Yesterday, the New Trier Township Consolidated Elections were held. As you likely know, I got involved in these non-partisan contests as a private citizen because I didn't like what I saw being attempted by people who, it seems to me, did not have the best interests of our township in mind.
The New Trier High School Seminar Day "controversy" hyped up by alt right provocateurs struck me as completely unfounded as well as harmful to our kids and community. Large numbers of New Trier residents agreed and rejected the fear mongering. Then, soon after the Seminar discussions were successfully held, there emerged a number of candidates for local offices. As they campaigned, it became increasingly clear they had links to the ideologues behind the Seminar Day protests.
Most of you know the rest of this story. A lot of New Trier residents concerned about this outside meddling in our township, park board and school board elections got involved in true grassroots fashion. And yesterday, the voters slapped the right-wingers down by a nearly three-to-one margin.
Now, you might expect me to spend the rest of this commentary in celebration, gloating over how we out-campaigned those meddlers. And, I must admit that it's a nice feeling to see opponents, so clearly guided by a rigid agenda and, in some cases, so ill-equipped for the position they sought, get their lunch handed to them. Also, it does please me that a couple of those operatives, either on the ticket or guiding the campaign, may now be less inclined to run for an office in these parts again. -- Don't feel sorry for them. I'm sure they'll be rewarded in some way for their plucky campaigning
And that's all the gloating I'm going to do. Here's why:
Today, as I've thought about the results of this successful grassroots effort I had this realization. Even with this local campaign featured on prominent pages in the Chicago Tribune - several times! - and even with scores of volunteers dedicated to spreading the word, and with exceptional candidates energetically reaching out to the public, and with an opposition that was clearly entangled in partisan political goals and ideological dogma, fewer than 21% of New Trier's voters went to the polls.
In comparing the numbers, I learned that New Trier's turnout was relatively decent based on county averages. Oak Park with a 32.6% turnout was by far the leader. The lowest turnout was in Hanover Township with an anemic 8.27%. But only a few other townships were, like New Trier, in the low to mid twenties. The majority of Cook County townships had turnouts in the teens.
Admittedly, the majority of these local elections usually have ballots filled with uncontested slates of candidates. So, it's understandable that many voters ignore going to the polls just to "go through the motions." But even when there is a contested race or a tax referendum, the turnout rarely gets out of the thirties. And as the opposition's agenda in yesterday's election shows, these "small" elections can potentially impact the lives of many people, for better or worse. Attention must always be paid.
This certainly also holds true for Mid-term Elections where in 2010 Tea Party candidates began to take over the U.S. House. Cook County's Mid-term turnout averages between 49.7% and 53.9%. It's only in the Presidential Elections where Cook County's turnout becomes somewhat respectable -- from 65% to 76%. Of course we Americans have our quaint Electoral College to muddy that up.
So what lesson did I take from looking at the numbers? It appears that New Trier has a core of engaged voters who are critical thinkers. When given solid information, they can be counted on to participate in local elections. As long as we activists stay attentive, this bodes well for future local contests even if turnout percentages remain low.
I also concluded that Bruce Rauner couldn't care less about his home area. He knows that New Trier is one of the best-run townships in the state, providing much needed services to residents in need. But he would be content to see it dismantled to further enhance his image with ultra-conservatives. And he has no problem buddying up to poisonous personalities like radio shouter Dan Proft. Giving credence to Proft's outrageous pronouncements (New Trier teachers are all hacks, North Shore people are all snobs, etc.) In this election he made it clearer than ever that Rauner is in this for Rauner, not for his New Trier home.
Yes, it felt good to defeat the Governor's candidates in his own backyard. (One last gloat.) But you can bet that the Governor, Dan Proft's PAC pack and the strategists in the various far-right think tanks are already working on new strategies to infiltrate New Trier's institutions. They didn't expect the turnout we generated. That is always the key.
