Each says the other is not fit for service. But that’s putting it nicely.
The candidates have been hammering each other with increasingly biting attacks for weeks – Hynes released an ad saying that former Chicago Mayor Harold Washington once fired Quinn for incompetence and Quinn accused Hynes of employing criminals and being a backstabber.
That may be politics as usual, but when moderator Carol Marin asked the candidates to give each other a compliment, the men had difficulty mustering up something good to say.
"I think anybody who gets in the (political) arena deserves credit," Quinn said in a weak endorsement. “I think it’s regrettable in this year that I didn’t have the full support of Dan Hynes from day one. … I’m disappointed in the comptroller."
“Its interesting, I thought the question was to give me a compliment and that’s what we got,” Hynes replied. "... I think the governor has done a good job on veteran's affairs."
The current governor of Illinois then refused to say if he would support Hynes in a general election against a Republican. Hynes said he unequivocally would support Quinn.
But Hynes also told Quinn flat out that he should retire, after the governor brought up a point about his father, Tom Hynes, a former politician, “double dipping” on state pension plans.
"I think Pat Quinn has become disoriented. He thinks he's running against my father. I know you've been in politics 30 years, but my father retired 15 years ago. Maybe you should, too."
Watch the hour-long debate here. Vote in the Democratic primary next Tuesday.