TGIF, Illinois. Happy Mother’s Day, especially to those who inspired their daughters and sons to jump into public service.

Casey Urlacher, the Mettawa mayor who was famously pardoned by Donald Trump, has filed paperwork to challenge Illinois Senate Minority Leader Dan McConchie, an outspoken critic of the former president.

McConchie wrote an opinion piece in the Sun-Times after the Jan. 6 insurrection, saying, “there is no longer any doubt that our Republican president has abdicated the principles of freedom, law and order and a democratic process.” Those are the kind of words that naturally attract retribution from Trump and his followers.

But Urlacher, whose brother is Bears Hall of Famer Brian Urlacher, says the former president didn’t have a hand in his filing with the Board of Elections for the 2022 race. “I haven’t even talked to Trump,” Urlacher told Playbook before saying he wouldn’t comment further.

Urlacher has a history with Trump, of course. The former arena football player was facing federal charges of conspiracy for allegedly acting as a bagman in an offshore gambling ring when Trump pardoned him in the final hours of his presidency.

Urlacher had already bowed out of a re-election bid for mayor while the charges hung over him. By the time Trump cleared his name, it was too late to get on the ballot, so Urlacher ran as a write-in candidate. He was declared the winner last month by a 151 to 105 vote, according to the Lake County clerk’s office.

A state Senate run would be a rematch for McConchie and Urlacher. In 2016, McConchie beat Urlacher 36.6 percent to 32.8 percent. A third candidate won 30.6 percent of the vote. (Side note: That year, Bears owner Virginia McCaskey contributed to McConchie’s race.)

Along with the high-stakes symbolism of a perceived pro-Trump Republican battling an anti-Trumper, the primary also would show the intraparty strain that’s developed in the aftermath of Trump’s presidency.

We’re seeing it in Washington, D.C., this week, as House Republicans appear ready to bump Rep. Liz Cheney from her leadership spot. Closer to home, Rep. Adam Kinzinger is being challenged by pro-Trump Republican Catalina Lauf and his preferred candidate in a Texas special election this week got crushed.

They’re all signs that GOP Chairman Don Tracy has his work cut out for him in 2022. If there’s one thing party leaders usually try to avoid, it’s incumbents having to go through a primary — especially when that person is in leadership.

Though Tracy is satisfied with the work McConchie is doing, he isn’t commenting on the race. The Illinois GOP doesn’t get involved in primary elections.


How Trump is hunting down the GOP’s leading families, by POLITICO’s David Siders

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, who was reportedly on the shortlist for vice president, won’t seek re-election — and instead will take a position with Chicago-based Walgreens, according to WSB Radio in Atlanta.

Watch for details this morning when Bottoms will speak at a scheduled news conference.

This would be the first big hire by Walgreens CEO Roz Brewer, who took over in March, replacing Stefano Pessina, who remains on the company’s board of directors. Chicago power broker Valerie Jarrett is on the board, too.

Brewer, who also lives in Atlanta, counts Bottoms as a friend.

It would be a surprise if Bottoms were to move to Chicago. She’s a lifelong Atlanta native who along with serving as mayor, is an attorney who’s worked as a judge and City Council member.

Have a tip, suggestion, birthday, anniversary, new job, or any other nugget for Playbook? Get in touch: [email protected]

At MxD innovation center at 9:30 a.m. for an economic development announcement.

Joins Congresswoman and Illinois Democratic Party Chair Robin Kelly at 9:30 a.m. for a press conference on the needs of Black women and girls.

No official public events.

The Illinois Department of Public Health on Thursday reported 40 additional deaths and 1,778 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus disease. That’s a total of 22,136 fatalities and 1,348,176 cases in Illinois. The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total tests from April 29 through May 5 is 3.0 percent. Chicago’s positivity rate is at 4.5 percent.

— GETTING TO NORMAL: Pritzker says Covid restrictions will loosen May 14, with goal of fully reopening the state on June 11: “Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s announcement puts the state on a more ambitious timeline than the city of Chicago, which Mayor Lori Lightfoot said this week is aiming for a full reopening by the Fourth of July. While she’s been critical of some of Pritzker’s rules throughout the pandemic, Lightfoot has repeatedly shown a willingness to keep tighter restrictions in place,” by Tribune’s Dan Petrella, Alice Yin and Jenny Whidden.

Even as rules relax, some Chicagoans say they’re not shedding their masks, reports WBEZ’s Mariah Woelfel

Illinois jail housing ICE detainees cited for Covid-19 violations, by Sun-Times’ Elvia Malagón

Citing higher revenue projections, Pritzker agrees to school funding increase: “Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker backtracked Thursday on one of the most controversial components of his budget proposal, saying improved revenue projections will allow the state to meet the goal in its education funding formula and increase school funding by $350 million over the current year. Pritzker has faced a pushback from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle when he introduced in February a $41.6 billion state spending plan for the budget year beginning July 1 that would hold funding for elementary and secondary schools flat for the second straight year,” by Tribune’s Dan Petrella.

