TGIF, Illinois. Today’s the day the music died in 1959.b
FIRST IN POLITICO: Progressive Rep. Delia Ramirez set to give State of the Union response, reports Nicholas Wu
The Chicago Tribune has endorsed Paul Vallas for mayor, the paper reported this morning. The endorsement comes on the heels of Jesus “Chuy” Garcia making news Thursday with a video calling out Vallas for comments he made on abortion. The video shows Vallas in his own words, saying, “Fundamentally, I oppose abortion” and “I’m more of a Republican than a Democrat.”
Lost in translation: Vallas’ campaign said the video is from a 2009 interview with Jeff Berkowitz, who features conservative candidates on his public affairs show, and that Garcia edited the interview “out of context.”
His response: “I am a lifelong Democrat who has always been 100 percent pro-choice. I’m proud to have been endorsed by pro-choice organizations like Planned Parenthood in previous campaigns for state office, and I have publicly pledged to ensure that Chicago remains a reproductive safe haven for all women.”
The issue gained steam: Mayor Lori Lightfoot tweeted a video last night pretending to look for Vallas at a Planned Parenthood event she was attending. “I’m looking for Paul Vallas. Oh right, he’s anti-choice, so he’s never going to be here,” she says.
These aren’t the first attacks on Vallas’ stand on abortion. At a recent forum, Lightfoot criticized him for not speaking out sooner on the repeal of Roe v. Wade.
“Paul Vallas has been silent on this for seven months until today at this forum,” Lightfoot said. “Shame on you, Paul, for not talking about women’s rights until today.”
We asked Vallas what was out of context in his words, “Fundamentally, I oppose abortion.” A spokeswoman said he was referring to his Greek Orthodox faith, which opposes abortion.
Garcia called Vallas “a liar” and “a wolf in sheep’s clothing, reports NBC 5’s Mary Ann Ahern,
The attacks on Vallas indicate he’s gaining steam in the mayor’s race ahead of the Feb. 28 election. Fox 32’s Mike Flannery has a new poll showing Lightfoot and Vallas in a dead heat with Garcia trailing.
Party affiliations: The mayor’s position is nonpartisan, though all the candidates describe themselves as Democrats, including Vallas, who ran as a Democrat for governor in 2002 and as lieutenant governor in 2013. Even Willie Wilson calls himself a Democrat, and he voted for Donald Trump in 2016.
Dems and their backroom deals: A meeting Sunday to vote on who will replace Mike Cabonargi on the Democratic State Central Committee is not public. Cabonargi stepped down after being tapped by the Biden administration for a regional job.
By invitation only: A party spokeswoman said only Carol Ronen, who is heading the meeting, can invite folks. She didn’t immediately return our call.
Why Ronen is in charge: She served alongside Cabonargi in the 9th District, so it’s the elected folks in that district who will be voting.
Calls for diversity: A number of elected officials and community folks are hoping to see the party name an Asian-American Democrat to the committee. The Asian American Caucus sent a letter urging the appointment come from that community. And the Indo-American Democratic Organization wrote a letter to Ronen calling for some transparency. Has the position been “publicly posted,” the letter asks?
Insiders say Leo Smith, the husband of former state Sen. Heather Steans, is the insider pick for the seat.
There’s a backstory there. Ronen is a former state senator who held the seat that Steans moved into back in 2008. They’re longtime friends.
If you are Carol Ronen, Playbook would like to hear from you. Email [email protected].
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— Latest temporary hold on gun ban covers more than 1,000 plaintiffs including former GOP governor candidate Darren Bailey, two state reps, by Tribune’s Jeremy Gorner
— No badge, no problem: Police board chair who doesn’t have authority to arrest people is given a concealed-carry permit, by Illinois Times’ Bruce Rushton
— Illinois schools are still grappling with a teacher shortage that seems to only be getting worse, a recent survey shows, by Capitol News’ Nika Schoonover.
