PI Original Josh Kalven Monday July 27th, 2009, 2:04pm

Electoral Grab Bag: Kennedy Vids, Hendon For Congress, Hamos' Open Seat, And More

We've got a bunch of new tidbits on the 2010 electoral landscape.

U.S. SENATE

While the big news here is Alexi Giannoulias' announcement yesterday, the question still remains whether Merchandise Mart CEO Chris Kennedy is going to jump in this race (or any other, ...

We've got a bunch of new tidbits on the 2010 electoral landscape.

U.S. SENATE

While the big news here is Alexi Giannoulias' announcement yesterday, the question still remains whether Merchandise Mart CEO Chris Kennedy is going to jump in this race (or any other, for that matter).  Over the weekend, a PI commenter left us a link to the following video.  It's unclear who produced it, but it's coming from the left and is clearly meant to let Kennedy know what type of opposition research would be used on him in the primary:

The same YouTube account posted a similar video back in May.

On the Republican side, Politico shines a light on Republican candidate Mark Kirk's continued backtracking on his support for the cap-and-trade legislation in the U.S. House.  That position provoked outrage from the right-wing and the blowback clearly rattled the North Shore congressman.

7th CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT

We hear there are still doubts about whether Rep. Danny Davis will officially enter the race for Cook Co. Board President.  Nonetheless, State Sen. Rickey Hendon is wasting no time laying the groundwork for a congressional campaign in the 7th District.  Appearing on Fox Chicago Sunday yesterday, he told the co-hosts that he has filed the necessary paperwork for a federal run.  During the interview, he had some harsh words for the military effort in Afghanistan. "All we're getting out of Afghanistan is cheap heroin on the streets of the city of Chicago that is destroying our communities," he said.  "We need to bring our troops home. That will help the economy."  He added, "Just because I like Barack, doesn't mean I'm always going to agree with him." Watch it:

10th CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT

Following reports of an impending "announcement" last week, State Rep. Julie Hamos disclosed today that she will be officially entering the race for the 10th Congressional District tomorrow afternoon.  More on that to come.

Speaking of Hamos, one progressive candidate seeking to replace her in the statehouse is Jeff Smith.  Here's some video of him addressing the Northside DFA earlier this month, courtesy of Illinois Media Progressives (IMP): 

COMPTROLLER

The SouthtownStar's Phil Kadner profiled State Rep. and possible Democratic lieutenant governor candidate David Miller over the weekend:

"I just think the the time is right to take advantage of the opportunity to move on to higher office. I've put in my time in the Legislature. I'm looking for a new challenge and a bigger job." [...]

He was first elected in 2000 when he upset 29th District state Rep. Willis Harris, who was backed by Dolton Mayor William Shaw, by 50 votes.

Miller, who had the support of U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-2nd), won another tough race two years later when redistricting forced him to run against state Rep. Bob Ryan (D-Lansing).

Since that time, the 47-year-old Miller has gained both seniority and respect in the state Legislature as one of the leaders of the black caucus.

He even managed to pass an income tax hike/school funding reform measure out of a House committee, a rare feat. But he could never get the bill called for a full vote of the House.

Sitting Comptroller Dan Hynes is expected to announce a primary challenge to Gov. Pat Quinn any day now, at which point Miller would likely jump in.

LT. GOVERNOR

Also at that Northside DFA event mentioned above was Justin Oberman, Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor.  Watch his remarks, via IMP:

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