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Vote set for tomorrow on House GOP Leader

Wednesday, Aug 28, 2013 - Posted by Rich Miller

* 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.

Stay tuned.

…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.


  1. - Empty Chair - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:08 am:

    Chaos. Woohoo!

  2. - x ace - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:11 am:

    “Election Manipulation , A Longstanding Illinois Tradition”

  3. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:11 am:

    “Starting a revolution is easy. Stopping one is hard.”

  4. - Knome Sane - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:14 am:

    =”One Michael Madigan is enough”.=

    Yes, because we would never want to replicate what Michael Madigan has accomplished! LOL!

  5. - hisgirlfriday - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:21 am:

    Why hold the caucus in Springfield? If they held it in the commercial club they could hold a combo caucus-fundraiser and collect their money from Ty in exchange for their votes on the spot.

  6. - Nosmo King - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:27 am:

    If Rep. Poe had the necessary 24, he would be clamoring to schedule a vote quickly too.

    House GOP members seem to have a hard time admitting defeat, which is ironic, given that they don’t win often.

  7. - Stones - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:28 am:

    It’s still like watching a slow train wreck.

  8. - Fan - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:29 am:

    Poe is a very nice guy, very likable. But he is not who the H GOP needs now. Durkin will do a very good job of assessing the needs and raising money. He will get them out of the super minority.

  9. - Just Me - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:50 am:

    The caucus can do whatever it wants, but in order for there to be a new Minority Leader I do believe that technically there has to be a vote for the Speaker by the full chamber, and whoever comes in 2nd for Speaker is the Leader (as long as he/she is of a different political party). As such, by my interpretation today’s caucus vote is nothing more than a really important, but not legally-binding, poll.

  10. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 10:57 am:

    I hear the Statehouse Inn has special a Auto-da-Fe Suite rate tomorrow.

    For a special low price, single-issue zealots get a hospitality suite/torture chamber to entertain GOP caucus members and gauge their purity. Cat-O-Nine tails and Rack included.

    Please note that the Statehouse Inn is a smoke-free environment. Burnings-at-the-stake are prohibited.

    Ty and Illinois Family Action are already booked.

  11. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:18 am:

    House Republicans desperately need a leader who will bring people together and will expand the party. Rep. Durkin is such a person. In contrast, Poe runs out of the party those who disagree with his narrow agenda.

  12. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:19 am:

    Given the conservative jihad against Durkin, I can see why Dwight Kay thinks he’s still in this thing. If Poe can’t get to 24, and the downstaters line up to keep Durkin from winning, Kay could emerge on top after a few ballots.

    They HGOPs are just crazy enough to let somebody like Kay lead them into oblivion.

  13. - Keyser Soze - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:22 am:

    Raymond Poe makes good fried chicken.

  14. - LincolnLounger - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:24 am:

    Thanks for the laugh, wordslinger. Sadly, you’re not far off. I hope the IFA crowd didn’t get a group rate. God knows they’ve never been able to count.

  15. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:24 am:

    What is it with these groups and gay marriage? They need to start their own “Anti-Gay Party” since they are so obsessed with the subject and demand adherence to their anti-gay views.

  16. - reformer - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:30 am:

    Not only is Durkin soft on marriage equality, but he’s no Brando Phelps on guns. Durkin voted for the one-handgun-a-month bill, HB 12, in 2009, and he voted against the Phelps concealed carry bill last year. Durkin is the only current member of the GOP caucus to have opposed concealed carry.

  17. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:40 am:

    ===They HGOPs are just crazy enough ===

    Not even close.

  18. - A guy... - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:45 am:

    A bit WAY too much from IFA.

  19. - Loop Lady - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:48 am:

    Durkin will prevail…he has the chops to raise money via his political and family networks and hopefully slate decent candidates for the GOP…BTW, Durkin is a suburban legislator in the Chicago region that is reeling from gun violence on daily basis and has every right to oppose concealed carry…

  20. - A guy... - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 11:51 am:

    If you’ve planned for a long time to make this move, you position yourself, daily, weekly, monthly to be the obvious and best choice. Durkin has been workin’ at this for a long time. Timing chooses the guy in the best position when the time comes. The time has come and Durkin is in the right place. There’s something in this for Poe if he handles things correctly. Kay needs to sit down and not embarrass himself…and hope everyone forgets his brochure i.e. burn whatever copies exist.

  21. - Been There - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 12:06 pm:

    ===you position yourself, daily, weekly, monthly===
    If this statement were about the House Dems you would have to add “yearly” or “for many years” to that for Lou Lang.

  22. - Bill White - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 12:09 pm:

    The timing of tomorrow’s caucus also pushes the Rutherford #LtGov luncheon off center stage.

    = = =

    === House Republicans desperately need a leader who will bring people together and will expand the party. ===

    Ty Fahner making threats against anyone who disagrees with him seems contrary to this point.

  23. - Cod - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 12:11 pm:

    Demoralized @ 11:24 am:
    You raise a good question. What would happen to the Republican party if they lost most of their base? No amount of big business pacs and campaign money would be able to gather the votes necessary to get elected.

  24. - walkinfool - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 12:29 pm:

    Waiting wouldn’t help Poe. The longer it takes, the tougher to get past his shortcomings.

  25. - Boog - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 1:01 pm:

    -Durkin is a suburban legislator in the Chicago region that is reeling from gun violence on daily basis and has every right to oppose concealed carry-

    One has nothing to do with the other, except that maybe CCW will actually decrease gun violence (whatever that is, people are violent, not guns).

  26. - Phenomynous - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 2:36 pm:

    “One Michael Madigan is enough.”

    The one thing the HGOP needs is someone like Madigan.

  27. - reformer - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 2:59 pm:

    Whatever the merits of Durkin’s positions on guns, he out of the mainstream of his caucus, as he is on other issues.

  28. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 3:07 pm:

    ==Whatever the merits of Durkin’s positions on guns, he out of the mainstream of his caucus, as he is on other issues. ==

    The death of the Republican Party is going to be the purity police. For a party that keeps saying they are diverse, statements like this one seem to indicate the exact opposite. What is it with these litmus tests??? Apparently if you have diverse thoughts you need not apply to be a Republican.

  29. - Loop Lady - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 3:44 pm:

    Boog: I guess you do not live in the Chicago metro area…

  30. - Michelle Flaherty - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 4:47 pm:

    What this clearly shows is that all the dysfunction of Democratic rule would end if the Republicans were in charge.

  31. - flea - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 6:18 pm:

    Poe is positioning for the second banana

  32. - Fed-up - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 7:28 pm:

    Why would Durkin give Poe anything, let alone the “second banana” spot. Poe brings nothing to the table as far as being an effective spokesman for the party or bringing moderates or others with diverse views into the party. Poe lives the litmus tests.

  33. - Visual Manager - Wednesday, Aug 28, 13 @ 9:25 pm:

    Poe by two….

  34. - Anonymous - Thursday, Aug 29, 13 @ 5:41 am:

    Durkin by unanimous vote.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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