Good Monday morning, Illinois. The juicy details of Bennifer (Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez) went public before BIF (Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework), explains Ryan Lizza and the national Playbook team. Rep. Adam Kinzinger has been tapped by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to serve on the select panel investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection. “I’m a Republican
Good Monday morning, Illinois. The juicy details of Bennifer (Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez) went public before BIF (Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework), explains Ryan Lizza and the national Playbook team.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger has been tapped by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to serve on the select panel investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.
“I’m a Republican dedicated to conservative values, but I swore an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution — and while this is not the position I expected to be in or sought out, when duty calls, I will always answer,” the Illinois Republican and Iraq War veteran said in a statement.
The appointment is already causing friction within the GOP — nationally and in Illinois.
“The Speaker has structured the select committee to satisfy her political objectives — which destroys its credibility,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy tweeted.
Kinzinger’s appointment follows Pelosi’s decision to reject two of McCarthy’s picks for the panel: Reps. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) and Jim Jordan (R-Ohio).
As POLITICO’s Jesse Naranjo and Olivia Beavers report: “Both are aggressive defenders of the former president, and they were already gearing up to shift the focus onto Democrats, rather than Trump and their party.”
Pelosi says Banks and Jordan, “would jeopardize the integrity of the investigation, and there’s no way I would tolerate their antics as we seek the truth.”
In response, McCarthy pulled all five of his Republican picks — including Illinois Rep. Rodney Davis. That now leaves two Republicans, Kinzinger and Rep. Liz Cheney, and seven Democrats. The committee’s first meeting is slated for Tuesday.
Though Kinzinger’s appointment will add an important bipartisan voice to the committee in the broad sense, it’s not likely to insulate him from criticism within his own party.
“I’m against [Kinzinger] being appointed by Speaker Pelosi,” said Republican state Sen. Darren Bailey, who is running for governor of Illinois and says Republicans should name Republicans to the committee, and Democrats, Democrats.
“In Illinois, we know all too well what happens when you give a speaker this much power and it never ends well for the people. This behavior only leads more people to believe Pelosi is trying to manipulate this commission for political gain instead of having honest conversations to uncover the truth,” Bailey told Playbook in a statement.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Illinois GOP did not respond to a request for comment.
And an official with the party who would only speak on background, said he welcomed Kinzinger’s appointment because it will “drag the party back to being a law and order party.”
That they wouldn’t speak on the record is an indication that the party is still grappling with how to juggle the far-right Trump supporters who tend to live downstate (like Bailey) with northern Republicans who, like Kinzinger, are appalled at the insurrectionists.
Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul is out with his official quarterly fundraising numbers heading into his re-election campaign — and it’s more than $10.
He raised $231,800 in donations during the second quarter. Raoul has $424,425.47 cash on hand, including $59,900 from the Laborers Political League Education Fund and $49,900 from LiUNA Chicago Laborers District Council PAC — both reported over the weekend.
The numbers are only now public due to a technical issue that came up when his campaign team switched its name from “Friends of Kwame Raoul” to “Raoul for Illinois.” The name change affected the campaign’s ability to make deposits with its financial institution.
When the July 15 numbers were released, it appeared Raoul had raised only $10.
Everyone wondered what was up. The problem has since been corrected and Raoul’s fundraising is on track.
Now his team is playing off the mix-up. It’s planning an Aug. 31 fundraiser at Joy District in Chicago. Individual donations start at $10, before going up to $2,500
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No official public events.
On Ogden Avenue at 1 p.m. to celebrate a donation from the Showtime Network to the Greencorps Chicago Program and the Chicago Public Art Group.
No official public events.
— The most influential spreader of Covid misinformation online is from Illinois: “Researchers and regulators say Joseph Mercola, an osteopathic physician, creates and profits from misleading claims about Covid-19 vaccines,” via The New York Times.
— Summer music festivals have returned — just in time for the latest coronavirus surge: “Lollapalooza, which takes place next week in Chicago’s Grant Park, will try to mitigate risk by requiring proof of vaccination or a negative coronavirus test taken within the past 72 hours as a condition of entry; attendees who aren’t vaccinated are asked to wear a mask throughout the festival. Sajal Tanna, an infectious diseases physician at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, said while requirement are better than none at all, they’re not foolproof,” by Washington Post’s Kim Bellware.
Emmett Till would be 80 this month. His story still defines the ongoing fight for justice: If there is hope after his horrific death, “it lies in this truth: the story of Emmett Till became a sorrowful symbolic catalyst for further action in the American civil rights movement. Mamie Till-Mobley’s bravery further empowered civil rights activists,” writes Elizabeth Alexander in Time.
What we still don’t know about how Emmett Till died: “The barn’s existence conjures a complex set of reactions: It is a mourning bench for Black Americans, an unwelcome mirror for white Americans. It both repels and demands attention,” writes Wright Thompson in The Atlantic after visiting the barn where investigators believe Emmett Till was killed.
