Good Wednesday morning, Illinois. A change to the convention worth keeping: the video roll call that came in from across the country.

Night two of the Democratic National Convention continued on the theme that Democrats want to extend their reach within their own party and to Republicans and fed-up Trump supporters.


Keynotes by some of the youngest elected officials in the country — including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — were followed by “a turn toward nostalgia,” as POLITICO’s Ryan Lizza describes it. Speakers included: party stalwarts Bill Clinton and Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter, former Secretary of State John Kerry, and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Notable Republicans showed up, too: Former Secretary of State Colin Powell and Cindy McCain, the widow of Sen. John McCain.

Six moments that stood out from night two:

New York Times elevator attendant Jacquelyn Asbie — who famously once met Biden as he headed up for an endorsement interview — was the first to nominate Biden for president. “I take powerful people up on my elevator all the time,” she said during the convention. “When they get off, they go to their important meetings. Me, I just head back to the lobby. But in the short time I spent with Joe Biden, I could tell he really saw me.” (The Times didn’t endorse him during the primary.)

Jill Biden unwrapped the story of her husband’s life, including how he overcame tragedy more than once. He’d help the country do the same thing, she said. "How do you make a broken family whole? The same way you make a nation whole," she said. "With love and understanding and with small acts of kindness, with bravery, with unwavering faith."

Hearing the Carters — in their 90s! — speak about Biden. “We deserve a person with integrity and judgment, someone who is honest and fair, someone who is committed to what is best for the American people,” the former president said, noting that Biden supported his 1976 bid for the White House.

Caroline Kennedy — daughter of the late President John F. Kennedy — beamed alongside her son, John Schlossberg, who has a striking resemblance to his uncle (Caroline’s late brother, John Kennedy Jr.).

Carol Moseley Braun’s appearance during the states’ roll call was nondescript at first glance. Playbookers recognized she was standing in front of the Old State Capitol in Springfield — Braun was a state representative before becoming the first Black woman elected to the U.S. Senate. The old capitol is where Abraham Lincoln gave his “house divided” speech, where Barack Obama announced his candidacy for president, and where Biden was announced as Obama’s running mate.

Chicago City Clerk Anna Valencia and her husband, businessman Reyahd Kazmi, are making nightly appearances clapping and cheering speakers during carefully scripted moments of the virtual convention. The party asked Valencia if they’d be up for it and she told playbook they agreed. Tonight’s challenge will be cheering on speakers while also hosting a watch party for the campaign. “We’ll see how we do both,” Valencia said.


Jill Biden outshines Clinton and more take-aways, by POLITICO’s David Siders.

Illinois Dems celebrate women leaders, take aim at ‘bully boy’ Trump, by Tribune’s Bill Ruthhart.

Awkward silence when question about Madigan pops up during Q&A, by Sun-Times’ Mitchell Armentrout.

Politico Live’s virtual programming during DNC continues:

• 9 a.m. ET Playbook co-authors Anna Palmer and Jake Sherman host “Plug in with Playbook” and will interview Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.). The interview is followed by the “New Swing States Map” featuring senior politics editor Charlie Mahtesian and national political reporter Holly Otterbein providing deep-dive analysis into Pennsylvania. Lastly, chief Washington correspondent Ryan Lizza, national political correspondent Natasha Korecki, political reporter Maya King and national political reporter Laura Barrón-López will discuss Joe Biden’s campaign and the political dynamics that are defining the 2020 election.

• 3:30 p.m. ET, New Jersey Playbook author Matt Friedman interviews Gov. Phil Murphy (D-N.J.).

• 8:30 p.m. ET "Four Square" show host and video journalist Eugene Daniels pre-games the day’s relevant political developments with chief political correspondent Tim Alberta, chief Washington correspondent Ryan Lizza and national political reporter Laura Barrón-López.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot is saying the “L” word. In separate discussions Tuesday, and in the starkest terms, she said layoffs for city workers are inevitable if the city doesn’t get money from Washington to help overcome a budget shortfall worsened by Covid-19.

