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Don’t be so sure

Friday, Nov 9, 2012

* Over 100 people responded to yesterday’s question about state Sen. Kirk Dillard’s upcoming gubernatorial campaign. Large numbers described him as a “moderate” who would save the Republican Party.

I’ve known Sen. Dillard for a very long time. He’s a good guy and a good legislator. He’s well-known for working across the aisle, and his moderate bonafides were boosted when he cut that TV ad for Barack Obama’s 2008 primary campaign.

* But on abortion, guns and gay rights he’s no moderate. And those three issues play heavily in the suburbs.

Dillard was rated as “Fully Pro-Life” this year by Illinois Citizens for Life and was endorsed by the Illinois Federation for Right to Life PAC. Judy Baar Topinka was a moderate on abortion issues, supporting most abortion rights but also supporting things like parental notification. That moderate stance got her labeled as a pro-life fanatic by groups like Personal PAC, which raises and spends big bucks in this state.

Chicago and suburban Cook County are not exactly amenable to gun rights arguments, yet Dillard was endorsed by the Illinois State Rifle Association when he ran for governor.

And while gay rights has become a far more acceptable issue in Illinois, Dillard attempted to intervene in a lawsuit this year on the anti-gay rights side. He also voted against civil unions.

* All campaigns are cartoons. We are subjected to black and white arguments. Nuance and moderation don’t always come through very well. Topinka was slammed in a cartoonish way for her moderation on abortion. But Dillard’s position is the same as Bill Brady’s on that issue, so he’ll be subjected to a similar assault if he wins the primary. The same goes for guns and gays.

I am not saying here that Dillard cannot win a general election. I’m also not saying that Dillard doesn’t have a moderate persona. What I am saying, however, is that he will be portrayed in TV ads as a hardline right-winger if he makes it to the general election.

Bet on it.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


68 Comments
  1. - MrJM - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:36 am:

    he will be portrayed in TV ads as a hardline right-winger if he makes it to the general election.

    On (at least) the issues of abortion, gays and guns that characterization would be correct.

    And if there is one overriding lesson from Tuesday, it’s that facts can be very suborn things.

    – MrJM


  2. - Fight for Hinsdale - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:38 am:

    If Karl Marx won the Republican Primary, he would portrayed as a crazy right-winger. It doesn’t matter what the person actually believes… see Dold/Biggert as Tea Partiers ads for an example.


  3. - haverford - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:39 am:

    He also surrogated for Brady a bunch during the 2010 election. Which means there’s lot of footage of him supporting Brady’s platform publicly - which I think goes to your point, Rich.

    I’m thinking specifically of his comments about Michelle Saddler when became Quinn’s COS - that’s not going to play well when played on loop.


  4. - Cassiopeia - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:39 am:

    One thing to always keep in mind about the off-year elections is that the turnout is a lot lower than in the presidential elections and a significant number of low interest democratic constituencies will not show up to the polls at the same level they do in presidential years. Further Obama will not be on the ballot in 2014.


  5. - just sayin' - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:44 am:

    Totally agree. I would only add that Dillard’s bigger problem is that he doesn’t take a firm stand on anything. He’s got these votes and positions out there, but won’t defend them when the time comes. He’s always on the fence. I think people will support a principled person they disagree with, but voters don’t like wishy washy people. That’s the real turnoff (see Mitt Romney).

    Dillard’s a nice guy, and hard not to like personally. But he’s not a leader.


  6. - Fight for Hinsdale - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:45 am:

    Moral of the story: Never underestimate the ability of the Republican Party to screw up a sure thing. Exhibit A: Mittens Romney.


  7. - Cincinnatus - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:47 am:

    First: Oswego Will,

    Sorry. I was immersed in the trees all day yesterday and lost track of the forest.


  8. - Elo Kiddies - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:48 am:

    It was somewhere between bizarre and surreal to see how Obama was portrayed when he ran in 2008; nobody, not fans and not enemies, were describing the guy we knew in Springfield. So, sure, if Dillard makes the General, expect him to be painted by both sides in ways that don’t resemble the guy who’s been in the Senate all these years.


