Chicago Sun-Times

March 2010 Archives

Sheila Simon.jpg

Sheila Simon, her admirers argue, can disagree without being disagreeable.
As Pat Quinn's newly anointed running mate, that's going to be an important asset.

Remember that Simon was one of the governor's appointees to his Reform Commission.
That was the commission that wanted far more sweeping ethics and campaign finance reforms than House Speaker Mike Madigan would ever flip for.

And so Governor Quinn caved into Madigan, signed a bill that didn't do what needed to be done, hailed it as "landmark" anyway, and then was forced to veto it. Leaving his Reform Commission in the dust. Ultimately, a new bill was signed, still lacking some of the crucial finance reforms that Illinois desperately needed but with some slight improvements.

During that process, Sheila Simon ended up being one of the pragmatists, settling for half a loaf rather than a whole.

Whether you regard that as a good compromise, she exhibited a distinct savvy about the process without pretending that the job had been completed.

The real question now will be about her role.

Pat Quinn was hardly an equal, working partner to Rod Blagojevich back when Quinn was the lt. governor.
Not unlike lots of other anonymous lite guvs in Illinois history.
Will Sheila Simon be given a more meaningful role?

Let's hope so. If only because Quinn, a longtime solo-operator and micro-manager, needs not only a wider circle of smart advisers but advisers he is actually willing to listen to.

It's the economy.
That's the issue for people in Illinois.
More than social issues, education, transportation, gun control....the list goes on.
But it's Illinois' desperate straits and the financial struggles of its citizens that matter most in the coming gubernatorial election battle with Republican Bill Brady.
Here is Governor Quinn on Chicago Tonight being questioned on the dollars and cents of it all.

Quinn, Ponce & Marin

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Governor Pat Quinn joins us on Chicago Tonight Monday evening at 7P on WTTW/Channel 11. We'll talk taxes or no taxes, legislative gridlock, teacher layoffs, and the November election. Join us!


Alexi Giannoulias tried by turns to argue, explain, and defend his family bank's investments and operation as the Democratic candidate for US Senate fights to win the seat that his mentor, Barack Obama, once held.
His Republican opponent, Mark Kirk, argues Giannoulias' conduct as a bank officer was nothing short of reckless.
At the end of a 22 minute interview on WTTW's Chicago Tonight on Wednesday, Giannoulias struggles with his own emotions as he confronts those claims.

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