So let's enjoy this win. Then let's take what we've learned and use it to be more effective than ever battling the 2018 GOP ticket led by -- Bruce Rauner. His inflexibility as Governor has done great damage to Illinois. But now that we've seen what he was willing to do to his own home neighborhood, he deserves to lose more than ever
NTDO member since 1973
A few weeks ago, Sharon Suzda, our friend, passionate Democrat and diligent NTDO Office Manager passed away.
A number of people have asked for information concerning a memorial event.
Sharon's memorial celebration will be held on
Sunday, April 23 from 2 PM - 3:30 PM at the Lakeview Center, Gillson Park in Wilmette.
Have you visited Senator Biss' website "The Road Back" --
click on the link to his video -- then, throughout the summer follow his plan's development on the website.
Daniel explains a lot about how Illinois got where it is today and how we can begin the journey on the road back toward achieving our state's tremendous economic potential.
Other upcoming events and news items:
Tomorrow evening, Thursday, April 6 in Winnetka --
a Chelsea Clinton Book Signing
When:Thursday, April 6, 2017 at 6:30pm
Where: The Book Stall, 811 Elm St., Winnetka
What: The Book Stall presents a book signing with Chelsea Clinton to celebrate the paperback release of Ms. Clinton's New York Times bestselling book for young people, It's Your World: Get Informed, Get Inspired & Get Going! This is a ticketed event. Purchase of the book is required to enter the signing line. For additional information or to RSVP, register online, email email@example.com or call 847-446-8880. If ordering online, add "Attending the April 6th event." in the Comments field
Wednesday, April 19 in Chicago -- ICPR Presents
the Mikva Award to Hon. Adlai and Nancy Stevenson
ICPR Presents Mikva Award to Hon. Adlai and Nancy Stevenson
: Wednesday, April 19, from Noon - 1:30pm
: Petterino's, 150 N. Dearborn St., Chicago
: Judge Mary Mikva will join The Illinois Campaign for Political Reform (ICPR) to present the Stevensons with The Mikva Legacy Award For Truth and Justice for their extensive work in Illinois through advocacy, public service, and the Stevenson Center on Democracy.
You can RSVP online or call ICPR at 312-436-1274 for questions.
Wednesday, April 19 in Chicago - A Reception for Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs.
Wednesday, April 19, from 5:30 - 7:30pm
Old Crow Smokehouse, 149 W. Kinzie, Chicago
Friends of Frerichs hold a reception in support of Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs.
Saturday, April 22 in Chicago - March for Science Chicago
Saturday, April 22, 2017 at 9:00am
Place in downtown Chicago to be determined
An Earth Day march to take a stand for science. The mission is: to show support for the scientific community, to safeguard the scientific process and research funding, to publicly celebrate science, and to encourage curiosity and exploration, the heart of the scientific approach.
Saturday, April 22 at the Botanic Garden, Glencoe - Brad Schneider Hosts an Earth Day Climate Change Panel.
Saturday, April 22, 1:00 - 2:00pm. Doors open at 12:30pm
Chicago Botanic Garden, Alsdorf Auditorium, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe
Celebrate Earth Day at a panel discussion on global climate change hosted by Congressman Brad Schneider. Panelists include: Donald Wuebbles, University of Illinois; Tom Skilling, WGN-TV; Elisabeth Moyer, Energy Policy Institute, University of Chicago; Gregory Mueller, Chicago Botanic Garden.
Free admission but registration is required.
For additional information or to RSVP, register online or call 847-383-4870.
Tuesday, April 25 in Springfield - Illinois Women March on Springfield.
Tuesday, April 25, 12:00 noon - 3:00pm
Rally at Lincoln Statue, State Capital, Springfield
A day of advocacy, lobbying and a large rally by more than 50 organizations across the state that support a progressive agenda. The focus will be on advocating for specific legislation under consideration in the Spring 2017 Illinois legislative session.
Saturday April 29 in Washington D.C. - T
he Peoples Climate March on April 29 in Washington D.C.
When: Saturday, April 29, 9:00 AM -3:00 PM
Where: Washington D.C.