“If we don’t get help from the federal government, we have nothing but bad choices, including looking at layoffs and looking at furloughs,” Lightfoot said during a panel discussion sponsored by the Center for American Progress Action Fund for the Democratic National Convention. “This is not the time for government to be putting people into an uncertain economy.”

The city faces a $700 million shortfall that will only grow larger as revenue streams are choked while the city tries to tamp down the coronavirus pandemic and businesses struggle to reopen. The Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman details how the budget hole is getting bigger.

Democratic leaders and the White House are at an impasse in reaching a deal on a $1 trillion corona relief measure, which has prompted Senate Republicans to make plans for a “skinny” bill instead, writes POLITICO’s Marianne LeVine.

It can’t come soon enough for Chicago. In an NBC/5 interview Tuesday, Lightfoot said she can’t take layoffs off the table “because we’re still working on solutions for the 2020 budget…We’re still looking to Washington, but we’re gonna have to formulate some alternative plans if we don’t see that there’s any glimmer of hope of getting more support from Washington, D.C.”

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At City Hall to announce reforms to the School Resource Officer program for the 2020-21 school year.

At the Thompson Center at noon for a Covid-19 update. Watch live

On vacation and back to work Aug. 24.

The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 27 new deaths Tuesday and 1,740 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Illinois. That’s a total of 7,782 deaths and 209,594 cases. The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total tests from Aug. 11 through Aug. 17 is 4.3 percent. Chicago’s positivity rate is 4.9 percent.

What Covid nurses know: “The firsthand stories of these front-line professionals starkly reveal the human toll of the pandemic, and the everyday heroism required to conquer it,” writes Cindy Kuzma for Chicago magazine.

Chicago removes Wisconsin, Nebraska from mandatory travel quarantine list — but Iowa and Kansas are going back on: “Kansas and Iowa were pulled from the list earlier this month, but will be back on as of Friday, according to the mayor’s office,” by Tribune’s Gregory Pratt.

Pritzker wins injunction against 3 Illinois schools not complying with mask mandate, via WTVO in Springfield

Another group of state lawmakers is taking a stand about looting and protests in the Loop. “Peaceful demonstrations are welcome,” wrote 14 members of the General Assembly in a statement sent to Playbook. “However, violent demonstrations are never justified. Looting, theft, and criminal damage to property are never justified. And unprovoked attacks against police officers are not only unjustified and lawless, they are an attack on all Chicagoans.”

The statement is signed by Sens. Bill Cunningham, Sara Feigenholtz, Robert Martwick and Tony Munoz; and state Reps. Jaime Andrade, Kelly Burke, Jonathan Carroll, John Connor, John D’Amico, Anthony DeLuca, Elizabeth Hernandez, Fran Hurley, Yehiel Kalish, Martin Moylan and Mike Zalewski.

“We’ve seen the power of peaceful protests after the murder of George Floyd, and there needs to be a dialogue about police accountability and reform,” Zalewski told Playbook. “But what is occurring both last weekend and this past weekend is taking away from that important conversation by a select few who are using the opportunity for protest as an excuse to destroy property and provoke and attack police officers.”

The lawmakers’ statement runs counter to a group of more left-leaning politicos earlier this week who issued a statement condemning Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Police Supt. David Brown for allowing “police force” to be used against demonstrators.

It was signed by state Sens. Robert Peters and Celina Villanueva, state Reps. Lakesia Collins and Theresa Mah, Aldermen Byron Sigcho-Lopez, Rossana Rodriguez Sanchez and Andre Vasquez, and Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson.


Chicago police announce several arrests in Aug. 10 looting, by WGN/9.

Alderman blasts police for sharing addresses of arrested protesters, by Block Club’s Mauricio Peña

Officials question tactics after clash between cops, protesters, by WTTW’s Amanda Vinicky

Responding to Trump’s criticism, Lightfoot says raising Chicago bridges protects Trump Tower: “One of the bridges we put up is near Trump Tower because our protesters and vigilantes would love nothing more than to attack Trump Tower… So those little notes that I get from Eric Trump after every time that we’ve protected that property, if they want us to stop, say the word,” Lightfoot said. Tribune’s Gregory Pratt has the story.