‘He Had a Life Before Death’: Remembering Emmett Till for the child he was, via The New York Times
Whoopi Goldberg, Danielle Deadwyler to star in movie about Emmett Till’s mother directed by Chinonye Chukwu, via Variety
Rep. Mike Quigley tweeted: “I’m proud to honor his legacy by cosponsoring @RepBobbyRush’s #AntilynchingAct to finally make lynching a federal crime. #EmmettTill80.”
— Pritzker launches first TV spots: They showcase the governor talking to a nurse who volunteered during the state’s Covid-19 response, a National Guard member involved in testing and vaccinations, and the owners of a small distillery who shifted their business from bourbon to hand sanitizer.
— Mike Ollen has been named campaign manager for Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s re-election operation. Ollen is a veteran of Democratic campaigns, having worked for former President Barack Obama, Secretary Hillary Clinton, and Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan.
… Ollen replaces Quentin Fulks, who until last week was part of Pritzker’s re-election campaign. Fulks’ days were numbered, however, after he ran the failed graduated income tax effort. Now he’s returned to his home state of Georgia, where he’ll manage Sen. Raphael Warnock’s re-election campaign.
— Gary Rabine opposes vaccine mandates, walks back anti-vaccine misinformation: “I’m not an anti-vaxxer by any stretch,” the asphalt magnate and Republican gubernatorial candidate told WCIA’s Mark Maxwell.
— THE JUICE: Underwood and Casten raising big bucks ahead of 2022 congressional campaigns: Rep. Lauren Underwood of Naperville collected about $875,668 in campaign donations during the year’s second quarter. Rep. Sean Casten, a Downers Grove resident in his second term serving the 6th District, collected more than $476,177 in the same period. Daily Herald’s Russell LIssau reports.
— Giannoulias’ policy plan: Democratic candidate for secretary of state Alexi Giannoulias wants to cut wait times at Illinois driver’s license facilities. Giannoulias say,s if elected, he would implement an online booking system “so Illinoisans who need to make in-person visits to renew their driver’s licenses or obtain other services can make an appointment and avoid the lines.” He’s calling it the “Skip the Line.”
— Nearly a year into Lightfoot’s anti-violence plan, many of Chicago’s most dangerous neighborhoods are doing worse: “The plan proposed flooding the 15 most violent community areas with resources. But gun violence is up in most of them, and the administration has yet to funnel extra help to neighborhoods with the most shootings,” reports Sun-Times’ David Struett with data analysis by Andy Boyle and Jesse Howe.
— Talk about a new Bears stadium raises concerns about public subsidies: “It’s not clear how serious the Bears are in pursuing a suburban stadium. The franchise has famously flirted with various locations outside the city limits over the decades: Elk Grove Village, Hoffman Estates, Aurora, northwest Indiana and even the exact same piece of land in Arlington Heights. The Bears dangled those prospects out, only to secure better accommodations in the city of Chicago,” writes Daniel Vock for Center for Illinois Politics.
— Chicago casino would be a costly bet, gambling operators say: “An urban casino project has high costs along with the potential for political and zoning issues that can cause delays, said Brendan Bussmann, partner and director of government affairs at gambling consultants Global Market Advisors. In Chicago, the tax rate, despite being lowered, still makes a project difficult, he said. ‘The challenge with Chicago is, the sun and the moon and the stars really have to align to make it work,’ Bussmann said,” via the Wall Street Journal.
— Proposal could prompt fines, mandatory counseling for families of kids who stay out past curfew: Ald. Raymond Lopez’s proposed ordinance would also find youths charged with “intoxication, selling alcohol, possession of cannabis, hosting parties where alcohol is consumed by minors, possession of firearms, and assisting minors’ engagement in the listed behaviors $1,000 dollars and refer the youth to mandatory family counseling,” report Samanta Guz and Durrell Malik Washington Sr. in South Side Weekly.
— At march for slain National Guard member, family cries out for justice, by Tribune’s Alice Yin.
— Italian Americans gather in Little Italy to demand Christopher Columbus statues be put back, by Tribune’s Stephanie Casanova
— Black Chicagoans flock to Bisa Butler, Obama portrait exhibits as museums rise to racial reckoning, writes Sun-Times’ Maudlyne Ihejirika
… Another exhibition coming to Chicago: “We Women: The Power of We” is in Brooklyn before traveling to Chicago, according to the Washington Post.
— New Gulf Coast tick species found in suburbs, but ‘we don’t need to freak out’: “This tick can pursue a potential host it detects nearby and is more likely than others to carry the pathogen causing Tidewater spotted fever, which brings such symptoms as headache, fever, muscle aches, rash and a scab. But the good news is that the methods of avoiding being bitten are the same as those that keep people safe from other species and the diseases they transmit,” by Daily Herald’s Eric Peterson.
— Kristen Ziman looks back on last five years, forward to new chapter in her life: “The chief, who insists she’s her ‘own worst’ critic, constantly asking herself ‘what could I have done better in that meeting or that interaction,’ admits ‘mistakes were made’ in her five years at the helm. Those include moving too fast and ‘not closing the loops’ when she took over as leader; not having enough riot gear for those 300-plus officers when bricks were being thrown at them during Aurora’s downtown unrest last year; and ‘not being loud enough’ in her opposition to the ‘bad parts’ of a sweeping criminal justice reform bill that Springfield passed earlier this year,” by Aurora Beacon-News’ Denise Crosby.
