Will Pat Quinn be a Lame Duck?

As Rod Blagojevich's impeachment trial heads for what appears to be a predetermined conclusion, Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn will soon be the governor of ...
by | January 23, 2009

As Rod Blagojevich's impeachment trial heads for what appears to be a predetermined conclusion, Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn will soon be the governor of Illinois. My thinking had been that this would give him an advantage when running for reelection, but this report in the Chicago Tribune is making me think twice:

Pat Quinn could soon become Illinois' next governor as Rod Blagojevich faces a Senate impeachment trial next week, but the lieutenant governor ranks near the bottom in the money race among those eyeing the 2010 election for the state's chief executive.

Disclosure reports filed with the State Board of Elections show Quinn, the two-term Democratic running mate of Blagojevich, began the year with little more than $83,000 in campaign cash--a far cry from the $3.5 million Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan reported.

Illinois' Democratic politics are going to be no less interesting once Blagojevich is gone from the scene. Sen. Roland Burris will have to decide whether he wants a full term and, regardless of what he decides, the Senate primary is likely to be competitive. Plus, just because Quinn will be the incumbent Democratic governor, that likely won't dissuade primary opponents. Lisa Madigan has that massive war chest for a reason.

In fact, Quinn has such a pittance of campaign cash that I'm a little unsure that he will seek a full term. Once he's the governor I'm sure he'll be able to raise money at a rapid clip, but he still might be an underdog to Madigan.

Josh Goodman
Josh Goodman  |  Former Staff Writer
mailbox@governing.com

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