CPS’ new fall plan includes full days of remote and live learning, but prompts union grievance: “The fall plan has a stricter structure and more accountability measures than the spring, when schools were suddenly forced to figure out remote learning amid an evolving pandemic,” by Tribune’s Hannah Leone and Claire Hao.

Navy Pier closing again next month as it faces staggering losses due to the coronavirus: “The iconic spot will temporarily stop all its operations and close the more than 70 small businesses that are housed there. It’s expected to reopen in the spring,” reports Block Club’s Kelly Bauer.

Possible cost to replace Chicago’s lead water lines is $10B: “Water Commissioner Randy Conner’s “back of envelope” calculation put the total replacement cost at $8 to $10 billion, and the replacement would be a “daunting task," he told aldermen at a hearing on city infrastructure Tuesday,” by Crain’s A.D. Quig.

Police union is trying to put its members on the state’s torture inquiry commission: “Two bills introduced in the state legislature are ‘a smack in the face,’ says one torture survivor,” by Adeshina Emmanuel in The Reader.

FOP says ‘dozens’ of officers unfairly stripped of police powers since George Floyd’s death: “Officers sidelined while investigations against them are pending include the officer accused of punching activist Miracle Boyd in the face during a confrontation at the now-removed Christopher Columbus statue in Grant Park,” reports Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman.

— State Rep. La Shawn Ford is proposing to make the Chicago Police superintendent job an elected position. “Right now, some residents don’t feel that the appointment of the top cop gives them a voice in selecting the best superintendent to head the Chicago Police Department,” Ford said in a statement. “The current structure doesn’t hold the superintendent accountable to the taxpayers.”

Federal judge delays R. Kelly’s Chicago trial over coronavirus pandemic: “Prosecutors last week said they wanted to delay Kelly’s October trial, arguing that the coronavirus pandemic raises logistical issues that could lead to a mistrial,” by Sun-Times’ Jon Seidel.

Glencoe financial adviser faces federal charges in wire fraud scheme involving foreclosed homeowners, prosecutors say: “Mary Martinez, also known as Mary Flores, 53, was charged with 10 counts of wire fraud after a grand jury was first impaneled in May 2019. Prosecutors allege that Martinez deceived people who were seeking to purchase new homes after facing foreclosure or having poor credit, according to the indictment,” by Pioneer Press’ Dan Dorfman.

Amazon opening big warehouses in Cicero: “The e-commerce giant has leased two industrial buildings in the western suburb, the latest in an astonishing flurry of industrial deals by Amazon here this year,” by Crain’s Alby Gallun.

Suburban homes are suddenly selling fast: “Agents say the long-lingering pandemic has people thinking their homes are too small and have too little outdoor space to suit the new all-at-home lifestyle,” by Dennis Rodkin in Crain’s.

NOW LIVE — THE FIFTY: Governors and local leaders 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. The latest story in the series focuses on how California’s police reform push could shift the national conversation. See the larger Fifty page here.

— INVESTIGATION: Military surplus flows to Illinois police, sheriffs: “Critics of the 1033 military surplus program, which has been reinvigorated after President Donald Trump lifted restrictions put in place by President Barack Obama, argue that no police officers should look like they are going to war, whether by wearing a military-style uniform, carrying an M16 rifle or driving a combat-ready truck,” by Tribune’s Jennifer Smith Richards and Stacy St. Clair.

Fearing an undermined election, Illinois Dems sound alarm over USPS: Lawmakers say they’re hearing from constituents worried medication will be late, bills won’t arrive on time and that mail-in ballots won’t be counted for the Nov. 3 election, by Tribune’s Alice Yin.

… Attorney General Kwame Raoul, as part of a coalition of 14 states, filed a federal lawsuit “challenging drastic operational changes at the U.S. Postal Service that threaten critical mail delivery and could undermine the national election in November.”

— Fact-Check: No, an Illinois couple who received five vote-by-mail applications cannot vote five times: “A viral Facebook post incorrectly asserts an Illinois couple who received multiple unsolicited ballot applications can ask for them all and fraudulently vote with them all. They cannot, and neither can anyone else,” by Samantha Putterman for PolitiFact.

