FILE - In this Sept. 19, 2014, file photo, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Chicago. Quinn plans to lean on some heavy Democratic hitters with strong ties to the state as his re-election campaign against Republican Bruce Rauner enters its crucial last month before the Nov. 4 vote. Quinn on Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014, touted the planned Illinois visits of President Barack Obama on Thursday and first lady Michelle Obama next week at an event where he talked up the state's successes with the president's health care law. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)
CHICAGO — In a story Sept. 30 about the Illinois gubernatorial campaign, The Associated Press reported erroneously that a troubled anti-violence program was overseen by Quinn's election campaign in 2010. It was overseen by Quinn's government administration.
A corrected version of the story is below:
Illinois governor leans on Obamas for support
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn looks to Obamas, Hillary Clinton as campaign enters vital last month
By KERRY LESTER
CHICAGO — Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn plans to lean on some heavy Democratic hitters with strong ties to the state as his re-election campaign against Republican Bruce Rauner enters its crucial last month before the Nov. 4 vote.
Quinn on Tuesday touted the planned Illinois visits of President Barack Obama this week and first lady Michelle Obama next week at an event where he talked up the state's successes with the president's health care law. Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is scheduled to be in Chicago next week to speak at a conference and could stump for Quinn too.
The timing for Quinn may be tricky, with a bipartisan panel of lawmakers announcing Tuesday that it would convene for two days next week to continue its probe into a troubled anti-violence program overseen by the Quinn administration in the months before the last election in 2010. Continuing revelations about problems with the program, after an audit said funds were misused, have dogged Quinn throughout the campaign.
The panel will convene on the same day as the Chicago visit by Clinton, a potential 2016 presidential contender and Park Ridge native, and a day after the first lady's visit. The Quinn campaign would not comment on whether it has asked Clinton to appear with him. The White House said Tuesday that President Obama will arrive in Chicago on Wednesday, then hold a campaign event with Quinn and deliver a speech on the economy at Northwestern University on Thursday.
Quinn shrugged off questions about the timing of the high-level support. He also dismissed questions about touting his ties to the president, a Chicagoan still popular at home but whose overall public approval ratings have fallen, and about his support of the health law, a polarizing issue for some voters.
"I'm very happy to have the support of President Obama and the first lady and Hillary Clinton," Quinn told reporters at a medical facility.
Quinn didn't shy away from his support of the Affordable Care Act, which he announced had enrolled more than 685,000 Illinois residents in its first year. He said the state's "aggressive enrollment efforts" helped register 468,000 residents in an expanded Medicaid program, and another 217,000 enroll in private health plans.
"I believe in this with every fiber of my being and I am very, very grateful to President Obama for being steadfast for getting this law passed," Quinn said, vowing to enroll a million Illinoisans.
Republicans portrayed the high-level visits as a sign of desperation by the Quinn campaign.
"I think he needs to get as many people in here as he can, to get more money, more resources to deliver a failed message, because he can't run from his record of deplorable conditions and a failed economy in Illinois," said Tim Schneider, chairman of the Illinois Republican Party.
Rauner, who campaigned across the state Tuesday, also has brought in big-name supporters to help raise funds, including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who chairs the Republican Governors Association. Both are potential 2016 presidential candidates.
The lawmakers said they would resume their probe of the anti-violence program on Oct. 8 and 9 after a federal prosecutor said it would not interfere with an ongoing federal investigation. The panel had earlier agreed to delay it by 90 days.
Republicans allege Quinn used money from the $54.5 million Neighborhood Recovery Initiative as a political slush fund in 2010 to secure election votes in heavily Democratic Chicago. Quinn has denied that and says he has shown "zero tolerance" for fraud or abuse.
Staff Writer Sara Burnett contributed from Chicago.
Follow Kerry Lester on Twitter at http://twitter.com/kerrylester
All content copyright ©2014 Daily Journal, a division of Home News Enterprises unless otherwise noted.