Richard Daley and the City Lites

Mayor Daley's fundraising got plenty of ink in this morning's papers, but a few other observations are worth noting. He's out-raised his opponents, yes, But more than that, he's raised more than all other city-wide candidates combined; 15 times more than the other citywides. Which says something. He can blanket the airwaves with 30-second spots, defining his opponents before they can define themselves. If he decides that someone he wants to win is in trouble, he's in a position to help them. He can include them in his TV spots, at very little cost to himself. He's got options.

He has options because he has money: $4.2M. It's worth noting who is giving to him and who isn't. Who isn't is people who give small checks. Donations under $150 are not itemized on the disclosure reports, and he shows only $375.00 in non--itemized giving. Which means that perhaps only 3 people have him small checks. (maybe as many as 375 people gave him $1.00 each; with over 6 million people in the region; same diff).

Who is giving is a curious bi-partisan combination. Andy McKenna Sr. is not the chair of the Illinois Republican Party; that's his son, but Sr. has given Mayor Daley $25K. Fred Krehbiel is a long-time Republican donor at the state and federal levels; he's given Daley $100K. Craig Duchossois comes from a Republican family; over the last decade 89% of his family's giving has been to Republicans; he gave Daley $100K. Some Democrats gave, too. But the point is, Daley is already well funded, and press reports suggest he's planning one fundraiser a day until February 27.

Challenger Dorothy Brown has $118K, about what she had before she announced. Dock Walls shows just $4K. Daley filed reports yesterday showing $134K raised on January 30th. He refunded $27,250 of that, but if the guy can raise more in one day than his opponents have on hand, that's making a statement.

In the clerk's race, Miguel Del Valle reports $70K available. Most of the money came in before Daley announced his selection as City Clerk; he shows only $25K raised in the final weeks of the year. Challenger and former Daley Aide Jose Cerda reported $56K available. Diane Jones doesn't appear to have formed a committee yet.

New City Treasurer Stephanie Neely is unopposed in her first race for political office. She has $32K, but being unopposed, she won't really need it.