How Bruce Rauner (R, GOV-ELECT, Illinois) can instantly become a Republican rock star.

I certainly hope that that gets his attention. Or that of his staff. Either will do.

Anyway… once upon a time, in the far-off year of 2004, there was a Republican candidate for Illinois Senator called Jack Ryan. Ryan was widely considered to be an excellent replacement for retiring Republican Senator Peter Fitzgerald… right up to the point that the Chicago Tribune got tipped off to some juicy bits in Ryan’s divorce records. The Tribune petitioned to get the records unsealed; a compliant judge complied; Ryan had to withdraw from the race in disgrace, because frankly those bits really were kind of juicy. Barack Obama went on to win that Senate race.

All of this is relevant because this was not the first time that the Chicago Tribune had gotten divorce records unsealed; during the Democratic primary the paper similarly petitioned to have then-frontrunner Blair Hull’s records unsealed. Blair Hull ended up losing that nomination… to, hey, Barack Obama!

Now, I will not go so far as to suggest (as some have) that in both or either cases the person who gave the original tip to the Tribune was anybody involved in the Obama Senate campaign*. I don’t know that for a fact, and neither does anybody else. But I think that there is enough evidence of shenanigans going on to justify having the incoming Rauner administration investigate who, if anyone, in the Illinois state government tipped off the Tribune. The corruption of the state government is legendary**: it’s a legitimate thing to check up on.

And oh, my, but national Republicans would just love to see Bruce Rauner – or somebody – look into it. Even if the investigation doesn’t actually finger one of Obama’s old staffers: the idea of somebody discovering that ten years isn’t enough time to wash away one’s sins would be very, very appealing. Not to mention a nice amount of negative reinforcement.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

*Even a small amount of research will give you the name of the person most likely to be involved in such shenanigans. If it isn’t already immediately obvious, I mean.

**Give you an idea: current incumbent Pat Quinn is the first Governor of Illinois in some time to not be facing federal corruption charges. And, to be fair about it: this is a bipartisan disgrace. So… well done, Gov. Quinn, I guess***. Heck of a thing to compliment somebody …read more    

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