Illinois Governor’s race: Brady bunch to be wire-to-wire winner?

1 Nov

The Race:

Illinois Governor

The Job:

As the chief executive of the state, the governor of Illinois is responsible for enacting laws passed by the Illinois General Assembly. The governor resides in the state’s executive mansion in Springfield. Illinois currently has no gubernatorial term limit. With the state’s history of corruption in the gubernatorial seat and the current budget deficit, transparency and spending reform are on the top of all candidate’s list.

The Candidates:

Pat Quinn – Democrat –

Pat Quinn is the 61-year-old incumbent from Hinsdale, Ill., but currently resides in Chicago. He graduated from Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service and he also has a law degree from Northwestern University’s School of Law. He served as State Treasurer from 1991 to 1995 and Lieutenant Governor under Rod Blagojevich from 2003 to 2009, assuming the role of Governor in 2009 after Blagojevich was impeached.

As Governor, Quinn signed a $29 billion capital bill to provide construction and repair funds for Illinois roads, mass transit and schools. He is Pro-Choice, supports contractual relationships for gays and lesbians, aims to have 25 percent of the state’s energy coming from renewable resources by 2025 and supports an income tax increase.

Bill Brady – Republican –

Brady, 49, is a state Senator from Bloomington, Ill. He Graduated from Illinois Wesleyan University, is the co-owner of Brady Homes and is a current board member of St. Joseph Hospital and Westminster Retirement Village. Brady has proposed “cutting a dime for every dollar” as a means of managing the state’s debt. He is Pro-Life and supported a state amendment to define marriage between one man and one woman.

Brady supports a call for term limits in the House and the Senate, a less rigid education structure by allowing intelligent design to be taught in schools, eliminating the state’s estate tax and opposes a sales or income tax increase.

Rich Whitney – Green Party –

Whitney is a 55-year-old civil rights attorney from Carbondale, Ill. He Graduated from Michigan State University and has a law degree from Southern Illinois University’s School of Law. He was a member of the Socialist-Labor party from 1975 to 1993, ran for 115th district Illinois House of Representatives in both 2002 and 2004 and also for Governor of Ilinois in 2006.

Whitney is Pro-Choice, supports progressive taxes, gay marriage, the legalization of marijuana, a state forensic audit, single-payer universal healthcare system and favors a ban on corporate campaign contributions.

The Skinny:

The gubernatorial race has been characterized by less-than friendly debates and tension filled candidate forums. Spawning from Rich Whitney protesting his exclusion from events such as the candidates forum at Chicago’s Union League Club and the gubernatorial debate at ABC7 to name calling tactics from both Quinn and Brady’s side.

Brady has consistently led in the polls, leading at 43.8 percent to Quinn’s 34.2 percent and Whitney’s 7 percent as of Oct. 24, 2010 (Rich Miller, Capitol Fax). The state’s general disenchantment with the Democratic Party make for a further Republican-leaning race.

Notable headlines include: Rich Whitney’s name being spelled wrong, as ‘Rich Whitey’ in 23 predominantly African American wards, Brady’s running mate Jason Plummer’s refusal to release his tax statements, and Brady’s request of an apology from Quinn regarding harsh comments made about Brady by Illinois Senator and Quinn supporter Rickey Hendon. Hendon called Brady “idiotic, racist, sexist and homophobic.”

Key Endorsements:

Pat Quinn has been endorsed by The Sierra Club and the Chicago Sun-Times.

Bill Brady has been endorsed by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, the Chicago Tribune, the Daily Herald and Crain’s Chicago Business.

Rich Whitney has been endorsed by The Cherokee Tribal Council of Illinois.

Jennifer Schanz

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