12/05/2017 07:27 AM EDT

By Natasha Korecki (nkorecki@politico.com; @natashakorecki) and Kristen East (keast@politico.com; @kristenicoleast) with reporting from Dan Diamond

Good Tuesday morning, Illinois.

THE BUZZ: If you thought Gov. Bruce Rauner hit bottom when he was branded "The Worst Republican Governor in America," by a conservative magazine, well, consider ... Monday.

On the same day Rauner formally learned he'd face a Republican primary from state Rep. Jeanne Ives, he had a head-tilting moment when he told reporters: "I am not in charge." Instead, he said, it was House Speaker Mike Madigan who pulled all the strings in the state including in the Democratic gubernatorial primary. Without naming names, Rauner accused Madigan of putting in the fix for billionaire J.B. Pritzker. "He's rigged his primary. He has rigged his Democratic primary. He has rigged it, ladies and gentlemen. If you guys won't report it, shame on you. He's rigged it. He controls it. It's a Mafia protection racket." Audio (go to around the 12-minute mark).

- "Gov. Rauner: 'I am not in charge' - Madigan 'has rigged system,'" by Chicago Sun-Times' Tina Sfondeles: "Gov. Bruce Rauner officially picked up a Republican primary challenger Monday, but the governor instead kept his focus on Democratic nemesis Mike Madigan - comparing the House speaker's party to a 'mafia protection racket' and arguing that it's Madigan who's actually "in charge" of the state. 'He's been in charge for 35 years. The guy's become a millionaire off of high property taxes in the state,' Rauner said of Madigan, while also accusing the speaker of 'holding businesses in Chicago hostage.'" Story here

Tribune's Rick Pearson, Kim Geiger and Monique Garcia: "Buffeted by controversy after controversy since Republicans broke with him to pass a state budget after more than two years of stalemate, Rauner showed signs of the stress Monday. Hours before Ives filed her paperwork with the State Board of Elections, the governor dismissed the challenge by a 'fringe' candidate and said he had 'the best chance of anybody in the state to win the general election.' ... Rauner went on to say that Madigan was running a 'Mafia protection racket' and 'rigged' the Democratic governor primary, a race in which billionaire J.B. Pritzker has amassed top endorsements. Story here

EXCLU: MCSWEENEY BACKS IVES - A leading conservative state Rep. long critical of Gov. Bruce Rauner has already taken a side in the governor's primary: he won't be voting for Rauner. State Rep. David McSweeney, a Republican with one of the largest social media followings in the state legislature, keyed into Rauner's Monday remarks. "I'm going to vote for Jeanne Ives on March 20th. Bruce Rauner, the Worst Republican Governor in America, is a failed Governor who just admitted that he's not in charge of the state," McSweeney first told POLITICO in a statement. "It's time that we have someone who will take charge."

THE KICKER - You know who's running unopposed in the primary? Michael J. Madigan. Ditto for John Cullerton. No Republican has filed either, but GOP can slate later.


- "Obama to address Emanuel's climate meeting Tuesday," by Chicago Tribune's John Byrne and Bill Ruthhart: "Former President Barack Obama will speak at Mayor Rahm Emanuel's climate meeting on Tuesday. Obama's afternoon speech will unfold as Republican President Donald Trump has said he will pull the U.S. out of the Paris climate accord in which nations agreed to lower carbon emissions. Trump also has reversed Obama-era domestic climate initiatives, saying he wants to bring back the coal industry." Story here

- "Forget Paris: U.S. mayors sign their own pact after Trump ditches climate accord," by USA Today's Aamer Madhani: "President Trump ditched the Paris Agreement, but dozens of U.S. mayors are set to sign their own climate accord vowing to do their part in cutting the nation's greenhouse emissions. USA TODAY has obtained a draft of the 'Chicago Charter,' an agreement that at least 36 U.S. cities are slated to sign Tuesday at the North American Climate Summit in Chicago. The agreement lays out the framework for how some of the country's municipalities plan to reach goals to reduce greenhouse emission and monitor each others progress - objectives similar to what the Paris international climate pact strives to achieve." Story here