  9. - Carl Nyberg - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:54 am:

    The Republicans, Fox News and the Tea Party have changed the standard for “moderate”.

    If a Republican can go back and forth with me three times without saying something untrue or completely illogical, he’s a moderate now.

    Most Republicans are living in a bubble that is different from reality. When confronted with facts they attack the source or engage in some tactic that shows they simply don’t want to deal with reality.

    That’s the modern GOP. Good luck to anybody who wants to clean house from within.


  10. - Rich Miller - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:59 am:

    ===a significant number of low interest democratic constituencies will not show up to the polls===

    African-Americans made up 20 percent of the voting day electorate in 2010, six points higher than their percentage this week.


  11. - John Galt - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 10:59 am:

    So Dillard has a moderate persona. The $1million question is: how much does that count for? Dold and Biggert have moderate personas AND moderate voting records yet they go clobbered.

    Does persona even cut through at all? Or does it depend on the race? For example, very high profile races the persona does cut through because people see the personas live on television frequently. Meanwhile local races persona matters because retail campaigning works.

    But what about the “middle races”? Territory too big to retail; too small for a ton of press attention.


  12. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:02 am:

    Cincy, we’re all good, Bud.

    We all (IL Repubs) have gotta get past 2010, and now 2012, and deal with new realities, and get a heck of a lot better on the ground, get the demographics better in our favor, run candidates that can win the districts they are running, and be less cookie cutter in more diverse.

    If you and I are 80% in agreement, we are friends.

    No need to apologize, not one bit. We are fighting the same good fight. I respect your passion for Dillard, it will serve his candidacy well.


  13. - shore - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:08 am:

    The problem with Dillard is that for a party that needs a fresh start he’s a part of the past. He’s been Edgar’s ex cos for 20 years and done nothing in the party or for the party other than to sit around and wait his turn. He’s had 10 years of Democrat dominance in springfield and offered nothing in the way of a new agenda forward or new plan or new leadership so what makes the party think he’s going to offer it now? That to me matters far more than god, guns and gays.

    Physically he’s the image of an older backroom good old boy that the party desperately needs to move on from. I want to tread carefully here, but I thought Republicans did Judy Biggert and the party a disservice in her campaign by not acknowledging what was clear in her debate with Harper a few years ago which is that she was no longer able to be a member of congress. Dillard has a similar problem with his physical image.


  14. - Eilean left - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:09 am:

    If Cross continues to put up candidates in Democratic districts and Democratic leaning districts,Madigan will make sure there is a good Democrat turnout.His GOTV and groung game can’t be matched by the Repub’s.


  15. - Cincinnatus - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:11 am:

    Willy,

    Not 80%, 100%!


  16. - LincolnLounger - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:12 am:

    One cannot help but like Dillard; however, his social conservative stands are mostly a product of trying to appease Jack Roeser. Meanwhile, his biggest cheerleader, Jim Edgar, decries this kind of social extremism while touting Dillard’s candidacy.

    I’m reminded of Br’er Rabbit — “the stucker and stucker I get.”


  17. - Eilean left - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:12 am:

    And don’t forget Lisa will be on the ticket which is another incentive for the Speaker to put his machine into motion.


  18. - phocion - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:13 am:

    John Galt is spot on. Any Republican who runs will be termed a “tea partier.” Any Republican who runs will be targeted by Terry Cosgrove as “anti-woman.” Any Republican with a Hispanic constituency will be called racist by Sandoval. Moderate Republicans like Saviano and Mathias were crushed while hard right Republicans were given cushy safe districts. So, yes, it is the mapping process that is polarizing politically and racially.

    It is also a Chicago media and blogosphere that decries one-party rule but refuses to call out race-baiting, gender baiting demagogues who lie and bully to whip people into a frenzy to crush any opposition to the Democratic Party.


