Lightfoot, Daley celebrate casino vote

Lightfoot, Daley celebrate casino vote

Good Thursday morning, Illinois. Programming note: Playbook won’t publish Monday so we can dust off the grill for summer. We’ll be back Tuesday, of course.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot stopped by Gibsons last night where Bally’s chairman Soo Kim was celebrating the City Council’s 41-7 vote paving the way for a casino in the city.

Bally’s lead lobbyist John Kelly hosted the party to thank all the players, lobbyists and investors for getting the project over the finish line.

It’s taken 30 years to get a Chicago casino approved, going back to Mayor Richard M. Daley’s administration — so it was no surprise he showed up at Gibsons to raise a glass, too.

Bob Reiter, president of the Chicago Federation of Labor, celebrated too. “Chicago is the home and the birthplace of the modern convention. We have the No. 1 tourist destination in the Midwest with Navy Pier. We’re a world-class city. But the one thing we’ve been missing for tourists is a casino entertainment center,” he told Playbook after the council vote.

Also spotted at Gibsons: Ald. Rod Sawyer, former Senate President John Cullerton, Secretary of State Jesse White, and lobbyist John Daley (a nephew of the former mayor).

Ald. Walter Burnett, whose ward will be home to the casino, was also on hand after giving an impassioned speech earlier in the day to encourage his colleagues to vote yes.

“We need to seize this moment. It’s something that we have to do. The city has been trying to do this for 30 years,” Burnett said before the council’s vote. “My mother, other women I know, older people, they’re on the bus going to Joliet and Rosemont (where there are casinos). Why can’t they be in Chicago?”

State Rep. Robert Rita was on the City Council floor to watch the vote. “It was a big hurdle,” Rita said afterward, reminding that the casino plan still must get approval from the Illinois Gaming Board.

Rita is the state lawmaker who shuttled the legislation through the General Assembly, which gave authority to the city to pursue a casino and approved the tax structure. Rita puts the casino on par with McCormick Place in terms of economic development.

He also praised Lightfoot for getting up to speed quickly on a complicated proposal that was approved by the Legislature just a few weeks after she took office in 2019.

“She was very diligent and on top of getting it passed and getting it right,” he told Playbook.

— NOT WITHOUT DRAMA: Ald. Byran Sigcho-Lopez criticized the process for approving the casino, saying the Lightfoot administration “is more worried about campaign contributions than doing the right thing for the city of Chicago.” An angry Lightfoot responded, “You are a liar! … I will not tolerate you besmirching the hard work of so many people who have worked on this! … Almost every word that comes out of your mouth after you say your name is a lie!” WTTW has the video

Casino brings promise of jobs and a boost for the city but also warnings of ‘red flags,’ by Tribune’s Gregory Pratt and Alice Yin

Casino is being billed as a pension solution. But it won’t be enough, reports WBEZ’s Becky Vevea and Mariah Woelfel

Who’s left out of the casino? “Cabrini-Green’s displaced residents aren’t being included in Chicago’s casino plans,” by Tonia Hill and The TRiiBE.

State Rep. Kam Buckner joined top Illinois legislative leaders to visit the New York General Assembly earlier this week, and he had to get court approval to go.

The conditions on Buckner after pleading guilty to driving under the influence require him to get permission from the Sangamon County Circuit Court or his probation officer before he travels outside the state, according to a one-page court discharge order obtained by Playbook. The 12-month order expires in March 11, 2023 — just 11 days after Chicago’s municipal election.

A spokeswoman for Buckner emailed a statement saying, “Kam’s always in compliance” with that rule. An official with the courts told Playbook that Buckner’s requests to leave Illinois are not public.

Buckner’s spokeswoman, Rebecca Evans, said the mayoral candidate was also “in compliance” March 21, when he traveled to Washington, D.C., to attend Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court hearing.

The probation measure came after Buckner pleaded guilty to a 2019 DUI offense in Springfield, where he fell asleep in his car and was determined by Illinois State Police to be over the legal drinking limit.

During the exchange with officers, Buckner said, “I’m a state rep” and pointed to the Capitol saying he had worked long hours in session. He also acknowledged having at least two drinks.

It was Buckner’s second DUI. The first was in 2010, as reported recently by the Tribune.

Have a news tip, suggestion, birthday, anniversary, new job, or any other nugget for Playbook? I’d like to hear from you: [email protected]

No official public events.

