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Perpetually blundering

Tuesday, May 29, 2007 - Posted by Rich Miller

Way to go, Republicans! There’s nothing quite like keeping the bipartisan “combine” story alive during an election year. From Lynn Sweet’s blog

Bob Kjellander, the sometimes controversal Illinois Republican, will be the vice chairman of the 2008 Republican National Convention, to be held in Minneapolis/Saint Paul.

So, I guess this means that Kj isn’t fading away any time soon?


  1. - Dieter - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 11:56 am:

    Kjellander is a pretty inconsequential figure. His power will wane, as his star is tied to Rove’s.

    Republican candidates in 2006 spent too much time talking about Bob Kjellander (which less than 1% of the electorate even knows who he is) than outlining why their platform would move Illinois forward.

    Ignore the problem and it will go away…

  2. - team america, world police - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 12:18 pm:

    I understand the state party did what it could to avoid this happening, but it was basically out of their hands.

  3. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 12:22 pm:

    Never heard of him.

  4. - Skeeter - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 12:28 pm:

    I’ve heard of him and agree that this is another instance of the Republicans damaging themselves.

    Like most people, I am not sure exactly what he is accused of doing, but I know that the accusations are out there. The substance of the allegations doesn’t really matter. What matters is the perception of sleaze.

    He sends a message to people who might consider voting for the reds: If you vote for these people, nothing will change.

    As long as people like him are around, people in Illinois will go with the devil that they know.

  5. - Chad - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 12:35 pm:

    Bob long ago refocused his time on national party activities, and has not focused on local party activities for a while. The Vice-Chair position is picked exclusivly by the national party, and is usually done in isolation of state party preferences. Bob will never be charged with any crime because he has a good understanding of how to toe the line where many others have not. He might engage in some activities that stress the bounds of PR — but what is new about that in Illinois GOP politics? For those of you who will rail and rave about this latest “injustice” by the GOP, I ask: How many candidates have you recruited? How many precincts have you walked or poll-watched? When did you last run for party or public office and risk the humiliation of complaint or defeat? I’m sick of hearing you bicker about a guy who paid his dues over a lifetime of volunteer activity. Grow up and do something useful, and stop using this guy as an excuse for sitting on your backside.

  6. - True Observer - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 12:39 pm:

    A comatose Democrat is nominated for Cook County Chairman.

    A Democratic Congressman (Lane Evans) is adjudged to be a diabled person (mentally incompetent) by a Judge and is renominated for Congress.

    A Democrat Governor with all sorts of potentially criminal involvements is nominated and re-elected.

    Kjellander is alleged to have done his lobbying work too well and made too much money because he worked with the Dems too.

    Now I see why the Republicans should worry.

  7. - GOP'er - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 12:56 pm:

    It’s actually only the Committee on Arrangements. But it’s still appalling.

  8. - Roger - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 12:57 pm:

    The only people who care about KJ are the rabid right, who need someone to blame for their failings..nevermind what they should really be doing is looking in the mirror.

  9. - Scoot - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 1:14 pm:

    Individual K?(sun-times) Won’t look good if he gets taken down before the 08′ convention.

  10. - GOP'er - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 1:20 pm:

    That’s funny Roger. So Blago can be beat-up over his investigations, but it’s only the “rabid right” who care about Individual K? Are Ron Gidwitz, Tom Cross and the Chicago Tribune part of the “rabid right”? All have called on Kjellander to go.

    Call Kjellander and get some new goofy talking points.

  11. - Bill Baar - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 1:20 pm:

    Dieter’s right, but it still hurts

  12. - steve schnorf - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 1:32 pm:

    I spend a lot of time around people who actually run for office, who actually donate to campaigns, who actually walk precincts, who actually are committemen and county chairman, and you know what, I never hear any of the saying, “Oh, if only Kjellander would get out of the way, we could once again win elections (only real exception from my personal contacts is Steve R, and it was just a ploy with him because he’s smart enough to know better).

    Fo some strange reason, this is a huge issue to a VERY small number of (mostly irrelevant) people. I can’t understand it, but I will note that many of them are people associated with a very narrow view of who is a Republican, and that usually includes them but not most of us.

    Those of you who believe that Alan Keyes would be a US Senator, and George Bush would have carried Illinois, and that JBT would be Governor if it wasn’t for Bob Kjellander–get a life!!

