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Rep. Andersson tries a comeback

Friday, Jun 22, 2018

* I told subscribers about this before I left for vacation. Rep. Steve Andersson (R-Geneva) voted for the budget and tax hike and the veto overrides last year. He decided to retire from the House, but his district’s Senate seat became available when GOP Sen. Karen McConnaughay decided not to run again. McConnaughay’s retirement could very well put this district into play, particularly if the county party chairs appoint someone far to the right. The Kane County party chairman has the weighted vote to make the appointment on his own. Subscribers know more. From a press release…

Since announcing my intention to forego running for re-election after solving the 2015-2017 budget crisis, I have been overwhelmed by bipartisan support and the call for me to run again in another capacity.

After much consideration about how I can best serve the people in the great State of Illinois, I have put my name into consideration with the Kane County Republican organization for retiring Senator Karen McConnaughay’s position on the ballot for the 33rd Senate seat, because I believe that my voice represents a view that is being increasingly silenced in the Republican Party.

It was my intention not to overly publicize my application, because the appointment is decided on by two Republican party county chairs (McHenry and Kane) and not by a public participation process. Then, on Wednesday of this week, Steve Schmidt a longtime Republican Strategist (serving President George W. Bush, Senator John McCain and many others) announced via twitter that he was joining an increasingly long list of former Republicans and was leaving the Republican Party. Schmidt called out our party as “corrupt, indecent and immoral.” After reading that, I realized I could not stand and be silent.

I believe that departures, like Mr. Schmidt, George Will, and many others signal a fatal flaw that will lead to the destruction of the Republican Party. While some may think that the Republican Party is strong (controlling 67 of 99 state legislative chambers, 33 of 50 governorships, Congress and the Whitehouse), we have abandoned the majority and the middle of the political spectrum, in favor of focusing only on the angry shouts of the far-right base. This needs to stop. Now.

Our party can only survive with a return to the aspirational goals that until recently defined the Republican Party. We have always believed in fiscal conservatism and a more moderate social position that is reflective of the views of most Americans. This is a return to our Republican roots. We are a party of the big tent that welcomes instead of excludes, and reflects the values of giants like Lincoln, Reagan and Rockefeller. We must stop being the party of “no” and offer real solutions that reflect our Republican values to the complex problems we face.

This means rebuilding a party that reflects the social values of the 21st century, such as all people have rights - women, LGTBQ, the mentally ill, the poor, and the immigrant. Our party needs to recognize and embrace the fact of global climate change, science, and evolution. We need to embrace the views of the religious (in all varieties) but also recognize the non-religious. We must be engaged with the rest of our world as a partner and not as isolationists who think only we have the correct answer. We must encourage and support innovation and growth in business. We must control spending and find ways to improve how we spend our tax dollars. However, we also must acknowledge that government has and does bring value to our world. It’s not about big government or small government, it’s about right sized government. Government needs to exist to do the things that individuals and small groups can’t.

One of the things government can do well is addressing and rebalancing historical social wrongs. Schools need to educate against bias (explicit and implicit) and educate our children on all of our various community histories such as those of minorities and LGBTQ. As President Jefferson famously (and somewhat ironically given his status as slaveholder) said, we dream to build an “aristocracy of achievement by a democracy of opportunity.” This sentiment applies today to all of us. Without social change, there is no democracy of opportunity. We need to work to build that opportunity. You can’t pull yourself up by your own bootstraps when you don’t have boots. Poverty and crime filled communities simply do not have the same opportunities to achieve that wealthy communities do. Effective government programs can make that happen and are a necessary party to real change.

I am seeking this appointment to help turn my party away from becoming the “corrupt, indecent and immoral” party that Mr. Schmidt claims we have become. That is not who we are, but if we keep mindlessly following demagogues who live the Machiavellian motto of “the ends justify the means” without adhering to real principles, that is who we will be. In the end, I cannot sit silently by and allow that to happen.

I am proud to be a moderate Republican. I offer my services to the people of the 33rd Senate District of Illinois. Thank you.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

29 Comments
  1. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 12:50 pm:

    If I can help, Rep. Andersson, you let me know.

    We need more like you to stick around.


  2. - Suburbanon - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 12:54 pm:

    I second that.


  3. - Fav Human - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 12:54 pm:

    “need more like you”.

    Because the Yinglings of the legislature need you to help them avoid the tough votes.

    Because the Senate needs a patsy or two for Chicago.

    Because Illinois needs more Chicago control.


  4. - Roman - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:00 pm:

    That’s a winning message in a center-right suburban district during a midterm that it not shaping up well for the GOP. Not sure if it’s a winning message for an audience of two county chairs who have to be careful not to upset their conservative base.


  5. - NIU Grad - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:00 pm:

    “Because Illinois needs more Chicago control.”

    The more far-right candidates the Proft wing puts forward means more Democrats winning elections…

    Circular firing squad indeed.


  6. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:00 pm:

    ===Because the Yinglings of the legislature need you to help them avoid the tough votes.===

    Voting to save Illinois from Rauner was the vote. If you’re more concerned about how roll calls are structured… Andersson lost his leadership slot and was made the poster child by Raunerites… as Andersson and 15 others (including Sen. Righter) knew the damage Bruce Rauner was inflicting on Illinois had to end.

    ===Because the Senate needs a patsy or two for Chicago.===

    This says more about you and your mouth breathing then Rep. Andersson.

    ===Because Illinois needs more Chicago control.===

    “I’m frustrated to but taking steps to reform Illinois is important than a short term budget stalemate” - Raunerites controlling the destruction of Illinois.


