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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Rothenberg Touts His Favorite Candidates So Far

Republicans have rallied around Illinois state Sen. Peter Roskam (R) in their effort to hold onto the seat of retiring Rep. Henry Hyde (R), which is considered politically competitive. Well-spoken and likable, Roskam sounds like a well-versed, mainstream conservative who fits this district well.
Roskam worked on Capitol Hill years ago for both Hyde and Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas), so he understands Congress and Congressional campaigns. He's one of those rare politicians who one minute sounds like a policy wonk and then next talks like a strategist and campaign consultant. I found him refreshing for his candor and insight.

Democrat Dan Seals is running against Rep. Mark Kirk (R) in Illinois and has little or no chance of winning. But if state and national Democrats have any sense, they'll find a way to use the African-American businessman's obvious skills and appeal. A graduate of Boston University, he holds a master's degree from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and an MBA from the University of Chicago. He currently works for GE Commercial Finance.

Is this like not knowing he was on comedy central satire news show....

Posted Thursday, March 02, 2006
SPRINGFIELD - As tempers flared at the state Capitol, Gov. Rod Blagojevich said Wednesday he didn't know he had appointed a Nation of Islam official to serve on a hate crimes commission until learning it from news reports.
Claudette Marie Muhammad was named to the commission last summer, but Blagojevich said he learned about it only in the last week or two after criticism of her appointment was discussed in news stories.
He nodded vigorously when asked if he wished his staff had discussed the appointment with him, but he would say little more.
"I don't know all the ins and outs and all the details of that appointment," he said in an interview with The Associated Press.
Meanwhile, one group of lawmakers demanded Muhammad repudiate racist and anti-Semitic remarks by Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.
Another member of the Governor's Commission on Discrimination and Hate Crimes, Lonnie Nasatir, said Blagojevich should ask for her resignation.
But black lawmakers said it was unfair to demand Muhammad speak out against her religious leader if other commission members aren't held responsible for the decisions and comments of their religious leaders. Catholic members, for instance, have not been asked to condemn their church's handling of child abuse cases, they said.
In an indication of the tense atmosphere, neither group of lawmakers would answer questions at their dueling news conferences.
Muhammad, who is the Nation of Islam's director of community outreach and Farrakhan's chief of protocol, issued a statement Wednesday saying she wants to "break down the barriers of hate and discrimination."
"I believe in fairness to all people regardless of race, creed, color, national origin or religious beliefs," she said.
Farrakhan often has attacked whites, Jews and gays over the years. At a speech over the weekend, he accused "Hollywood Jews" of "promoting lesbianism, homosexuality" and other "filth." He also said Zionists and conservatives manipulated President Bush into attacking Iraq.
Blagojevich condemned Farrakhan's comments. "They're wrong and hateful and they're harmful," he said.
But Blagojevich said he doesn't believe in "guilt by association" and wouldn't hold Muhammad responsible for her boss's comments, so long as she opposes discrimination and hate crimes.
"In a way, this is actually an opportunity to keep bridging differences and misunderstandings," he said.
His office did not immediately return calls Wednesday afternoon seeking comment on whether Muhammad's statement satisfies Blagojevich's concerns.
But in a statement of his own, Blagojevich said Muhammad had reaffirmed "her commitment to promoting tolerance and acceptance."
Rep. Sidney Mathias, a Buffalo Grove Republican and former member of the commission, said Muhammad should resign unless she condemns Farrakhan's comments.
Commission member Nasatir, a regional director for the Anti-Defamation League, said Muhammad should be removed because her leader is "promoting hate."
But others said she has served for months without showing any sign of being unfit for the commission.
Sen. Donne Trotter, D-Chicago, said he was stunned that his colleagues "would take such a narrow-minded view and essentially attack a woman's integrity and character and her objectivity because she belongs to a group that they personally do not like and have never liked. To me it sort of hints to a little hypocrisy."

