(Chicago, IL) — December 21, 2009. The gloves are off.
In the race to succeed to succeed State Rep. John Fritchey on Chicago’s north side, U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Chicago) today endorsed former Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney Dan Farley and took scarcely veiled swipe at one of Farley’s opponents, Ann Williams.
“Dan Farley is not a special interest lobbyist. We need a State Representative who will fight for us and against the special interests who try to control our State, ” Quigley said in a Farley campaign e-mail. “I enthusiastically support Dan Farley to fight the status quo in Illinois.”
Williams, a former aide to House Speaker Michael Madigan and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, is a former lobbyist at Wyeth, which manufactures chapstick, advil and centrum vitamins as well as pharmaceuticals. She is now a full-time candidate.
Farley’s opening volley clearly indicates the line of attack his campaign will take against Williams, the only female in the three person race, which includes civil rights attorney Ed Mullen. Farley’s early polling undoubtedly reveals that “special interest lobbyist” is a potent rhetorical club in which to hammer Williams and will likely be a staple in all of Farley’s communications going forward. Betcha.
The Quigley endorsement of Farley comes on the heels of last week’s endorsement of Williams by State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago) whose district abuts on the east side Fritchey’s.
The dueling endorsements by Quigley and Feigenholtz set-up round two by proxy of their earlier political clash in the February 2009 special congressional election to succeed Rahm Emanuel, a contest in which Quigley defeated his fellow progressive lakefront liberal and Fritchey, among others.
In addition to Feigenholtz, Williams has won the endorsements of House Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie and House Deputy Majority Leader and Cook County Democratic Party Executive Vice-President Lou Lang (D-Skokie), in addition a slew of other House and Senate lawmakers.
However, Quigley’s congressional district overlaps the state house district in play and the first term congressman still possesses some of his progressive glow among area voters coming off the recent election. The Quigley endorsement is a higher-order gift for Farley, the son of former State Senator Bruce Farley (D-Chicago).
A Quigley-Feigenholtz grudge match by proxy is a gift for political spectators.
It’s the season for gifts.
UPDATE: Tuesday December 22, 2009.
According to a spokesperson for Quigley, the Congressman never approved the endorsement quote. The Farley campaign invented it.
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