Monday, February 27, 2006

Tribune 2004 Endorsements

The Tribune's endorsements
Chicago Tribune
November 2, 2004

These are the Chicago Tribune editorial board's endorsements in Tuesday's elections.

Endorsements are made only in contested races.



George W. Bush (R)


Barack Obama (D)


1st District

Bobby Rush (D)

2nd District

Jesse Jackson Jr. (D)

3rd District

Daniel Lipinski (D)

4th District

Luis Gutierrez (D)

5th District

Rahm Emanuel (D)

6th District

Henry Hyde (R)

7th District

Danny Davis (D

8th District

Melissa Bean (D)

9th District

Jan Schakowsky (D)

10th District

Mark Kirk (R)

11th District

Jerry Weller (R)

12th District

Erin Zweigart (R)

13th District

Judy Biggert (R)

14th District

Dennis Hastert (R)

15th District

Tim Johnson (R)

16th District

Donald Manzullo (R)

17th District

No endorsement

18th District

Ray LaHood (R)

19th District

John Shimkus (R)



5th District

Rickey Hendon (D)

8th District

Ira Silverstein (D)

11th District

Louis Viverito (D)

26th District

Bill Peterson (R)

29th District

Susan Garrett (D)

32nd District

Pamela Althoff (R)

35th District

Brad Burzynski (R)

38th District

Gary Dahl (R)

47th District

John Sullivan (D)

56th District

Bill Haine (D)

59th District

Ron Summers (R)


5th District

Ken Dunkin (D)

8th District

Julie Samuels (Green)

10th District

Annazette Collins (D)

11th District

John Fritchey (D)

12th District

Sara Feigenholtz (D)

15th District

William Miceli (R)

16th District

Lou Lang (D)

17th District

Elizabeth Coulson (R)

18th District

Julie Hamos (D)

19th District

Joseph Lyons (D)

20th District

Michael McAuliffe (R)

21st District

Robert Molaro (D)

22nd District

Michael Madigan (D)

24th District

No endorsement

28th District

Michael Fredette (R)

35th District

Kevin Joyce (D)

36th District

James Brosnahan (D)

38th District

Robin Kelly (D)

40th District

Richard Bradley (D)

43rd District

Ruth Munson (R)

46th District

Lee Daniels (R)

47th District

Patti Bellock (R)

48th District

Guy Rosenthal (D)

50th District

Patricia Reid Lindner (R)

51st District

Ed Sullivan Jr. (R)

52nd District

Mark Beaubien (R)

53rd District

Sidney Mathias (R)

57th District

Elaine Nekritz (D)

58th District

Karen May (D)

59th District

Kathleen Ryg (D)

60th District

Eddie Washington (D)

61st District

JoAnn Osmond (R)

62nd District

Sharyn Elman (D)

63rd District

Perry Moy (R)

64th District

Michael Tryon (R)

65th District

Rosemary Mulligan (R)

68th District

Dave Winters (R)

70th District

Robert Pritchard (R)

71st District

Steve Haring (R)

72nd District

Patrick Verschoore (D)

74th District

Donald Moffitt (R)

75th District

Doug Hayse (R)

79th District

Kay Pangle (R)

82nd District

Eileen Lyons (R)

85th District

Brent Hassert (R)

88th District

Dan Brady (R)

92nd District

Aaron Schock (R)

95th District

Randall Hultgren (R)

99th District

Raymond Poe (R)

101st District

Robert Flider (D)

103rd District

Deborah Frank Feinen (R)

106th District

Keith Sommer (R)

107th District

Kurt Granberg (D)

108th District

David Reis (R)

109th District

Roger Eddy (R)

111th District

Steve Davis (D)

114th District

Wyvetter Younge (D)

115th District

Mike Bost (R)

117th District

John Bradley (D)



5th District

Lloyd A. Karmeier (R)


3rd District

Jim Wright (R)


Vote "YES" for the following:

1st District

Thomas Hoffman

Sheila O'Brien

Mary Jane Wendt Theis

2nd District

Susan Fayette Hutchinson

3rd District

William Holdridge

Endorsements in the collar counties

These are the Chicago Tribune's endorsements in Tuesday's elections for races in Cook, DuPage, Kane, McHenry, Will and Lake Counties:



