Thursday, July 20, 2017

The IL Gov's Race: I don't like Kennedy.

To be honest, I just don't like this guy. 
Needless to say, dumping Rauner is our main goal in next year's race. But until then, I'm trying to sort out the gaggle of Democrats running in the primary. The way things look now, any of them --or Dave the cable guy -- could beat the billionaire incumbent, even in this, the most expensive gov's race in history.

Chris Kennedy is definitely not my favorite among the Dems running for governor. Yes, I know the Kennedy name still puts lots of liberals in nostalgia mode and the name alone may be enough to beat Rauner.

But to be honest, I just don't like the guy. It might have something to do with the way he tried to use his power as head of the U of I Board of Trustees and family wealth (president of the Merchandise Mart) to tarnish the career of my friend and former UIC colleague, Distinguished Prof. of Education, Bill Ayers over something "uncivil" Bill supposedly wrote 40 years earlier about Kennedy's father.

Then there was matter of Kennedy denying a UI teaching job to Prof. Steven Salaita over his tweeting critically about Israel. It was a move that ended up costing the scandal-ridden, cash-strapped university more than $2M in settlement and legal costs and the university president her job.

That kind of pettieness and propensity for taking revenge on critical writers, educators or journalists, belies the progressive line Kennedy is pushing now. Reminds me too much of Trump and Rauner. 

So I couldn't help chuckle while reading this. 

Capitol Fax's Rich Miller:
"Chris Kennedy spoke at the Mom+Baby governors candidate meet and greet yesterday. I didn't see anything on his Twitter page about it, but I'm told about 30 moms and 10 kids had to wait at least half an hour for him to arrive. And it went downhill from there."
And this...
 He was a hot mess. Shirt barely tucked in. He had on biking shoes. He spoke about Trump the entire time. Crazy! 
It was embarrassing. He misquoted stats that our members corrected him on. He got called out on lack of supporting single payer and marijuana legalization. He also starting talking education inequity and misspoke on the cps funding. It was nuts. Story here
Finally, Kennedy won't show his hand on hot-button school reform issues like charters and vouchers. Why not? Makes me suspicious.

Kennedy is welcome to come on Hitting Left and try and prove me wrong. We've already had candidate Ald. Ameya Pawar on and State Sen. Dan Biss will be our in-studio guest on August 4th. Others may soon follow.

It would be nice if there was at least one woman running.

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