Good Wednesday morning, Illinois. Your Playbook host has finally dined at Benihana, and now all the jokes make sense.
Darren Bailey is doubling down on making crime a central part of his campaign, saying on Tuesday that if elected he would restore the death penalty in certain cases, according to The Associated Press.
It’s a familiar issue for the Illinois state senator and Republican governor candidate. Earlier this year, Bailey filed a bill calling for the death penalty for individuals found guilty of killing police officers.
The idea was squashed by the Democratic-controlled General Assembly, but Bailey hopes it resonates with voters.
Crime is a subject that hits a nerve with Democrats at a time when violence has dominated headlines in Illinois. Shootings are on the decline in Chicago, though over the weekend the city saw more than 50.
Bailey sees it as a wedge issue. It’s difficult to use the economy to energize Republicans while the labor market keeps chugging along and gas prices are falling.
Although tradition has held that the midterm elections benefit the party not in the White House, Democrats are feeling emboldened to rise up against attacks on abortion rights. The FBI investigation into former President Donald Trump holding on to classified documents is also bolstering Democrats’ resolve to get out the vote.
Crime, however, remains a hot topic for Republicans. On Tuesday, Bailey stood with county sheriffs, saying along with bringing back the death penalty when police officers are killed, he would eliminate the law that overhauls the cash bail system (It ends bail for nonviolent crimes.).
“Illinois violent crime has risen since JB took office and remains above the national average. Illinois has had more than 1,000 homicides in 2020, setting a multi-decade high. Chicago’s murder count went up 60 percent since JB’s first year in office,” said Bailey, who’s been endorsed by the Fraternal Order of Police in Chicago and Illinois. It’s an endorsement Gov. JB Pritzker had four years ago.
Pushback from Pritzker: “With 63 days until Election Day, Darren Bailey has once again shown us the only thing his campaign is capable of doing is fear mongering and playing footsie with insurrectionists,” Pritzker campaign spokeswoman Natalie Edelstein said in a written statement.
“Bailey’s refusal to own up to the votes he’s taken against supporting law enforcement, coupled with his lack of real solutions and support for those who rioted on January 6th, shows you exactly the kind of ‘leader’ he is — one who can’t take accountability,” Edelstein continued.
During a press conference Tuesday, Bailey was asked about why he didn’t vote on a new law that funded local police to the tune of tens of millions of dollars. Bailey blamed the Democratic-controlled General Assembly, saying Republicans weren’t given enough time to study the legislation. Pritzker’s team says plenty of time was given.
It’s political tit for tat. Bailey is trying to pin crime on Pritzker — and in 62 days we’ll know if it’s an issue that sticks.
New ad for Bailey: The People Who Play By The Rules PAC has launched a new ad promoting Bailey as the “practical problem solver.” The ad buy was placed in statewide mledia markets and on social media. Opening line: “Darren Bailey isn’t popular with the political establishment of either party because he’s from the real world.”
SCOOP: Ald. Howard Brookins Jr. won’t seek reelection, joining more than a dozen City Council members who are making their exits from City Hall. It’s “the right time,” he said in a statement to Playbook.
In his nearly 20 years as alderman, Brookins said, “I have walked in the footsteps of my father, and I took pride in modeling servant leadership for our beautiful communities.” He was referring to Howard Brookins Sr., a former state rep and senator.
The alderman said he’ll “remain politically active and available for guidance and counsel,” particularly for young Democrats. “I have faith in their leadership and history shows us that the Black movement works best when the new generation takes over at the right time,” he said. “I believe now is that time, at least for our community here in the 21st ward.”
Brookins, a lawyer, ran unsuccessfully for circuit court judge earlier this year. On the City Council, he’s served under three mayors and sat on numerous committees, including Transportation and Education. Brookins is also the 21st Ward committeeman.
— Retiring Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza bemoans one-way street of Chicago politics: “If there’s one thing that I’ve learned — especially in the past couple of years — I know who the real people are, and I know who the fake ones are. And I know who has my back. I know who doesn’t,” Sadlowski Garza told the Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman
— And Ald. Nick Sposato (38th) says the exodus isn’t over, by CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov
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, but on the campaign trail in Wilmington at noon to visit with Operating Engineers Local 150.
At Wendell Phillips Academy High School at 3 p.m. for a ribbon-cutting for the school’s new athletic annex.
