Walking out on Bill Clinton

Chicago talk radio giant WLS reports a noticeable lack of enthusiasm among Democrats in Obama's hometown a week before the county, state and national elections. 

Former President Bill Clinton's ‘get out the vote' rally for Democrats at a downtown Chicago hotel was the most unenthusiastic WLS veteran political reporter Bill Cameron has ever witnessed.

Clinton was an hour late for the Tuesday afternoon rally at the Palmer House and droned on for another hour, sending dozens of the few hundred Democrats in attendance for the exits.

It doesn't surprise me that Chicago area Democrat operatives walked out on Bill Clinton as the election he is crossing the nation to promote is just a sideshow to many of them.   In a similar manner, Democrat County Board candidate Toni Preckwinkle and SEIU officials may talk about working hard to get out the Black vote in Chicago next week but just how enthusiastically many other local Democrat officeholders will be in urging their people to work long hours at this time is unclear.  That's because local politics in Chicago have always revolved around the mayor's office.  

I suspect some of those who walked out on Bill Clinton Tuesday anticipate that they will be spending all of Thanksgiving weekend reviewing names on mayoral candidates nominating petitions.  The calendar shakes out like this.  Potential candidates to replace the retiring Mayor Daley only have until November 22 to turn in 12,500 signatures of Chicago registered voters on their nominating petitions for the February, 2011 mayoral election.   It is a safe bet that any candidates who doesn't turn in a lot more than that number will have their ballots challenged by another candidate by the November 30 challenge deadline.   Circulating petitions and then verifying that 12,500+ signers are, indeed, all registered to vote in Chicago is a  tedious, labor intensive tasks.  Reviewing the other guys petitions is even more tedious and boring. 

When I was active in Chicago politics in the 1980s when the Mayor's race was always hotly contested, Chicago's Democrat operatives often reserved their strength in the November elections.  They wouldn't urge their most reliable political workers to give 110 percent in the Governor's race or for a US Senate seat lest they be in need of a vacation when the contest that mattered most to them began in earnest less than three weeks later.  

Phil Boehmke adds:

Just a word of warning to the Illinois Republican candidates, don't be fooled by the mortuary atmosphere of Tuesday's rally, in Chicago the dead vote early and often.
Chicago talk radio giant WLS reports a noticeable lack of enthusiasm among Democrats in Obama's hometown a week before the county, state and national elections. 

Former President Bill Clinton's ‘get out the vote' rally for Democrats at a downtown Chicago hotel was the most unenthusiastic WLS veteran political reporter Bill Cameron has ever witnessed.

Clinton was an hour late for the Tuesday afternoon rally at the Palmer House and droned on for another hour, sending dozens of the few hundred Democrats in attendance for the exits.

It doesn't surprise me that Chicago area Democrat operatives walked out on Bill Clinton as the election he is crossing the nation to promote is just a sideshow to many of them.   In a similar manner, Democrat County Board candidate Toni Preckwinkle and SEIU officials may talk about working hard to get out the Black vote in Chicago next week but just how enthusiastically many other local Democrat officeholders will be in urging their people to work long hours at this time is unclear.  That's because local politics in Chicago have always revolved around the mayor's office.  

I suspect some of those who walked out on Bill Clinton Tuesday anticipate that they will be spending all of Thanksgiving weekend reviewing names on mayoral candidates nominating petitions.  The calendar shakes out like this.  Potential candidates to replace the retiring Mayor Daley only have until November 22 to turn in 12,500 signatures of Chicago registered voters on their nominating petitions for the February, 2011 mayoral election.   It is a safe bet that any candidates who doesn't turn in a lot more than that number will have their ballots challenged by another candidate by the November 30 challenge deadline.   Circulating petitions and then verifying that 12,500+ signers are, indeed, all registered to vote in Chicago is a  tedious, labor intensive tasks.  Reviewing the other guys petitions is even more tedious and boring. 

When I was active in Chicago politics in the 1980s when the Mayor's race was always hotly contested, Chicago's Democrat operatives often reserved their strength in the November elections.  They wouldn't urge their most reliable political workers to give 110 percent in the Governor's race or for a US Senate seat lest they be in need of a vacation when the contest that mattered most to them began in earnest less than three weeks later.  

Phil Boehmke adds:

Just a word of warning to the Illinois Republican candidates, don't be fooled by the mortuary atmosphere of Tuesday's rally, in Chicago the dead vote early and often.

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