Many Illinois cities struggling to fund pension obligations, according to libertarian-leaning report: “Of the 175 cities analyzed in the report (which did not include the city of Chicago), 99 had police, fire and municipal pension funds that were less than 60% funded — compared to 21 cities in 2003,” by NPR Illinois’ Derek Cantu.

Exelon CEO: Replacing nuclear with renewables, storage to meet carbon goals could cost Illinois $80B: “Crane dismissed the prospect that federal legislation could pass in time to prevent the closure of the Byron and Dresden plants, expressing more optimism in a state solution. “We’re confident that we’ve got adequate support within the administration and within the legislature, and we’ll see how it goes,” Exelon CEO Chris Crane said during the company’s Q1 earnings call. Utility Dive’s Larry Pearl reports.

Box turtle survey — with a canine assist — helps researchers understand where risks to human health might emerge: “The ornate box turtle, about 5 inches long and streaked with yellow beams, was listed in 2009 as threatened in Illinois, a state where the prairie habitat the turtles depend upon is almost completely gone…Finding the turtles can be tough. So researchers turn to the dogs,” reports Tribune’s Morgan Greene.

Few details as to why Madison County official was placed on leave, reports Madison-St. Clair Record’s Ann Maher.

Democrats chart new legislative maps behind closed doors, but insist, ‘It’s nothing new, there’s no secret’: “Standing outside the Democratic map room on Thursday, House Republicans blasted the majority for a redistricting process the GOP dubbed “the literal opposite of transparent,” by Sun-Times’ Andrew Sullender.

AG Kwame Raoul testifies before House lawmakers: “Raoul told a House committee his office has implemented new safeguards since the April 10 ransomware attack that compromised the office’s network and affected office employee’s email accounts,” by Capitol News’ Sarah Mansur.

Lawmakers focus on Invest in Kids scholarship: “State lawmakers debated the future of the Invest in Kids scholarship Thursday ahead of budget negotiations that could potentially cut the income tax credit for donors to the program that helps low-income families find education for their children,” by State Journal-Register’s Ben Szalinski.

Republican senators’ bill calls for standardizing election procedures in the state: “Sens. Sally Turner, of the Logan County town of Beason, and Sue Rezin, of Morris, said during a virtual news conference Thursday their bill is intended to provide more transparency and give voters more confidence in how elections in Illinois are conducted,” by Capitol News’ Peter Hancock.

Chicago on the road to financial solvency, Lightfoot assures investors: “The mayor also noted that more than half of the $1.9 billion in federal aid will be used to retire $965 million in scoop-and-toss borrowing — though she faces resistance from City Council members who call it a Wall Street bailout,” by Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman.

2nd analysis police search warrants finds reporting gaps, major racial disparities: “The report released Thursday by the public safety section of city Inspector General Joseph Ferguson’s office found that of the residential warrants in which details were recorded about the subject of the warrant, 3.5 percent were listed as white. Black men were listed as the target in nearly 72 percent of the cases. Black women were 11 times more likely to be targeted than white women,” by Tribune’s Annie Sweeney.

Police Department raids on homes plummet, City Hall inspector general finds, by Sun-Times’ Frank Main

This quote — The unfinished legacy of outgoing CPS CEO Janice Jackson: “Jackson is proud of her accomplishments, and says to critics who say she could have done more: ‘If I could deal with hundreds of years of racism and a century of disinvestment in Black and Brown communities in Chicago in four years or seven years, then I’m Jesus Christ,’” by Sun-Times’ Lauren FitzPatrick and Nader Issa.

CPS selective enrollment high schools will nearly double the number of diverse learners next year: “In addition, 89 percent of all high school applicants were matched with one of their top three choices of selective enrollment schools, an increase of around 9 percentage points from 2020, and 95 percent of those who applied received an offer, according to CPS,” by Tribune’s Karen Ann Cullotta.

Facing foreclosure, Patrick Daley Thompson turned to clout’s piggy bank: “He got $89,000 from Washington Federal Bank for Savings after another Bridgeport bank demanded he repay a loan that was nearly three years past due,” by Sun-Times’ Tim Novak.

Is Chicago really in the ‘Midwest’? “Chicago was squeezed into Illinois to make it more Northern. It’s now the capital of the Midwest, but culturally, call it a Great Lakes state,” writes Edward McClelland in Chicago magazine.

Lu Palmer Mansion purchased for $1.25M, now needs zoning change to become a museum, reports Sun-Times’ Maudlyne Ihejirika.

Rare hummingbird’s stop in LaBagh Woods is a once-in-a-lifetime sight for Chicago birders, by Tribune’s Morgan Greene.

— SIGN OF SUMMER: Buckingham Fountain will be turned on before Memorial Day after 2020 Covid absence, by Tribune’s Clare Proctor

Even in Chicago’s crowded history of FBI cooperators, Daniel Solis’ deal stands out: “In exchange for going undercover and helping the U.S. attorney’s office prosecute 14th Ward Ald. Edward Burke, who spent decades near the top of the city’s political food chain, Solis was offered what’s known as a deferred prosecution agreement…As part of the deal, Solis has allegedly admitted to taking campaign cash from a real estate developer in exchange for official action as Zoning Committee chair — a blatant case of public corruption that federal prosecutors would typically argue deserves a stiff punishment,” by Tribune’s Jason Meisner.

