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The [Tuesday] Papers

A post in Politics on the R.J. Vanecko indictment is on the way. In the meantime, let's catch up with the rest of the news.

1. Rich Miller on his Capitol Fax Blog reports that Dick Durbin is in good shape according to a poll showing he has a 51% approval rating, but isn't that not so great considering he's the No. 2 person in all of the U.S. Senate and that a below-50% rating is within the (4.4%) margin of error?

I haven't heretofore sensed any vulnerability for Durbin, but I expected a better showing for such a known quantity.


In 2010, Nate Silver wrote in the New York Times that Incumbents Polling Below 50 Percent Often Win Re-Election Despite Conventional Wisdom.

But his debunking was less true for U.S. Senate races.

How many [Senate] candidates who met this definition - leading in the polls, but with less than 50 percent of the vote - were upended in their re-election bid?

Actually, the percentage is pretty high. Of 25 such candidates, 9 of them lost, or 36 percent:

So far, things look pretty good for the 'magic number' theory: more than one in three of these Senate incumbents lost, in spite of holding the polling lead.

Just sayin'.

2. "The federal tax evasion trial of Cook County Commissioner William Beavers has been delayed until the end of January because one of his attorneys is ill, a judge decided today," the Tribune reports.

"Beavers' legal team had asked for opening statements to be delayed until Monday because attorney Victor Henderson is suffering from acute bronchitis."

Judge James Zagel, however, feared a short delay might push the trial's end too close to Christmas, when jurors might be distracted. It also isn't clear just when Henderson will be better.


"Though Beavers had five attorneys to defend him in court, Henderson is the team's tax expert," the Trib notes.


"The delay, however, will allow Beavers' attorney, [Sam] Adam Jr., to more fully explore his run for the 2nd district congressional seat recently vacated by the embattled Jesse Jackson Jr., who is himself under investigation for alleged campaign fraud."

Okay, now I want to see a doctor's note.

"Asked by reporters about his potential run, Adam said he said he will now be able to spend the next 10 days exploring the idea with his family and by speaking to residents of the district."

Motion to reconsider, judge?

3. A common denominator in the cases against Beavers and LaShawn Ford? Gambling at the Horseshoe in Hammond.

"It wasn't just a couple of trips to the casino," a federal prosecutor said. "[Beavers] lost a lot of money. It happened frequently."


"[Ford] was indicted . . . on federal charges that he lied to a bank to get a $500,000 extension on a line of credit and used the cash to cover car loans, credit cards, mortgages, campaign costs and payments to a Hammond casino," the Tribune reported.


Rahm: A Chicago casino would keep that money at home.

4. "'After months of trying to obtain the data from the meter company, we finally have it and were able to determine what we suspected all along: that the parking-meter company bills are off 85 cents on the dollar - or $22 million more than they billed' for out-of-service meters, says [Rahm] Emanuel," the Sun-Times reports.

No problem, Rahm. You can contest that by mail or request an in-person hearing.


"A Chicago Parking Meters spokeswoman declined to comment."

Or was it a park district board member who declined comment?

5. "Only 44 percent of CTA riders say they own a car, despite Mayor Rahm Emanuel's suggestion last week that they have a 'choice' of whether to take public transit or drive," the Tribune reports.

The more relevant question, though, is how many riders who buy 7-day and 30-day passes own a car, and what data Rahm was referring to that the CTA used to arrive at its fare increases.

6. Beginning Of The End For The Bears?

Defense gets old before our eyes. Team can't win unless they get turnovers. Cutler-Marshall is the entire offense - one of the worst in the league. And yet, each of their remaining games (Vikings, Packers, Cardinals, Lions) is winnable.

7. The Streets Under The Streets Are Back.

But has Lower Wacker Drive been gentrified?

8. Sandi From North Aurora.

On Intervention.

9. Tuesday Funk #52.

An evening of literature and beer with a former Beachwood White Sox correspondent.

10. The Chicago Loopers And A Super Rare Bass.

Welcome to Chicago.


The Beachwood Tip Line: Roll the bones.


Posted on December 4, 2012

MUSIC - Millions Of New Guitar Players.
TV - "One America News" is AT&T.
POLITICS - When Wall Street Came To My Mobile Home Park.
SPORTS - Tonyball, Bears On The Run, Eyes On The Sky & More!

BOOKS - China Holding Swedish Publisher.


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