- "World mayors gather in Chicago for North American Climate Summit," by NBC 5 Chicago: "Mayors from around the world will gather in Chicago Monday as they prepare to sign a first-of-its-kind international agreement after President Donald Trump's Administration decided to walk away from the Paris climate accord. The more than 50 mayors and global climate leaders will converge on the city for the North American Climate Summit, part of a commitment to addressing climate change on the local level. On Tuesday, they will sign the Chicago Climate Charter, which aligns with the Paris agreement." Story here

THE PLAYBOOK POWER LIST: 18 TO WATCH IN 2018: The final Playbook Power List of the year highlights 18 politicians, activists and operatives across the country who are poised to make waves in 2018. From the anti-Trump "Resistance" on the left to the far-right, Bannonite wing trying to remake the GOP, keep an eye on these people over the next 12 months. Click here to find out who made the list.

Illinois hook: Susana Mendoza - "Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza already scored a serious victory after beating Gov. Bruce Rauner's hand-picked - and handsomely financed - incumbent opponent last year. But winning that election turned out to be the easy part. Mendoza left a position as Chicago's City Clerk and stepped into a statewide office - and into the morass of one of the longest-running budget battles in the nation's history. The Democrat was in charge of paying the bills at a time when the state ran up a $16 billion bill backlog with no budget deal and no new revenue on the horizon. In less than 12 months, the high-energy, fast-talking Mendoza transformed the comptroller's office into a fully engaged, fearless financial counterforce that unabashedly dove into brutal daily budget battles."

ADVOCATE HEALTH CARE ANNOUNCES MEGA-MERGER. By POLITICO'S Dan Diamond: The state's largest hospital system on Monday said it's planning to merge with Aurora Health Care - the largest health systems in Wisconsin - by next summer, pending regulatory approval. Advocate Aurora Health would be the nation's 10th largest not-for-profit health system, with 27 hospitals, about 500 care sites and $11 billion in annual revenue. The merger would be "50-50," the systems told reporters on Monday, with neither organization paying the other and the current leaders staying on to serve as co-CEOs. It's Advocate's second attempt at a would-be mega-merger: The Downers Grove-headquartered system attempted to combine with nearby NorthShore University HealthSystem, but the deal was challenged by the FTC and ultimately scrapped after a judge blocked it in March. Advocate's merger with Aurora might be more palatable to regulators given that the two systems operate in different states, observers note. While hospital mergers generally lead to higher prices for patients, as larger systems exert their negotiating leverage with local insurance companies, Advocate CEO Jim Skogsbergh vowed that patients wouldn't see price increases as a result of the deal.

WHAT YOU WEREN'T EXPECTING IN THE CONGRESSIONAL TAX BILL - a college savings plan for fetuses. Illinois State Treasurer Mike Frerichs today plans to raise red flags over a provision in the congressional tax plan that could allow accounts to be set up for unborn children. The treasurer's office calls it "an attempt to use college savings programs to further anti-choice policy goals." The provision allows parents to set up accounts for unborn children. Right now, one needs a social security number to be associated with the account. Abortion rights advocate believe the provision is an attempt to undermine Roe V. Wade. As treasurer, Frerichs in charge of managing the state's 529 college savings programs, Bright Start and Bright Directions. At today's news conference, Personal PAC's Terry Cosgrove and Planned Parenthood's Paula Thornton Greear will join Frerichs.

