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Jack O'Malley, the last Republican to hold countywide office in Cook County, shown in 1995. File Photo.

GOP to sit out countywide races? All part of the plan, party says

I can confidently predict there will be exactly zero votes tallied on Tuesday for the 2014 Republican candidate for Cook County Board president. That’s because, as anyone who has already voted here has been reminded, there is no Republican candidate for County Board president this year.


Sam Yingling

Campaign hits, runs and errors

No, Alice, all gay men do not look alike. But if you live in the northern suburbs of Lake County where an Illinois House race is hard fought, you might wonder if that isn’t the subtext of a campaign mailer attacking incumbent Democratic state Rep. Sam Yingling. Or maybe worse, that it’s just a dumb mistake.

Benjamin Netanyahu

Insulting Netanyahu was a bad idea

At a time when Islamist fanaticism is roiling the Middle East and the Islamic State is on the march in Syria and Iraq, the Obama administration insults Israel, our only reliable ally in the region, by mocking Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with a barnyard epithet for coward. Disrespecting a friend is no way to conduct foreign policy or impress allies in these troubled times.

First lady Michelle Obama speaks during a campaign event for Illinois Governor Pat Quinn at the University of Illinois Chicago earlier this month. (File Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

How first lady, Rauner factor into their parties' House races

First lady Michelle Obama headlines a rally for Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., Gov. Pat Quinn and Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., on Saturday — the last of a series of White House assists — as Republicans tell me the coattails of GOP governor hopeful Bruce Rauner will help two critical Downstate congressional races.

Exterior of the Internal Revenue Service building in Washington in 2013. File Photo. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

IRS’ blithe seizure of assets should terrify us

 The IRS, looking for tax cheats, has a rule where banks must flag cash deposits over $10,000. So in an attempt to avoid this scrutiny, drug dealers and other criminal types keep their deposits under $10,000. But legal small-business owners also make regular small cash deposits. You’d think the IRS would differentiate between running a drug ring and running a bakery. But they didn’t.

Dr. Linda Brubaker, Dean of the Loyola University of Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, talks to students after accepting one of three Tradition of Excellence awards in 2012. File Photo. | Curtis Lehmkuhl

Students not legal — but superb

Dr. Mark Kuczewski of Loyola’s Stritch School of Medicine heard of a star student on the West Coast who wanted to be a doctor, but she was not a legal resident. Medical schools were not accepting such students. Kuczewski and higher-ups at Loyola moved quickly to allow undocumented students to compete for admittance. Loyola was the first to make the change and 34 universities have so far followed suit.

Jitu Brown of KOCO, talks about the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Bd. of Ed. outside of the Pope School 1826 N. Albany, in May. File Photo. | Brian Jackson/Sun-Times

Plan to keep Dyett open — for now — isn’t a clear victory

Jitu Brown, of Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (“KOCO”), and a coalition of community groups, demonstrated what it takes to move the powers-that-be. Brown, the national director for KOCO’s “Journey for Justice Alliance,” has been among the most vocal opponents of the plan to phase-out Dyett High School on the South Side.

Activists hold a protest near the Manhattan apartment of billionaire and Republican financier David Koch in June. (File Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Democrats already pointing fingers

I voted early the other day. But I didn’t slap on my shirt one of those “I voted” stickers they were handing out at the polling place. I didn’t want someone on the street asking me if I voted for Barack Obama.

Cook County Commissioner Jesus Garcia speaks to the media after the Future of Chicago lecture series. Wednesday, October 29, 2014 | Brian Jackson/Sun-Times

He’s quiet and careful, but don’t count Garcia out in mayor race

I’m sure Cook County Commissioner Jesus Garcia’s name crossed my mind when I ran through possible mayoral candidates for 2015, but I counted him out because he’s never really shown the ambition to be The Guy. But I’ll say this: If Garcia could somehow make it to a runoff and Chicagoans had an opportunity to take the measure of the man, he would have a chance.

Republican Bruce Rauner addresses the congregation at New Beginnings Church of Chicago, whose pastor, Corey Brooks, has endorsed him. | Richard A. Chapman/Sun-Times

Why Quinn and Rauner are suddenly interested in black voters

The latest twist in the increasingly strange, ugly race for governor came over the weekend, when south-side minister Corey Brooks said he received death threats, and his church was burglarized, after he appeared in TV commercials for Republican Bruce Rauner.

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