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The 2010 Beachwood Voters' Guide

For entertainment purposes only. And voting.

GOVERNOR

Like George W. Bush after 9/11 and Barack Obama after his election in 2008, Pat Quinn has squandered an unusually awesome opportunity to unite citizens for positive change. Instead, his fluke ascension to the state's top job exposed him as an inept bumbler incapable of holding such high office. Democrats nominated the wrong person and now want to stick us with him for another four years. And if his term is somehow cut short, we'll be left with one-term Carbondale city councilmember Sheila Simon. How irresponsible of Pat Quinn, who picked Simon after voters chose Scott Lee Cohen.

On the other hand, Bill Brady snuck through the crowded Republican primary despite his record as a lackluster legislator who is the type of conservative often called paleolithic. If his term is somehow cut short, we'll be left with callow lumber heir Jason Plummer. How irresponsible of the Republican Party, which didn't vet its lieutenant governor candidates any better than the Democrats did theirs.

Clearly, Rich Whitney is the best candidate in the race - even if that's not good enough for party hacks and their enablers who know in their heart they are wrong. Your vote is yours. Do you want to vote for Eric Zorn's candidates your whole life?

Your vote for, say, Pat Quinn is no different than Joe Berrios's vote for Pat Quinn. The real question isn't why you are voting for Whitney, it's why Zorn and Co. aren't.

Or, if you're proclivities lay on the other side of the spectrum, vote for libertarian Lex Green. No one can take your vote from you. This isn't Russia. Your vote is about you, not them. It's not a protest vote and it's not about sending a message - it's about voting for who you think is the best candidate available and being proud of that vote because so many have died to protect it. They didn't die for you to be blackmailed into voting for mob bankers and bumblers and throwbacks and liars.

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Besides, don't be fooled. Your vote doesn't matter. It's one vote. Make it count - for you, not them.

U.S. Senate
What would it take for liberals to not vote the party line? Being a mob banker isn't enough? How about the sheer audacity of being Alexi Giannoulias, a rich kid who bought his way into the system with no credentials to be a United States Senator? Where would you draw the line? A monkey trained to vote with the party every time? A monkey with a questionable past trained to vote with the party line every time? Why not just go with a monkey - we could pay him in bananas and save the taxpayers some dough.

On the other side of the ballot, a vote for Mark Kirk may have once seemed tolerable, but his cynical core has been revealed for all to see. Should he be rewarded or scorned?

Again, it's hard to come to any other conclusion than voting for the Green Party's LeAlan Jones or libertarian Michael Labno. Jones has a compelling personal story, is right on the issues and would be the only African American in the Senate. How can you not vote for him? A vote for Alexi Giannoulias is equal to Joe Berrios's vote for Alexi Giannoulias. You don't get to add an explanation to your ballot. It counts the same. Was voting for Rod Blagojevich the right thing to do four years ago in order to keep a Democrat in office?

Cook County Board President
Toni Preckwinkle was obviously the best candidate in the Democratic primary but she's also just as maddening as she was as an independentish alderman, playing footsie with the Regulars when she finds it opportune and displaying smarts but not the kind of courage of a real leader. Tom Tresser isn't the best qualified for the job but the last thing we need is Joe Berrios's pal in office.

Cook County Assessor
Anyone who votes for Joe Berrios has their head up their butt. There is no justifiable rationale. I find Forrest Claypool to be a bit smarmy, slick and weaselly myself, but I'd rather have him running that office for the next four years than the video poker industry's lobbyist who also happens to be the chairman of the Cook County Democratic Party (read: the Gates of Hell) and a Machine hack on the Board of Review.

State House District 22
Neither paper makes an endorsement in this race but I can't urge residents there strongly enough to vote for P.J. Ryan, Michael Madigan's shill. Put the shill in!

State Treasurer
Robin Kelly is the Giannoulias aide whom we might normally think of as a fine public servant but who, unfortunately, is the Giannoulias aide. She's on the team, folks. And that won't do.

Dan Rutherford is the Republican legislator looking to move up and the last thing we want to do is give him a path to a run for governor down the road.