Richard Devine (D)


John Cox (R)


Dorothy Brown (D)


Patricia Young (D)

Gloria Alitto Majewski (D)

Barbara McGowan (D)


Salyers vacancy

Michelle Jordan (D)



Bill Kunkle (R)


Kay Marie Hanlon (R)


Catherine Sanders (R)


The Tribune recommends a "YES" vote for the judges seeking retention, with the following exceptions. On these judges, the Tribune recommends a "NO" vote:

Dorothy Jones

Susan McDunn

William O'Neal



1st District

Paul Fichtner (R)

2nd District

Patrick O'Shea (R)

3rd District

Richard Moss (D)

4th District

Debra Olson (R)

5th District

Hiram Wurf (D)

6th District

Pamela Rion (R)


1st District

Marsha Murphy (R)

3rd District

Wallace Brown (R)

5th District

Carl Schultz (R)


Chris Kachiroubas (R)


Peter Siekmann (R)


Vote "YES" for the following judges:

Bonnie Wheaton

Robert Emmett Byrne

Robert K. Kilander

Rodney Equi



2nd District

Mary Richards (R)

4th District

Penelope Cameron (R)

10th District

Thomas Van Cleave (R)

14th District

Elaine Stern (D)

20th District

Marlena Fox (D)

22nd District

Jackie Tredup (R)

24th District

Margaret Scalfaro (R)


Karen McConnaughay (R)


Charles West (R)


Sandy Wegman (R)


John Barsanti (R)


Jensen vacancy

Robert Spence (R)

Vote "YES" for the following retention judges:

James Doyle Donald Fabian



1st District

Judy Martini (R)

5th District

Bonnie Thomson Carter (R)

6th District

Lawrence Leafblad (R)

10th District

Diana O'Kelly (R)

11th District

Sandy Cole (R)

16th District

Robert Powers (R)


Sally Coffelt (R)


Richard Keller (D)


Mary Ellen Vanderventer (D)


Michael Waller (R)


Daniel Pierce (D)


Vote "YES" for the following:

Raymond McKoski

Henry Tonigan

Margaret Mullen



1st District

Dan Shea (R)

Marc Munaretto (R)

2nd District

Marie Chmiel (R)

Lori Keller (D)

3rd District

Ann Kate (R)

Nick Provenzano (R)

4th District

John Hammerand (R)

Sue Draffkorn (R)

5th District

Virginia Peschke (R)

John Jung Jr. (R)

6th District

Richard Klasen (R)

Mary Lou Zierer (R)



1st District

Lee Deutsche (D)

Mary Ann Gearhart Deutsche (R)

Cory Singer (R)

2nd District

Thomas Weigel (R)

6th District

Don Gould (R)

Kerry Sheridan (R)

Deborah Rozak (R)

7th District

Kathleen Konicki (R)

Ronald Svara (R)

Jim Bilotta (R)

9th District

Stephen Wilhelmi (D)


Pamela McGuire (D)


Laurie McPhillips (R)


James Glasgow (D)


Steve Weber (R)


Patrick O'Neil (D)


Joseph Mikan (R)

The Tribune's endorsements, Chi. Trib., November 2, 2004, § 1, at 20.

Chicago Tribune: George W. Bush for President

Chicago Tribune Editorial
George W. Bush for president

October 17, 2004

One by one, Americans typically settle on a presidential candidate after weighing his, and his rival's, views on the mosaic of issues that each of us finds important.

Some years, though, force vectors we didn't anticipate turn some of our usual priorities--our pet causes, our own economic interest--into narcissistic luxuries. As Election Day nears, the new force vectors drive our decision-making.

This is one of those years--distinct in ways best framed by Sen. John McCain, perhaps this country's most broadly respected politician. Seven weeks ago, McCain looked with chilling calm into TV cameras and told Americans, with our rich diversity of clashing worldviews, what is at stake for every one of us in the first presidential election since Sept. 11 of 2001:

"So it is, whether we wished it or not, that we have come to the test of our generation, to our rendezvous with destiny. ... All of us, despite the differences that enliven our politics, are united in the one big idea that freedom is our birthright and its defense is always our first responsibility. All other responsibilities come second." If we waver, McCain said, "we will fail the one mission no American generation has ever failed--to provide to our children a stronger, better country than the one we were blessed to inherit."

