Friday, October 21, 2005

Berkowitz on Roeser's Radio Program Sunday Night: After West Wing.

Jeff Berkowitz will be a guest this coming Sunday night on Tom Roeser’s Political Shoot-out, WLS 890 AM Radio, from 8:00 pm to 9:00 pm [See here for more about the show and See here for Tom’s Blog]. The show will also be joined by Tony Peraica, running unopposed in the Republican Primary for that party’s nomination for Cook County Board President [See here].

Peraica is part of the Gang of Four, who hope to bring the Apocalypse Now to the 76 year old, 11 year Democratic incumbent President of the Cook County Board, John Stroger, who was first elected to the Board Presidency in 1994, over the Conscience of the Conservative Movement in Illinois, Joe Morris. Stroger has been on the County Board for more than three decades.

In addition to Peraica, two additional members of the Gang of Four, aka the Cook County reformers, are seeking to displace Stroger from his throne, and they, of course, are Democratic County Board Members Forrest Claypool [who said he had raised about a million dollars when he was on my show in September, watch the Claypool show, here] and Mike Quigley, who I understand had raised about 300 K as of that time.

Of course, the political grapevine is rife with rumor and innuendo about various “backroom deals,” in the works that might affect who the next Cook County Board President will be, including establishment alternatives to Stroger. The position is viewed by the pols as quite a plum, as the Cook County Hospitals, Temporary Juvenile Detention Centers, Jails, etc., are viewed as a patronage heaven for the regular Democratic Party in Chicago and Cook County.

That is why the reform Commissioners Claypool, Quigley, Peraica and Suffredin are viewed as such a threat to the lifeblood of the Regular Dems in Cook County. If not Stroger, they certainly want another one of their own in that position. After all, with the Hired Truck, Hired Tow and Hired Thief programs being turned over to a court appointed “monitor of hiring,” by the Daley Administration, eventually the Democratic Party’s monopoly in the City of Chicago and County of Cook could be threatened without the patronage jobs and contracts that keep the City and County a “one Party Town.” Dollars [patronage jobs and contracts] are the “mother’s milk,” of politics.

Upset with something I said on my show? something I wrote on this blog?—Tom Roeser’s show on Sunday night is your chance to fire back. A free fire zone, so to speak. Also, you can help shape the show by calling in with your questions and comments—312-591-8900. Democrats, Republicans, Independents and others are, of course, all welcome.

I don’t know the topics—which are determined by Mr. Roeser, exclusively, and are kept, under Lock and Key, and under the watchful eye of Tom’s wife, Lilian Roeser [Behind every great man, there is a greater woman], until just before the show. However, an educated guess is that the questions will consist of various Cook County, city of Chicago, downstate and Statewide issues, possibly selected from the following questions, some of which are holdovers from what I suggested in this blog before I was on the show in July [See here].

Of course, you can call and ask any of the below questions or whatever you like. As with University of Chicago Ph. D. prelim questions in economics over the years, many of the questions on Political Shoot-out stay the same each week, only the answers change. And you are free to choose, so to speak:

Could Tony Peraica beat John Stroger?
• How much money would Peraica need to beat Stroger?
• Will Stroger’s proposed tax increase lose for a third year in a row?
• Can the Stroger-Daley forces get to Earlean Collins?
• Is Tom Roeser right in suggesting the Republican activists should let RNC member Bob Kjellander be?
• What’s the real reason for Topinka’s indecision?
Will Topinka run for Governor?
• Can Claypool push Quigley out of the Cook County Board President Democratic Primary race?
• Will the Governor’s All Kids health care proposed legislation be passed overwhelmingly and cement his re-election?
Does the Governor’s use of State Employees outside the health care area to promote his All Kids proposed legislation constitute the use of state resources for political purposes, and therefore is it akin to George Ryan-Scott Fawell activities, for which, in part, George is now on trial?
Will the U. S. Attorney’s office be attending the Governor’s event this Sunday to decide if your tax dollars are being put to political use? Will Fawell be at his side or will Pat Fitzgerald send Fawell back to prison, via Indiana?
Is Senator Obama a likely VP pick in 2008?
• Will Jim Edgar play a role in the November, 2006 election?
• Who raised, this summer, one million dollars, in one evening, for their school voucher- school choice foundation.
• Who will replace Dick Kay?
Will John Sullivan be a credible Democratic primary challenger to Cong. Dan Lipinski in the 3rd Cong. District?
Will John Ascot be a credible Democratic primary challenger to Cong. Danny Davis in the 7th Cong. District?
• Is the pruning of the Republican Gubernatorial Primary candidates about to start?
• Is Cong. Bean vulnerable in the 8th CD?
• Will Rahm Emanuel find a rich candidate to self-fund as a challenger to Christine Cegelis and Lindy Scott in the 6th CD Democratic Primary?
• Can Cong. Kirk be beat in the 10th CD?
• Can Cong. Evans be beat in the 17th CD?
• Have the corruption eruptions and turmoil in the Daley Administration slowed?
• Has Daley turned the corruption eruptions around?
• Did Mary Dempsey make a difference?
• Who will replace Bob Sirott? An expanded role for Phil Ponce?
• And, of course, much, much more.
Jeff Berkowitz, Host and Producer of Public Affairs and an Executive Recruiter doing Legal Search, can be reached at