Friday, July 16, 2004

Updated July 15, 2004 at 11:00 pm, revised on July 16 at 12:20 pm

State Senator Kirk Dillard acknowledged on Thursday night on the 10:00 pm NBC Chicago television local news that he will be thinking, over the weekend, about becoming the Republican U. S. Senate candidate. Considering Judy asked him to do so and because of his Jim Edgar relationship, this should go quickly--if he thinks there is enough money to make it worth his effort. But why would “they,” be willing to give Dillard more than Rauschenberger or why would Dillard be willing to take so much less. Why, indeed. “Come on down.” and “Let’s make a deal,” begins in earnest tomorrow. Or, maybe the deal has already been cut. Anyway, if this is a suicide mission, Kirk doesn't give up much-- three months of his time away from the kids. Not real suicide. More like an extended business trip. What’s Kirk Dillard’s motto? Where there is a Dillard, there is a deal; Let’s not make a federal case out of this.

However, if Barack Obama and he are such good friends and co-sponsor so much legislation, as he told us tonight, why can't he pronounce Barack's name correctly?. Of greater importance, Dillard, apparently was one of the four Republican votes that former Fab 5 State Senator and Party Leader Pat O'Malley said [on my show, "Public Affairs," this spring] that RNC member and primo lobster Bob Kjellander secured for Blagojevich on the 10 billion dollar pension bond deal last year that was so important to Blago.

Talking about making a federal case, could that bond vote be a problem, especially in light of the recent news developments related to that issue and the ubiquitous Bob Kjellander? Vetting, anybody? It will be interesting to see how the former prosecutors and now vetters, Fahner and Roberts, vet that one. Indeed, this is sort of the joining together of the old meaning and the new meaning of the phrase, “being wired in Chicago.” The issue is joined?

Or, will the GOP vetters stick to DUIs and business dealings, as the more establishment Illinois GOP Leaders suggested, when the vetting process was announced. If they are going to expand the vetting process, will they go further than sealed child custody records. What do you think the Chicago Tribune thinks? Will they have something to say about vetting Dillard and on what he should be vetted? The public’s right to know. Another test for the Tribune. This will be fun to watch: the Tribune Edit Board wrestling with itself on the issues of ethics and expediency.

Judy Baar Topinka and State Senator Pat O'Malley, two powerful Illinois GOP leaders? Topinka, O'Malley. O'Malley, Topinka. One has been very conspicuous, another less so. Sound like a good television show for "Public Affairs?" Please give me your comments. And, I, in turn will see what O'Malley and Topinka think about it.

Jeff Berkowitz, Host and Producer of "Public Affairs," can be reached at