On Saturday, April 29 in our nation's capital and across the country, marchers will stand together to demand that Donald Trump act in a meaningful way to address the climate crisis and stop attacking the hard-won protections for all our communities, especially people of color, indigenous people, women, and more. Together, we can show the world that we demand climate action. To sign up for the Washington march click here. -- (More details for events across the country to follow.)
Friday, May 5 at noon in Chicago - Jan Schakowsky's Ultimate Women's Power Lunch in Chicago.
Friday, May 5, at 12:00 noon
Chicago Hilton, 720 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago
Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky hosts the 2017 Ultimate Women's Power Lunch. Keynote speaker: Gina McCarthy, head of the EPA under President Obama. Special guest: Tamika Mallory, Co-Chair of the Women's March on Washington.
Friday, May 5 at 5:30 in Chicago - Nasty Women Art Exhibition to Support Planned Parenthood.
Friday, May 5, from 5:30 - 10:30pm
Moonlight Studios, 1446 W. Kinzie St., Chicago
A one-night exhibition and fundraiser to hear and support the voices of artists identifying as Nasty Women. This is a free event open to all ages that will sell artist submissions and include food and drink, music, speakers, and more.
All profits from the sale of artwork will benefit Planned Parenthood of Illinois.
who represent New Trier Township in
Washington, Springfield and Cook County
You'll be hearing a lot from these exceptional public servants. --
And they want to be hearing a lot from you.
The fact is, they need to hear from you and want to hear from you in order to represent you most effectively. So, the first thing you can do is get to know who these people are. The links below to their campaign websites are a good place to start.
, 9th U.S. Congressional District Representative
and Chief Deputy House Democratic Whip. The new Ninth District boundaries include all of New Trier except for Glencoe.
, 10th U.S. Congressional District Representative which includes a number of precincts in Glencoe.
Julie Morrison, State Senator for Illinois' 29th State Senate District
State Senator for Illinois' 9th State Senate Distric
t.The Ninth District includes all of New Trier Township.
. The district includes New Trier's northernmost precincts.
IL 18th District State Representative
. The 18th District includes much of New Trier up to Hazel Avenue and Dundee Road.
, IL 17th District State Representative.
The 17th District includes the East Glenview and West Wilmette areas of New Trier Township.
IL 58th District State Representative.
The 58th District includes the northernmost precincts in Glencoe.
Larry Suffredin, Cook County 13th District Commissioner. The 13th District includes all of New Trier, Evanston and Niles Townships.
Dear Fellow Democrats,
If you are not already an NTDO member, and enjoy our Newsletter, we hope you consider joining us as a dues-paying member. NTDO is a not-for-profit political action organization. We depend on our membership dues to support our Democratic causes and candidates.
There are two options for dues payments: by check or credit card.
By Check: Make check payable to NTDO and mail to our office:
800 Oak St., Suite 112
Winnetka, IL 60093
By Credit Card: visit our website by clicking here
Click on the "Get Involved" tab
Find the link for "contribute with ActBlue"
or go directly there by clicking here.
|Still not a member of the New Trier Dems? Your participation in grassroots political action will make a difference. -- Come join us.
When you're a member of the New Trier Democratic Organization, you have an active role in affecting the political process; participating in grassroots campaigns, staying in touch with elected officials, playing a role in deciding which candidates are endorsed. You'll also gain free admission to select forums and events throughout the year.
Come be a part of New Trier's grassroots political community.
The New Trier Democratic Organization is made up of hundreds of grassroots volunteers dedicated to advancing progressive ideals through the political process. We welcome your participation.
Dean T. Maragos, Committeeman New Trier Township
We are located at 800 Oak Street in Winnetka, IL. Ph: 847-446-8030
*This Internet communication paid for by the New Trier Democratic Organization and not authorized by any federal or state candidate or campaign committee. A copy of our report filed with the State Board of Elections is available for purchase from the State Board of Elections in Springfield, Illinois.