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The Mechanics

Election 2016 Wed Nov 18 2015

Republicans in Disarray, but Democrats in Despair

GOP dissarayNate Silver is one of America's sharpest political analysts, so when he writes a piece like "Maybe Republicans Really Are In Disarray", it should raise some eyebrows. Silver doesn't come to a definite conclusion, but he does lay out a logical explanation of why "disarray" might be the right term to describe the current standing of the Republicans nationally. I would add that it could easily be extended to the situation in Illinois, where Governor Bruce Rauner seems to be alienating his own party, and where at a glance it would seem increasingly likely that Senator Mark Kirk will lose next November.

Silver, though, also argues against the disarray argument, by making a fairly simple point: excluding the presidency, Republicans are winning a lot more than they're losing. Even here in Illinois, with Democratic supermajorities in both houses of the General Assembly, the reality is that the Republicans hold the governorship, one U.S. Senate seat, and eight of 18 U.S. House seats. The voting profile of the state would suggest that the Republicans should be doing far worse here.

So are the Republicans in disarray? I think the answer has to be yes. But does it matter very much? Maybe not. As bad as things may seem for the Republicans, they're nevertheless the majority party in the country, based on control of both houses of Congress, a large majority of governorships, and most state legislatures.

The party with the worst problems right now is the Democratic Party, and we can even see this playing out in Illinois.

Continue reading this entry »

Phil Huckelberry

Op-Ed Wed Mar 11 2015

Sifting Through Senator Kirk's "Chicago Will Become Detroit" Threat

By Dave Stieber

Last week Republican Senator Mark Kirk said that the citizens of Chicago should "re-elect Rahm or Chicago could end up like Detroit." Now the on the surface the comment seems to just imply that for whatever reason Senator Kirk believes that Rahm Emanuel will be more able to help with our city's finances than his challenger Chuy Garcia. It is odd that Senator Kirk believes this, because since Mayor Emanuel took over our city's bond rating has dropped five times. Clearly the mayor is great at raising money for his own re-election campaign, but raising money to help the city... not so much.

So let's go a little deeper into Mark Kirk's comments threatening that if Garcia is elected Chicago will become like Detroit.

Continue reading this entry »

Mechanics

National Politics Wed Apr 17 2013

Sen. Kirk Releases Video on Gun Control Legislation

Today Sen. Mark Kirk sent out an email to constituents sharing a video about the Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act, the gun control bill he co-authored with senators Pat Toomey (R-PA), Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Charles Schumer (D-NY), with reference to the recent gang violence in Chicago.

Dear Friends,

Last week, I met with Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy who highlighted an unfortunate statistic: 40 percent of guns were purchased without a background check. I have made it one of my top priorities in Congress to end gun violence in cities like Chicago and to dry up dangerous criminals' access to illegal weapons. Drug gangs like the Gangster Disciples exploit the loopholes in our current system, and they commit senseless acts of violence leading to the death of innocent people, like 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton, shot and killed in gang crossfire. I invite you to watch my new video that explains Senator Manchin (D-WV) and my bipartisan legislation, the Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act. This bill will reduce gun violence across the US and save lives while defending law-abiding citizens' Second Amendment rights.

It is an honor to represent you in the United States Senate.

Very Truly Yours,

Mark Kirk
U.S. Senator

Andrew Huff

Social Issues Wed Apr 03 2013

Sen. Kirk believes "the government doesn't belong in the middle." Women's Rights, Anyone?

Sen. Mark Kirk joins the ranks of other Republican elected officials who have announced their support for same-sex marriage. His stance was the opposite during his 2010 Illinois senate race citing religious reasons.

He states, "Same-sex couples should have the right to a civil marriage. Our time on this earth is limited; I know that better than most. Life comes down to who you love and who loves you back--government has no place in the middle."

He is the fourth Republican congressman to split from his party's adamant stance on gay marriage along with Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY) Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH).

His unexpected stroke last year has truly humbled him and made him more open-minded to the demands of American citizens. I applaud Kirk for being bold in his party; however, the quote, "the government has no place in the middle," makes me think of other places the government has no place: a woman's body.

Continue reading this entry »

Sydney Corryn / Comments (3)

Mark Kirk Mon Aug 06 2012

Senator Kirk Releases a New Recovery Video

Sen. Mark Kirk released a new video on Friday showing what progress he's made recovering from the stroke he suffered in January. It's the second such video he's made.

Kirk recently met with Senate colleagues, but he's postponed at least one planned fundraiser and has given no timetable for a return to full congressional duties.

Andrew Huff

Mark Kirk Tue May 08 2012

Sen. Mark Kirk Shares Video of Rehabilitation

Fifteen weeks after suffering a stroke that partially paralyzed the left side of his body, Illinois Senator Mark Kirk shared video on his YouTube account today of himself learning to walk again at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. He's enrolled in an intensive walking study for stroke patients. With ongoing training, the senator says he hopes "to climb the 45 steps that my staff counted from the parking lot to the Senate front door to fight for the people of Illinois."

Andrew Huff

GB store

Feature

Parents Still Steaming, but About More Than Just Boilers

By Phil Huckelberry / 2 Comments

It's now been 11 days since the carbon monoxide leak which sent over 80 Prussing Elementary School students and staff to the hospital. While officials from Chicago Public Schools have partially answered some questions, and CPS CEO Forrest Claypool has informed that he will be visiting the school to field more questions on Nov. 16, many parents remain irate at the CPS response to date. More...

Civics

Substance, Not Style, the Source of Rahm's Woes

By Ramsin Canon / 2 Comments

It's not surprising that some of Mayor Emanuel's sympathizers and supporters are confusing people's substantive disputes with the mayor as the effect of poor marketing on his part. It's exactly this insular worldview that has gotten the mayor in hot... More...

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Mechanics is the politics section of Gapers Block, reflecting the diversity of viewpoints and beliefs of Chicagoans and Illinoisans. More...
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