Chief Justice William Rehnquist Dies

I never saw this coming. Apparently it was quite sudden. RIP.


LaHood playing the money game

It all starts to make sense now. It was somewhat unexplained why Rep. Ray LaHood dropped out of the governor's race., but this article helps us see the logic. LaHood made a substantial amount of money in fundraising even while being doused with rumors that he wasn't serious about winning the mansion back. He dropped out very soon, and since I believed him to be a possible primary winner, I couldn't work it out until now. It appears LaHood had meetings with Jim Edgar about a possible run, and LaHood encouraged him to run. LaHood raised money in order to spend it. He will give his donors a refund if they wish, but will spend the rest on support of other races, including what he says would be "a big check" to Edgar if he runs. From this perspective it appears that LaHood may be looking for higher office, but not the governor's seat. He probably figured that he couldn't win against a well-funded Blago, then set his sights on Dick Durbin's Senate seat up for reelection in '08. He figured he could help Edgar win the governors mansion back, then have a strong duo of Governor Edgar and Speaker Hastert to help him defeat Durbin, whose poll numbers are sliding. Of course, LaHood could just be doing to do his best to defeat Blago, and maybe he just has fun campaigning across the state. But I personally don't think that is a career politician's thinking.

Sidenote: In the article, LaHood says that he thinks Edgar will run, while a spokesperson for Rauschenberger complains that donors are holding back until Edgar makes up his mind. I can't decide whether that is for real, or just Rauschenberger's excuse for poor early fundraising.