— Chicago-area communities vow to slash carbon emissions with ambitious new ‘Climate Action Plan,’ by WBEZ’s Michael Puente
— Can a Hawthorne ‘racino’ keep horse racing alive in Chicago? “With Arlington scheduled to close, the last track standing is betting a new model will bring new bettors to an old sport,” by Chicago magazine’s Edward McClelland.
— Attorney at center of Bridgeport bank case has long ties to City Hall, powerful players: “Robert M. Kowalski is accused of embezzling at least $31 million from Washington Federal Bank for Savings, which operated in the Daley family political fiefdom for generations,” by Sun-Times’ Tim Novak.
— Feds say R. Kelly crisis manager bribed Cook County official after ‘Surviving R. Kelly’: “The new allegation surfaced in a lengthy court filing in which prosecutors asked a judge permission to admit allegations of uncharged crimes during Kelly’s racketeering trial in Brooklyn, set to begin next month,” by Sun-Times’ Jon Seidel.
— New podcast on serial killer John Wayne Gacy raises questions about police investigation: “Gacy killed 33 young men and boys and buried them in the crawl space under his Norwood Park home in the late 1970s,” reports Bob Chiarito in the Sun-Times.
— 6 years after Gary woman, young nephew disappeared, family slams police probe: ‘I don’t feel like they’ve been helpful at all’: “It’s like they vanished from the face of the Earth,” said the woman’s mother and boy’s grandmother. Sun-Times’ Tom Schuba reports
— Who’s back to work: Gov. J.B. Pritzker, says 60 percent of state workers are back to work in government offices and that many state employees may remain working from home permanently because they are “more efficient,” according to his one-on-one with WCIA’s Mark Maxwell.
— Is it speeding? Pandemic joy rides? Experts explain 10% spike in crash fatalities: “It will take some time for the complete data behind the numbers to emerge,” IDOT spokeswoman Maria Castaneda said. “But we do know anecdotally from law enforcement that speeding and reckless driving likely increased with deadly consequences during the pandemic, and continues as more cars are on the road in Illinois and throughout the country.” Daily Herald’s Marni Pyke reports
— As the phase-out of Illinois’ eviction moratorium nears, some remain on edge: “While state officials say renters will be protected through the court system and $2 billion in relief money, housing activists are skeptical,” by WBEZ’s Natalie Moore.
— New law to help prevent pets from being in homes of animal abusers: “Starting on Jan. 1, 2022, courts will have the ability to ban you or someone in the same home from having control of animals if convicted of two or more of these offenses,” by New Channel 20’s Tessa Bentulan.
— Lawmakers calling on Pritzker to make Illinois leader in cybersecurity, by WTAX’s Dave Dahl
— Column: Pritzker has to find a different, uncharted way to work with organized labor: “When an energy bill was negotiated while the anti-union Bruce Rauner was governor, the unions agreed to drop their demands for some all-important prevailing wage language in order to get a deal done to save a couple of nuclear power plants. Now, the unions have prevailing wage in this new bill, but are also pushing the pro-union Pritzker hard to stand with them against his own stated desires to eventually decarbonize the electric power industry,” writes Rich Miller in the Ford County Record.
— Michelle Wu, the Boston City Council member running for mayor there, is originally from Chicago. “I am the oldest kid in my family and my parents didn’t speak English fluently for a lot of my childhood. So from the time that I learned English at school I was the official translator and interpreter for the family. I have known what it feels like for the grown-ups in my life who were so powerful in some ways, so wise in some ways, but then so helpless [that] when we would be out in public [I would] be pushed out in front to get over those language barriers and cultural barriers,” she told POLITICO’s Brakkton Booker for The Recast.
— MEDIA MATTERS: Bill Cameron to retire: The Chicago City Hall radio reporter has covered every mayor since Richard J. Daley, media reporter Robert Feder.
— ‘We’re f—ed’: Dems fear turnout catastrophe from GOP voting laws, by POLITICO’s Maya King, David Siders and Daniel Lippman
— Democrats lose ground on school equity plans, by POLITICO’s Maggie Severns
— Fed pressed to stop pumping cash into booming markets, by POLITICO’s Victoria Guida
— How Illinois triathlete Kevin McDowell beat cancer on his journey to the Tokyo Olympics, by Tribune’s Stacy St. Clair in Tokyo
FRIDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Chicago Association of Realtors government affairs director Kristopher Anderson for correctly answering that a sycamore at the U.S. Capitol grounds honors Emmett Till.
TODAY’s QUESTION: Who are the politician brothers who entertained colleagues with their piano sing-alongs? Email to [email protected]
Former Senate Republican Leader Frank Watson, former Ald. Michael R. Zalewski, Public affairs consultant Thom Serafin, SEIU Local 1 political affairs director Mario Lopez, and Earth Friendly Products founder John Vlahakis.
- Shia Kapos @shiakapos
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