— Shawnee National Park? “A grassroots proposal fueled by opponents of logging and other concerns is gaining traction to transform the 289,000-acre Shawnee National Forest in southern Illinois into a national park and the nation’s first climate preserve,” writes Illinois Times’ David Blanchette
— 50th Ward race: Offensive tweets, including about Israel, threaten challenger’s efforts: In one tweet dated in May 2019, Mueze Bawany, a Chicago Public School teacher wrote “F— Israel and f— all you Zionist scum.” Later that year in an exchange on Twitter, he called a white woman a “Cracker,” and subsequently told her to “F— off honky.” Tribune’s Hank Sanders, John Byrne and A.D. Quig report
Ald. Debra Silverstein said she was “shocked, saddened and deeply disturbed” by Bawany’s social media exchanges. “Obscenity and hate do not facilitate unity among diverse communities,” she said. Full response here
— Challenger for FOP president says incumbent has alienated everyone — and hurt rank-and-file cops, by Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman
— Kam Buckner pledges to fix the CTA’s problems if he’s elected mayor — and he’s anti-dibs, by Block Club’s Noah Asimow
— VIDEO: Roderick Sawyer discusses mayoral candidacy with Laura Washington, via Block Club
— Springfield mayoral candidate wants to publicize list of businesses, individuals who had debt forgiven, by Illinois Times’ Scott Reeder
— WTTW News voter guide for the Chicago municipal election.
— RACE TO WATCH: Ald. Daniel La Spata is facing a cast of high-profile, well-funded challengers as he fights to keep representing Chicago’s 1st Ward, including former Ald. Joe Moreno, attorney Sam Royko, whose father was prominent columnist Mike Royko, and Logan Square Preservation President Stephen “Andy” Schneider.
Only in Chicago: Moreno, an incumbent in 2019, lost to La Spata after a series of legal scandals, including pleading guilty to lying to police about his car being stolen. “I lost my election last time because of me,” Moreno told Olivia.
The race that year also focused on Moreno having ties to developers. La Spata has since instituted a review process for zoning projects. La Spata said he’s worked to make democracy “a 365-day-a-year thing,” after coming into a ward with “some of the most opaque and corrupt decision making processes.”
Top issue: It’s the same as most every other ward — concerns about public safety.
JUICE: La Spata has been outpacing his opponents in fundraising, reporting $145,000 at the end of the last reporting period. Royko had nearly $104,000, and Schneider had about $92,000 in the bank.
— Chicago to receive $60M in federal funding to fight homelessness: “It’s part of $315 million in federal funding to 46 communities across the U.S. to fight homelessness,” reports Tribune’s Lizzie Kane.
— The folks in line to profit from Lightfoot’s Bally’s casino deal: “Among them: the family of the woman chairing the mayor’s reelection campaign fund, contractors that are Lightfoot financial backers and two clout-heavy real estate investors,” by Sun-Times’ Tim Novak and Robert Herguth.
— Chicago offering $11M in grants for local nonprofit arts organizations, by Sun-Times’ Stefano Esposito
— Families accuse CPS of inaction in wake of deadly shooting outside Benito Juarez HS, by ABC 7’s Evelyn Holmes
— North Austin Center opens to promote education, sports, wellness — home to Jason Heyward Baseball Academy, by WGN’s Chip Brewster
— 2 Woodlawn residents block bus as migrants move into temporary shelter at former Wadsworth Elementary School, by Tribune’s Richard Requena and Laura Rodríguez Presa
— District 214 considers hiring lobbyist over proposed change to taxing authority for Bears project: “We’re going to do what we have to do for our students and the district,” the superintendent said this week. “We are not drawing a line in the sand. We want to have a consensus. We want to join hands and get through this thing.” Daily Herald’s Eric Peterson reports.