The libertarian is James Pauly; how a libertarian would run this office is the source of endless humorous speculation at Beachwood HQ. But we'll pull the lever for the Green, Scott Summers. What's not to like?

State Comptroller
David Miller wins our endorsement for this reason alone. (Original Kristen McQueary article mysteriously not available; the upshot is that the Illinois Education Association is disingenuously refusing to endorse Miller, the Democrat, for unscrupulous reasons. No interest group is your friend, folks, even if they tend to lean toward your side. They're only using you.)

Secretary of State
Incumbent Jesse White is an ally of Joe Berrios. Robert Enriquez is the Republican and is endorsed here simply to stick it to The Man. The libertarian is Josh Hanson, but we fear he would spend his term in office campaigning against all traffic laws.

Attorney General
Lisa Madigan has been a success based on one simple quality: competence. It's amazing that's all it takes in Illinois! On the other hand, she has refused to investigate her father's campaign for voter fraud regarding allegations that - once again - he has put up a shill as his opponent, even as she'll be watching everyone else. And what's not to like about David Black?

U.S. House
As usual, the Tribune and Sun-Times largely endorse the incumbents (in 14 of the 16 races the Trib endorses in and 10 of the 11 races the S-T endorses in). Do you think Congress is doing that great of a job? Do you think that Congress is doing a terrible job but that for some strange reason the Illinois delegation is kicking ass? Neither do I.

Let's take a look by district.

1. Both papers endorse hapless race-baiter Bobby Rush. The Green Party candidate is Jeff Adams and the Republican is Ray Wardingley. Adams is preferred, but either would be acceptable as a way to dislodge Rush.

2. Neither paper offers an endorsement due to Jesse Jackson Jr.'s troubles. Voters have no such luxury. Anthony Williams is the Green.

3. Both papers endorse Dan Lipinski, proving that no matter how heinously you get into office in Illinois, the media will soon forgive and forget. I find such behavior reprehensible. Laurel Lambert Schmidt is the Green. Michael Bendas is the Republican, but I can't endorse Republicans whom I do not know in these races in case they are shills.

4. Both papers endorse Luis Gutierrez even though his real estate dealings are shadier than anything Junior is likely to have done. Gutierrez's passion for immigration reform is commendable, but not enough. Robert J. Burns is the Green.

5. Mike Quigley is the incumbent. Let's see how much progress he makes.

6. Both papers endorse Republican incumbent Peter Roskam. I'll take Democrat Benjamin Lowe.

7. Both papers endorse incumbent Danny Davis, a grade-A clown. Clarence Desmond Clemens is the independent.

8. Both papers endorse Republicrat Melissa Bean. Bill Scheurer is the Green.

9. Both papers endorse incumbent liberal faker Jan Schakowsky. Simon Ribeiro is the Green.

10. The Trib endorses Republican weasel Bob Dold for Mark Kirk's open seat while the S-T endorses perennial loser Democrat Dan Seals. Write in your neighbor.

11. Both papers endorse Republican challenger Adam Kinzinger over incumbent Democrat Debbie Halvorson, who apparently has been a total disaster. Write in your neighbor.

12. Both papers skip this race, denying an endorsement to Democratic incumbent Jerry Costello. Rodger Jennings is the Green.

13. Both papers endorse Republican incumbent Judy Biggert. Scott Harper is the Democrat. Judy's been there long enough.

14. Both papers endorse Democratic incumbent Bill Foster, whom I have no quarrel with.

15. The Trib endorses Republican incumbent Tim Johnson. The Democrat is David Gill.

16. The Trib endorses Republican incumbent Don Manzullo. The Green is Terry Campbell.

17. The Trib endorses Republican challenger Bobby Schilling over Democratic incumbent Phil Hare. The Green is Roger Davis.

18. The Trib endorses Republican incumbent Aaron Shock. The Green is Sheldon Shaefer.

19. The Trib endorses Republican incumbent John Shimkus. The Democrat is Tim Bagwell.

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Comments welcome.



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Posted on November 2, 2010


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SPORTS - Theo Casualties Mount.

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