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Did I tell you the show was Tuesday?
The night begins with Mick singing the national anthem—Marvin Gaye style. Then, after a heated debate over which version is best—Marvin's or Jimi's?—Mick and I will bring on our guests, three of Chicago's best political journalists: Natasha Korecki and Dan Mihalopoulos of the Sun-Times and Charles Thomas of ABC-7.
First subject of discussion: Bruce Rauner's business dealings.
So much to talk about.
There's the nursing home company that somehow wound up under the control of a retired graphic artist named Barry Saacks, who says he didn't know he'd bought it, just as families were trying to collect on a billion-dollar wrongful death settlement.
Good luck, families.
Then there's the company that won a billion-dollar sludge-hauling contract from Detroit, after, among other things, jetting Detroit's Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick to Vegas for a heavyweight fight.
That will prompt Mick to do a dramatic reading of a transcript of text messages between Mayor Kilpatrick—now serving a 28-year sentence on corruption charges—and his lover, who also happened to be his chief of staff.
Chief of staff: Baby, if I was with you right now, I would sit you down, get on my knees in front of you. I would pull myself up to you and gently suck on your ear lobe . . .
Mayor Kilpatrick: Please tell me more!
And you think Chicago politics are exciting?
All of which leads to discussion of whether Governor Quinn—who may be even less popular than Mayor Emanuel—is the world's luckiest politician for drawing Rauner as an opponent.
At some point, Natasha will be asked to discuss the general state of corruption in Illinois—a topic she knows much about, since she wrote a book called Only in Chicago, which is all about the Rod Blagojevich scandal.
Speaking of politicians doing time.
Which will give everyone a chance to weigh in on Rauner's connection to Stuart Levine, a convicted swindler who used to sit on a state pension board for teachers back when Blago was governor.
And you thought Detroit's politics are corrupt?
Other possible topics for discussion under new business:
Will Karen Lewis actually declare her mayoral candidacy before February's mayoral election?
And now that Mayor Emanuel's finally getting around to repaving the streets—just in time for that election—will he ever fill the pothole at Warner and Damen? Or will he keep that pothole unfilled in the hopes that I—once again—fall into it while riding my bicycle?
At all points, Ben and Dan will do their best to refrain from discussing great Greek basketball players—a topic they know way too much about.
The show starts at 6:30 p.m. Admission is $5. The Hideout is at 1354 W Wabansia.