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Milk Man makes up fake headlines attacking JBT... Chiago Tribune Story

2 new television ads for Oberweis use made-up headlines

By Ofelia Casillas and Rick PearsonTribune political reporters

March 1, 2006
Republican governor candidate Jim Oberweis is launching two TV ads that use made-up newspaper headlines to attack front-runner Judy Baar Topinka's integrity.The words are displayed as if they appeared on the front pages of the Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and the State Journal-Register of Springfield.But Oberweis campaign manager Joe Wiegand said, "those aren't headlines." Instead, he said, the "text is excerpted" from stories that appeared in those publications. A review of the stories did not find the exact words as they were presented in the ads, which are to begin airing Wednesday."We are not printing a newspaper," Wiegand said Tuesday. "We are doing a television advertisement."Charles Wheeler, a journalism professor at the University of Illinois at Springfield, called the ads deceitful."It strikes me that you are trying to use the newspapers' good name for your own purposes and misrepresenting what the newspaper actually reported," said Wheeler, a former longtime Statehouse reporter for the Sun-Times.One Oberweis ad displays the Post-Dispatch with the words "Ordered to Destroy Document" and cites a decade-old story about a former Topinka aide who alleged he had been ordered to shred a document listing investors in two state-backed hotel loan projects.But the actual headline on the story was, "Illinois treasurer aide is accused; Loans, hotel investors' list are involved." The matter was referred to local prosecutors, but no further action was taken.The ad also shows the words "Investigation Into Topinka" appearing below the Tribune masthead. But the actual headline for the 2003 story cited by Oberweis was "Campaign probe of Topinka launched; U.S. subpoenas workers' records."Topinka has said it has been three years since her office has heard from federal prosecutors about allegations of state workers' doing political work.A second ad criticizes Topinka for trying to settle a massive debt owed the state on the hotel loans a decade ago--a move blocked by then-Atty. Gen. Jim Ryan, who said he believed the settlement offer was too low.The ad displays a Sun-Times with the words, "$30 Million Sweetheart Deal" and the Journal-Register with the words, "Attorney General Blocks Bad Deal." In actuality, the Sun-Times cited by the campaign was an editorial with the headline, "Sweetheart hotel deal should be jilted." The headline for the Journal-Register story actually read, "Hotels' debt deal blocked; Attorney general cites U of I study."Ron Gidwitz, another GOP contender, has previously aired ads critical of Topinka, the three-term state treasurer.A fourth major candidate, state Sen. Bill Brady (R-Bloomington), said his campaign won the endorsement of the Illinois State Rifle Association on Tuesday. Brady has proposed eliminating state Firearms Owner Identification Cards.Meanwhile, the political action committee of U.S. Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) is urging supporters to donate to Iraq war veteran Tammy Duckworth in her bid for the Democratic nomination against Christine Cegelis and Lindy Scott for the congressional seat being vacated by Rep. Henry Hyde.In an e-mail to be sent Wednesday to Keeping America's Promise contributors, Kerry said Duckworth "knows that it's time for veterans to speak up for a stronger America."

10th District Dems...

2 Democrats vying to challenge 10th District Congressman Mark Kirk met face to face in Highland Park this week. Zane Smith and Dan Seals participated in a forum at the Highland Park Community Center.

Smith bashed Dan Seals saying that Seals didn't have the right kind of experience to challenge Mark Kirk. Meanwhile Seals said that his experience working for Senator Joe Leiberman has prepared him to take on Kirk.

There was a lot of agreement on the issues such as withdrawing from Iraq, ending the Bush tax cuts, and providing universal health care. But a clear favorite came out of the forum... Seals trounced Smith 65 to 10 in the straw poll.

But even with the these two strong candidates, some of the committeemen/women in the room said it might be impossible to beat Congressman Kirk because of his popularity with many groups that often support Democrats and his ability to work with all wings of his own party.

