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The [Tuesday] Papers

"Twenty two candidates met a Monday deadline to file paperwork for a spot on the ballot in the special election to succeed former U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.," the Tribune reports.

"The field of 17 Democrats and five Republicans still could be winnowed, however, as campaigns try to knock opponents off what would be a crowded Feb. 26 primary ballot in the 2nd Congressional District."

Indeed. And there are probably a half dozen candidates at most who really have a shot at this. You can see the whole field here.


"So, we have three African-American women and eight African-American men and one white woman with high name recognition from her time in Congress and her bid against Jackson last year," Rich Miller writes on his Capitol Fax blog. "If Halvorson can raise a few bucks and doesn't run an awful campaign, you have to consider her the current frontrunner."

Disagree. Halvorson got smoked in the primary last time around, and it wasn't just because Jesse Jackson Jr. was still on the ballot. This is the kind of thinking that had some prominent pundits thinking unknown but white and Irish water rec commissioner Terry O'Brien was going to win the Cook County presidency in 2010. He didn't come close.

This is a race between Robin Kelly and Toi Hutchinson. My money's on Kelly, as it has been from the start.

See also: The Political Odds.


If anyone is going to pull off a surprise in this race, it could be Joyce Washington. But I doubt it.


"On Monday, onetime state representative Robin Kelly, who resigned from Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle's staff last month, announced she already raised $200,000 just since December," the Sun-Times reports.

"Last week, state Sen. Toi Hutchinson announced she raised $130,000 despite December being 'traditionally the most difficult fundraising month of the year.'"

So while Hutchinson was patting herself on the back she was easily outdone by Kelly.


"Both Kelly and Hutchinson lauded their fund-raising prowess as a sign of widespread support within the sprawling district that includes the South Side of Chicago, south suburbs and runs down to Kankakee and Will counties.

"One-term former U.S. Rep. Debbie Halvorson, who lost against Jackson in a primary last year, didn't disclose her total, saying she hadn't added up the numbers yet. But Halvorson said she doesn't have to work as hard at raising money to run ads because she's already gone through the initial introduction to the district."

Yeah, that's the sort of thing someone who didn't raise a lot of money says. I'm not sure her name recognition in the district - which isn't the one she served her single congressional term in - is as high as pundits assume, and name recognition doesn't equally favorability.


See also: To Replace Jesse Jackson Jr., Candidates Court Clergy, by former Beachwood intern Steven Yaccino, in the New York Times.

Weak Hand
"Chicago's most powerful labor leader suggested Monday that a land-based city casino be located at the James R. Thompson Center, state government's problem-plagued downtown headquarters," the Sun-Times reports.

"Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce President Jerry Roper was the first to suggest putting a casino on the lower level and first floor of the building that occupies a full city block at Clark and Randolph with hotel rooms on the floors above."

That sounds like a spectacularly bad idea.

1. Not enough floor space; splitting the field of play between two floors isn't something I'm guessing a casino operator would be keen on.

2. Not enough room for future expansion.

3. Not an area in need of ancillary development.

4. Can you imagine the gridlock?

5. The renovation needed including fixing the building's myriad existing problems isn't likely to be attractive to whatever company gets the bid; you can bet they'll want to build their own extravagant complex - with plenty of city subsidies to help out. Think of the construction jobs, dude!


"We've heard concerns that it's too close to City Hall. We get that."

Physical proximity isn't the problem, though the transformation of the state's downtown headquarters into a gambling parlor isn't symbolically pretty. City Hall will never be more than an arm's length away from its casino, no matter how many miles you put between the buildings.

Hashtag NotreDame
The BCS debacle's best tweets.

Chicago, Illnoize & A Harp Named Anna
In our Local Music Notebook.

Programming Note
Lots more news to catch up with but I've got a morning appointment to make. And to my Facebook friends, it's not a flu shot, though I'll probably get one of those this week.

* Flu Sidelines Muti From CSO Concerts
* Surge Of Flu Patients Taxes Area Emergency Rooms

I've never gotten the flu shot, though I've certainly gotten the flu. Had the swine thing a couple years ago and it was the worst I've ever felt in my life.

Plus, I've got the world's greatest doctor and this is the note he sent me after I expressed some skepticism about getting the shot:

"I think flu shots are very good things. Stop by sometime this week to get one."

So I will. But meanwhile, I'm off to do some reporting on a different matter altogether . . .


The Beachwood Tip Line: Double down.


Posted on January 8, 2013

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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