Rich Miller

Rich Miller

Dem Supreme Court hopefuls have huge money edge

Spread the love

By Rich Miller

The labor union and trial lawyer-backed All for Justice independent expenditure committee has so far reported raising $3.5 million, with, I’m told, at least another $5 million in pledges.

The committee’s sole purpose is to back the two Democratic candidates running for the Illinois Supreme Court: Appellate Justice Mary K. O’Brien and Judge Elizabeth Rochford. Its spending is finally beginning.

A press release claimed, “An initial [advertising] buy of $3 million dollars,” with “plans to spend millions more informing residents of the 2nd and 3rd districts of these extremists on the ballot.”

The ad features a woman emphasizing that just “one seat” on the Illinois Supreme Court could imperil or preserve abortion rights.

RichMiller 1

Rich Miller

“Mark Curran and Michael Burke want to ban abortion in Illinois, even in cases of rape and incest. Women put in jail for making their own medical decisions? That’s not what I want for my kids. That’s not what I want for anyone. Mark Curran and Michael Burke are too extreme and they don’t belong on the Illinois Supreme Court.”

The ad will almost surely face legal opposition. The Illinois Republican Party made a big deal last week about a similar TV ad aired by Supreme Court Justice Burke’s Democratic opponent, Appellate Justice O’Brien.

The ILGOP demanded that O’Brien take down the ad, which claims, “Mike Burke says he agreed with the decision to overturn Roe. He’s supported by the extreme groups that want to ban all abortion for Illinois women.”

Burke is backed by anti-abortion groups. The first sentence in that excerpt, however, is hotly disputed by the Republican Party, which claims Justice Burke “has not expressed any opinion on that issue or any issue that may come before the Illinois Supreme Court.”

Justice O’Brien’s campaign, however, pointed to Burke’s attendance at an important Illinois right to life banquet. Burke said this year that, like the U.S. Supreme Court justices who voted to overturn Roe v. Wade, he too is a constitutional “originalist,” meaning he refers back to the original drafting of the Constitution rather than subsequent court rulings when making a decision. He also noted that abortion is “not an enumerated right” in either the Illinois or the U.S. constitutions.

It’s very difficult to legally force a TV station to take down a candidate’s advertisement. But, as we’ve seen in the past few weeks with Dan Proft’s People Who Play by the Rules PAC ads for Darren Bailey, it’s not nearly as difficult to force an independent expenditure committee to prove the truthfulness of what it’s saying in its ads or see them yanked.

Time will tell if the new All for Justice ad stays up.

Meanwhile, the opposition research is starting to come out on Curran. My associate, Isabel Miller, posted some of it on CapitolFax.com last week, but expect more to emerge on topics like Curran’s comments about the January 6th attempted insurrection (the police officer who shot Ashli Babbitt should resign, he said) and on gay rights (Curran said at a rally opposing a same-sex marriage bill that the law would “result in the loss of liberty for those opposed to same sex marriage”).

Of course, there’s abortion. Curran has attended anti-abortion rallies, donated some of his own campaign funds last year to Illinois Citizens for Life and praised Donald Trump for appointing Supreme Court justices who overturned Roe v. Wade, among other things.

Curran is also the former longtime sheriff of Lake County, which is fully in the 2nd Supreme Court District, and he may still have some residual name recognition from his 2020 race for U.S. Senate, which Curran lost to Dick Durbin 55-39.

Money-wise, the Supreme Court races started about even in July, as far as the candidates were concerned. But that has changed considerably in the past month or so.

Democratic Justice O’Brien has since reported raising almost $1.6 million to Justice Burke’s $13,000. Democratic Judge Rochford has reported raising $742K to the Republican Curran’s $137K, much of it from his family.

The Ken Griffin-funded Citizens for Judicial Fairness independent expenditure committee had more than $5.5 million in the bank at last check. It is not expected to help Curran, but is expected to jump in for Justice Burke. The Firewall Project, which is raising money to back Republicans for the Supreme Court and Greg Hart for DuPage County Board Chair, has reported raising $440K in the past few weeks.

But the Democrat-affiliated All for Justice IE committee is hoping to have a budget of as much as $8-10 million by election day. So stay tuned.

Rich Miller also publishes Capitol Fax, a daily political newsletter, and CapitolFax.com.

