Aaron Schock is back in the public eye .. signalling a return to public service?

rp_aaron_schock_head-150x150.jpgFormer U.S, Congressman Aaron Schock is back on Twitter … to refute the facts of a story. And along comes a pundit from the Washington Post to speculate — as all pundits do — about what it all means:

But the tweet suggests that while Schock has tried his best to let the public forget about him and his spending drama, he hasn’t forgotten about it. And he apparently thinks there’s a lot left for him to prove.

In breaking his Twitter silence, Schock is likely thinking about his political future –such as it is.

He may forever be known as “the Downtown Abbey congressman,” but it’s certainly possible he could rise from the political dead. He is only 34; he was just 33 when he resigned. Until that moment, Schock had a bright political future ahead of him and was considered a prime candidate for higher office in Washington or back home in Illinois.  For everyone who says Schock can never recover, please see Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.). Or New York City mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner.

Here’s what’s going to happen. If the feds close their investigation without charging him (or if there is a deal where Schock pleads and avoids prison time), look for him to start or be hired to head one of those Washington DC based lobby groups or think tanks that seem to promulgate over there.

The other option is for Schock to start some private firm that is somehow involved in real estate. He’s made a lot of money doing that, and he certainly is a smart money-maker. But one can also argue that much of his success was due to the fact he was doing business with folks who really, really wanted a Congressman to owe them favors.

Me, I’m not counting on Schock being charged, let alone convicted. The accusations against him might have damned him in the public eye, but these laws were written in a way to look like they were cracking down, but not designed to really provide any way to convict violators.

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.

Darin LaHood emerging as the ethical choice to replace Aaron Schock — and conservatives hate it

From National Journal:

LaHood, whose father represented Illinois’s 18th District for more than two decades, has emerged as the early favorite to take over from Schock after his ostentatious spending habits brought the congressman down. LaHood could scare off all other serious contenders because in many ways, he looks like a perfect fit for a post-scandal special election.

Start with his family pedigree. Former Rep. Ray LaHood, who served as President Obama’s first Transportation secretary, represented the Peoria-based district in understated fashion for more than a decade, a sharp contrast to the jet-setting, big-spending lifestyle Schock showcased on Instagram. Before Schock even announced he would resign, Peoria’s Journal Star editorial board noted that “these ethical questions never came up with” his predecessor.

Then there’s LaHood the younger’s fortuitous focus on ethics reform in the state legislature. LaHood didn’t have much success, but it puts him in a perfect position to draw a contrast with Schock, said state Sen. Jason Barickman, a Republican colleague who considered but decided against a bid for Schock’s seat.

So, who is our new congressman going to be? My money is on Darin LaHood

Aaron Schock resigned effective March 31. I assume the county party leaders in the 18th District will have a vote. Obviously, State Sen. Darin LaHood has a shot. It depends on how pissed off they are at the fact that Darin’s father, former Rep. Ray LaHood, resigned from his position to take a job as transportation secretary for President Obama.