More Later, but

First, Christine Cegelis and her campaign have handled the addition of another candidate with class. However, some of her supporters need a two-by-four across the head–no not all, not a majority, but some of the comments I’ve been seeing echo this claim by Dick Simpson:

“Emanuel just wants her to run because he can control her and use her in photo opportunities for the party.”

I would suggest that saying a woman helicopter pilot who has come back from amputations and is working on becoming flight certified again is entirely capable of making her own decisions about what she might do. Suggesting she is a tool of someone else is offensive.

There are plenty of legitimate issues such as policy positions or even residency that are reasonable critiques. Suggesting that Tammy Duckworth is a tool of Rahm Emanuel is just claptrap. If there is one thing she has earned is being taken seriously as Tammy Duckworth–just as Lindy Scott and Christine should be taken seriously as Lindy Scott and Christine Cegelis.

Thanks to Rich for pointing out the column again in comments.

Duckworth: On Serving in Iraq

Strangely, I ran across the bit of wingnuttery just as I was about to post this.

“One of the things I’ve been reading and people have questions is how is it that I could have not agreed with the of entering of Iraq and how could I think that was a bad decision and that was wrong and still go over in the reserves. I think what’s important to understand is that I serve as a soldier, it was my duty to answer the call of my country and I went to Iraq despite the fact that I thought it was a mistake to go there because I serve the American people and because my nation called me to go. And that’s why I went. And I did the absolute best job I possibly could every single day I was there because my commitment is to the people of the United States. And that’s why I went was commitment to duty, commitment to country. And that’s something I want to continue doing to serve the American public by representing the people of this district.”

Duckworth is a Coward?

Oh, Really?

That the reason why her (and other Iraq veterans) are running as Democrats, is because the Republican veterans re-enlisted. But, of course no one is lending an ear to the brave people who go back in because they believe in protecting our country. Have you heard any stories about the people who go back to fight? Of course not, but there’s many who have a story to tell. Trust me, it shouldn’t be a surprise that there are more Democrat Iraq veterans running for office than there are Republicans, for the very reason I wrote above. Republicans believe in this war, and keep gonig back to fight it. Democrats are cowarding over here, trying to buy votes with the “I hate Bush” mantra. However, it is always amuzing, if not irritating, to see the media focus on any “anti-Bush” B.S. than the good news of the war.

Let me repeat this bit:

That the reason why her (and other Iraq veterans) are running as Democrats, is because the Republican veterans re-enlisted. But, of course no one is lending an ear to the brave people who go back in because they believe in protecting our country.

There’s wingnuttery and then there’s this wingnuttery.

Via Michael over at Soap Box Chicago.

New Survey USA Gubernatorial Approval Numbers

Blagojevich at 41% approval/53% disapproval.

Those numbers are bad, but before everyone jumps up and down and says he can’t win, Granholm has slightly higher disapproval numbers and is considered a likely candidate for reelection.

Yes, very vulnerable.

No, not a sure thing to beat.

His biggest problem is that the longer he stays above 50% disapproval, the harder it is to reduce those numbers.

Amongst Democratic voters he has a 55% approval rating which is pretty damn low. His best numbers ideologically come from self-described moderates meaning the more liberal base is open to a challenge, though with his SEUI support, I’d still say he’s the prohibitive favorite to be renominated.

Spanky’s Back: Illinois Congressional Filing

Shamelessly taken from the House Race Hotline:

* IL 01: Rep. Bobby Rush (D), Phillip Jackson (D), Jason Tabour (R)

* IL 02: Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D), Robert Belin (R), Howard Schug (R), Anthony Williams (L)

* IL 03: Rep. Daniel Lipinski (D), John Kelly (D), John Sullivan (D), Arthur Jones (R), Raymond Wardingley (R)

* IL 04: Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D), Ann Melichar (R)

* IL 05: Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D), Mark Fredrickson (D), John Haptonstall (D), Kevin White (R)

* IL 06: Peter Roskam (R), Christine Cegelis (D), Tammy Duckworth (D), Lindy Scott (D)

* IL 07: Rep. Danny Davis (D), Jim Ascot (D), Robert Dallas (D), Charles Hutchinson (R)