On Green Street at 10 a.m. to attend the Chicago Venture Summit Future of Food. On Kenwood Avenue at 1:30 p.m. for the ribbon-cutting of POAH Mattie Butler Apartments.

No official public events.

— Illinois Dems push back at Texas governor for shifting the gun narrative to Chicago: At a press conference yesterday, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott said: “I hate to say this, there are more people that are shot every weekend in Chicago than there are in schools in Texas,” Abbott said. “So, if you’re looking for a real solution, Chicago teaches that what you’re talking about is not a real solution.”

Gov. JB Pritzker threw a jab at Abbott, tweeting: “Shame on you…. You are lying about Chicago and what actually perpetuates gun violence. The majority of guns used in Chicago shootings come from states with lax gun laws.

Chicago Mayor Lightfootwrote: “Lives are being lost. Be a part of the solution or get the hell out of the way.”

Democratic Party Chair and Congresswoman Robin Kellyaccused Abbott of “blowing all sorts of dog whistles.”

And Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36th) called Abbott Abbott an “@sshole” who should “keep our city’s name out of your mouth.”


O’Rourke accosts Abbott at press conference on shooting, by POLITICO’s Kelly Hooper

Reactions from parents, families, and the Uvalde, Texas, community, pulled together in POLITICO’s national Playbook

Illinois GOP governor candidates cite mental health as core issue in gun debate, by State Journal Register’s Andrew Adams

More comments from Illinois Dems, via Sun-Times Tina Sfondles

— ‘You were a corruption superspreader’: Judge sentences ex-state Rep. Luis Arroyo to 57 months in prison in bribery case involving sweepstakes machine bill, by Tribune’s Jason Meisner and Megan Crepeau

— MORE DETAILS:Madigan spoke with confidant about helping lobbyist find work with gaming industry, affidavit alleges, by Tribune’s Ray Long and Jason Meisne

Hope Chicago: Meet the Chicago millionaire who’s teamed up with Janice Jackson to transform the South Side: “College only furthers the gap between the haves and the have-nots,” says Pete Kadens. Over the next decade, Hope Chicago hopes to fund 30,000 college and trade school students. Story via 60 Minutes.

Stricter curfew approved by divided City Council: “Mayoral allies and critics alike again condemned the crackdown as a desperate response that will have no impact on an outbreak of youth violence downtown — but signed off on it anyway,” by Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman

… Best quote from Ald. Jason Ervin, who voted in favor of the curfew: “Nothing’s open after 10 but legs and liquor stores,” he says.

— SPOTLIGHT: Daniel Taylor was innocent. He spent decades in prison trying to fix the state’s mistake: “He was in police custody at the time of the murders, but a dubious confession led to his wrongful conviction while Chicago police and prosecutors turned a blind eye to inconvenient facts that eventually exonerated him,” by ProPublica’s Steve Mills.

Chicago police search for man who pointed gun at FOX 32 crew during a live report in River North, by Fox 32’s Natalie Bomke

‘Walking Man’ critically injured after doused with flammable liquid and set on fire on Lower Wabash Avenue: “Joseph Kromelis, 75 — a homeless man well-known for walking the streets of the Loop — suffered third-degree burns over 65% of his body,” by Sun-Times’ Sophie Sherry and Tom Schuba.

Baristas at two Chicago Starbucks become the city’s first to unionize, by Tribune’s Talia Soglin

Irvin chides organizers over banning police in uniform from Aurora Pride Parade: The Aurora mayor and Illinois governor candidate called it “baffling how what is supposed to be an event focused on and celebrating equity, diversity and inclusion is now choosing to exclude others, specifically, the law enforcement officers who have supported the Pride Parade since its inception and who work so diligently to maintain safety and order at the event.” Aurora Beacon-News’ Steve Lord reports

Arlington Heights library trustees reaffirm decision to fly Pride flag, by Daily Herald’s Christopher Placek

43 years after Flight 191 horror, siblings unite with book: “On Wednesday’s anniversary of the tragedy that killed their parents, siblings Melody Smith, Kim Jockl and Jim Borchers made their annual pilgrimage to the Flight 191 memorial wall in Lake Park in Des Plaines,” by Daily Herald’s Burt Constable.

