Democrat Edwin Eisendrath announces bid for
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[DEC. 20, 2005]
CHICAGO -- In an emotional speech to
supporters in Chicago on Sunday, Edwin Eisendrath laid out an
optimistic alternative for Democrats weary of investigations and
allegations of ethical lapses in the Blagojevich administration.
"When I am governor, my first
priority will be to restore people's trust in government,"
Eisendrath said. "I'll end the shameful practices we've seen these
past eight years. You're going to see something you haven't seen in
Springfield in a while: a government you can be proud of. Anyone who
can't do that in four years doesn't deserve four more."
Eisendrath, 47, laid out a series of questions he wants answered
by Gov. Blagojevich.
"Tell us why you raided nearly $2.3 billions from the already
underfunded pensions of teachers and state workers," he said. "Tell
us how you plan on paying for the election-year giveaways you are
announcing daily. Tell us if you will refrain from using
contributions raised by appointees to boards and commissions that
dole out lucrative contracts and investments. Tell us why you opened
the door for Republicans to run against corruption while George Ryan
is on trial."
The announcement speech was at Kendall College, where Eisendrath
works as an administrator. He spoke about the importance of higher
"Under the Ryan-Blagojevich administrations, the average income
in Illinois has declined by more than $6,000 -- except for people
with college degrees. To make higher education more accessible, I
left government to build an online university.
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"And working with President Tullman, the board, the faculty and
staff here at Kendall, we turned around a troubled college and
created a place that prepares young people for careers that are
growing in Illinois. People doubted it could happen. But we didn't."
Eisendrath directly addressed what many Democrats fear most about
Blagojevich: that the scandals swirling around his administration
will cost the party the governor's mansion.
"You know what breaks my heart? It took our party 30 years to win
the governorship. The perception of ethical lapses in the
Blagojevich administration has put all that we've worked for at risk
in under four."
From the event in Chicago, Eisendrath traveled to Springfield,
where he planned to have a Monday press conference and turn in
10,000 signatures in order to qualify for the ballot. He plans to
conduct a statewide campaign kickoff tour in January.