Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Have You Met Bill Brady's Running Mate? His Name is Scott Lee Cohen

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Have You Met Bill Brady's Running Mate? His Name is Scott Lee Cohen
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Scott Lee Cohen has officially switched sides in the gubernatorial race. Pat Quinn didn’t want him on the Democratic ticket, so he’s now decided to become Bill Brady’s running mate.

Brady, of course, can use a running mate. Quinn and his sidekick, Sheila Simon, have toured the state together. They were spotted lunching downtown. But when was the last time you saw Brady in public with Jason Plummer, the embarrassing lumber heir who, alone among Illinois politicians, still refuses to release his tax returns?

Quinn has been in a tough situation ever since Cohen won the Democratic primary for lieutenant governor. If he hadn’t dumped Cohen, he would now be asking Illinoisans to vote for a guy who allegedly knocks around for-hire floozies. But by kicking Cohen off the ticket he created an enemy for himself -- an enemy who had enough money to buy his way back onto the ballot, by paying winos and derelicts to collect signatures for him.

Quinn isn’t helping himself by trashing Cohen like an ex-girlfriend after a bad breakup.

“I think he has a character that has a lot to be desired,” the governor told Chicago Public Radio.

Cohen sniped back with his own assessment of his ex’s character, saying Quinn lacks the “tenacity and determination” that has characterized Cohen’s own life. Pat thought Scott would crumble. He thought he’d lay down and die. Oh, no, not Scott. He will survive. To make this election hell for the governor.

“The people of Illinois are suffering,” Cohen told NBC5. “He is cutting education. He’s cutting mental health. We’re gonna have 70,000 homeless people walking on the streets, yet he’s handing out pay raises to his staff. This is the kind of leader he is … if character’s going to count, he’s got some explaining to do.”

Bill Brady couldn’t have said it better himself. And Jason Plummer couldn’t have said it at all, because the reporter would then have asked him about his taxes. So let’s welcome Illinois’ newest political team: Brady and Cohen. They may not have much in common, but they have a common enemy.

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