This should be quite an interesting race. In 2014, Republican Bruce Rauner won against the unpopular Democratic incumbent Pat Quinn who had been damaged by an unpopular tax increase. Rauner used his popular (and Democratic) wife to swing enough voters in the Chicago suburbs to win the election as well as running as the businessman who will clean up Springfield.
His reelection strategy is quite odd: He’s trying to run against the Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives, Mike Madigan, who isn’t a candidate for governor. I’ve seen national Republicans try to tie their Democratic opponent to Nancy Pelosi (the EVIL San Francisco liberal) but I can’t understand trying to use the same tactic in a statewide race. Anyone who knows the name of Mike Madigan is likely above the low information voter. Sure, Madigan is hated by Republicans, I have a co worker who will burst a blood vessel every time he hears the name, but Rauner already has those votes locked up.
Kennedy is full of shit with this claim. I happily voted for Rahm Emmanuel and I’m quite glad that there has been an incredible amount of new development in Chicago. Kennedy can lock up the Chuy Garcia votes, but Chuy got his ass kicked in the Chicago mayoral race.
So, I guess that leaves me supporting JB Pritzker in the primary. I can’t say I’m thrilled to see him running on basically an anti-Trump platform. Yes, Trump is awful, but that just seems like a cheap political ploy.
I live in Chicago, and find your claim that only Republicans hate Madigan amusing. He is mostly hated outside of his own district, and his name is widely known by even low-information voters because he’s been Speaker for longer than I’ve been alive (over 30 years). He is largely responsible for the pension and budget mess the state is in.
Regardless, as you say, Rauner is not running against Madigan, and he can only be voted out by the voters in his district anyway (which will never happen).
Anyway, I mostly just find it shameful that the state Democratic party establishment has decided that Pritzker, a billionaire with no governing experience, is the right candidate to go up against another billionaire with no governing experience. If he wins the nomination, I won’t vote for either of them.
I’ll be voting for Daniel Biss in the primary. I do question his judgement for choosing and then dumping Carlos Ramirez-Rosa as his running mate (who I despise, and now he is running for House Rep in my district, but anyway), but otherwise he is the best of the lot. Which isn’t saying much- this is the Illinois Democratic Party, after all.
The ‘state Democratic establishment’ hasn’t decided a thing. I wanted to give Kennedy a chance but conspiracy theories and whining about gentrification aren’t good political tactics to win my vote.
I just googled Bliss. Too funny, the pic on his campaign’s website homepage is very near where I live. But, an idiotic LaSalle street tax is an absolute deal breaker for me.
Chuy Garcia is just like Bernie Sanders, both pathetic jokes of politicians. The goal in politics is to win elections, not to finish in a lowly second place and not even really be competitive. I’m really glad Rahm is the mayor of Chicago and I look forward to having a Democrat replace Rauner.
Pritzker has the bulk of the endorsements, and the broke DNC is salivating at the prospect of a candidate that can fund his own campaign. There is no conspiracy to get him elected, but that favoritism is obvious.
I have never paid attention to a thing Kennedy has said as I am sick of political dynasties. At least we can agree on disliking him.
Your ravings against Sanders and Garcia aren’t even worth responding to.
Is Rauner facing any primary heat from Republicans, or is that not a thing. If this ends up being 2 billionaires trying to outspend each other (Rauner/Pritzker) it’s going to be
hard for me to be excited in any way.
The state’s financial situation is a bloody disaster (and not helped by the fact that the city of Chicago and Cook County are both in horrible shape, too). The seeds of our current situation were planted many years ago, with lots of benign neglect of the looming pension obligations, and now it’s hard to see what can be done to get us out of the mess.
Rauner got elected on the premise that a successful businessman would be able to turn things around, but his term has become nothing but a four-year staring contest with Madigan.
Frankly, I’m not sure why any sane person would want the job.
He was also elected on the promise that he’d be willing and able to work with the Democrats to help fix the state’s finances and, instead (as you note), just stonewalled any budget action because he wasn’t getting pet non-budgetary demands met.
I heard him on WBEZ this morning and was quite impressed with what little I heard. I’ll have to look into him. I’m getting a bit tired of being bombarded by JB Pritzker ads, and this guy seems to be sensible and also a bit anti-Madigan which is a plus for me (a most-of-my-life Democratic voter.) The idea that only Republicans dislike Madigan is silly to me.
Add me to the list of voters who will vote for Biss in the primary and Pritzker in the general. In fact, I’ll probably work for the Biss campaign and then move over to Pritzker’s campaign after he wins. As much as I’d like to see Biss in the governor’s mansion, I don’t think it’s very likely.
A group I belong to has had both Pritzker and Biss speak. I was hoping Kennedy would speak too but they haven’t been able to book him. This actually makes me wonder how serious a candidate Kennedy is – the group has 600+ progressive members, many of whom will work for one or more campaigns his year. It seems to me that an opportunity to entice a few dozen people to run phone banks or canvass door-to-door for you is worth a couple of hours of your time.
At any rate I was favorably impressed with both Biss and Pritzker.