This year, each of us has the privilege of choosing between two major-party candidates whose integrity, intentions and abilities are exemplary.

One of those candidates, Sen. John Kerry, embraces an ongoing struggle against murderous terrorists, although with limited U.S. entanglements overseas. The other candidate, President George W. Bush, talks more freely about what is at risk for this country: the cold-eyed possibility that fresh attacks no better coordinated than those of Sept. 11--but with far deadlier weapons--could ravage American metropolises. Bush, then, embraces a bolder struggle not only with those who sow terror, but also with rogue governments that harbor, finance or arm them.

This was a radical strategy when the president articulated it in 2001, even as dust carrying the DNA of innocents wafted up from ground zero. And it is the unambiguous strategy that, as this page repeatedly has contended, is most likely to deliver the more secure future that John McCain wishes for our children.

A President Kerry certainly would punish those who want us dead. As he pledged, with cautiously calibrated words, in accepting his party's nomination: "Any attack will be met with a swift and certain response." Bush, by contrast, insists on taking the fight to terrorists, depriving them of oxygen by encouraging free and democratic governments in tough neighborhoods. As he stated in his National Security Strategy in 2002: "The United States can no longer solely rely on a reactive posture as we have in the past. ... We cannot let our enemies strike first."

Bush's sense of a president's duty to defend America is wider in scope than Kerry's, more ambitious in its tactics, more prone, frankly, to yield both casualties and lasting results. This is the stark difference on which American voters should choose a president.

There is much the current president could have done differently over the last four years. There are lessons he needs to have learned. And there are reasons--apart from the global perils likely to dominate the next presidency--to recommend either of these two good candidates.

But for his resoluteness on the defining challenge of our age--a resoluteness John Kerry has not been able to demonstrate--the Chicago Tribune urges the re-election of George W. Bush as president of the United States.

- - -

Bush, his critics say, displays an arrogance that turns friends into foes. Spurned at the United Nations by "Old Europe"--France, Germany, Russia--he was too long in admitting he wanted their help in a war. He needs to acknowledge that his country's future interests are best served by fixing frayed friendships. And if re-elected, he needs to accomplish that goal.

But that is not the whole story. Consider:

Bush has nurtured newer alliances with many nations such as Poland, Romania and Ukraine (combined population, close to 110 million) that want more than to be America's friends: Having seized their liberty from tyrants, they are determined now to be on the right side of history.

Kerry is an internationalist, a man of conspicuous intellect. He is a keen student of world affairs and their impact at home.

But that is not the whole story. Consider:

On the most crucial issue of our time, Kerry has serially dodged for political advantage. Through much of the 2004 election cycle, he used his status as a war hero as an excuse not to have a coherent position on America's national security. Even now, when Kerry grasps a microphone, it can be difficult to fathom who is speaking--the war hero, or the anti-war hero.

Kerry displays great faith in diplomacy as the way to solve virtually all problems. Diplomatic solutions should always be the goal. Yet that principle would be more compelling if the world had a better record of confronting true crises, whether proffered by the nuclear-crazed ayatollahs of Iran, the dark eccentrics of North Korea, the genocidal murderers of villagers in Sudan--or the Butcher of Baghdad.

In each of these cases, Bush has pursued multilateral strategies. In Iraq, when the UN refused to enforce its 17th stern resolution--the more we learn about the UN's corrupt Oil-for-Food program, the more it's clear the fix was in--Bush acted. He thus reminded many of the world's governments why they dislike conservative and stubborn U.S. presidents (see Reagan, Ronald).

Bush has scored a great success in Afghanistan--not only by ousting the Taliban regime and nurturing a new democracy, but also by ignoring the chronic doubters who said a war there would be a quagmire. He and his administration provoked Libya to surrender its weapons program, turned Pakistan into an ally against terrorists (something Bill Clinton's diplomats couldn't do) and helped shut down A.Q. Khan, the world's most menacing rogue nuclear proliferator.

Many of these cross-currents in Bush's and Kerry's worldviews collide in Iraq.

Bush arguably invaded with too few allies and not enough troops. He will go to his tomb defending his reliance on intelligence from agencies around the globe that turned out to be wrong. And he has refused to admit any errors.