CENSUS FOLLOW-UP: The Illinois Municipal League has written a letter to Gov. JB Pritzker asking that his administration keep municipalities in mind when trying to secure additional federal dollars as a result of census numbers being 2 percent higher than initially reported.

Early voting for June primary pushed back in Chicago to May 31: “Officials say that the change was required after 1st Congressional District candidate Stephany Rose Spaulding was removed from the ballot, and after Cook County Sheriff candidates Carmen Navarro Gercone and Noland Rivera were added to the ballot following legal challenges,” via NBC 5.

— Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas and Lori Lightfoot were at Avli restaurant, where Pappas was hosting representatives from 13 countries for a Property Tax and Innovation Summit. Pix

— A fundraiser for lobbyist Liz Brown-Reeves’ bid to serve on the Democratic Central Committee drew a packed house last night at Stonegate Farms in Springfield. The home owned by John Barker has been the site of many funders over the years. Hosting was Deputy Gov. Andy Manar. Brown-Reeves and Manar have been friends since he was a legislative aide in the Senate and she worked in the House. Co-hosts were state Sen. Doris Turner and lobbyist Julie Curry. Also spotted: Pritzker Campaign Manager Mike Ollen, lobbyist and pension expert Eric Madiar, Dykema Gosset lobbyist Scott Selinger, longtime statehouse insider Trevor Clatfelter, and Biden delegate Chris Dunn.

Complaint: Irvin campaign hasn’t identified Ken Griffin as sponsoring entity: “Irvin’s team claims Pritzker and Democratic leaders are behind the complaint,” by WGEM’s Mike Miletich.

Underwood leading drive to bolster swing district Democrats on Obamacare subsidies: “At issue are pending increases in health insurance costs for Affordable Care Act plans. Voters will learn just before the November elections that temporarily boosted subsidies will expire in 2023 — unless Congress acts,” by Sun-Times’ Lynn Sweet.

Newcomers battle over open seat in Illinois’ 13th Congressional District, by State Journal Register’s Andrew Adams

— Elizabeth Rochford just released a new digital ad in her bid for Illinois Supreme Court in the Second District race.

— Jacqueline Collins has been endorsed by SEIU Healthcare Illinois in her bid for the IL-01 congressional seat.

— Mark Carroll has been endorsed by Republican state Rep. Jeff Keicher, Campton Township Republican Party Chairman Andro Lerario, and Illinois Federation for Right to Life in his bid for IL-11 GOP primary.

— Litesa Wallace has been endorsed by Galesburg Mayor Peter Schwartzman in her bid for the IL-17 congressional seat.

We asked if there’s a gun restriction you think could survive the Supreme Court AND make a real difference in gun deaths: Chicago Association of Realtors government affairs director Kristopher Anderson believes the answer is in “Universal background checks including fingerprinting, banning ghost guns (unstamped), banning NEW PRODUCTION of high-capacity magazines. And I say this as a proud 2A supporter.” CTU organizer Jim Cavallero wants see legislation that “prioritizes people’s human needs over band-aid legislation that doesn’t address the root of our problems.” And attorney David Melton says it’s simple: “Eliminate immunity for gun manufacturers.”

What’s something you accomplished only after years of trying? Email [email protected]

Why heavyweight Republicans no longer fear Trump, by POLITICO’s Adam Wren and Natalie Allison

GOP state legislative campaign hub launches plan to turbocharge online fundraising, by POLITICO’s Elena Schneider

Trump expressed support for hanging Pence during Capitol riot, Jan. 6 panel told, by POLITICO’s Betsy Woodruff Swan and Kyle Cheney

Today at 6 p.m.: Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11) will host a virtual panel discussion with community leaders on how the draft Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade would impact Illinois. On the panel are experts from Physicians for Reproductive Health, Illinois NOW and the ACLU. RSVP to [email protected].

WEDNESDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Roger Flahaven for correctly answering John C. Marcin was a 35th Ward Democratic committeeman who later became city clerk of Chicago.

TODAY’s QUESTION: Who’s the most beloved Chicago sports figure who ran for alderman — and lost?Email [email protected]

Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, mayoral candidate and Ald. Raymond Lopez, former state Treasurer Dan Rutherford, former state Rep. James Peyton “Pate” Philip, Sheridan Strategies founder Devon Spurgeon, and Peninsula Hotel PR director Susan Ellefson.



via Illinois Playbook

May 26, 2022 at 07:32AM

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