— Archdiocese announces mergers of Schaumburg, Hoffman Estates parishes, by Daily Herald’s Griffin Krueger
— Battle over Rockford abortion services heads to court with lawsuit from clinic neighbors, via Rockford Register Star
— Feds’ child porn sweep on Telegram app leads to arrest of Chicago man, more than a dozen others, by Sun-Times’ Jon Seidel
— Former East Bank Club controller gets more than 4 years in federal prison for embezzling $4M, by Tribune’s Jason Meisner
— Christian Mitchell, the deputy governor for public safety, energy and infrastructure under Gov. JB Pritzker, has been named the next vice president for civic engagement at the University of Chicago, beginning April 1. Here’s the release
— Ray LaHood is behind a new internship program that will benefit Bradley University students wanting to experience Congress. The Michel-LaHood Summer Congressional Internship Program is named after LaHood, the former congressman and U.S. transportation secretary, and the late Bob Michel, a former House Republican leader and mentor to LaHood. Both men attended Bradley.
LaHood’s son is Rep. Darin LaHood (IL-16), who praised his dad for “supporting youth engagement in our democracy.” Agreeing to host interns include Rep. LaHood, Robin Kelly (IL-02) and Eric Sorensen (IL-17). LaHood and Sorensen represent Peoria, and Kelly is also a Bradley alum.
— Lindsay C. Jenkins has been nominated as a judge for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
— Ambitious proposal from Congressman Sean Casten aims to break Washington gridlock: The Illinois Democrat “is introducing a package of legislation he is calling ‘A Common Sense Vision for American Democracy,’” reports NBC 5’s Charlie Wojciechowski.
We asked for your political selfies:
Kent Gray with South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem.
Carlos Jaramillo with former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley.
Kathy Posner with former President Donald Trump.
Kyle Ryan with Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky.
Warren Silver, second from left, with Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
John Straus with Sen. Tammy Duckworth.
Chris Ruys with former President Barack Obama (Hey, it’s Friday!).
How do you survive the February doldrums? Email [email protected]
— McCarthy calls for intel briefing on Chinese spy balloon over Montana, by POLITICO’s Lara Seligman and Phelim Kine
— Road trip to Arizona, where the GOP would rather lose than change, by POLITICO’s David Siders
— Meet the border-district Republican at the ‘epicenter’ of the immigration fight, by Sarah Ferris and Olivia Beavers
— Bertha Bell Cross, housekeeper for many, loved seeing her kids, grandkids succeed, dead at 85: “For decades, she traveled from her South Side home to clean the homes of prominent Gold Coast and Lincoln Park families. ““She started as a housekeeper, but she became part of our family,” said Emily Singer Lucio, daughter of former Ald. Bill Singer. Sun-Times’ Mitch Dude.
— Katie Fitzgerald is president and CEO of Ronald McDonald House Charities effective March 6. Fitzgerald has been president and COO at Feeding America nonprofit.
— Brad Stotler is now director of public policy at the Illinois Corn Growers Association. Stotler has been district director for Rep. Darin LaHood since he entered Congress in 2015.
— Phil Melin is executive director of Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse CALA-Illinois.
— APS & Associates, the public affairs firm led by Alex Sims-Jones, is hiring for two positions: associate and senior associate.
THURSDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Diana Turowski for correctly answering that the Edgewater Beach Hotel on Sheridan Road once offered seaplane rides to the Loop.
TODAY’s QUESTION: What Chicago museum and historical society is housed in a former Chicago fire station? Email [email protected]
Today: former Sun-Times CEO Edwin Eisendrath, Al Jazeera correspondent John Hendren, Brentano Math & Science Academy principal Seth Lavin and campaign consultant Eli Stone.
Saturday: Cook County assistant deputy elections clerk Matt Fruth, Adelstein Liston Media’s Ann Liston and Corporate Cleaning CEO Neal Zucker.
Sunday: Senate Dems deputy comms director Reena Tandon, RubyRose Strategies founder DeRondal Bevly, photographer Suzette Bross Bulley, reform activist Lowell Jaffe and writer and journalist Hannah Alani.
via Illinois Playbook https://ift.tt/vBldpeS
February 3, 2023 at 07:45AM