Kerry, though, has lost his way. The now-professed anti-war candidate says he still would vote to authorize the war he didn't vote to finance. He used the presidential debates to telegraph a policy of withdrawal. His Iraq plan essentially is Bush's plan. All of which perplexes many.

Worse, it plainly perplexes Kerry. ("I do believe Saddam Hussein was a threat," he said Oct. 8, adding that Bush was preoccupied with Iraq, "where there wasn't a threat.") What's not debatable is that Kerry did nothing to oppose White House policy on Iraq until he trailed the dovish Howard Dean in the race for his party's nomination. Also haunting Kerry: his Senate vote against the Persian Gulf war--driven by faith that, yes, more diplomacy could end Saddam Hussein's rape of Kuwait.

- - -

On domestic issues, the choice is also clear. In critical areas such as public education and health care, Bush's emphasis is on greater competition. His No Child Left Behind Act has flaws, but its requirements have created a new climate of expectation and accountability. On both of these important fronts, but especially with his expensive health-care plan, Kerry primarily sees a need to raise and spend more money.

The failure of either candidate to offer spending and taxation proposals that remotely approach balancing the federal budget is an embarrassment to both. The non-partisan Concord Coalition calculates the 10-year impact of Bush's proposals as a negative $1.33 trillion; the impact of Kerry's is a nearly identical $1.27 trillion. Kerry correctly cites the disturbingly expensive legacy of Bush's tax cuts--while, in the same breath, promising new tax cuts of his own.

This is a genre of American fiction that Bush, if he is re-elected, cannot perpetuate. To Bush's credit, his tax policies have had the aggregate effect of pushing Americans toward more savings and investment--the capital with which the world's strongest economy generates jobs. But he has not shown the necessary discipline on discretionary spending. Two particularly egregious examples: Medicare prescription drug coverage and an enormously expensive farm subsidy bill, both signed by Bush.

This country's paramount issue, though, remains the threat to its national security.

John Kerry has been a discerning critic of where Bush has erred. But Kerry's message--a more restrained assault on global threats, earnest comfort with the international community's noble inaction--suggests what many voters sense: After 20 years in the Senate, the moral certitude Kerry once displayed has evaporated. There is no landmark Kennedy-Kerry Education Act, no Kerry-Frist Health Bill. Today's Kerry is more about plans and process than solutions. He is better suited to analysis than to action. He has not delivered a compelling blueprint for change.

For three years, Bush has kept Americans, and their government, focused--effectively--on this nation's security. The experience, dating from Sept. 11, 2001, has readied him for the next four years, a period that could prove as pivotal in this nation's history as were the four years of World War II.

That demonstrated ability, and that crucible of experience, argue for the re-election of President George W. Bush. He has the steadfastness, and the strength, to execute the one mission no American generation has ever failed.

Copyright © 2006, Chicago Tribune,1,1802792.story?coll=chi-navrailnews-nav

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Alexander Cockburn: Rahm's Candidates Fence-Straddle on the War

beat the devil by Alexander Cockburn

The Year of Vanished Credibility

[from the January 9, 2006 issue]

Start with Bush. Never at ease before the cameras, he now has the hunted blink and compulsive nasolabial twitch of the mad dictator, a cornered rat with nowhere left to run. Nixon looked the same in his last White House days, and so did Hitler, according to those present in the F├╝hrerbunker. As Hitler did before him, Bush raves on about imagined victories. Spare a thought for the First Lady, who has to endure his demented and possibly drunken harangues over supper. The word around Washington is that he's drinking again. At this rate he'll be shooting the dog and ordering the First Lady to take poison, which I'm sure she'll have great pleasure in forwarding to her mother-in-law.

Certainly it's hard to escape Bush's voice. Every time I turn on the radio, there he is giving a press conference, or yet another bulletin on the great triumphs in Iraq (where the recent election produced utter defeat for the United States and total victory for Iran). There's talk of a Bush bounce in the polls, though I tend to believe the usually reliable Zogby poll, which found on December 13 that after edging back up above 40 percent in November, Bush's job approval rating was once again at 38 percent. I'm sure millions of Americans yearn to approve of Bush. He's officially scheduled to be in the White House for another three years, and who wants a lemon in the garage that long? And indeed, the President does still have his die-hard fans, clustered in their places of worship in the remoter regions of the country. A mid-November poll by SurveyUSA found that in only seven states did Bush's current approval rating even hover around 50 percent. These consisted of thinly populated states where sexual relations with livestock are still commonplace: Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Alabama and Mississippi.