Slate published this piece last month:

- "Why the Republican tax plan gives fetuses the right to save for college," by Slate's Christina Cauterucci: "There are three possible reasons why Republicans would try to legally rename a fertilized egg or fetus in the middle of a tax bill. One is to troll pro-choice advocates and legislators, who will now be forced to argue against this silly provision along with all the more substantive offenses that lie within the bill. The GOP might also hope for a fetal domino effect: To have a 529 account, you need to have a Social Security number. Babies usually get their Social Security numbers along with their birth certificates. Giving fetuses access to tax benefits could trigger an If You Give a Mouse a Cookie situation that ends with microscopic clumps of human cells getting birth certificates, marriage licenses, and political appointments." Story here

Filing deadline quick hits

- We first reported on Monday that state Sen. Sam McCann was bowing out of the Republican primary for his state senate seat. That began speculation that McCann could run as an independent for senate - or even governor.

- Todd Stroger runs for MWRD instead of county board president.

- Via Illinois Election Data: "It appears there will be a Republican primary for Attorney General, Gary Grasso has filed. He's a DuPage County board member and former Mayor of Burr Ridge."

- Nine people file for Currie's 25th house district seat

- Five people - including Ira Silverstein - running for Silverstein's 8th district senate seat.

- Marwig-McAuliffe rematch


- "Former Rockford Congressman, presidential candidate, Anderson dead at 95," by Rock River Times' Shane Nicholson: " Former Congressman John B. Anderson, who represented Illinois' 16th district for 20 years and ran as an independent in the 1980 presidential election, passed away Sunday his family said. He was 95." Story here

- "Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan's Massage Envy subpoenas include South Naperville, Elmhurst locations," by Northwest Herald's Lindsay Gloor: "In response to a BuzzFeed News investigation that revealed more than 180 women nationwide have reported sexual assaults at popular spa chain Massage Envy, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan filed subpoenas to investigate incidents within the state. ... Madigan's office is investigating Massage Envy and its Illinois franchisees at certain locations in Chicago, Elmhurst, Naperville and Tinley Park to gather information about the company's policies, employee training and handling of complaints related to sexual assault and sexually inappropriate behavior, according to a news release from Madigan's office." Story here

- "Before becoming a state, Illinois had its own Liberty Bell," by Travis Lott of the County Journal: "Those who did not want to live under the impending British rule moved to St. Louis or Ste. Genevieve, Missouri. The town fell to the British and was kept under control of the crown until July 4, 1778, when George Rogers Clark led an expedition of American troops into the village to liberate it. After a two-month journey over 1,000 miles, Clark and his 175 men arrived in Kaskaskia to take the area. Many of the British had been withdrawn from the area, and Clark captured the settlement without a shot being fired. With Clark in town, residents rang the Liberty Bell of the West, which got its name that day. The bell was originally given to the Catholic Church of the Illinois Country by King Louis XV of France. The bell was cast in France in 1741, making it 11 years older than the Liberty Bell that sits in Philadelphia." Story here


MAH FOR BISS - State Rep. Theresa Mah will announce her endorsement of Daniel Biss for governor at a press conference in Chinatown this afternoon.

STEINEM BACKS NEWMAN OVER LIPINSKI: Activist and women's rights leader Gloria Steinem is endorsing Marie Newman in her attempt to unseat incumbent Dan Lipinski in the state's 3rd Congressional District. Women's rights groups Feminist Majority and the American Women's Party are also backing Newman over Lipinski campaign. "We need effective, principled fighters who can put an end to this president's unilateral actions by stopping them in Congress - and that's what Marie Newman will do," Gloria Steinem said in a statement and accused Lipinski of not being a Democrat. "She is unafraid of doing what's right, even in this time when it isn't easy. Too many times, Dan Lipinski has voted to deprive citizens of healthcare, to oppose immigrant's rights, to de-fund Planned Parenthood, to suppress contraception, to oppose marriage equality, and to deny the rights of LGBTQ Americans."

SCHNEIDER BACKS VILLIVALAM: U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider, (D-Ill.), is endorsing Ram Villivalam for Ira Silverstein's seat in the 8th senate district. "I proudly and enthusiastically endorse Ram Villivalam for State Senate. Ram has long been a key contributor to my success as a Representative," Schneider said in a statement. "As my Outreach Director, Ram demonstrated his ability to learn the key-issues and bring proven results to the community. As your State Senator, I know Ram will not only be an outstanding legislator but use those same skills to create a positive impact for hard working middle-class families in our community and throughout Illinois."