  19. - OneMan - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:16 am:

    Begs a question…

    If you had a Judy like perspective on Abortion, would an ad with you looking right at the camera saying you are fine with a woman’s right to chose but favor things like notification help with suburban women? Is this a really an all or nothing proposition?


  20. - Ahoy! - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:17 am:

    Very good points and a great post. While Dillard probably would have outperformed Brady (from the suburbs and would have probably run a better campaign) enough to beat Quinn. The Republican nominee will probably not be facing Pat Quinn and will likely have a stronger opponent. While Dillard is probably good enough to beat Pat Quinn, is he good enough to beat a stronger Democratic challenger?


  21. - Ahoy! - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:18 am:

    also should have noted that the trade unions would not have been so heavy on Quinn if Dillard was the nominee in 2010.


  22. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:20 am:

    ===…Madigan will make sure there is a good Democrat turnout.His GOTV and groung game can’t be matched by the Repub’s.===

    That is today … and the last elections.

    It is a new day. You want to try to make a difference in the Precincts, in the demographics, in the solid recruiting.

    Today, you are right.

    Do you want to be right … for tomorrow?


  23. - Carl Nyberg - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:21 am:

    Voters aren’t giving much credit for Republicans being “moderate” if the only “moderate” votes cast are irrelevant ones.

    Dold and Biggert were there for the GOP 100% of the time on the close votes.

    You can’t name one GOP priority item that failed because Dold or Biggert wouldn’t support it.


  24. - wordslinger - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:27 am:

    Who knows what positions will be changed in coming months?

    We’re already seeing “evolution” on long-held positions from some on the far right. Or maybe it’s Intelligent Design.


  25. - Madison - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:30 am:

    A primary bid for anybody today in the GOP is predicated on the players.. And how they split the vote in a large primary. Were I Dillard, I would ascertain who the players are, how to split them ideologically, and divvy up the remainder of the spoils, then line up shills if possible. This has many threads, the abortion people will be out, as will the pension haters and the money grabbers. Whomever navigates this minefield successfully can win 100 counties and still. Face Armageddon in November.


  26. - soccermom - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:37 am:

    Haverford — Thanks for the reminder of Dillard’s dismissive comments about Michele Saddler. Here’s (part of) her bio:

    Michelle served as Director of Investments for the State of Illinois, and she later managed one of the nation’s top performing investment pools for nearly 200 Illinois municipalities.

    She served as Co-Chair of Protestants for the Common Good, an Illinois social justice organization. She served for more than five years as President of the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, and she led Illinois’ largest international adoption agency, Lifelink, in Bensenville, Illinois.

    Michelle earned her undergraduate degree from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and her Master’s in Management Degree from Northwestern’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management.

    Yeah, she just got that job because she’s an African-American woman. Nice, Kirk. Really nice.


  27. - Eilean left - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:38 am:

    OW
    You are funny,but don’t forget that MJM is a creature of habit.He eats that apple every day including today, the last election,all the way back to 1996.


  28. - mokenavince - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:44 am:

    This pro-life or else is a tough sell, most women
    want to control thier private parts.

    The 9 hard righters on this subject, lost their
    elections. Ryan lost as VEEP but managed to keep his seat. He was the exception to the rule.Dillard is a fine chap but if he goes down that route,he gone.


  29. - wordslinger - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:45 am:

    –It is also a Chicago media and blogosphere that decries one-party rule but refuses to call out race-baiting, gender baiting demagogues who lie and bully to whip people into a frenzy to crush any opposition to the Democratic Party.–

    Another victim heard from.

    Yeah, I recall Kass and the Tribbies whipping people into a frenzy to crush opposition to the Dem Party.

    I don’t think anyone in a competitive race lacked the resources to get their message out (or to go negative on their opponent).

    Folks weighed, judged, voted. Then the votes were counted.


  30. - Crank Houston - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:47 am:

    Judy Topinka was moderate on all the social issues and got slaugthered in the suburbs. Let’s stop confusing cause and effect.


