WBEZ | Doug O'Brien http://www.wbez.org/tags/doug-obrien Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Best Game in Town: Rising temperatures mirror political climate http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-08/best-game-town-rising-temperatures-mirror-political-climate-101388 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/obama%20money%20AP.jpg" style="width: 466px; height: 338px;" title="(AP/file)" /></div><p>With less than 100 days before the general election, August temperatures aren&rsquo;t the only things on the rise. Political campaigns have grown more contentious&mdash;and expensive. President Obama shattered fundraising records when he raised more than $750 million for his 2008 campaign. But that was before <em>Citizens United</em>. The Supreme Court decision recognized political spending as a form of protected free speech, giving corporations and unions the ability to spend unlimited amounts of money to support or denounce a candidate. And while Obama remains the reigning champ, Mitt Romney appears to be the odds-on favorite to get dough from America&rsquo;s top CEOs. According to a review of federal records by <a href="http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/07/30/13034655-top-ceos-donate-to-romney-over-obama-by-4-1-margin?lite" target="_blank">NBC News</a>, the former governor and presumptive Republican nominee, charms four chief executives for every one the president nabs.</p><p>Campaign cash isn&rsquo;t the only high-stakes game in presidential politics&mdash;it&rsquo;s not even the best pun. For that, political watchdogs and odds-makers look to the almighty Veepstakes. Still no word on a ticket-mate for Romney but time is running out (pun entirely intended): The Republican National Convention kicks off in Tampa, Florida on August 27<sup>th</sup>.</p><p>So, as the political climate began to boil, <em>Afternoon Shift</em> threw the <em>Best Game in Town </em>back on the burner. Host Steve Edwards was joined by a pair of political strategists: Democrat <a href="http://www.kurthlampe.com/" target="_blank">Kitty Kurth</a> and Republican Doug O&rsquo;Brien, of Prairie State Strategies. Together they tackled a host of hot topics--from key local Congressional races to campaign blunders made thus far.</p><p>With the party conventions on the horizon, O&#39;Brien (not this one, the other one) expects the events to be a&nbsp; bit of a snooze--unless Romney announces Justin Bieber as his VP. To which I say, in the name of Beliebers the world over...&quot;Never Say Never.&quot;</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="293" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/_Z5-P9v3F8w" width="517"></iframe></p></p> Wed, 01 Aug 2012 14:01:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-08/best-game-town-rising-temperatures-mirror-political-climate-101388