Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Early (but not too early) and Often

Jay Travis and friends.
When progressive 26th Dist. Rep. candidate Jay Travis went to her polling place to vote at 6 a.m. this morning, she and dozens of others, including lots of seniors, were turned away due to alleged "voting machine" problems and told to "come back later". Travis has mounted a fiercely competitive challenge against machine-backed Christian Mitchell.

Mitchell was supposed to win this one easy with a war chest full of money from corporate "reform" groups like Stand For Children and DFER. But Travis, a long-time community organizer, has organized a strong field operation and is showing much stronger than expected.

Arne & Eli
BROAD MONEY...The machine boys are now running scared, which might account for the polling place irregularities. It also might account for a last-minute $10,000 contribution to Mitchell's war chest from none other than California b-b-billionaire Eli Broad. Why would Broad be so interested in a local Chicago election? The former real estate tycoon and Wall Street (AIG) kingpin is in the market for pols willing to support his public school takeover and privatization strategy. And Mitchell is an eager taker.

This isn't the first sighting of Broad money working to influence Chicago school policy. Broad bankrolled the invasion of the Supes Academy here last year and CPS CEO Byrd-Bennett along with her predecessor J.C. Brizard are alums of Broad's Superintendents Academy. Broad is the subject of a  state investigation in California for his secret million-dollar donation to the right-wing, anti-public school, anti-union group, Americans for Job Security.

But as I pointed out back in 2010, Broad money comes "not just with strings, but ropes."

Yesterday's influx of cash to a nervous Mitchell campaign also came from the likes of JPMorgan Chase & Co.PAC, Illinois Energy Association, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce PAC, and Ald. Joe Moreno, who just wants to be on the side that's winning it seems.

Here's hoping they just pissed away good money after Broad bad.

AMES VICTORY PARTY...This from Bridget Murphy of the Logan Square Neighbors Assoc. (LSNA)
After the polls close Ames referendum volunteers will gather at Weegees Lounge, 3659 W Armitage Ave, for a victory party. Come join in 7:30pm and after, as precinct captains bring in their tape showing a landslide victory for the SAVE AMES from becoming a military school referendum campaign! We are grateful for local businesses Weegees, Revolution Brewing, and Pixel Graphics for donating to Save Ames.  Contact: Maria Trejo 312-927-2207 or Leticia Barrera 773-727-9941

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