Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Ranking term limits with debates and sombreros as mark of a loser

I have some very unofficial rules I have developed for myself during my time as a reporter-type person in determining the legitimacy of political candidates.

RAUNER: Money, and term limits?
The first candidate who complains that his opponent won’t debate him (or her) is a loser (and a whiner).

THE FIRST CANDIDATE who puts on a sombrero at a political rally, thinking it will get him the Latino vote, is un tonto – and a loser.

And most importantly, the first candidate to come out and try to make an issue of term limits is probably someone so insecure that the only way they think they can win is to create a situation where the opponent can’t even run!

The reason I bring this issue up is because of the degree to which Republican gubernatorial nominee Bruce Rauner is trying to use the “term limits” issue to his advantage. A committee he's involved with will file petitions Wednesday to try to get a state Constitution amendment on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Pat Quinn is a long-time political hack who shouldn’t even be allowed to run, is what Rauner would have us think.

HECK, RAUNER BACKERS are going so far as to remind us how Quinn himself once led an effort to try to impose term limits for state government officials. Meaning Quinn is now a hypocrite.

He should hang his head in shame and slink off into the political sunset. Unless you’re one of those ideologues who believes that any government official who doesn’t pursue a socially-conservative agenda is a criminal who ought to serve time in prison!

QUINN: '14 his last election?
Yes, I’m mocking the kind of people who get all worked up over term limits because they’re more interested in creating fantasy situations for government – rather than trying to present themselves as the best possible candidate who we, the people, ought to pick instead of some long-time incumbent.

Maybe it’s because I really do believe that the real “term limit” is Election Day, when we can dump anybody we really can’t stand. It does happen! Incumbents do lose!

MADIGAN: Is '18 her 'turn?'
INSTEAD OF TELLING us why we should want to vote for him (other than his primary rhetoric about how he’d be the guy who would dump all over organized labor), we’re getting cheap talk about how Quinn shouldn’t be able to run.

Quinn took this issue seriously enough that he came out and said this week he won’t be running again after this election cycle.

SHIMKUS: Broken promise?
For if he wins, it would be his second four-year term as governor, along with the couple of years of Rod Blagojevich’s last term that he was unable to complete.

Actually, that probably is enough time for any one person. It would be the way for Quinn -- the man whom we also remember for his token loser campaigns for U.S. Senate and Illinois lieutenant governor (in '98) to go out on top. Here’s hoping that if the Mighty Quinn prevails on Nov. 4, he keeps his word.

BECAUSE NOT ALL political people do.

Take Rep. John Shimkus, R-Ill. He’s a member of Congress from near St. Louis whose district includes much of Southern Illinois. He first got elected to Congress in 1996, and he made a promise back then that he wouldn’t serve more than 12 years.

Let the voters decide?!?
By 2008, that promise didn’t seem to matter as much. He kept running. Heck, he’s still a member of Illinois’ congressional delegation.

Nobody in that district seems to hold it against him that he didn’t keep his word about term limits. I don’t even really get worked up about it.

IT JUST REINFORCES my viewpoint that when a candidate comes out and rants and rages in favor of limiting how long people can hold public office, what they most likely mean is that they want limits for people of the other political party who might challenge them someday.

Most certainly not for themselves!


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