At Ignite Glass Studios at 6 p.m. for the 50th anniversary celebration of Aunt Martha’s Health and Wellness.
— GRUDGE MATCH: Watch for Congressman Jesus ‘Chuy’ Garcia to announce his support for Jeylu Gutierrez to run against longtime Ald. Edward Burke in Chicago’s 14th Ward. Gutierrez is district director to Cook County Commissioner Alma Anaya. Garcia’s expected endorsement ignites a long feud between the congressman and Burke, the City Council’s longest-serving alderman.
Garcia represents reform to Burke’s machine politics. Their feud goes back to the 1980s when Garcia, then an alderman, backed Mayor Harold Washington while Burke blocked every initiative Washington put forward. Years later, Garcia took issue with Burke representing Donald Trump’s real-estate interests in Chicago — and, of course, Burke serving as alderman while facing federal racketeering charges must grate.
— Former Gov. Pat Quinn on why he’s mulling a run for mayor, via NBC 5’s Mary Ann Ahern
— Nick Ward, a candidate for alderman in the 48th Ward has been endorsed by the Chicago Democratic Socialists of America.
— Illinois traffic deaths spike as pandemic trends lead to more roadway tragedies: “Deaths on Illinois roads jumped by about 24 percent in the first quarter of this year compared to the same time last year. Experts say the pandemic forces driving a nationwide increase aren’t showing signs of slowing down soon,” by Sun-Times’ Manny Ramos.
— First Illinois ‘REV’ electric vehicle tax credits awarded to Decatur company: “The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity awarded Tuesday the first tax incentive package under the Reimagining Electric Vehicles (REV) Act to Decatur-based T/CCI Manufacturing, a company that currently builds compressors for internal combustion engine vehicles,” by Lee Enterprises’ Brenden Moore.
— Illinois has big goals for its clean energy sector, but they’re easier said than done, by St. Louis Public Radio’s Eric Schmid
— Gov. JB Pritzker is featured prominently in a Vanity Fair story by Eric Lutz. The take: Pritzker is progressive but he’s no AOC, said Marj Halperin, a political strategist and progressive organizer with Indivisible Chicago. “But he taps into the policies that we care about and does the right thing.”
Lutz puts it this way: “He comes off as authentic. He doesn’t pretend to be an outsider, or a ‘blue-collar billionaire,’ as Donald Trump Jr. once described his own father. Pritzker is who he is — and who he is is a guy who can act like he’s a spokesman for the Illinois Office of Tourism in one breath and rail against the threat of GOP extremism in the next.”
— Bob Fioretti, the former 2nd Ward Chicago alderman, officially kicks off his campaign today for Cook County Board president against Democratic incumbent Toni Preckwinkle. Fioretti, who’s running as a Republican, will make his announcement at the Billy Goat Tavern. “No fries. Cheeps!”
— Congressman Bill Foster has been endorsed by the Illinois AFL-CIO, the Illinois Federation of Teachers, and the Associated Firefighters of Illinois. Foster is running for reelection in IL-11.
— Judge Elizabeth Rochford has been endorsed by the Associated Fire Fighters of Illinois in her bid for Illinois Supreme Court, 2nd District.
— Judge Mary Kay O’Brien has been endorsed by the Coalition of Frontline Police Officers, representing some 20,000 active or retired law enforcement officers, in her bid for Illinois Supreme Court, 3rd District.
— Bears show renderings for enclosed stadium complex in Arlington Heights, but say they’d expect some public funding for entertainment district: “The team estimated that construction of the proposed project would create 48,000 jobs, a $9.4 billion economic impact for Chicagoland, and $1.4 billion in annual economic impact. The team would not seek taxpayer help to build the stadium, but given the economic impact, would seek public funding for the rest of the project,” by Tribune’s Robert McCoppin and Gregory Pratt.
— Bears to pay $200,000 worth of village costs for Arlington Park stadium project consultants, reports Daily Herald’s Christopher Placek
— Gurnee man released from prison after judge vacates life sentence in 1993 murder of his ex-wife, by Daily Herald’s Doug T. Graham
— The plan for a downtown Chicago casino now has a surprising ally: river lovers: “The formerly filthy waterway is becoming a star city attraction — and developers like Bally’s are taking notice,” by Steve Johnson for WBEZ.
