Friday, January 15, 2016

Will Dems follow orders, back Foxx?

The Cook County Democratic Party put the word out Thursday – loyal Democrats are supposed to back Kim Foxx’ bid to be the new state’s attorney.

FOXX: The official choice of Dem party
With the party deciding to slate her bid over that of incumbent State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez and challenger Donna More, it means that the political operatives in charge of getting people to actually turn out and vote for Democrats on March 15 will be under orders to stress votes for Foxx.

OR, IF THEY happen to be among those people who just can’t bring themselves to vote for the woman who was once chief of staff to county board President Toni Preckwinkle, they will be under orders to keep their mouths shut and do nothing to interfere with Foxx’ campaign operations.

Personally, I remain unsure how the election for a new state’s attorney this year will turn out.

I don’t doubt that people upset by incidents involving police violence against black people will be in place, and there will be some people more than willing to see incumbent Alvarez go as punishment for the fact it took her office about a full year to decide to prosecute the Chicago cop who shot Laquan McDonald to death.

Even those who I’m sure want to protect the interests of Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Sacrifice Anita, but keep Rahm!

BUT THE FACT is that Foxx will not be in a head-to-head political fight against Alvarez come the Democratic primary. More, a one-time federal prosecutor who also has been involved with the Illinois Gaming Board, has her own share of supporters.

The overly-simplistic way of viewing this fight is to say Foxx will dominate the South Side and suburbs where significant numbers of African-American people live (she is a resident of suburban Flossmoor), while More will be the preferred opposition to Alvarez for North Side and suburban voters who are overwhelmingly white.

PRECKWINKLE: Will she decide election?
Which could result in a split that gives Alvarez just enough voters to win a three-way fight.

So what does this decision to slate Foxx really mean?

IF IT IS a factor in getting North Side and suburban political types to get on board with the program for Foxx, it could be significant. It could be what enables her share of the vote to top Alvarez – particularly if it drives More’s campaign into irrelevancy.

But the one thing I have learned about being around political people is their talk in public often does not match their actions.

RAUNER: Will ties help, or hurt, More?
I could very easily envision a whole batch of whispering taking place up north that enables More to keep getting voter support – even though publicly the officials will claim they’re going along with the political party’s pick on Thursday.

For all I know, the fact that More has a record of financial ties (as in campaign contributions) to Gov. Bruce Rauner could wind up being a boost for herself – even though I’m sure both Alvarez and Foxx will go out of their way to make More out to be the governor’s lackey because of it.

IN SHORT, I remain confused about how this particular election will turn out – and remain convinced that the race for Cook County state’s attorney will be the prime campaign at stake on March 15.

ALVAREZ: Any love for Anita these days?
U.S. president? Forget it! Who really cares which of those clowns running in both major party’s political primaries manages to take Illinois voter supports? Just a bit more evidence of the overly-local tendencies Chicago and suburban voters tend to have when it comes time to walk into the voting booth on Election Day!

And one that could provide yet another anecdotal story about how the political parties just don’t mean as much these days as they did in the days of “the Machine” when “Boss Daley” could bark orders at who should get elected to office.

Somehow, I don’t think Preckwinkle has the same boss-like tendencies.


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