As Wednesday was Democrat Day and Thursday Republican Day at the State Fair, this seems like a good time for our monthly gubernatorial odds. For the first time, we’re seeing all the candidates in one place.
DAN RUTHERFORD, 2-1: Rutherford is still the favorite, but his odds have slipped a little bit because he’s being outspent by Bruce Rauner. Rutherford told the Republican County Chairmen's Association at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, “I am the only candidate who has won a statewide race.” Rutherford also has been pointing out that in his 2010 run for treasurer, he won 22 percent of the vote in Chicago, more than the 20 percent a Republican needs to win statewide. (Bill Brady got 17 percent for governor.)
PAT QUINN, 5-2: Neither Bill Daley nor Kwame Raoul seem to have the statewide appeal necessary to win the Democratic primary. Quinn could get lucky again and draw a right-wing Republican opponent -- maybe even a rematch with State Sen. Bill Brady.
“There’s nobody in Illinois who can run a grass-roots campaign like I can,” Quinn said at Democrat Day. “I’m not afraid of big money, big-time lobby groups. I think I can win the day with the kind of campaign people in Illinois will admire.”
BRUCE RAUNER, 9-2: Rauner has already spent $750,000 -- more than any other candidate -- and aired two television ads. He’s anti-union, but hasn’t tainted himself among suburban voters by taking conservative stands on social issues. He refuses to say whether he’d sign a gay marriage bill. Rauner showed up at Republican Day on a Harley-Davidson, proving he’ll also spend as much money as it takes to look like a regular guy.
KIRK DILLARD, 20-1: Dillard’s campaign took a big hit when his 2010 finance chair, Ron Gidwitz, defected to Rauner -- a sign that Rauner is the business community’s man.
“I have experience money can’t buy,” Dillard said at Republican Day. Which is good, because he doesn’t have money to buy anything else.
BILL DALEY, 33-1: In a general election, Daley would probably lose 101 counties. No Daley has run for office outside Cook County, and it’s hard to see suburbanites and Downstaters voting for the family most associated with Chicago politics.
"Some folks ask, 'What can a guy named Daley from Chicago possibly do for all the people of Illinois?'" Daley said at Democrat Day. "Well, the people of Illinois are fair and decent, and they want a governor who can lead."
BILL BRADY, 50-1: Brady spent Republican Day attacking his opponents for their ties to Democrats. He compared Rauner’s relationship with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel with Dillard’s appearance in a 2008 primary campaign ad for Barack Obama.
“People are tired of this one-city, one-party rule and the connections to Rahm,” Brady told the Sun-Times on Republican Day. “It’s a huge liability for a Republican, just as the Obama connection to Dillard is a huge liability.”
The surprise loser of the 2010 gubernatorial election has nothing left but negative rhetoric.
KWAME RAOUL, 50-1: The Tribune’s Eric Zorn laid out this possible path to victory for Raoul: “Labor, which is sorely disenchanted with Quinn and Daley, would likely form a core of support for Raoul, as would African-American voters and the same of bloc of white liberals who backed Obama — perhaps enough, all told, that he would win a three-way primary.”
Governor is the only statewide office an African-American hasn’t won in Illinois, but Raoul has to say he’s running before he’s worth betting.