Architect of the Capitol to take up issue of Douglas statue, by AP’s John O’Connor

As Chicago colleges reopen, faculty and staff push back on fall plans: “This comes as Covid-19 cases in the Chicago area are increasing and already forced some local universities, including DePaul, Loyola University Chicago, University of Illinois at Chicago and City Colleges, to make last-minute changes that shift more classes and services online this fall,” by WBEZ’s Kat McGee.

Without clear schedule, SIU football focus turns to players: “Once SIU’s fall football season fell off a cliff last week, coach Nick Hill and his staff turned their attention to getting their squad through an extended 2020-21 season,” reports Southern Illinoisan’s Todd Hefferman.

Notre Dame moves classes online for two weeks after Covid-19 cases more than double in one day: For at least the next two weeks, we will move undergraduate classes to remote instruction, close public spaces on campus and restrict residence halls to residents only.” Tribune’s Elyssa Cherney.

Jim Belushi has a new TV show about his adventures as a cannabis farmer, and he plans to start selling soon in Illinois: “On his new TV show “Growing Belushi,” Chicago-area native Jim Belushi plays a variety of roles, including passionate cannabis farmer, demanding boss and perhaps most surprising, nude swimmer,” by Tribune’s Tracy Swartz.

State Sen. Julie Morrsion (29th) is calling on longtime Sen. Terry Link to step down from his role as Lake County Democratic Chairman in light of the federal charges brought against him for income tax evasion. In a statement, Morrison said the charges, on top of potentially being involved in the Luis Arroyo federal bribery case, make him “unqualified to lead” the Democratic Party there.

Former Gov. Pat Quinn has donated $100 to Alaina Hampton’s Majority Justice Movement PAC.

DeJoy suspends Postal Service changes amid election fears, by POLITICO’s Zach Montellaro and Daniel Lippman

Trump to Michelle Obama: I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for Barack, by POLITICO’s Quint Forgey

Businesses warn they won’t participate in Trump’s payroll tax plan, by POLITICO’s Brian Faler

Commentary: Food service distribution industry in peril: “Over the last five months restaurant sales have plummeted, and they have not been able to pay their distributors for purchased inventory. This uncollectible debt has created a significant limitation on distributor liquidity when they need it most to extend credit to their customers so they can restart their businesses. The PLUS Act would provide tax credits for these uncollectible accounts receivable,” writes Rep. Darin LaHood with International Foodservice Distributors Association Mark Allen.

— Tiffany Hightower is now executive director of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation, the civic and philanthropic arm of the caucus. Hightower has most recently worked as a political consultant and served as political director for Chris Kennedy’s gubernatorial campaign and regional director for Chicago Victory PAC. She previously was director of operations for former Chicago City Treasurer Kurt Summers Jr.

— Darrick Hooker has joined Barnes & Thornburg’s Intellectual Property Department as a partner in the Chicago office–making him the fifth partner addition in Chicago this year and the fourth in the office’s Intellectual Property Department, according to the firm. Hooker earned his J.D. from Indiana University Maurer School of Law and his B.S. from the University of Illinois. Outside of his legal practice, he serves on the board of directors of the Institute for Science & Education Technology, Free Spirit Media, Firehouse Community Arts Center, and the Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association.

Today at noon: Chicago Ald. Gil Villegas will join Sen. Cory Booker, Ironworkers President Eric Dean, former HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros, and Tom Steyer, co-chair of the Biden Climate Engagement Advisory Council to talk about how cities work: “A More Perfect Union.” Details here

Hebru Brantley signs with William Morris Endeavor: The Chicago artist and creator of the famous Flyboy installations signed with the talent agency headed by Ari Emanuel, brother of former Mayor Rahm Emanuel, via Artsy.

Lincoln Park Zoo welcomes adorable endangered zebra foal: “The 13-year-old Zebra mother gave birth after her gestation period, which lasted over a year,” via People magazine.

Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts, Fifth Third Bank Senior VP Bernard Bartilad, former state Rep. Monique Davis; Higher Ground Labs co-founder Shomik Dutta; Rep. Jan Schakowsky’s political director Ben Head; Cook County Board president comms director Nick Shields.




August 19, 2020 at 08:01AM

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