TGIF, Illinois. Enjoy the weekend and get ready for the General Assembly to return to work next week for two months of big-issue legislating. BREAKING FROM BUCKINGHAM PALACE: Prince Philip, the queen’s husband, has died at age 99. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot spent the week having to talk about the police shooting of Adam Toledo
TGIF, Illinois. Enjoy the weekend and get ready for the General Assembly to return to work next week for two months of big-issue legislating.
BREAKING FROM BUCKINGHAM PALACE: Prince Philip, the queen’s husband, has died at age 99.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot spent the week having to talk about the police shooting of Adam Toledo and the road rage shooting of a toddler. She saw the governor sign two pieces of legislation she has opposed. The Cook County Democrats took the unusual move of endorsing state legislation for a 21-member elected school board in her city — which Lightfoot has rejected for being unwieldy. And a group of media organizations pulled together an unscientific email survey that suggested the mayor was losing support among residents.
There were some good headlines in the mix, including Lightfoot hosting Vice President Kamala Harris in Chicago. The mayor also expanded the hours of Chicago public libraries, announced a new jobs youth program, welcomed two mass vaccination sites, and cheered the $33 million in federal vaccination aid coming to Chicago.
The good news didn’t stop the cacophony of critics on social media, especially those who homed in on the survey that the mayor’s team and others said was deeply flawed.
Lightfoot’s campaign aides say the email survey doesn’t jibe with the support they’ve seen in the mayor’s own polling, most recently from January — numbers they don’t want to share because it feels like spiking the ball at a time when the city is still suffering.
Lightfoot’s camp isn’t worried about Cook County Democrats pushing back against the mayor. It fits her brand as operating independently of the machine-style politics the party, fairly and unfairly, known for.
The mayor’s campaign team has quietly started to fundraise after taking a break during much of the pandemic. She’s pulled in $269,860 from 229 donors between her two campaign committees during the first quarter, according to Lightfoot aides.
She isn’t expected to ramp up fundraising until the end of the year or in early 2022, a year before the 2023 election — and presumably when much of daily life has returned to normal. By then, she hopes for some better headlines.
There’s no love in baseball: Lightfoot and Pritzker booed at White Sox game.
Tuesday’s municipal elections were a mixed bag for vice with communities divided on referendums that would allow cannabis sales and video gambling.
Cook County: The Village of Summit and a portion of Roselle approved pot sales, while Norridge voters snuffed out the idea (see what I did there). Norridge voters did, however, overwhelmingly approve video gambling in their town — 70 percent to 29 percent.
DuPage County: Woodridge and the DuPage side of Roselle voted in favor of cannabis. That area of Roselle also narrowly approved cannabis cultivation.
Lake County: Lincolnshire voters defeated their cannabis initiative by one vote, 472-471.
Will County: The town of Bolingbrook gave a thumbs down to video gambling, 55 percent to 48 percent.
Longtime elections attorney Michael Del Galdo says in spite of the losses for cannabis dispensaries, there’s been a “sea change” in suburban voters’ attitudes on marijuana.
“If you would have asked me five years ago about the possibility of suburban voters approving marijuana sales in their towns, I would have said that you are smoking something,” he said in a statement to Playbook (he did it, too). Del Galdo pointed to the DuPage portion of Roselle approving pot sales and Lincolnshire nearly approving weed as examples.
Failure of the referendums, he said, may have more to do with “unpersuasive or over-complicated” language than how voters really feel.
Have a tip, suggestion, birthday, anniversary, new job, or any other nugget for Playbook? Get in touch: [email protected]
No official public events.
At Kellar School in Robbins at 11 a.m. to discuss localized support for K-12 students returning to the classroom. Then at Markham Fieldhouse at 12:30 p.m. to discuss expanding economic equity in the south suburbs.
No official public events.
The Illinois Department of Public Health on Thursday reported 34 deaths and 3,739 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus disease. That’s a total of 21,457 fatalities and 1,269,196 cases in Illinois. The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total testing from April 1 through 7 is 4.2 percent. Chicago’s positivity rate is at 5.2 percent.