- "Where to go? Book bird-dogs intriguing Chicago places," by Neil Steinberg: "Englewood is a long way to go for a cup of coffee. But I like coffee. So when I heard about Kusanya Cafe, a coffeehouse at 69th and Green, I decided to slide over for a cup.Most Chicagoans never go to Englewood for any reason. They associate it with murder, not coffee. But even the worst neighborhoods are also just that - neighborhoods - and I figured, if people can live there, I can visit." Story here

- "Chicago Park District is exploring a new boardwalk for North Avenue Beach," by Curbed Chicago's Jay Koziarz: "Big changes are being considered for North Avenue Beach and the Chicago Park District is hoping a new deal with a private concessionaire will help pay the bill. The plans call for the creation of a new boardwalk-type promenade around North Avenue's ship-shaped beach house currently home to Castaways restaurant." Story here

- "Controversial ad spurs demand for Council hearings on Suburban Express," by Chicago Sun-Times' Fran Spielman: "A bus company serving college students should be stripped of its right to make pick-ups and drop-offs at O'Hare Airport for releasing an ad offensive to Chinese students and compounding the offense with an even more insulting 'apology,' an influential alderman said Monday. Two months after dropping out of the Democratic race for governor, Ald. Ameya Pawar (47th) is jumping into the racially-charged controversy surrounding Suburban Express, the Champaign-based company that shuttles college students from six colleges in Illinois, Indiana and Iowa to and from the Chicago area." Story here

- "New Chicago mural honors influential women," by AP: "A new mural honoring 20 women who have shaped Chicago arts and culture has been unveiled at the Chicago Cultural Center. The 132-foot by 100-foot mural features TV host and actress Oprah Winfrey, former Chicago first lady Maggie Daley and Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Gwendolyn Brooks, among others. Artist and MacArthur Fellow Kerry James Marshall unveiled the mural Monday morning." Story here


U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan named U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam to serve on the House-Senate Conference Committee for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Roskam (R-Ill.) was selected as one of five members of the Ways and Means Committee to work with the Senate to reconcile the respective tax bills and present a final version for a full vote.

"At a very base level, we are starting with the understanding that the status quo is hurting middle-income families across America and our primary responsibility is figuring out the most effective way to give those hardworking taxpayers - the backbone of the American economy - the tax relief they are looking for. The work we're doing on this bill is about those families, it's about small businesses and it's about our economy," Roskam said in a statement. "As we work over these next couple of weeks to strengthen this legislation, I am encouraged by the support I've received throughout this process from the individual taxpayers and small business owners throughout my district who realize the significance of keeping more money in every paycheck."

- "Chart: How the Republican tax overhaul would affect you," by NPR's Danielle Kurtzleben and Scott Horsley: "Now that the Senate has passed its own version of a tax overhaul, lawmakers will work to iron out differences with the House version. The resulting legislation could then be sent to President Trump for his signature. There are a number of key differences between the House and Senate tax bills. For example, the individual tax cuts in the Senate version expire after 2025. In the House bill, they don't. The two measures also differ in their treatment of certain small businesses, the mortgage interest deduction, tax brackets and the estate tax. Here's a look at some of the changes that individual filers could expect if either the House or Senate versions is included in the final bill." Story here

Last night, a sizeable crowd in Chicago showed out in force to protest the bill, see pics here: - "2nd Protest of #GOPTaxScam today outside Chicago Board of Trade," by The Coalition for a Better Illinois 6th (@CBIL6th) on Twitter: See the tweet