All the same, we've mishandled the situation. When Bush landed on the aircraft carrier and said, Mission accomplished, we all sneered. Wrong move. We should have applauded and said, Now leave! Same thing when there turned out to be no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. We sneered again. We should have said, Great! America's safe. Let's quit while we're ahead.

Now Bush is saying that the job will be done when Iraqis enjoy the democratic freedoms guaranteed Americans. We should say, They do! Bought news stories; secret surveillance of phone calls, e-mails and faxes; arrest without warrant; disappearances; torture--you've brought our democracies into sync. Call it a day, bring the troops home and then we can start impeaching you.

But who would do the impeaching? The Democrats have lost as much credibility as the President and the Republicans. Ever since the New York Times loitered a year late into print with its disclosure about the NSA spying program (only the latest in a sequence of unconstitutional infamies by that agency stretching back for decades, mostly against domestic political protesters), I've seen it argued that if the Times had gone with the story last year, Kerry might be President.

But if the Democrats had cared about the Constitution, they could have broken the story last year. Democratic Congressional leaders knew, because the whistleblowers from the NSA desperately tried to alert them, only to get the cold shoulder. Kerry's prime advisers on such matters--Richard Clarke and Rand Beers--knew, because they'd previously been Bush's top functionaries in the "war on terror."

We're heading into a year when the Democrats could be making hay by actually doing the right thing. If 2005 is a pointer, they never will. The latest evidence is that Rahm Emanuel, in charge of selecting Democratic Congressional candidates for 2006, is choosing millionaires and fence-straddlers on the war. He shunned Christine Cegelis, who nearly beat sixteen-termer Henry Hyde in 2004, and whom Illinois polls show to be a popular contender to succeed Hyde. But Cegelis has the disadvantage in Emanuel's eyes of not being very rich and of agreeing with John Murtha on immediate withdrawal of US troops from Iraq. So Emanuel picked Tammy Duckworth, who embodies the cynicism of the "Democratic strategists," being a double-amputee woman Iraq veteran who is not from the district, has a hot-air position on the war and is thought to espouse a "pro-business/centrist platform."

For years Democrats have been dreaming of having a bluff, no-nonsense type, preferably draped in medals, to lead them into political battle. They picked a clunker last year, in the form of Kerry, who had a glass jaw, six houses, a silly billionaire wife and an infinite capacity for talking out of both sides of his mouth. Along comes Murtha, once a Marine drill instructor at Parris Island, who is showing how to talk about the war, how to say it's quitting time. And they flee him like a poisoned thing.

I watched Murtha put Bush away last Sunday. It was effortless.

WOLF BLITZER: Here's what the President said this past week....He seemed to be addressing you specifically...
BUSH: Setting an artificial deadline would send the wrong message to our most important audience, our troops on the front line. It would tell them that America is abandoning the mission they are risking their lives to achieve and that the sacrifice of their comrades killed in this struggle has been in vain.
MURTHA: This is a real war; this is not a war of rhetoric. What the troops get disappointed [about] is they don't have the equipment they need.... I found a shortage of 40,000 battle jackets that they didn't have. That's the thing that demoralizes them. And they know they're targets. I was out at the hospital the other day, and I talked to a young woman whose husband had been to Iraq twice, wounded very badly, lying there in a hospital bed. She says, You know, he enlisted to fight for America, not for Iraq. The Iraqis have to do this themselves. That's the answer to this whole situation.

So that's it for 2005: no credibility for the President, or for the Democrats, or for the New York Times, which took a year to figure out whether the Constitution is worth fighting for. 2006 should be an exciting year. Let's welcome it in.

About Me

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"Austin Mayor" is not a real name. "Austin Mayor" is not a title. "Austin Mayor" is a pseudonym. "Austin Mayor" is a simulacrum. "Austin Mayor" is performance art. "Austin Mayor" is a brand without a product. "Austin Mayor" is your imaginary friend.