Illinois Democrats Make Play For Unity, Victory
By The Associated Press, with Additional Reporting from Illinois Public Radio
Illinois Democrats are working to promote party unity in the final months of the 2014 campaign despite having some visible divisions.
Party officials and candidates from the top to bottom of the ticket attended Wednesday's breakfast hosted by the Illinois Democratic County Chairmen's Association in Springfield.
U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth headlined the event.
But like last year, House Speaker and state party chairman Michael Madigan didn't attend. And Secretary of State Jesse White says he has concerns about the expectedly close race between Gov. Pat Quinn and Republican Bruce Rauner.
Quinn used his time at the podium to repeat many of the phrases he uses all the time --- like "make the will of the people the law of the land."
But he tried to rally the party faithful by making digs to his multimillionaire Republican challenger, Bruce Rauner.
"There was a great president who was around when I was coming up, and John Kennedy said, "a rising tide lifts all boats.," he said. "Now I'm running against somebody who thought President Kennedy said 'a rising tide lifts all yachts,' that's what he thinks, okay?"
For the second year in a row, Gov. Pat Quinn canceled the afternoon rally at the Illinois State Fairgrounds. Quinn was booed by union members at the fair in 2012 after he canceled their raises.
Quinn says the afternoon lineup of musical acts replacing political speeches will be more fun.