— Vaccine eligibility expands but tighter rules loom: “Just three weeks after Gov. J.B. Pritzker outlined his plan for eventually lifting all coronavirus-related restrictions, some of the experts who have advised his administration instead are suggesting it’s time for rules be tightened once again,” by Tribune’s Dan Petrella, Alice Yin and Jenny Whidden.
— Pritzker urges frustrated Chicagoans to hit the suburbs — Arwady suggests Indiana: “We now need to get as many shots into arms as quickly as we possibly can,” the governor said. “I want to make sure that people in Chicago know that they are welcome to sign up for our mass vaccination sites.” Sun-Times’ Mitchell Armentrout reports.
— Illinois sets single-day vaccination record as worry over variants grows, by the Daily Herald’s Jake Griffin
— U. of C. issues stay-at-home order due to ‘large cluster’ of Covid cases, via NBC/5’s Becca Wood
— DEM PARTY CHAIR ROBIN KELLY vows stronger candidate recruitment in GOP strongholds: “We’re planning how we can build a stronger party. I know people say we’re a blue state, but there’s a lot of places where there’s still a lot of red, and Democrats feel like we need to do more,” Kelly said in a virtual meeting of the City Club of Chicago. Tribune’s Rick Pearson reports.
… Kelly leads Dem Party while documents list Karen Yarbrough as party chair: The Democratic Party updated documents to report Michael Dorf had taken over as treasurer, but it did not report Rep. Robin Kelly’s new role as party chairman. “The curious omission reveals how carefully the Congresswoman’s team is reviewing the fine print in election laws to avoid attracting any scrutiny from federal authorities,” reports WCIA’s Mark Maxwell.
— New state rep appointed: Democratic leaders in the 32nd House District appointed Cyril Nichols, the associate athletics director for City Colleges, to replace Rep. Andre Thapedi, who has stepped down after 12 years. Nichols’ district encompasses part of the South Side and south suburbs and could be redrawn with the upcoming redistricting map. Others who applied: Allyson Scrutchens, who worked for Ald. Roderick Sawyer; Kimberley Egonmwan, a General Assembly staffer; and Cook County Young Democrats Chair Chakena Perry.
— CALL US CURIOUS: Richard Uihlein, the Uline CEO and donor to conservative candidates and causes, just gave $3,500 to NaperPAC, a Naperville committee headed by former Republican state Rep. Grant Wehrli.
— Junaid Ahmed, who’s running in the 8th Congressional District, is expected to report that he’s raised $216,000 since launching his campaign in February.
— CITY ‘IS GROUND ZERO’ for lead pipe problem, even if Biden’s $45B replacement plan passes: “City Hall is expecting to pay for the replacement of just 650 of Chicago’s 400,000 lead service lines this year, according to the Department of Water Management. For the vast majority of homeowners, Lightfoot echoes what they heard from her two immediate predecessors, Rahm Emanuel and Richard M. Daley. It is up to individual property owners, not the city, to decide if it is worth replacing the toxic pipes at their own expense,” by Tribune’s Michael Hawthorne.
— Company that got $295M in Chicago city business lied to get deals, City Hall says: “The city wants to ban Joel Kennedy Constructing Corp. from city contracts, saying it falsely claimed that more than half of its work was done by city residents and that it’s based in Chicago,” by Sun-Times’ Tim Novak.
— Aldermen move to prevent parade permit infighting: “The ordinance preserves permit priority for parades that had been forced to cancel due to the coronavirus pandemic,” by Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman.
— EPA chief’s justice pledge rested by Chicago metal-plant fight: “Southeast Chicago residents living with lead in their Little League fields and neurotoxins in their air have fought city and state officials for years to prevent a massive metal shredding plant from moving into their neighborhood along the Calumet River. And now that new EPA Administrator Michael Regan is insisting that community-focused environmental equity will be part of the “DNA” of his agency, their fight over the General Iron plant may be an ideal early test of whether his promises will be kept,” by Bloomberg Law’s Jennifer Hijazi.
— CPS high school reopening agreement remains elusive: “The teachers union has scheduled a meeting of its House of Delegates for Sunday, the day before thousands of teachers are due to report to high schools for the first time in a year,” by Sun-Times’ Nader Issa.
— Chicago Riverwalk restaurants, vendors begin reopening today, reports ABC/7’s Diane Pathieu.
