gifts.” PHOTO

Cor Strategies’ government affairs director Rich Carter, noted broadcaster and U. of I. director of constituent engagement Andrea Darlas, First District Appellate Court Judge Mathias Delort, and Trip Sisters travel show co-host Catie Keogh.




August 11, 2020 at 07:24AM

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