Please, please, please move Aaron Schock’s trial to Peoria


aaron_schock_head-150x1501-150x150Indicted former Rep. Aaron Schock has asked a federal judge to move his case from Springfield to his hometown of Peoria, Illinois, saying it has “virtually no connection” to the state capital.

Schock was indicted earlier this month on 24 counts, from wire fraud to filing false mileage reimbursements to filing false tax returns. He resigned from Congress after POLITICO asked him about thousands of dollars in questionable mileage reimbursements.

In a filing Monday afternoon, Schock’s attorneys said that none of the “alleged misconduct occurred in Springfield, and no significant witness, if any witness, lives in Springfield. Yet the [U.S. attorney] chose to file this case not in Peoria — where the [U.S. attorney] maintains an office mere blocks from the federal courthouse — but in Springfield. The only basis for doing so appears to be the prosecutor’s convenience.”

Yes, by all means move the trial to Peoria. That way, Peoria media — mainstream and alternative — will have ample opportunity to cover the trial in all the dirty details.

CLICK HERE to read the complete article.

So, I chatted with Aaron Schock today

rp_aaron_schock_head-150x150.jpgThe former congressman was in Starbucks ordering a drink. I didn’t recognize him at first, as he was dressed like a bum pretty much (shorts and a baseball cap and a two-day growth of beard). He’s in town for the holiday.

It was a cordial chat, We talked a bit of local politics. I won’t reveal the content, but I will say he thinks Peorians have an unnecessary  inferiority complex. Which is what I’ve been saying for years. It’s what leads us to hire outsiders for school board and the housing authority, often who do not have a clue how — or the inclination — to build consensus with local people. We both cited Chuck Weaver as an expert asking Peorians for their input.

I didn’t ask him abut his legal troubles. He seemed chipper.

The loss of Aaron Schock cripples downstate GOPers, who were quite fond of the money he tossed around

From the Chicago Tribune:

Needless to say, the Illinois Republicans are heartbroken by this loss. Schock is a former state House member and retained quite a bit of personal affection and even admiration from his onetime colleagues and staffers. But it’s the loss of his assistance that will be felt the most.

Schock has been helpful to the point of being almost indispensable to the statehouse Republicans. He’s helped recruit candidates, raised money for them and helped them campaign. And he was quite successful.

Ever since he defeated a Democratic state representative in a solidly Democratic district at the age of 23, Schock has been the Illinois GOP’s wonder boy. And they’ve used his help and his model to win other districts, including state Reps. Adam Brown and Michael Unes, who both won Democratic-controlled districts with Schock’s assistance in 2010.

The Illinois Republicans don’t remember Schock as the jet-setting, rule-cutting playboy he became in Washington, D.C. When he was in Springfield, Schock was rarely seen on the nightlife circuit, often traveling back to Peoria after the day’s session ended to meet with constituents.

Bah. Money and politics sucks. I say give all candidates an equal amount of money — and very little at that — and then sit back and watch those with the better ideas win. Not the candidates who tell the prettiest lies most often.

Dan Brady decided NOT to get beat by Darin LaHood in the primary

From the Southern Illinoisan:

SPRINGFIELD — State Rep. Dan Brady took himself out of the running for the soon-to-be vacant 18th Congressional District seat Tuesday.

The Republican from Bloomington had been among a handful of GOP lawmakers considering a bid for the seat held by U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock of Peoria.

In a statement released Tuesday, Brady said he was planning to remain in the state Legislature, where he has served since 2001.

OK … so maybe Bobby Schilling IS NOT running for Aaron Schock’s seat

Yikes. Facebook is filling up with posts about how Bobby Schilling, in his press conference today, endorsed Sen. Darin LaHood for the 18th District.

So apparently, I was wrong.

Fine, I’ve been wrong before. I’ll be wrong again.

On the other hand, maybe he read my posts and decided against running.

Yeah. That’s it. That’s the ticket.

Oh, yeah … Bobby Schilling is SO running for Aaron Schock’s seat

Press release from Bobby Schilling:

PEORIA, ILFormer U.S. Congressman Bobby Schilling (R-Colona) will be making a special announcement tomorrow morning at Peoria County GOP Headquarters at 8835 N. Knoxville Ave. in Peoria.
WHAT: Bobby Schilling Special Announcement
WHERE: Peoria County GOP Headquarters, 8835 N. Knoxville Avenue, Peoria
WHEN: Saturday, March 28 at 9:30 A.M.Bobby Schilling (R-Colona) was born and raised in Rock Island, Illinois. He has been married to his wife, Christie for 28 years and together they have 10 children. Schilling represented the Illinois 17th District in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2011-2012, serving on the House Armed Services Committee, the House Agriculture Committee, and the House Small Business Committee.

So, Schilling is driving to Peoria — the heart of the 18th District — to make a mystery announcement. So, yeah, Schillinhg is running.

I’ll say this again: The 18th District is strongly Republican. But it’s strongly moderate Republican. Schilling has a relatively decent chance of winning the primary. But he has NO change os winning the general. Moderate GOPers will switch to vote for a moderate or conservative Democrat, and Peoria’s Lebanese voters will vote for the Democrat out of spite.