* Subscribers have known about this for a few days…
Illinois House Republicans are gathering to elect a new leader on Thursday following a summer of internal squabbling while the current caucus chief debated his political future.
The 1 p.m. meeting at Springfield’s Statehouse Inn follows House Republican Leader Tom Cross’ announcement last week that he would be stepping down from his post to run for treasurer. […]
According to House caucus rules, a majority of Republican members’ votes — 24 — are needed to elect a new leader.
* Rep. Raymond Poe (R-Springfield) was not pleased with the meeting’s timing and sent a letter to his colleagues blasting Rep. Jim Durkin. From the SJ-R…
“It sounds like even though some of my people can’t be there, they are going to press ahead with their meeting on Thursday,” Poe said Tuesday. “I don’t’ think they worried about if my people could be there or not, they’d just like to have it.”
In a letter to House Republicans, Poe said the hasty election threatens a rift in the party. He said it was his understanding that Sept. 12 was selected by Cross because a majority of House Republicans said that was the most convenient time to meet. He also said changing the meeting date on such short notice will require the Republicans to suspend their internal rules for conducting caucus meetings if they want to vote on a new leader Thursday.
“I would suggest we not start our new caucus with this type of underhanded activity,” Poe said in his letter. “One Michael Madigan is enough.”
* And Poe isn’t giving up…
“I have the assurance from the majority of our caucus that they will vote for me to be the next leader,” Durkin wrote. “And it has been made very clear that our caucus wants to get this vote behind us as soon as possible.”
A new leader needs 24 votes to get elected. Poe said he has 24 votes between solid commitments and “leaners.” There are 47 House Republicans.
“I’m not convinced he’ll have enough people there to win, either,” Poe said. “I don’t know what we do then.”
Subscribers have the full letters from both men.
…Adding… I forgot to mention that Illinois Family Action has weighed in against Durkin…
Making him the minority leader for the Illinois House Republicans would undoubtedly elevate Representatives Ron Sandack (R-Westmont) and Ed Sullivan (R-Libertyville) into leadership positions. This is completely unacceptable. Both of these lawmakers are lobbying for him for this position. Both of these lawmakers are co-sponsors of SB 10 [gay marriage].
Another enormous blot on Durkin’s record is that more than anyone else, he was responsible for the elevation of Pat Brady to the post of Illinois Republican National Committeeman and then Illinois Republican Party Chairman. When Brady came out publicly and strongly for homosexual “marriage” earlier this year, he did more damage to the Illinois GOP than anyone since former Governor George Ryan. Jim Durkin’s cozy relationships with feckless politicians like Pat Brady and State Representatives Sandack and Sullivan have apparently caused him to reconsider his defense of true marriage.
A bit much, if you ask me.