  31. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:48 am:

    - Eilean Left -

    ===You are funny===

    I don’t know how to take that reading your past few posts? so …

    You mean, let me understand this cause, ya know maybe it’s me, I’m a little messed up maybe after Tuesday and all that happened, but I’m funny how, I mean funny like I’m a clown, I amuse you? I make you laugh, I’m here to amuse you with my political thoughts? What do you mean funny, funny how? How am I funny?

    Now I don’t know what you mean, you said it. How do I know? You said I’m funny. How am I funny, what is so funny about my politcal thoughts and musings today? Tell me, tell me what’s funny!

    So, if you could help, I would appreciate it.

    I respect MJM on many levels, don’t beleive me, hit that “Goggle Key” and I will try to not forget about the creature of habit.


  32. - Sunshine - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:50 am:

    Republicans will do their own damage in the primaries. The Dems simply have to sit back and watch.

    Independents will continue to get stronger and stronger and until the GOP gets substantial new young blood in their ranks and new ideas regarding the new realities in todays voters they will be a long time looking at a Democrat majority….and Governor.

    It will take years to rebuild and repair the damage they have done to themselves.

    Dylan was right “The Times They Are A-Changin.” Just not for the Republicans.


  33. - Elmo - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:56 am:

    All Republicans in Illinois are extremists, by definition.

    Illinois voters have rejected this extremism time and time again (thank god for last Tuesday!)


  34. - Peggy So-IL - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:58 am:

    You folks up north work it all out. It’s all academic to us.


  35. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 11:59 am:

    - Elmo -

    Very insightful and not at all a blanket statement or a bumper sticker, without thought, fact, or example.

    Thanks for adding!


  36. - reformer - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:01 pm:

    Dillard signed the notorious Norquist anti-tax pledge, which lasts as long as his career and which forbids any hikes in fees or taxes. “There are no exceptions to the pledge,” states the ATR website. http://s3.amazonaws.com/atrfiles/files/files/State%20Taxpayer%20Protection%20Pledge%20List_CURRENT_2012(8).pdf

    The good Senator violated his pledge twice in 2012 alone, by voting for a new 5% tax on satellite TV and by voting for a new “pole tax” on strip clubs. In years past he voted for the RTA sales tax hike among other things.

    So is he a hardliner on taxes, as his Taxpayer Protecton Pledge suggests, or is he amenable to higher taxes, as his voting record demonstrates? And what does violating his pledge say about him?


  37. - too obvious - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:03 pm:

    All I know is Kirk Dillard raised my electric bill.

    yeah right, let me rush out and help him. I’m a chump. Not.


  38. - Irish - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:06 pm:

    The issues of the day appear to be leaving the GOP behind. Edgar, Thompson and Ryan did not embrace the core values of the Republican right wing and did not demonstrate the hard core opposition to gay rights, abortion, and gun control. They were successful in their bids for Governor.

    But in retrospect the populace as a whole were not in the place they are today in regards to gay rights, so that was probably not as big an issue.

    Gun control, while it has been a perennial issue, has come to the forefront more since the days of the above three Governors due to the many mass shootings that have occurred in the last few years. People are fearful of the randomness of these incidents and the only thing that is being pushed to solve the problem is gun control. Eventhough we know that won’t prevent them from happening no one else has offered alternatives.

    I believe the GOP needs to decide whether they will take the pulse of society, bend a little, and survive. Or maintain their hardline in an attempt to bring society back to their values, and possibly become extinct. They have become the party of “No” in Illinois. They are against most of the Democrats agenda but don’t offer viable, specific, alternatives.

    As with all issues, the pendulum swings from one side to the other. Probably driven more by incidents and issues of the day than political positions of a group or individual. The GOP needs to decide whether they are going to sit and wait for it to come back or are they going to adapt, and when it swings back make what changes they can make at that time. If they do not have people in the right places when it comes back they miss their ooportunity.


  39. - reformer - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:06 pm:

    Given his track record on taxes, if Dillard takes a new pledge before the 2014 election, will voters trust him? I recall his mentor Jim Thompson pledging not to raise taxes before two elections, only to discard them soon thereafter.