Indicted Dem operative Patrick Doherty hit with new charges in red-light camera shakedown scheme: “The superseding indictment significantly increases the scope of the case against Doherty, who has already pleaded not guilty to bribery conspiracy charges filed last year,” by Tribune’s Jason Meisner.

American Girl doll lawsuit filed by Adler Planetarium astronomer over look-alike doll is dismissed: “Astronomer Lucianne Walkowicz wanted American Girl to stop selling the doll. It has not,” by Sun-Times’ Mitch Dudek.

Longtime Glendale Heights president takes election fight to federal court: “The election that made Chodri Khokhar village president is not over in the eyes of two other candidates, including the longtime incumbent, Linda Jackson,” reports Daily Herald’s Susan Sarkauskas.

Johnson takes the helm in a year of change on the Libertyville village board: “The guard officially changed Tuesday as Donna Johnson and three new trustees — Matthew Hickey, Matthew Krummick and Dan Love — were sworn in. The new trustees replace three incumbents with a combined 30 years of experience who chose not to seek reelection,” by Daily Herald’s Mick Zawislak.

Maine South HS officials investigating photo re-creating George Floyd’s murder, by Daily Herald’s Russell Lissau

The wealthy lobbyist behind Andrew Yang’s campaign for mayor is familiar to Illinoisans: “Andrew Yang’s relationship with Bradley Tusk, a tech investor, has raised concerns about conflicts of interest if he is elected. Tusk, 47, has an expansive political and financial portfolio. He worked for Senator Chuck Schumer as his communications director, was a special adviser to Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and then became deputy governor of Illinois, under Gov. Rod Blagojevich,” via the New York Times.

— City of Chicago Clerk Anna Valencia, who’s running for Secretary of State, pushed back at fellow Democratic candidate Alexi Giannoulias over his ethics reform agenda, which we wrote about Thursday. “Wait @Giannoulias lecturing us on ethics & leadership? Are questionable financial practices & abandoning Democrats part of his plan? Hope he actually shows at the next Secretary of State forum, so we can discuss our histories with ethics, leadership & the need for real reform,” she tweeted, alluding to his family’s failed Broadway Bank.

The Biden White House slowly, glacially, returns to normal, by POLITICO’s Natasha Korecki and Anita Kumar

She built her career boosting GOP women. Now Elise Stefanik is elevating herself, by POLITICO’s Melanie Zanona, Ally Mutnick and Anna Gronewold

The Fox News reporter the White House hates to love, by POLITICO’s Christopher Cadelago

Jenner has hangar pains after Hannity interview, by POLITICO’s Carla Marinucci

Covid, George Floyd spur $250M Joyce pledge: “It is a sizable undertaking for the 73-year-old Chicago-based foundation, traditionally oriented to education, criminal justice and journalism initiatives, among others. It says grants this year will climb to $60 million from $52.2 million in 2020 and $37.7 million in 2019,” by Crain’s Steven Strahler.

Eira Corral Sepúlveda, who was elected commissioner of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District in November, this week wraps up her position as clerk of Hanover Park, a job she’s held for more than 12 years. Sepúlveda’s exit from the clerk job fulfills a campaign promise that she wouldn’t hold both positions if elected to the MWRD. She didn’t run for re-election as clerk. “When I started in this role, I was a 23-year-old single mother who believed in the potential of inclusive government and wanted to make it reality for my community,” she said in a statement to Playbook. At MWRD, Sepúlveda is the youngest and first Latina Commissioner on the MWRD Board.

Today at 11 a.m.: “Reset” on WBEZ caps off its week-long exploration into city government by asking the question: “How do we make city government more effective?” Reset checks in with a panel of public officials and experts as part of its “Re-Imagine Chicago” series with the University of Chicago’s Center for Effective Government.

THURSDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to John Moore and Stephen Rosenblat for correctly answering that retired Gen. Wesley Clark is the former Democratic presidential candidate who was born at Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago.

TODAY’s QUESTION: Who was overcome with emotion after hugging Mayor Richard M. Daley and Congressman Bobby Rush in 2008? Email to [email protected]

Today: Ald. Jason Ervin (28th Ward); Champaign Mayor Deb Frank Feinen, East Aurora school board member Alex Arroyo, former state Sen. Calvin Schuneman, After School Matters CEO Mary Ellen Caron, Illinois Federation of Teachers President Dan Montgomery, and Dulana Reese, chief of staff to state Rep. Kam Buckner.

Saturday: Former state Sen. Heather Steans, former state Rep. Roger Eddy, Metropolitan Planning Council President MarySue Barrett, University of Chicago Assistant VP of comms Jeremy Manier, and restaurateur Ron Onesti.

Sunday: City of Chicago Chief Marketing Officer Michael Fassnacht, Built In’s Nicholas Jackson, and Personal PAC founder Marcie Love.



via Illinois Playbook https://ift.tt/2NknKhq

May 7, 2021 at 07:23AM

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