— U. of C. launching nation’s first quantum startup accelerator: “Duality plans to help up to 10 quantum startups per year by providing office and lab space, access to research facilities and $50,000 in unrestricted funds. If successful, the accelerator could turn the South Side of Chicago into the Silicon Valley of quantum technology — a next-generation convergence of science and industry,” writes Tribune’s Robert Channick.
— Two officers involved in CTA platform shooting face firing: “Police Department-related charges were filed Tuesday against Officers Melvina Bogard and Bernard Butler in connection with an intense encounter that led to what officials alleged was the unnecessary shooting of Ariel Roman on Feb. 28, 2020, at the Grand Avenue Red Line station,” by Tribune’s Jeremy Gorner.
— ON THE AIR: Fran Spielman — who got her start in sports radio — interviews Cubs Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg: “Sandberg, 61, recently joined the Cubs as a multiplatform analyst. He will be part of game broadcasts as well as pregame and postgame shows, podcasts and interview shows.”
— Andrea Bocelli tour — latest arena trek headed to Chicago: “The 21-date “Believe” tour, in support of Bocelli’s new album of the same name, kicks off Oct. 13 in Milwaukee,” by Sun-Times’ Miriam Di Nunzio.
— LOWE’s LIABLE in Illinois sales tax fraud action: “The home improvement chain Lowe’s could be on the hook for millions of dollars in unpaid Illinois sales taxes and penalties under a court order that holds the retailer isn’t entitled to a tax benefit generally reserved for building contractors. Cook County Circuit Court Judge James Snyder ruled Lowe’s engaged in a “material violation of the law” in avoiding taxes by portraying itself as a contractor when it sold and installed dishwashers and microwave ovens in the homes of Illinois customers,” via Bloomberg Tax.
— Justice Department to intervene in disability discrimination suit against Chicago: A complaint alleges the city “fails to provide people who are blind, have low vision, or are deaf-blind with equal access to pedestrian signal information at intersections,” per a statement from the feds.
— Warrant issued after man skips court on charges he ran from cops when Adam Toledo was fatally shot: “Ruben Roman Jr. was supposed to appear in court Wednesday on a 2019 case but never showed up,” by the Sun-Times’ Matthew Hendrickson.
— Murder charges for West Rogers Park man who knew roommate ‘was dying and did not call an ambulance,’ by Tribune’s Rosemary Sobol
— RICHARD IRVIN looks forward to second term as Aurora mayor: “Irvin is no stranger to history, being the first Black mayor elected in Aurora four years ago. And in a way, history was on his side in the 2021 election. Aurora has had nine mayors since 1953, and Aurorans have had 12 chances to vote incumbents out of office, but have done it only twice,” by Aurora Beacon-News’ Steve Lord.
— Kristal Larson declares victory as Avon Township clerk: “Larson will become the second openly transgender person ever elected in Illinois, according to the Washington, D.C.-based LGBTQ Victory Fund,” by Lake County News-Sun’s James T. Norman.
— Kathryn Ciesla declares victory in Northbrook village president race; caucus candidates lead in trustee race: “Ciesla said the ‘first order of business’ is to hire a new village manager to replace Rich Nahrstadt, who is retiring,” by Pioneer Press’ Kaitlin Edquist.
— In the small village of Ford Heights, voters support a former mayor accused of stealing nearly $150K in public funds, writes Daily Southtown’s Ted Slowik.
Opinion: Politics creeps further into south suburban public higher education: Monica Gordon was backed by heavy hitters from the Democratic Party in her bid for a seat on a community board that oversees Chicago Heights-based Prairie State College. “If results stand after certification, Gordon will have ousted Trustee Joelle Mulhearn, a Flossmoor elementary school teacher who sought a second term. Ronald J. “Ronnie” White, of Chicago Heights, president-elect of the International Conference of Police Chaplains,” writes Ted Slowik in the Daily Southtown.
— ADAM KINZINGER calls for Matt Gaetz to resign: The 16th District congressman is the first Republican to call for Gaetz to resign since news broke that the Justice Department is investigating the Florida congressman over sex trafficking allegations. Kinzinger is a fierce critic of former President Donald Trump, as well as Gaetz and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.). Kinzinger’s recently formed political action committee works to help fund Republican candidates who have separated themselves from Trumpism.