    In 1997, Edgar proposed an increase in the income tax to better fund education, even though he had excoriated Netsch in 1994 for the same proposal.


  40. - boat captain - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:08 pm:

    I agree with the comments that the republicans have to change with the times. The mess with Todd Akin has linked the repubs with that mindset in a lot of the peoples minds anyway and that has hurt them a lot. The special interest groups seem to rule the day and it ends up with nothing good for anybody. The politicians have to get back to what is good for the state and the feds what is good for the country instead what is good for them. I understand the special interest groups that have their ideas and I don’t discount them but in the end we all have to get along, and if we would it would make it better for everyone. Pat Quinn was good at sitting on the sidelines and barking to popular issues but now that he is in the big seat he is not a leader, he never was, and his way of governing is not working. I have little hope of him changing because that is the only way he has ever done it.


  41. - reformer - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:10 pm:

    “I look forward to having Lisa Madigan as attorney general when I’m the governor.”
    – Kirk Dillard, 7-8-09, throwing Joe Birkett under the bus


  42. - reformer - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:14 pm:

    Here’s a quote from Steve Neal’s column, Sun-Times, March 21, 1994:

    “State Sen. Kirk Dillard (R-Hinsdale), Edgar’s former chief of staff, has said that he could support an increase in the income tax for education if it’s linked to property-tax relief.”


  43. - wordslinger - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:15 pm:

    –Judy Topinka was moderate on all the social issues and got slaugthered in the suburbs. Let’s stop confusing cause and effect.–

    JBT in 2006, general, for the record:

    Cook (including city): -500,000

    DuPage: + 31,000

    Kane: +6,000

    Lake: -6,000

    McHenry: + 9,000

    Will: -7,000

    Things to keep in mind:

    –The Greens ran relatively strong in the suburbs.

    –Blago swamped JBT on the air, early and often, with dirty campaign money, outspending her $16.7 million to $7 million.


  44. - Yes, but... - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:21 pm:

    You’d think at some point the voters are going to get beyond this stuff that frankly isn’t particularly relevant given supreme court decisions - ie gun control, abortion - as the state sinks into insolvency, they might actually vote on important issues instead. Maybe i’m just a dreamer.


  45. - Cincinnatus - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:22 pm:

    The bottom line on Dillard is this:

    Nobody has a better record as a Republican legislator of passing major legislation in a Democrat controlled General Assembly, or actually controlled spending in the Madigan-led House than when Dillard was Edgar’s Chief of Staff.

    Dillard gets things done.

    When he was the DuPage County Republican Chairman, there were 32k more voters taking Republican primary ballots than when he took over as Chairman. During his tenure, the Republican’s never lost a Township or County election.

    As DuPage Chairman, he recruited more women and minorities to elected office, and he had a hispanic and asian outreach program and working with Genn Hdas, he crafted a “party switcher” program which lured back Reagan Democrats to the GOP.

    On Tuesday, he led the ticket in DuPage County (sometimes up to 1/5th of the state-wide Republican vote in the State), even outpacing popular Peter Roskam by 7% and remarkably, Dillard received 75% of the vote in the Cook County portion of his district, which is crucial if the Republicans want to sniff the Governors Mansion again.

    AND, Dillard proved in 2010 that he is not a regional candidate, and ran well in all portions of the State. Dillard has an incredible political partner in his wife and adorable young children who portray a young image for the Senator.


  46. - phocion - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:25 pm:

    Er, Wordslinger, I’m hardly a victim. I just get tired of hearing people wonder why there aren’t more moderate Republicans. Either people support moderate Republicans, or they don’t. It’s clear from this round that between a choice of a Democrat and a moderate Republican, the Democrats won. The same ones who complain about it, however, refuse to call out the antics of a Cosgrove or Sandoval. I don’t know what the solution is, but it’s clear that the mapping was intended to get rid of moderate Republicans while preserving hard right wingers. Which in turn will continue to turn off soft Democrats from ever considering a moderate Republican because they will be lumped in with the tea partiers. Brilliant politics. Bad for the state.


