November 14, 2018
RAUNER BLOWOUT MEANS WORST IS YET TO COME FOR ILLINOIS REPUBLICANS

When an incumbent governor loses statewide by 659,527 votes, loses Cook County and Chicago by 820,960 votes, and loses the collar counties by 27,525, it's time to abandon ship. Bruce Rauner (R) got crushed, and he cannot blame President Trump. He did a poor job of governing, messaging and defining himself. But IL has become so lopsidedly Democratic that no Republican could have won. Democrats gained 2 US House seats, 6 IL House seats, and beat 2 Republican Cook County commissioners. 2020 and 2022 will likely be worse. Full Article...


November 7, 2018
OPEN CITY TREASURER POST DRAWS A "GIVE-ME-MORE-WORK" 2019 CROWD

There are misguided people who like to create more work for themselves. They're called neurotic. There are politicians -- such as the assembling 2019 field of candidates for Chicago city treasurer -- who want to create a whole lot of work for themselves. They're called ambitious and opportunistic. The open $133,545-a year post is a steppingstone to nowhere. Of the recent occupants, one got dumped, another appointed state's attorney (and then lost), another indicted and convicted on corruption and bribery charges (which were later reduced in a plea bargain), two others resigned mid-term, and the current treasurer is retiring. Governing magazine called the job a "backwater." 2019 candidates include Ald. Ameya Pawar (47th), who wants some of the treasurer's $6 billion of city revenues to be invested in affordable housing and child care centers. Bring on more risky investments. Peter Gariepy and Melissa Conyears-Ervin are also running, and all three want the staid office to do more than it does right now. Voters want a new treasurer who won't quit and won't be indicted. Good luck with that. Full Article...


October 31, 2018
ANTICIPATED "BLUE WAVE" COULD BE JUST A BLUE RIPPLE

Political pundits have long assumed that an anti-Trump, anti-Republican "Blue Wave" is building, and that the 11/6/18 election will be a sweeping Democratic victory. Yet Republicans look solid in "red" states. In Illinois, Rauner is a goner, but Democrats will pick up only one congressional seat (Roskam). Nationally, Republicans will GAIN 2-3 US Senate seats, will lose 18-20 US House seats, and will lose up to half a dozen governorships. Here are my predictions. Full Article...


October 24, 2018
'WHO IS FOOLING WHO?' IN 45TH WARD ALDERMAN RACE

Ald. John Arena is the kind of guy who does not suffer fools gladly, and he considers a "fool" to be anybody who disagrees with him. Having won in 2011 by 30 votes and in 2015 by 1,225 votes, there seems to be a lot of fools in the Northwest Side 45th Ward. The 2019 aldermanic field is forming, but no formidable anti-Arena candidate is emerging. Arena's vociferous support of 7 "mixed-use" housing projects with CHA tenants in "affordable" units has inflamed some voters, but Arena is a leftist Bernie Sanders Democrat with a solid base in liberal, upscale Portage Park. The projects, incidentally, are in Jefferson Park. How nice. Arena has an 8-year record, which isn't too bad. He's not quite "unassailable," but he's a heavy favorite for re-election. Full Article...


October 17, 2018
WOMEN, MINORITIES CROWD BALLOT IN 2018 STATEWIDE CONTESTS

Do the #MeToo and BlackLivesMatter movements, as they say, have legs? We will find out on 11/6. Of the 36 governor races, Democrats have nominated a woman in 12, Republicans in 3; of the 35 U.S. Senate races, Democrats have nominated a woman in 15, Republicans in 6. Black Democrats could win governorships in GA, FL and MD, and a senate seat in MS. A gay could be CO governor. We live in an "outraged society," where everything that anybody says or does will be "offensive" to somebody. But that may not translate into electoral victory. Democrats hold 26 of 35 senate seats. They could lose MO, ND, IN, WV, and FL; Republicans could lose their seats in AZ, NV, TX and TN. But the 51-49 Senate will remain Republican, with Republicans perhaps gaining 1 or 2 seats. Democrats will net a few governorships, but the U.S. House is the prize. If Democrats knock off 23-plus Republicans, Nancy Pelosi (D) will be speaker again. Full Article...


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