… Gaetz paid accused sex trafficker, who then Venmo’d teen, reports The Daily Beast
… Key figure in Matt Gaetz probe likely cooperating with federal prosecutors, by POLITICO’s Josh Gerstein
… Gaetz-tied group threatens to sue reporters writing on his Trump relationship, by POLITICO’s Gabby Orr and Meridith McGraw
— IN-PERSON LEARNING this year gives schools a head start for planning next year: “Educators describe schooling during the pandemic as building a plane while flying. Now, they say they have a longer runway to work with for next year,” by WBEZ’s Susie An.
— Illinois ranks third for structurally deficient bridges, according to the the American Road and Transportation Builders Association via the Farm Journal.
— Illinois State Armory renovation plans move forward. It ‘has the potential to re-energize’ by State Journal-Register’s Ben Szalinski
Proposed legislation would legalize supervised injection facilities to combat drug overdoses: “State Rep. LaShawn Ford (D-Chicago) has proposed the creation of safe consumption rooms — also referred to as supervised injection facilities. Proponents of similar programs around the world argue they allow people who suffer from addiction to take substances in a safe environment and reduce the likelihood of fatal overdoses,” by NPR’s Derek Cantu.
— Biden moves ahead on civil rights without members of Congress. But his legacy depends on them, by POLITICO’s Laura Barron-Lopez and Eugene Daniels
— Biden’s green goals face a power grid reckoning, by POLITICO’s Eric Wolff
— Advocates launching a petition drive to urge Justice Breyer to retire, by POLITICO’s Josh Gerstein
— What an analysis of 377 Americans arrested or charged in the Capitol insurrection tells us, by Robert A. Pape, director of the Chicago Project on Security and Threats.
— Cameo CEO Steven Galanis on building a $1B start-up: “Our goal at Cameo is to become a publicly traded company most likely in the next 18 to 36 months,” Galanis tells CNBC Make It.
— Big political names showed up to mark the American Council of Engineering Companies of Illinois Engineering Excellence Awards Thursday. Guest speakers at the virtual event: Reps. Cheri Bustos, Rodney Davis, and Raja Krishnamoorthi, Illinois Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch, Senate President Don Harmon, House Minority Leader Jim Durkin, Senate Minority Leader Dan McConchie, state Sens. Don DeWitte and Ram Villivalam, and Chicago Ald. Gilbert Villegas. Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued a proclamation honoring ACEC Illinois for its 100th anniversary year.
— Tribune journalists are close to an improbable win in quest for new owners: “The battle for control of Tribune Publishing isn’t over yet. But it’s taken a major turn — one that only the most optimistic observers could have foreseen even as recently as a week or two ago,” writes Bloomberg.
— Meet the Tribune’s potential savior: “Here’s more on Hansjorg Wyss, the 85-year-old Wyoming resident who is part of the team making a $680 million offer for Tribune Publishing,” by Crain’s Steven R. Strahler.
— How a Chicago nonprofit is working to promote diversity within TV, by WBEZ’s Angel Idowu
THURSDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Playbook Trivia buffs Fred Lebed and Clem Balanoff for correctly answering that the Margaret Cross Norton Building was the first building in Springfield’s Capitol complex to be named after a woman. (h/t Dave Joens of the Illinois State Archives for the question.)
TODAY’s QUESTION: What job did Mayor Richard J. Daley offer Jesse Jackson when he first arrived in Chicago? Email to [email protected].
Today: Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx, former first lady of Illinois Patti Blagojevich, public affairs strategist Anne-Marie St. Germaine, legislative affairs aide to president of the Cook County Board Lisbeth Leanos.
Saturday: Civic leader Marci Holzer, BrEpic Communications CEO Justin Breen and author Stuart Dybek.
Sunday: Jacob Marcos Peterson, comms and diversity inclusion consultant; Pablo David, VP of government affairs at AJ Capital Partners; Andrew Huff, a nonprofit exec who founded Gapers Block; and Alexandra Eidenberg, the Vote Mama Illinois state chair.
- Shia Kapos @shiakapos