  47. - wordslinger - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:28 pm:

    –AND, Dillard proved in 2010 that he is not a regional candidate, and ran well in all portions of the State.–

    He proved he could get 20.4% — a little less than the Brady juggernaut, a little more than the McKenna irresistible force.


  48. - Give Me A Break - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:28 pm:

    Cincy: That is a serious Man Crush you got going on.


  49. - Irish - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:30 pm:

    One thing that would help our state immensely in the fiscal crisis we are in is for MSM to be honest and non-partisan and to do in depth coverage of issues instead of sensationalizing short, out of context sound bites given to them by spin doctors.

    Example. Everyone feared Brady being elected governor because of his 10% across the board cuts. Last fiscal year Quinn targeted 9.4% cuts per agency in that fiscal year alone. IDNR took a 13.75% cut in just FY12. Did anyone see the MSM pick up on that? Has anyone seen a study or a chart that shows Agency cuts by Fiscal Year in the last two years of Quinn’s administration? I am betting that other than CMS who enjoyed a 2.89% INCREASE last FY most agencies’ cuts will exceed the 10% proposal by Brady by the end of FY 13. And that is in just three years of Quinn’s four year term.

    I have not seen anything by the ILGOP calling attention to this. It could be that by calling attention to the cuts already made they will hurt their call for the income tax to be repealed and more cuts made.


  50. - Cook County Commoner - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:32 pm:

    All Republicans running in the off-year race, or at least one that draws money, will be met with ads featuring Todd Akin and Richard Murdock and their delusional insights into female biology and God’s will. I don’t think these troglodytes got the credit they deserved for the Democratic wins.


  51. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:37 pm:

    - wordslinger -

    ILGOP needs to do the following:

    Find more GOP voters in Cook, as simple as 4 more KNOWN votes per precinct in Chicago and Cook, given that “known” GOP voters and NOT voting, literally VOTING at a 100% turnout. (2034 Pcts in the City, 1673 Suburban Cook), that gets you 14,800 … Brady lost by just over 19,400, you now need to find 4,600 votes … in the entire state.

    4 votes …4 voters … 2 houses of a couple that has a recorded GOP history and they didn’t vote … at all. Remember, not AGAINST Brady’s conservate’s views, they didn’t vote.

    4 votes, and then the collars and the resto fo the state should be ably to find the 5,000 to easy get over.

    If you have a strong GOTV and Field Operation.

    - wordslinger -, I am just yelling in the wind.


  52. - wordslinger - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:38 pm:

    CCC, don’t forget Rep. Walsh’s lession on life-saving advances in medical technology.


  53. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:41 pm:

    ===AND, Dillard proved in 2010 that he is not a regional candidate,===

    193 votes … not a good all over the state arguement, because a DuPage, real, field organization would have found those votes …

    They would have … it’s true.


  54. - Rich Miller - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:51 pm:

    ===they might actually vote on important issues instead===

    That’s where you go so wrong in your thinking. Dismissing things like abortion as unimportant is exactly what gets your party into so much trouble at the ballot box.

    Learn, please.


  55. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:53 pm:

    === ===they might actually vote on important issues instead===

    That’s where you go so wrong in your thinking. Dismissing things like abortion as an issue as unimportant is exactly what gets your party into so much trouble at the ballot box.

    Learn, please.===

    We get so close to getting it correct, … then the bottom drops out from us becasue we just dismiss all the wrong things, and focus on all the wrong things to alienate women, Latinos, and Moderates …

    Other than that …


  56. - Small Town Liberal - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 12:59 pm:

    - Nobody has a better record as a Republican legislator of passing major legislation in a Democrat controlled General Assembly -

    Cincy, I truly don’t have a beef with Dillard, but can you point me to all of the major legislation he’s gotten passed?

    He’s been a legislator for 18 years, and just a quick look at the interwebs doesn’t show a huge list of accomplishments as far as legislation goes.


