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Federal Government Tue Jan 06 2009

John Fritchey Is In

See what happens when you stay away from Facebook for a night? You miss an early announcement for a Congressional candidacy.

John Fritchey, State Representative from the 11th District (Lakeview, Bucktown, and Ravenswood) and Committeeman for the 32nd Ward (Bucktown, Ukrainian Village) announced this morning that he also will be running for the seat opened up by Rahm Emanuel's resignation.

As many of us predicted, the opening of this seat is going to create a wide-open race that could have repercussions for city politics over the next couple of years.

Contenders will include Fritchey's neighboring Rep, Sara Feigenholtz, newcomers Justin Oberman and Charles Wheelan, County Commissioner Mike Quigley, likely 40th Ward alderman Patrick O'Connor, and of course attorney and author Tom Geoghegan, among others. O'Connor, if he runs, would likely win the endorsement of the county party, although that's no certainty (nor does it guarantee a win). Feigenholtz and Quigley hold major fundraising advantages*.

Given the presence of Feigenholtz, Fritchey, and Quigley, this race will be won west of Kedzie as those three, among others, split their base vote.

*Commenter John points out that Quigley hasn't raised the money yet, only that he expects to. The misreading is mine, that Quigley meant that he plans to announce he'd raised as much money as Feigenholtz, not that he had yet to raise it.

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James / January 6, 2009 2:25 PM

How do you figure that Quigley has a fundraising advantage? As of right now Feigenholtz has over 300 grand and Quigley won't say what he has. Only that he "plans" to eventually match her numbers. In other words, he hasn't been able to raise even 1/3rd of what Sara has raised. I "plan" to buy a Porsche. Doesn't mean it will happen.

Ramsin CanonAuthor Profile Page / January 6, 2009 2:35 PM

Good point James--from my misreading of the Sun-Times piece--I read it as Quigley intends to announce he's raised that much, not that he intends to raise it yet. I'll make a change to indicate that.

TVOR / January 6, 2009 4:41 PM

You say O'Connor is likely to be the slated candidate. Is that based on anything other than what Fran Spielman wrote today? If not, you should credit her.

Do you know who has the most weighted vote in the slating process?

Do you know who the various ward organizations are supporting?

By the way, a comment on your tortured sort-of-apology (sortapology?) for backing Blagojevich in 2006: Considering that you also supported Blair Hull for US Senate in 2004 - was there someone else running? - I hope you'll agree that your political judgment, well, stinks.

Ramsin CanonAuthor Profile Page / January 6, 2009 5:23 PM

"By the way," put your comment on that story, not this one. Future off-topic comments will be deleted. I'm unconcerned with the opinion of someone who snivels behind anonymity (with whiny phony email addresses like "pleasedontemailme") to take repetitious pot-shots.

I base the statement on O'Connor on conversations with other observers and inference. Mr. O'Connor having served as a floor leader in the City Council has the strongest personal and organizational ties to the city committeemen. My record for citing others' work is sterling.

The slating votes are weighted by past vote performance. I have not yet called every ward and twp organization to ask who they are endorsing, since, you know, the election wasn't announced until Friday and all the candidates haven't announced yet.

ac / January 6, 2009 7:06 PM

I think Rep. Fritchey supported Dan Hynes during the 2004 Senate Race not Blair Hull. Dan Hynes is a good public servant and is/was a proven state wide elected official.
Re Not Supporting Obama -
I cannot speak for Rep. Fritchey, however those endorsements come very early in a campaign. It was very hard to forecast that Obama, who is/was obviously a very smart and good legislator, would change into what he is today. Obama grew tremendously through the course of the 2004 primary. You have to remember that the last campaign Obama was in, he was slaughtered by Congressman Rush, and slightly less than half of the democratic primary voters in the state of illinois did not vote for him in 2004.
There might be reasons to question Rep. Fritchey's political judgement, however, on Hynes vs. Obama, I think people should cut him some slack.

For Blagojevich, on the other hand, he owes us a serious apology -- or at least some beer & pizza.

Ramsin CanonAuthor Profile Page / January 6, 2009 8:50 PM

Woah, AC! I want to be absolutely clear: the commenter above is referring to MY (I know, off topic, but that's his wont) boneheaded endorsement of Hull in 2004, not Fritchey. Fritchey I do believe endorsed Barack, with whom he was close in the state house.

AC / January 7, 2009 6:59 AM

Oooops ... sorry.
I do think he endorsed Hynes, but it doesn't matter.
Springfield is not exactly filled with the 'best & brightest'. In many ways it would be a shame to loose such a capable legislator to washington.

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