More on this race coming soon... should be a fun one

Lake County Board Race- District 2

Latest from the ground in Lake County Board District #2..........

Incumbent Randall Whitmore has had his hands full for the last few months. He is facing a difficult primary challenge for his county board sit from Beach Park's Jason Mercure.

A lot of politicians have been talking about ethics recently, and now the issue seems to be coming up in this race...Decide for yourself on this one:

Randall Whitmore sent out a taxpayer funded mail piece to voters in his district, one problem, he sent it out within 30 days of the primary election, in other words some may say he is campaigning with government dollars. If its illegal for members of the General Assembly to send out state paid mailings within 30 days of the election, why is it ok for Randell Whitmore and other Lake County Board Members...

Bottom line-- Lake County needs tougher ethics rules

Legislators say "we don't want an anti-semite on the hate crimes panel"

Legislators of both parties are holding a press conference today in regards to Governor Rod Blagojevich's appointment of Claudette Marie Johnson an aide to anti-semite Louis Farrakhan, to Blagojevich's 'hate crimes panel.'


Obama team breaks more promises

The Suburban Pulse heard that Senator Barack Obama and his staff promised to meet with several suburban mayors for last week. But, when the mayors gathered together to meet with Senator Obama and his staff ---they never showed up. What was Obama doing? I hope he hasn't reverted back to his old college habits........

This isn't the first time that Senator Obama and his team has let people down... and it probably won't be the last time

Milkman on the attack...

Oberweis turns up heat on Topinka
By Eric KrolDaily Herald Political Writer
Posted Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Republican governor candidate Jim Oberweis today will begin airing a pair of TV ads blasting opponent Judy Baar Topinka for a controversial Springfield hotel loan deal and a pending federal investigation in her treasurer’s office.
With ethics looming as a top issue as former Gov. George Ryan’s corruption trial wraps up, the Sugar Grove dairy magnate is going on the offensive as the March 21 primary looms.
“Topinka tried to give away millions of taxpayer dollars to insider friends. A deal so rotten the Republican attorney general ordered it blocked,” an announcer says.
That’s a reference to Topinka’s proposed 1995 settlement of a state-backed loan for two downstate hotels with politically connected investors. Then-Attorney General Jim Ryan scuttled the deal.
Topinka told the Daily Herald editorial board last week she stands by the deal, although she admitted she should have tried to build consensus before proposing it.
The other ad refers to a list of hotel investors that top Topinka aides allegedly ordered a spokesman to shred. The aides denied it.
The second ad also refers to a 2003 subpoena for documents by the U.S. Attorney’s office following an ex-employee’s complaint that political work was being done on state time.
Topinka said she hasn’t heard back from authorities and doesn’t expect to. Topinka spokesman Eric Robinson said the ad is an “over the top” attack by a candidate lagging behind Topinka in the polls.
“Like milk gone bad, the Oberweis campaign has soured Illinois Republican voters once again,” Robinson said.
Oberweis joins Chicago millionaire Ron Gidwitz in ripping Topinka via TV. Like Gidwitz, Oberweis closes his–30-second ad with 15 seconds of himself talking about why he’s the best choice. Combining a negative ad with a candidate’s positive message, while cost-effective, also tends to drive up voters’ negative impressions of the candidate running the ad.
The other major Republican in the race, Bloomington state Sen. Bill Brady, has run a biographical ad downstate.
The GOP primary winner will face Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich or ex-Chicago alderman Edwin Eisdendrath.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

8th District Race...

The race for the 8th District Republican nomination to face Congresswoman Melissa Bean is going to be one of the most highly contested primaries in the Mid-west... The candidates are shown to the right... they include (from left to right, top first), Aaron Lincoln, S. David McSweeney, Kathy Salvi, Rep. Bob Churchill, and Ken Arnold.

Which one of these candidates do you think can win the primary? Beat Melissa Bean? What are their strengths and weaknesses?