* IL 08: Rep. Melissa Bean (D), Ken Arnold (R), Teresa Bartels (R), Robert Churchill (R), Aaron Lincoln (R), David McSweeney (R), James Mitchell (R), Kathy Salvi (R)

* IL 09: Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D), Kurt Eckhardt (R), Simon Ribeiro (R), Michael Shannon (R)

* IL 10: Rep. Mark Kirk (R), Daniel Seals (D), Zane Smith (D)

* IL 11: Rep. Jerry Weller (R), John Pavich (D)

* IL 12: Rep. Jerry Costello (D), Kenneth Wiezer (?)

* IL 13: Rep. Judy Biggert (R), Bob Hart (R), Bill Reedy (D), Joseph Shannon (D)

* IL 14: Rep. Dennis Hastert (R), John Laesch (D), Ruben Zamora (D)

* IL 15: Rep. Tim Johnson (R), David Gill (D)

* IL 16: Rep. Don Manzullo (R), Richard Auman (D)

* IL 17: Rep. Lane Evans (D), Brian Gilliland (R), Jim Mowen (R), Andrea Zinga (R)

* IL 18: Rep. Ray LaHood (R), Steve Waterworth (D)

* IL 19: Rep. John Shimkus (R), Vic Roberts (D), Danny Stover (D)

In bold are the most likely to become interesting. Other races have potential, but that will have to develop. IL-10 is arguable, but there are quality candidates for the Dems.

Duckworth on O’Hare Expansion

“I think that…the expansion at O”Hare has already been decided at the federal level and at this point and time we need someone who can be a strong advocate for making sure we get the most benefits we possibly can. This is already happening, we need to make sure we can do the best we can to get as many things as we can, things like things like development, like jobs, like employing our trades people. At the same time, we need someone who understands mitigation procedures, environmental risk. We need to talk about noise and maintenance.”

She also noted she had flown into the airport many times and was quite familiar with the challenges involved in expansion and its effects upon the 6th District.

Duckworth: On Assault Weapons

I tried to make this a broader question about gun control and Illinois’ laws, but I didn’t follow up well (the problem with interviews when you are watching your kids–I had a three year old curl up with me during this point).

On assault weapons, she supports the assault weapon ban and pointed out that she is very familiar with firearms both professionally and for recreational uses. She also stated she was the best shot amongst the four.

Duckworth supports waiting periods as exist in Illinois.

The question I didn’t follow up on was whether she supported the Illinois requirements for having an FOID. While not directly a federal issue, this is a hobby horse of mine.

Duckworth: On Healthcare

Supports universal access to affordable health care for everyone. Strongly objects to recent Medicaid cuts. In terms of specifics about how to reach greater access she will be developing that position.

A central point she made was the impact of increasing costs on business and the long term impact on jobs.

Duckworth: On Her Background

She grew up largely internationally and spent her last semester in high school in Hawaii. She then stayed in Hawaii for college and transitioned from marine biology to political science in which she ended up majoring. From there then she moved to Dekalb to enter the PhD program in political science.

She reached ABD status and worked on a dissertation that studied the political economy of Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia’s response to the Asian financial crisis. During that period she had several committee members retire or pass away and eventually she migrated to health policy and public health.

She then went to work for Rotary International managing their Rotary programs in Asia and began to work on a public health dissertation on private and public institutions working on health issues. This tied into the work at Rotary as Rotary is attempting to eradicate polio worldwide through a private initiative.

She moved to Dekalb 15 years ago and then has been in Hoffman Estates for three years.

Duckworth: On Deciding to Run

I’m not going to be able to transcribe this quickly so this series of posts will summarize Tammy Duckworth’s responses in an interview conducted Saturday early afternoon. I didn’t follow-up as well because the twins were getting anxious while I was interviewing her.

While she was recovering she had essentially a year to think about what she wanted to do especially the first 2 1/2 months when she couldn’t really move. She was brought up to perform public service and then when she testified before the Senate VA Committee and it really got her thinking about things she could do and she saw the opportunity to fight for her area and be a vote for change.