— 15 Chicago aldermen have turned down inflation-tied pay raises nearing 10% as election looms, by Tribune’s John Byrne and Alice Yin
— Fallen Chicago Police officers remembered at Gold Star Families Memorial, by Sun-Times’ Emmanuel Camarillo
— Lollapalooza producers to pay $410,000 to clean up Grant Park after this year’s music festival, by Tribune’s A.D. Quig and Tracy Swartz
— Get new Covid-19 vaccine to help prevent fall surge of infections, officials urge Chicagoans: “The updated vaccine contains half that original vaccine recipe and half designed to offer protection against the widespread omicron versions that are considered the most contagious version of the virus yet, officials said,” via WTTW’s Brandis Friedman and Heather Cherone.
— Trial kicks off in custody battle over Heather Mack’s daughter: “Four people are seeking custody of 7-year-old Estelle Schaefer, known as Stella, in the trial before Cook County Judge Stephanie Miller. Mack and her onetime boyfriend, Tommy Schaefer, are charged in federal court with plotting the overseas murder of Mack’s mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack,” by Sun-Times’ Jon Seidel.
— Music critic Jim DeRogatis seeks to quash subpoena to testify at R. Kelly trial, by Tribune’s Jason Meisner and Megan Crepeau
We asked if what Illinois food candidates better know how to eat on the campaign trail:
Andy Shaw had fun with this saying, “crow.” Ha ha.
And William J. Kresse said “definitely a corndog.” (Presuming he means don’t eat it with a fork.)
Alternately, we suggest a fork for deep dish (folding your deep dish with your hands is a no-no). And please, never ask for a “low-cal horseshoe” because if it’s low-cal, it’s not a horseshoe.
Would you rather go to the moon or Mars, and why? Email [email protected]
— Dem governors in the big battlegrounds are looking strong — but the GOP is expanding the map: “The GOP is trying to flip the governorships in New Mexico and Oregon, even as Democrats’ Midwestern battleground governors run ahead in the polls,” by POLITICO’s Zach Montellaro.
— GOP offers strained Trump defenses in Mar-a-Lago probe — for now, by POLITICO’s Andrew Desiderio and Nicholas Wu
— All the former president’s lawyers (that we know of), by POLITICO’s Betsy Woodruff Swan, Nicholas Wu and Kyle Cheney
— Democratic attorneys general candidates rake in donations post-Roe, by POLITICO’s Alice Miranda Ollstein
— Casey Conger Caballero, political newcomer and DuPage County native, has been elected chair of the York Township Democratic Organization. She’s a 34-year-old returned Peace Corps volunteer.
— Evanston Republicans try to revitalize local party, by Evanston Now’s Jeff Hirsh
— Temporary national executive director appointed at Rainbow PUSH Coalition amid group’s ‘transition’: “Bishop Tavis Grant has been appointed acting national executive director of the organization that was founded by Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr.,” by Sun-Times’ Mariah Rush.
— Greg Claus has been named federal program officer for the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, which oversees high speed internet in Illinois. He was deputy chief of staff for Congressman Brad Schneider.
— Rachel French is now comms director The HAP Foundation, a not-for-profit organization focusing on hospice and palliative care research and education. She was media affairs consultant for Health Care Service Corp. and before that was deputy press secretary to Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White.
— Andy Knapp has opened North Shore Corporate Advocacy, focusing on the public policy issues of small to mid-cap energy and manufacturing companies. He has served in senior public and government affairs roles at ExxonMobil, BP and in the renewable energy sector.
— Ritika Agrawal has been promoted to be account executive at the Energy BBDO ad agency in Chicago.
— Today at 6 p.m.: A discussion at Malcolm X College about violence in Chicago with state Rep. La Shawn Ford and numerous health care providers, community organizations and state agency officials. Details here
— Today at 6 p.m.: A town hall on the proposed Offshore Wind Pilot Project features state Sen. Robert Peters, state Rep. Marcus Evans Jr., and Climate Jobs Illinois’ Joe Duffy and Chynna Hampton, among others, at the Public Library South Chicago Branch, on South Houston Avenue.
TUESDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Fred Lebed for correctly answering that a Soldier Field monument displays bronze medallions of the U.S. military branches.
TODAY’s QUESTION: What Chicago hotel housed more than 2 million servicemen from 1941 to 1945? Email [email protected]
Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller, former state Rep. Peter Breen and public relations exec Maureen Schulman.
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September 7, 2022 at 09:02AM