Peraica will not be a potted plant

As only Peraica could do

I only wonder if this will catch on? I would love to really know what is going through everyone's mind when they are at these meetings. Not that Tony Peraica has ever been silent, and kept his opinions to himself. But it would be nice to know what the other's are thinking? But would the other Commissioners do this? I don't see Bill Beavers, when he is there, and awake doing this. I really think Forrest Claypool would have a lot to twitter, so would Mike Quigley, but soon Mike Quigley will be in DC. Which make me wonder will someone get annointed to Quigley's post until the next election? If so who?

I actually like the idea of our elected officials twittering; I hope more Cook County Commissioners will consider doing this. I actually would like to see more do this, the Alderman, the Illinois State, the Illinois Senate, the US Senate and House. The possibilities are endless, the
information would be enormous.

Twitter with Tony

"Meet Cook County Commissioner "Tweetie."

That's the handle outspoken Republican Tony Peraica uses in posting his live play-by-play of County Board meetings on Twitter, the online micro-blog that's all the rage.

» Click to enlarge image

Commissioner Tony Peraica with his laptop computer at the County Board meeting.
(Rich Hein/Sun-Times)

Commissioner tweets at meeting
Last month, Peraica started posting short messages -- called "tweets" -- during board meetings about everything from contract votes and political bickering to his opinions and wisecracks in 140 characters or less.

With a few strokes of the keyboard, he's part legislator, part reporter and part talk-show host.

"I think it's important to keep the public informed about what's going on with the board as it happens," Peraica said. "This is a wonderful technology that enables us to keep in touch with 600 to 700 people who care about what happens at the meeting."

During Wednesday's County Board meeting, Peraica posted 15 tweets, including updates on major votes, mild self-promotion and a jab at Commissioner Mike Quigley, who won the 5th Congressional District Democratic primary the night before.

Peraica said his goal is giving his constituents more details about how their tax dollars are spent than they'll find in the media.

County Board President Todd Stroger said Peraica should probably pay closer attention to what's going on during meetings rather than "twittering his thumbs."

"I think it's strange," Stroger said. "It doesn't sound kosher. He probably shouldn't be typing while we're doing business. Maybe that's why he can't remember how he voted on things two weeks ago."

Peraica, however, says he can pay attention and post his thoughts, no problem.

"I'm multitasking all the time," he said. "My entire life, I had to do two or three jobs, law school, kids, family. You get used to it after a while."


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