  13. - amy - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 1:43 pm:

    Kjellander…it has become a word of it’s own now,
    to kjellander, a kjellanderer…..we can come up
    with some spot on definitions. keep it up

  14. - HoosierDaddy - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 1:50 pm:

    No Steve, I don’t think Kj is the root of all of our problems as a party, but he does need to go. He is not the root, but he’s a symbol. Plus, it’s pretty hard for us in ‘10 to talk about cleaning up Illinois politics with an albatross like him up front.

    P.S. I’ve walked plenty of precincts and even managed a (successful) campaign or two.

  15. - Ha ha - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 2:31 pm:

    Maybe the Republicans can also give Jack Abramoff, Mark Foley, Duke Cunningham and George Ryan jobs at the Convention too.


  16. - JW - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 2:37 pm:

    I am not a KJ basher as some but I do find it interesting (questionable)why when Patrick Fitzgerald is already looking at you would you want to go and make yourself even a bigger fish for him to try and caught and fry.

  17. - Larry Mullholland - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 2:41 pm:

    Those who have a problem with KJ are the same ones who have problem with ANY person who is not a HARD right, anti-abortion conservative.

    KJ supported (s) moderating the party. He has supported candidates that might actually appeal to the mainstream. That is the reason people like Roeser and Jim Oberweicopter work against him. Keep up the good work Bob!

  18. - The Pug is on the Prowl - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 3:20 pm:

    Um…does it get us better hotel rooms?

  19. - Team Sleep - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 3:45 pm:

    I think the overall perception of the state party is bad enough that K-J shouldn’t make much of a difference. In a national scope, he shouldn’t make much of a difference, either, especially with all of the problems the Bush Administration and Karl Rove have caused. Do I wish he would step down as the national committeeman? Yes, but in all honestly there is little I can do to impact this.

  20. - Heads must roll - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 3:52 pm:

    There isn’t enough room in the federal prison system for the “drug king-pings” and all the corruption going on in our state.
    Wonder who’ll get a free pass?

  21. - For the Kiddies - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 4:03 pm:

    I’m glad to see that FTN is all over this story.

    If it weren’t for FTN’s round the clock efforts, it might have been worse. They claim they prevented KJ from being Treasurer of the ‘08 Convention–instead, he’s merely the vice-chairman. Thank you FTN, Jack, Doug, John …

    With successes like this, FTN can claim to be in a position to rebuild the ILGOP.

    We can only hope.

  22. - Political Ghosts - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 4:21 pm:

    Question authority before they question you!

  23. - Bill - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 4:43 pm:

    “Are Ron Gidwitz, Tom Cross and the Chicago Tribune part of the “rabid right”?


  24. - Roadkill - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 4:56 pm:

    It’s easy to explain, as the vice chairman he is apparently in charge of all of the vice.

  25. - Disgusted - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 5:51 pm:

    It doesn’t matter if you walk precincts, manage a campaign, etc. If you are a hard-working, tax-paying citizen, you have a right to demand that your representatives are above criticism and are honest. Unfortunately, money and ego are the most admired things in a candidate - honesty is rarely mentioned. You would think these men, and they are mostly men, would be embarrassed to have their dirty laundry out there for all to see.

    I hope the Feds are planning a new federal prison in Illinois, because we could fill it up easily, just from the political ranks. What a shame this state and its politicians have become.

  26. - Fun to watch - Tuesday, May 29, 07 @ 6:09 pm:

    What a bunch of hypocrites the Republicans are. Throw all the mud at the Clintons, Blagojevich, Obama or whoever, but when their Individual K is under attack they quickly become apologists for the biggest profiteer out there.

    It’s also funny how we’re told it’s no big deal that this Kjellander guy has these jobs. But yet he sure seems to consider them important. If it’s no big deal, why won’t he let one of the other millions of Republicans have the job. Is there really no Republican who could do the job who hasn’t been assigned a letter by Patrick Fitzgerald? Perhaps not.

    Score another huge Dem win in ‘08 baby! The Republicans are brain dead!

  27. - Anon - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 6:26 am:

    Personally, I would have thought that the GOP “powers that be” would have put Big Jim, George R, or Tony Soprano in charge of Vice.

  28. - Roger - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 9:00 am:

    GOP’er…Gidwitz & Company only called on KJ to step aside when they wanted the vote of the rabid right…they pandered to you guys, you don’t see that?

    Stop blaming everything on KJ…it’s your wing of the party that is driving people to the Democrats.

    As for talking points…let me know when you’re done using the ones posted by Fran.

  29. - Truthful James - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 9:07 am:

    Good old Bob Shill Lander, I understand that he roomed with Karl Rove in college, which explains a lot. Andy McKenna does not have the cojones to face the combine, which has strangled general growth in the Party. Andy is likely preparing for another run at office, perhaps governor. He needs national party money, given his abysmal record of fund raising in the State.

    Steve — the candidates you list never had a chance, with or without the Shill-lander. Don’t put opposition to him in that box.

    The Party needs reorganization from the bottom up. It won’t get it as long as there as long as the precincts know that they have truly no influence. The Dems solved this poroblem long ago and grew a new crop of prospective leaders..

  30. - GOP'er - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 9:36 am:

    If Illinois Republicans had any sense, they would withhold all contributions to the RNC. This is an insult to all the Republicans here who for years have been trying to make the Illinois GOP something other than a national laughingstock.

  31. - Roger - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 11:15 am:

    What has the far right been doing exactly? Bringing in Alan Keyes didn’t help matters there GOP’er.

    KJ’s position doesn’t mean a thing to the average voter…and he’s not why this state is blue…I understand those like GOP’er have to have somone to blame, because God forbid their views have nothing to do with this state going Democrat every election cycle.

    Maybe if the rabid right wasn’t telling people what to do with their bodies, or what they can or cannot do in their own homes…and stopped enabling a president who has the blood of 3400 US troops on his hands, then maybe they’d get somewhere.

  32. - Huh? - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 12:56 pm:

    Roger, when you talk about bringing in Alan Keyes, do you mean the State Party on which Kjellander sits as a senior official? No “conservative” or any other regular Republican had any say at all in bringing in Keyes. Only Kjellander’s State Party had any say. And only Kjellander’s crew had the job of doing the due diligence and screening.

    And wasn’t Kjellander one of the original Bush Pioneers, those high dollar fundraisers? And isn’t Bush one of those anti-abortion, pro-war people you hate?

    And is Patrick Fitzgerald part of the “far right”? What does Kjellander’s being named Individual K have to do with ideology anyway?

    Keep pointing your dirty finger Roger. You and your darling Individual K have 4 pointing back at you.

  33. - Roger - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 1:12 pm:


    Trying to rewrite history are we?

    Dave Syverson, Steve Rauschberger and Dan Proft brought in Alan Keyes…so perhaps you should get your facts right before you try posting here.

    But then again, why let the truth get in the way, huh?

  34. - Huh? - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 3:12 pm:

    Listen clueless, Rauschenberger and Proft aren’t members of the state gop’s central committee, and had no vote. Of the 3 you listed, only Syverson had any vote.

    Any Republican could lobby for anyone they wanted. But the final vote and decision rested with only the members of the central committee. Anyone could lobby. But only the central committee (chaired by Topinka at the time) had the responsibility to weigh all the candidates and to do the background screening.

    Instead of spreading disinformation on things you obviously know nothing about, look at Illinois law. There’s nothing about Rauschenberger or Proft. The law puts the responsibility on the central committee alone to fill statewide vacancies.

    What a surprise that someone like you would be in Individual K’s corner.

  35. - Roger - Wednesday, May 30, 07 @ 7:30 pm:

    You know what’s funny…I’m clearly not a Republican, but you assume I’m in his corner…I just think it’s funny mopes like you blame a man for the GOP’s short comings in this state when NO ONE outside of politics knows who he is. I just get sick of hearing you and your ilk cry like babies because you can’t win elections….

    Try taking a look in the mirror, and at your issues…THAT is why your party doesn’t win in Illinois, it’s not because of KJ.

    As for disinformation, clever, especially coming from you given you still can’t accept the fact that the rabid right brought in Keyes and made a joke of your party.

    God, people like you are so dumb, no wonder we’re blue…Go Barack!!!!

  36. - Sal - Thursday, May 31, 07 @ 9:11 am:

    Hey Roger, Individual K called. He wants his bootlicker back.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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