Here is Roll Call's overview of the race

Terry Link staffer is an ex-con

Cynthia Marie Alexander a political aide to Senator Terry Link has an interesting history--- a history of money laundering, aiding and abetting a narcotics conspiracy, and obstructing justice. Alexander who works in Link's office was sentenced to 7 years in federal prison for her part in a Lake County cocaine ring in 1992. Below is a Chicago Tribune article from May 15, 1992:

A Lake County lawyer was sentenced in federal court Thursday to more than 7 years in prison for aiding a childhood friend's multimillion-dollar cocaine operation.Cynthia Alexander, 33, of Long Grove, was convicted by a jury last August of money laundering, aiding and abetting a narcotics conspiracy, and obstructing justice.Alexander's longtime friend, Clifford Jones, the admitted leader of the drug ring, pleaded guilty and testified at her trial that she was his adviser and accomplice in a cocaine business that at its peak made $7,000 a day in 1987. On Thursday, U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber sentenced Alexander, whose law office is in Waukegan, to 7 years and 3 months in prison.He also imposed a 10-year prison sentence on Jones that had been worked out by his lawyer and the government.Also convicted of money-laundering at the trial were the parents of Jones' former wife, James and Lavern Young; and Riley Barnett, a North Chicago real estate agent.In addition, Willie Coleman, a former North Chicago police officer, was convicted of providing security for the drug ring and allowing Jones' workers to use his home as a drug house.Previously, Leinenweber sentenced James Young to 2 years in prison, gave Young's wife 3 years of probation and sentenced Barnett to 3 1/2 years in prison and Coleman to more than 4 years in prison.In lengthy testimony at the trial last summer, Jones said he first met Alexander when both worked in a summer camp as teenagers. Years later, when Alexander was a lawyer in downtown Waukegan in 1985, Jones hired her to represent him on a gun charge.After that, the government contended, she helped Jones in numerous criminal ways for up to 2 1/2 years in the late 1980s.Alexander, who was once touted as a possible future judge, advised Jones to have his drug sellers carry less than five grams of cocaine at a time to avoid stiffer prison sentences if they were arrested, according to Assistant U.S. Atty. Patricia Holmes.Alexander also suggested the workers wrap the cocaine in magazine paper rather than the common white paper that might attract the attention of police, Holmes said.Alexander also let workers leave drug money at her office at the end of the day and let Jones use her law firm's bank accounts to launder drug money, Holmes said.With the assistance of the Youngs, Alexander also helped Jones launder money used to buy a $212,000 house in Chino Hills, Calif.Jones started cooperating with authorities months before the indictments took place.In one conversation secretly recorded by Jones, Barnett, the real estate agent, took Jones on a tour of the buildings he had bought on Jones' behalf and admitted he knew the money came from drug proceeds, Holmes said.

Blagojevich appoints a bigot to his hate crime panel

Governor Rod Blagojevich is starting to earn himself a reputation throughout the state --and its not a good reputation. With lots of rumors floating around about the Governor, and truths about his improprieties becoming public, one would think he would not appoint a Louis Farrakhan advisor to his 'hate crimes panel.' And this guy wonders why he is stuck at 35% in the polls... unreal click here to read the story click here to read Farrakhan's racist and anti semitic comments click here to email Governor Blagojevich-- tell him not to allow Louis Farrakhan or his people to be part of any hate crimes panel

This guy, Rod, he is a joke

Lake County Traffic...

It seems like all people do in Lake County is talk about how bad traffic is... But, Congressman Mark Kirk actually has done something about it. Click the link below watch a newsclip from ABC7 TV on the Lake County Intelligent Transportation System that Congressman Kirk led the fight for.

This is something that Democrats and Republicans in Lake County can be happy about!

New Blog!

The SUBURBAN PULSE is the place for all the latest political talk in the Chicago Suburbs. In the next few days this site will have plenty for you to see... check back often!!