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Thursday, March 16, 2006 01:36 pm

The Hype

On the hunt for Faith and predicting the outcome on Tuesday

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A DIFFERENT MARCH MADNESS I asked Christopher Z. Mooney, professor at the Institute of Government and Public Affairs at the University of Illinois at Springfield, to point out a few things to look for in Tuesday’s general primary. Here goes. The race for treasurer, Mooney says, may be the one to watch because it pits two factions of the state party against each other, with Paul Mangieri as the “party establishment candidate” and Alexi Giannoulias as the political upstart with tons of money who’s backed by a rock-star senator. Mooney says it’ll also be interesting to see what happens to the three losers in the GOP primary race. It’s still possible for Judy Baar Topinka to lose, though unlikely, he says. If Jim Oberweis loses, does he maintain his role as the spokesman for the right? Or does Bill Brady, especially if he beats or makes a strong showing against the milk magnate, become the right’s new young face and make Oberweis look like a three-time loser? If Ron Gidwitz loses, Mooney says, he may end up in “Blair Hull territory,” looking at how many thousands of dollars he spent per vote.
FINDING FAITH According to the Sangamon County clerk’s office, Faith Logan, Democratic committeewoman for the 75th Precinct, lives at 509 S. 13th St. Unity for Our Community president Mike Williams — one of Logan’s challengers for the 75th seat — doesn’t believe Logan actually resides there. I took a spin to see for myself, and indeed, found a boarded-up domicile with a “No Trespassing” sign affixed to the door. Logan did not return messages asking for her side of the story. “If she lived there, I would have seen her. I see Faith walking up and down the street. I don’t know where she’s going to, or coming from,” says Williams, who lives around the corner at 1214 E. Edwards. “The issue is out of our hands,” says Sangamon County Clerk Joe Aiello. Because no one objected to Logan’s petition, he explains, she will remain on the ballot. If she wins, it’s at the discretion of Sangamon County Democratic chairman Tim Timoney whether to seat her. “Personally, I don’t think she should be on the ballot,” Aiello says.
POLL CONTENTION In a poll conducted recently by Kankakee City News, 68 percent of the voters in U.S. Rep. Jerry Weller’s district say the congressman shouldn’t serve a 13th term in Congress. The newspaper said it polled 300 voters. According to the News, when a reporter called Weller’s campaign office to discuss the poll’s findings “we were told that the campaign did not believe that the opinion of African-American voters would affect their candidate’s chances of victory in November.” Weller’s press secretary Chris Kennedy says no one in either Weller’s congressional or campaign offices recalls the conversation. He also questioned the newspaper’s journalistic integrity and called their story the “pinnacle of ridiculousness.” Asked if his reporter could have misheard the staffer, News publisher James Taylor Sr. stands by the story, saying that accuracy and adhering to high journalistic standards are very important to him. “We don’t do anything precipitously.”
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