Local News

Richards won its own regional on Feb.4 behind the efforts of Katie Barr (from left), Natalie Stahulak, Mia Montes, Ulyssa Garcia, Laurin Jacobs, Kylie Schaefer, Andrea Abarca, Yasmine Maali, seen here with head coach Ed Fink and assistant coach Brian Waight. The Bulldogs advanced to the Oswego East Sectional. Photo by Mike Walsh

Girls Bowling | Richards wins regional; Shepard’s Kahlen Ranson rolls to individual title

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Mike Walsh Correspondent Screaming and cheering parents and friends expressing their staunch support for their bowlers. Teammates fervently hoping for an opportunity to advance to sectional competition next weekend. For good measure, not one but two gender-reveal parties getting ready to begin a few lanes away. Quite a vibrant atmosphere for a…

Sandburg's competitive cheerleaders perform Saturday in the IHSA finals in Bloomington. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Cheerleading State Finals: Sandburg takes fourth behind conference rivals

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Jeff Vorva Staff Writer BLOOMINGTON — Sandburg’s competitive cheerleaders finished fourth in a state finals competition that looked a lot like a SouthWest Suburban Conference meet. At least it did for the Large Team division competition, in which the top five finishers hail from the SWSC. The 2023 state finals were held…

Nazareth's quest for a state championship starts on Tuesday. Nazareth photo

Area Sports Roundup | Nazareth girls clinch conference crown with win over Carmel

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Jeff Vorva Staff Writer Nazareth’s girls basketball team is eyeing a Class 3A state championship after finishing second to Carmel a season ago. The Roadrunners whipped the Corsairs, 48-24, Feb. 4 to win the East Suburban Catholic Conference for the second straight year. It marked coach Ed Stritzel’s 400th career victory. Nazareth…

SRP-IMAGE-Logo

Girls Bowling | Reavis wins second straight regional crown; Argo’s Sara Flynn take indie title

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Mike Walsh Correspondent Two years, two consecutive regional championships for Reavis’ girls bowling team. The Rams made it back-to-back titles in an impressive manner, topping the 13-team field at the Reavis Regional with a pinfall total of 4847, topping second-place Argo (4684) by 163 pins at Palos Lanes in Palos Hills Reavis…

Promoter Katie Goggin discusses the Countryside Summer Concert series. She has to book acts well in advance. (Photo by Steve Metsch)

Countryside plans summer concert series, bluegrass festival

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Steve Metsch It might be winter, but it’s never too soon to talk about summertime music. Such was the case Jan. 11 when the Countryside City Council’s Special Events Committee heard from promoter Katie Goggin regarding the city’s annual Summer Concert Series. The committee also heard about the second annual Bluegrass and Brews Festival…

Newly elected Judge Nick Kantas gives the oath of office to Senator Mike Porfirio. (Supplied photos)

Porfirio resigns township post to take Senate seat

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Steve Metsch Mike Porfirio is now a state senator and the Township of Lyons Board of Trustees has a vacancy. Porfirio submitted his resignation as a trustee, which was accepted by the board at its Jan. 10 meeting. Porfirio was elected to the Illinois Senate in November, and was sworn in as…

Deputy Police Chief David DeLeshe (left) and McCook Mayor Terrance Carr said the new drone will help investigate crimes. It can also be used to find hot spots in fires. (Photos by Steve Metsch)

Drone takes McCook crime fighting to new level

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Steve Metsch The McCook Police Department has a new weapon to fight crime. A new drone equipped with an infrared camera and the ability to zoom in 200 times was at the village’s latest board meeting on Jan. 17. The village used part of a $50,000 grant from the Secretary of State’s…

CRRNH_CathSchoolsWeekOLS_020823

Super Hero fun at Our Lady of the Snows

Spread the love

Spread the love Catholic Schools Week was plenty of fun this year at Our Lady of the Snows School, as students were encouraged to dress as a super hero. Parents interested in checking out the school, 4810 S. Leamington, for 2023-24 are encouraged to call (773) 735-4810. – Supplied photo

new lane configuration 2-6-23

Tri-State lane closures start Monday as area ramps prepare to reopen

Spread the love

Spread the loveOvernight lane closures are scheduled next week to shift traffic on Interstate 55 and on the northbound Tri-State Tollway (Interstate 294) between Willow Springs Road and Plainfield Road and reopen the ramp connecting northbound I-294 to southbound I-55 and Wolf Road. On Monday, February 6, beginning at 9 p.m. and continuing until 5…

Newly installed Orland Park Area Chamber president Ramzi Hassan addresses members during last week’s installation dinner. (Photos by Steve Neuhaus)

Comings & Goings: Orland Area Chamber installs new officers

Spread the love

Spread the loveRamzi Hassan of Edwards Realty Company was installed last week as president of the Orland Park Area Chamber of Commerce. The 2023 board of directors was also installed and annual membership awards were handed out during ceremonies last Thursday at the Crystal Tree Country Club. Installation duties were performed by Orland Park Mayor…

Neighbors

DVN JCs Restoration House Ad
Richards won its own regional on Feb.4 behind the efforts of Katie Barr (from left), Natalie Stahulak, Mia Montes, Ulyssa Garcia, Laurin Jacobs, Kylie Schaefer, Andrea Abarca, Yasmine Maali, seen here with head coach Ed Fink and assistant coach Brian Waight. The Bulldogs advanced to the Oswego East Sectional. Photo by Mike Walsh

Girls Bowling | Richards wins regional; Shepard’s Kahlen Ranson rolls to individual title

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Mike Walsh Correspondent Screaming and cheering parents and friends expressing their staunch support for their bowlers. Teammates fervently hoping for an opportunity to advance to sectional competition next weekend. For good measure, not one but two gender-reveal parties getting ready to begin a few lanes away. Quite a vibrant atmosphere for a…

Sandburg's competitive cheerleaders perform Saturday in the IHSA finals in Bloomington. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Cheerleading State Finals: Sandburg takes fourth behind conference rivals

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Jeff Vorva Staff Writer BLOOMINGTON — Sandburg’s competitive cheerleaders finished fourth in a state finals competition that looked a lot like a SouthWest Suburban Conference meet. At least it did for the Large Team division competition, in which the top five finishers hail from the SWSC. The 2023 state finals were held…

Nazareth's quest for a state championship starts on Tuesday. Nazareth photo

Area Sports Roundup | Nazareth girls clinch conference crown with win over Carmel

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Jeff Vorva Staff Writer Nazareth’s girls basketball team is eyeing a Class 3A state championship after finishing second to Carmel a season ago. The Roadrunners whipped the Corsairs, 48-24, Feb. 4 to win the East Suburban Catholic Conference for the second straight year. It marked coach Ed Stritzel’s 400th career victory. Nazareth…

SRP-IMAGE-Logo

Girls Bowling | Reavis wins second straight regional crown; Argo’s Sara Flynn take indie title

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Mike Walsh Correspondent Two years, two consecutive regional championships for Reavis’ girls bowling team. The Rams made it back-to-back titles in an impressive manner, topping the 13-team field at the Reavis Regional with a pinfall total of 4847, topping second-place Argo (4684) by 163 pins at Palos Lanes in Palos Hills Reavis…

Promoter Katie Goggin discusses the Countryside Summer Concert series. She has to book acts well in advance. (Photo by Steve Metsch)

Countryside plans summer concert series, bluegrass festival

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Steve Metsch It might be winter, but it’s never too soon to talk about summertime music. Such was the case Jan. 11 when the Countryside City Council’s Special Events Committee heard from promoter Katie Goggin regarding the city’s annual Summer Concert Series. The committee also heard about the second annual Bluegrass and Brews Festival…

Newly elected Judge Nick Kantas gives the oath of office to Senator Mike Porfirio. (Supplied photos)

Porfirio resigns township post to take Senate seat

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Steve Metsch Mike Porfirio is now a state senator and the Township of Lyons Board of Trustees has a vacancy. Porfirio submitted his resignation as a trustee, which was accepted by the board at its Jan. 10 meeting. Porfirio was elected to the Illinois Senate in November, and was sworn in as…

Deputy Police Chief David DeLeshe (left) and McCook Mayor Terrance Carr said the new drone will help investigate crimes. It can also be used to find hot spots in fires. (Photos by Steve Metsch)

Drone takes McCook crime fighting to new level

Spread the love

Spread the loveBy Steve Metsch The McCook Police Department has a new weapon to fight crime. A new drone equipped with an infrared camera and the ability to zoom in 200 times was at the village’s latest board meeting on Jan. 17. The village used part of a $50,000 grant from the Secretary of State’s…

CRRNH_CathSchoolsWeekOLS_020823

Super Hero fun at Our Lady of the Snows

Spread the love

Spread the love Catholic Schools Week was plenty of fun this year at Our Lady of the Snows School, as students were encouraged to dress as a super hero. Parents interested in checking out the school, 4810 S. Leamington, for 2023-24 are encouraged to call (773) 735-4810. – Supplied photo

new lane configuration 2-6-23

Tri-State lane closures start Monday as area ramps prepare to reopen

Spread the love

Spread the loveOvernight lane closures are scheduled next week to shift traffic on Interstate 55 and on the northbound Tri-State Tollway (Interstate 294) between Willow Springs Road and Plainfield Road and reopen the ramp connecting northbound I-294 to southbound I-55 and Wolf Road. On Monday, February 6, beginning at 9 p.m. and continuing until 5…

Newly installed Orland Park Area Chamber president Ramzi Hassan addresses members during last week’s installation dinner. (Photos by Steve Neuhaus)

Comings & Goings: Orland Area Chamber installs new officers

Spread the love

Spread the loveRamzi Hassan of Edwards Realty Company was installed last week as president of the Orland Park Area Chamber of Commerce. The 2023 board of directors was also installed and annual membership awards were handed out during ceremonies last Thursday at the Crystal Tree Country Club. Installation duties were performed by Orland Park Mayor…

House Ad Subscription1
Regional dermatology associates House Ad