  57. - haverford - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 1:03 pm:

    ===they might actually vote on important issues instead===

    What’s hilarious to me is that Republicans are the ones that have made abortion an election issue again.

    In 2000, there was some study (that I’m not going to look for) that only 20% of young women (18-26 or so) thought abortion/reproductive rights were an important issue.

    But the push to chip away at a long-settled issue over the past decade has made it something voters (women and men) care about again, and it turns them out to the polls.

    So, enjoy! You push people, they get mad. And vote. Cuts both ways.


  58. - Jimmy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 1:04 pm:

    The guy needs to win his Party’s Primary. Being a moderate won’t work in 2014 - especially with the tea party folks who believe that Romney was too moderate to win back the White House.


  59. - haverford - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 1:06 pm:

    And soccermom, you’re welcome. Made me mad then, still makes me mad now. Just a jerky thing to say. I always felt like he knew better than that.


  60. - Old and In the Way - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 1:17 pm:

    I’ll say it again……I like Dillard but when it comes time to connect with the voters he doesn’t. He could have beat Brady but his downstate campaign was pathetic……upstate he will get flogged over the wedge issues of abortion and guns. He IS a good guy but the perception among many is that he will not stand up for anything……


  61. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 1:17 pm:

    - Eilean Left -

    Do you have an answer for me?

    And - soccermom -, where do I sned the “Golf Tom Golf” Golf shirts?


  62. - Yes, but... - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 1:43 pm:

    ======they might actually vote on important issues instead===

    That’s where you go so wrong in your thinking. Dismissing things like abortion as unimportant is exactly what gets your party into so much trouble at the ballot box.

    Learn, please. ===

    The point is that things will get so bad in this state that maybe, just maybe, people will pull their heads out and realize there is no reason to vote for or against somebody over an issue that the politician can’t do anything about…and then we can move forward constructively. Unfortunately, it will be too late to avoid a lot of pain at that point.


  63. - Rich Miller - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 1:46 pm:

    ===over an issue that the politician can’t do anything about===

    Then you’re woefully misinformed, man. Time to move along I think.


  64. - Kerfuffle - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 2:25 pm:

    This is all interesting but I’m not sure that Dillard can make it out of the primary let alone the general. I really think he’s a good guy and believe he would be a drastic improvement over what we have had in our last two governors.


  65. - Eilean left - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 2:45 pm:

    OW
    Your comment about it being a new day just struck me as funny thats all.It seems like I have heard that line beefore.Unfortunately for the GOP to change they would have to really try to convince the electorate they they are not lying. Most of these right wingnuts actually believe in what they are espousing on issues such as abortion,immigration,gays,guns and thier phoney family values issue.Just saying.


  66. - Cincinnatus - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 2:51 pm:

    Small Town Liberal

    See Dillard’s bio at kdillard.com. Some highlights where he is Chief Sponsor:

    New McCormick Place work rules
    Mandatory DNA testing of felons
    Lured Boing and NAVISTAR headquarters to Illinois
    Ban sex offenders from practicing medicine
    First ethics and campaign reform in 25 years
    Illinois Internet Portal to disclose state salaries and contracts
    Truth in sentencing
    Pledge of Allegiance back to high schools
    Parental notification
    “Safe to Learn” act
    Only major tort reform to pass GA (struck down by Democratic Supreme Court)
    “15-20-Life” the toughest anti-gun crime law in US
    Felony to discharge a firearm from a vehicle
    Amber Alert system
    Sex offender registry
    Railroad safety initiatives (cut RR crossing deaths in half)
    The original expansion of McCormick Place
    Outlawing date rape drugs

    Need I go on?


  67. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 2:59 pm:

    - Eilean Left -

    …ok …


  68. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, Nov 9, 12 @ 3:09 pm:

    AA didn’t toss in yesterday because I’ve known Kirk too long to be even reasonably objective.
    Having said that, I agree with Kerfluffle that he is “a good guy and believe he would be a drastic improvement over..our two previous governors.”
    Being a good guy and better than Rod/PQ is a pretty low bar, tho.


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