Eric Krol writes about some unfamiliar but well-heeled names being bandied about for US Senate against Dick Durbin.
A respected Chicago Board of Trade executive from Winnetka and a Long Grove businessman whose family owns the Ben Franklin variety store franchise are among those talking to Illinois Republican leaders about running against Democratic U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin next year.
Both Kevin J.P. O’Hara, the chief administrative officer at the Chicago futures exchange, and Steve Greenberg, the wholesale executive, would seem to have the ability to write a check to cover some or all of the costs of a campaign.
State GOP leaders consider that important in finding an opponent for Durbin, given the political dynamics in play. Whoever runs against Durbin already is getting a late start, a situation made worse by a Democratic plan to move up Illinois’ 2008 primary to Feb. 5 - six weeks earlier than normal.
The practical effect on the political machinery is that candidates could need to file for office as early as mid-October. That means campaign season could start July 4 instead of the traditional Labor Day kickoff. And given federal campaign fundraising limits, candidates already should have started the money sweepstakes.
To that end, Illinois Republican Party Chairman Andy McKenna Jr. said he’s talked to individuals who could self-fund about challenging Durbin, who’s No. 2 in Senate Democratic leadership.
The others, including Oberweis, Brady, etc. are also included. But what do you think about this unknown self-funder idea?