- "John Lausch: the U.S. Attorney from Joliet," by MySuburbanLife's Bob Okon: "The new U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois not only is from Joliet, but he's also in town a lot. John R. Lausch Jr., who was sworn into office at a private ceremony Nov. 22 in Chicago, has not lost touch with his roots in Joliet, where he grew up in the Cathedral area and was a linebacker on the 1987 championship football team at what was then Joliet Catholic High School." Story here


- "US charter schools put growing numbers in racial isolation," by AP's Ivan Moreno: "Charter schools are among the nation's most segregated, an Associated Press analysis finds - an outcome at odds, critics say, with their goal of offering a better alternative to failing traditional public schools. National enrollment data shows that charters are vastly over-represented among schools where minorities study in the most extreme racial isolation. As of school year 2014-2015, more than 1,000 of the nation's 6,747 charter schools had minority enrollment of at least 99 percent, and the number has been rising steadily." Story here


- "A hospital charged $1,877 to pierce a 5-year-old's ears. This is why health care costs so much," by ProPublica's Marshall Allen: "Wasteful use of medical care has 'become so normalized that I don't think people in the system see it,' said Dr. Vikas Saini, president of The Lown Institute, a Boston think tank focused on making health care more effective, affordable and just. 'We need more serious studies of what these practices are.' Experts estimate the U.S. health care system wastes $765 billion annually - about a quarter of all the money that's spent. Of that, an estimated $210 billion goes to unnecessary or needlessly expensive care, according to a 2012 report by the National Academy of Medicine." Story here


- "Rep. Ives officially launches campaign for governor," by AP: "A Republican state legislator is officially kicking off her primary challenge against Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner. Rep. Jeanne Ives of Wheaton says in remarks released early Monday by her campaign that she'll side with 'taxpaying Illinois families' instead of the 'political ruling class.' She notes that she supported Rauner's campaign in 2014, but says Illinois needs a new path. Ives earlier said she'd selected former state Rep. Rich Morthland as a lieutenant governor running mate." Story here


- "Prosecutors: Manafort wrote op-ed with colleague in Russia," by AP's Chad Day and Eric Tucker: Story here

- "Trump, Democrats restart talks to avert shutdown," by POLITICO's Sarah Ferris, Jennifer Scholtes and Seung Min Kim: Story here

- "Trump endorses Roy Moore as Republicans come around on working with him," by POLITICO's Daniel Strauss and Louis Nelson: Story here

- "Supreme Court allows Trump travel ban to take effect," by The New York Times' Adam Liptak: Story here

EVENTS Courtesy of IntelligentEvent (@Chi_Intellevent)

TODAY - Danielle DuMerer, Chicago CIO - Chi Hack Night - Danielle DuMerer was appointed as Chief Information Officer for the City of Chicago after nearly ten years working in the Department of Innovation & Technology. Danielle will talk about her journey to this role, and the City's future efforts to leverage data and technology to be more responsive.


- Gubernatorial Candidate Christopher Kennedy - CAPAG - Join this conversation with Chris Kennedy, Democratic candidate for Illinois Governor, as he explains his vision for Illinois.

PR Wins and Blunders of 2017 - PCC - Our slate of top-tier Chicago journalists will dish with renowned media critic Robert Feder about the biggest wins and losses in Chicago-area public relations in this talk show-style luncheon conversation. Panelists: Sara Burnett, Associated Press; Natasha Korecki, POLITICO; Michael Puente, WBEZ; Stacy St. Clair, Chicago Tribune.

WHERE's RAHM? delivers welcome remarks to municipal leaders convening for the North American Climate Summit; will sign and preside over the Chicago Climate Charter Signing Ceremony; attend the C40 Cities Bloomberg Philanthropies Awards Lunch then joins Mayor Hidalgo, Mayor Lee, Mayor Plante, Mayor Mancera and Mayor Wheeler to announce the Reinventing Cities competition; delivers closing remarks at the North American Climate Summit.

WHERE's RAUNER? In morning, joins Lt. Governor Sanguinetti and Opioid Overdose Prevention and Intervention Task Force members to announce new initiative at Thompson Center.

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