Democrats point to clear choice in November
By STEFANO ESPOSITO AND MITCH DUDEK Staff Reporters March 19, 2014 1:01PM
Governor Quinn, Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Senator Dick Durbin, Toni Preckwinkle, Sheila Simon and others enjoy a breakfast the morning after the primary elections at Billy Goat's in Chicago on March 19, 2014. | Al Podgorski/Chicago Sun-Times
Lynn Sweet interviews Sen. Dick Durbin about the campaign ahead.
Updated: April 21, 2014 6:50PM
Mayor Rahm Emanuel joined Gov. Pat Quinn and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin for a traditional post-election breakfast at the Billy Goat tavern Wednesday — with the mayor telling voters they now have a clear choice for the general election.
“The public in Illinois is going to have a choice between an agenda that looks out and works on behalf of middle class families who are trying to make it from paycheck to paycheck ... and those who are trying to pull the rug from beneath the middle class,” Emanuel said, standing beside Durbin and Quinn.
The governor wasted no time blasting his Republican opponent, calling him a billionaire with nine homes who has a lot of explaining to do to voters — particularly when it comes to his position on Illinois’ minimum wage.
“People want to see the real Bruce Rauner,” Quinn said.
The governor also said Rauner’s closer-than-expected race in the primary means “money isn’t all there is to politics.”
“Clearly, the Republican primary showed there were a lot of folks who were dissatisfied with Rauner’s approach,” Quinn said.
Durbin said his Republican opponent, state Sen. Jim Oberweis, is going to have a hard time getting past a controversial ad Oberweis ran when he last ran for the U.S. Sentate. The ad featured him riding in a helicopter over Soldier Field and warning of 10,000 illegal immigrants entering the United States daily: “Enough to fill Soldier Field every single week.”
“If you go to any Hispanic community in this town and you mention my opponent’s name, the first word they’ll say to you is ‘helicopter.’” Durbin said. “They remember his ad — hovering over Soldier Field — because it was an effort to divide Chicago and Illinois.”
Emanuel, Durbin and Quinn ate in the Billy Goat’s “V.I.P” room — which jokingly stands for “a very insecure person” — and they were joined by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon and Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios.