That red line peaking in 1994 brings back memories of the worst election night I’ve ever had. I was wrapping up the boiler room operation for my legislative race until about 11pm. We lost a close race for an open seat, then I turned on the TV to see results from other races around the country and the news was devastating.
Speaker Foley lost his seat. We lost the US House. The US Senate. The Illinois House/Senate. The Governor’s race was a blow out, Rostenkowski lost. It was a bloodbath across Illinois and across the country.
That was a wave election fueled in part by anti-Clinton sentiment and the effective Contract with America branding of Newt Gingrich. In Illinois, Edgar pummelled Netsch for her income tax hike (only to propose that very idea later in his administration).
The good news was that the sweep wiped out some Democrats that were past their prime and opened opportunities for new candidates to emerge. We created a deeper bench and Madigan worked tirelessly to recruit and support new candidates to overcome the Daniels map.
If the GOP thinks 2012 was bad for them, it was nothing compared to 1994 for us. We learned some important lessons in the aftermath of that year, as these numbers show. Will the GOP learn anything from 2012?
The Edgar spike in 1994 from the Bush vote in 1992 is remarkable, as is the subsequent crash of the Dole vote in 1996.
I’m starting to think Illinois voters were buying what Edgar was selling.
What should be most alarming to the Illinois GOP, however, is that since 1994, the GOP candidate for either governor or president has only broken the 50% mark once — that being George Ryan at 51% in 1998.
47, that’s some good stuff. And it brings up another point.
1994 national GOP wave vote in Illinois: 63.9%
2010 national GOP wave vote in Illinois: 45.9%
In these days of GOP reflection, I’d encourage them to determine who the voters are that comprise that 18-point difference, why they left and how to get them back.
- Republicans amaze me ! - Friday, Nov 16, 12 @ 12:48 pm:
The only thing more inept than national republicans are Illinois republicans. Even if Obama’s number are in the tank, they will nominate a right wing ideologue for governor. Madigan is smart enough to keep his constituency together and let the republicans ensure his keeping the middle with their dreams of the 1950’s …
Not gonna happen, Cassie. You refer to 1992-1994. The GA was operating under a GOP-drawn map. Pate had already gained control of the Senate after 1992. The national GOP wave of 1994 took care of the rest of the seat loss the House Dems had already experienced in 1992 under the new map. Netsch, Quinn, and Burris giving up their statewide seats to run for another office probably didn’t help. Not saying they would have prevailed in re-elect, but made the race to replace with GOP much easier. You’re comparing apples to oranges.
Word, I’d also suggest it was not simply what Edgar was selling, but that huge GOP wave in 1994 certainly didn’t hurt.
- Pot calling kettle - Friday, Nov 16, 12 @ 12:54 pm:
Illinois Democrats have always been willing to consider a Republican, but the Republican has to be a moderate the Dems think they can work with. Edgar and Ryan certainly fit that bill.
Suburbs— that’s the point. Kirk Dillard would be guv today… And will be, if nominated, in 2014 against Pat Quinn. But, as long as the ring wing picks your candidate in Illinois, the r party will be reduced to writing opinion blogs, not governing.
The republican party is dead because the people that support traditional republican values are already pushing up daisies or reviewing their preplanned funeral packages. Republicans will have to become democrats to win elections in Illinois. Make no mistake about it, the Illinois republican party is dead.
Too subtle, Rich. Needs “PAT QUINN! ->” drawn in big red letters pointing at 2010.
- Endangered Moderate Species - Friday, Nov 16, 12 @ 2:48 pm:
–The republican party is dead because the people that support traditional republican values are already pushing up daisies or reviewing their preplanned funeral packages.–
Your thinking is what is wrong with the current GOP thinking. Yesterday’s ILGOP leaders were fiscal conservatives but were moderates on social issues. George Ryan ran a campaign to the left of Glenn Poshard. Politics is about winning elections and having influence in the debate. As long as the current GOP continues to hold their candidates to the litmus test right wing views, they will continue down the path they are currently walking on.