  7. - Uncle Ernie - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:00 pm:

    Rep. Anderson, you have a real grasp of the problem. The Republican party will die unless moderate Republicans stand up and embrace their historic values. They must cast off the Tea Partiers and Right wing hate groups. It may cost some the election in the early stages of reversal, but if the party is to survive, moderation must return. If the Republicans do so the Democrats will come back from the Left extremities. Our form of government cannot survive from the wings, we must work in balance from the middle listening to all sides and then working together to solve issues. Donald Trump is a symbol of the worst in America today, hatred, greed, and immorality. That is not the Republican Party or the Democratic Party and it must stop. Best wishes to you Rep. Anderson…


  8. - Doofman - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:17 pm:

    Interesting that he mentioned Schmidt but not the specific reason he finally left, or even mentioned immigration once in his list of issues/values he wants to preserve. Sure, it’s (mostly) a Fed issue, but still seems telling to me


  9. - Chris Widger - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:21 pm:

    Anderson is largely right, but the battle he describes just isn’t happening in Illinois. It would be encouraging for a Democrat to point at the history of the Illinois Democratic Party and make the same charges, but that’s not terribly likely. Parties are just people; the flaws with the national GOP and state Democratic Party are merely the flaws we all carry.


  10. - Republican Critter - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:23 pm:

    Wow. Andersson said what many of us Republicans are thinking. If the Repub party nominates a right wing candidate they can kiss that senate seat goodbye. Senate Dems and Pritzker will dump millions into that seat and win it. An Andersson run will lock that seat for the Repubs.


  11. - Chambananon - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:24 pm:

    @Doofman

    He literally stated “all people have rights — … and the immigrant.” He’s including immigration as one of the issues the GOP is on the wrong side of right now.


  12. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:28 pm:

    ===…but the battle he describes just isn’t happening in Illinois.===

    The battle in the ILGOP is three fold;

    Raunerites and the warped ideology of Raunerism.

    Moderate GOP members who know better than to fall for Raunerism, and believe in the Reagan Rule of 80%.

    The IPI/Proft/Ives “Slytherins”, who have a purist litmus test and a “if you don’t believe, you surrender to… “ whomever is the boogeyman that day… Dems, Rauner, moderates…

    The battle Rep. Andersson sees… its happening, happened, and has ended… until Raunerism is removed from the equation and then the battle for what’s left of the brand “ILGOP” will be fought.


  13. - 19th ward guy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:46 pm:

    FYI. Steve Schmidt gave the world Sarah Palin. Might want to find a better role model


  14. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 1:49 pm:

    ===Steve Schmidt gave the world Sarah Palin. Might want to find a better role model.===

    The choices are the Schmidts of the GOP or Trump.

    You’re with Trump?


  15. - Dome Gnome - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:08 pm:

    From Steve’s lips to God’s ears. Make it so.


  16. - Kelly B. - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:20 pm:

    Go get ‘em, Steve! Thank you for always putting the long-term good of your constituents and the State of Illinois ahead of petty party politics. That *is* casting a tough vote. What you have chosen to do is govern, not pander, and I couldn’t be prouder of you. Lots of difficult problems to solve, and the first step is bringing people together to discuss the issues and the vision, NOT continuing the nasty rhetoric.


  17. - Arthur Andersen - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:29 pm:

    John McCain, and only John McCain, gave us Palin. Anyone else was an adviser. He made the call.

    Andersson is spot on about the future of the GOP and I plan on supporting him.


  18. - Griffin - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:32 pm:

    Reading this, I see no difference between Steve Andersson (D) and Steve Andersson (R). Oh, he said “fiscal conservatism” somewhere amidst the standard Democratic talking points.

    This has nothing to do with being a Republican, let alone a conservative. This is pathetically blatant virtue signaling to his Democrat pals, and I will never be less stunned than if his next move is to formally join them.

    To Kane County — do not give this to him. If a Democrat ends up winning in November, at least it will be one honest enough to run as one.


  19. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:39 pm:

    ===Reading this, I see no difference between Steve Andersson (D) and Steve Andersson (R).===

    Ah… - Griffin -… a Slytherin…

    ===This is pathetically blatant virtue signaling to his Democrat pals, and I will never be less stunned than if his next move is to formally join them.

    To Kane County — do not give this to him. If a Democrat ends up winning in November, at least it will be one honest enough to run as one.===

    lol… the fear of the purity breaking…

    “If a Democrat ends up winning in November, at least it will be one honest enough to run as one.”

    This speaks more about your lacking then Rep. Andersson. Lemme guess, you’re for a big tent, as long as the purity remains.

    Pathetic.


  20. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:46 pm:

    ===I will never be less stunned than if his next move is to formally join them.===

    So… and I wanted this to stand alone…

    Your take is… if Rep. Andersson is the chosen GOPer, you feel, and wont be stunned, if, after being the floor leader for Leader Durkin, GOP bona fides, this is all a ruse to flip to become a Democrat once he (if he’s lucky enough, abd ets through November too) is squarely in the Illinois Senate?

    That’s your take?

    That’s the stance YOU want heard? You are even warning the Kane County GOP too?

    How ya feel about Raunerism and that uber-left, costal, limousine liberal social agenda? That the GOP you support… 80% of the time? lol

    You’re worried about Rep. Andersson… yeah, ok, go with that.


  21. - Norseman - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:48 pm:

    Run Rep. Anderson run. We need quality people in the Senate.


  22. - Waffle Fries - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 2:50 pm:

    Rep. Anderson all the way man.


  23. - Taxedoutwest - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 3:00 pm:

    Andersson hits my feelings on the head. I don’t care what a person does in his or her bedroom. It is none of my business what happens in a women’s clinic (I can’t figure women out as it is!:)) And, I am fiscally conservative as them come, which is why Steve Andersson is a hypocritical liar. My business’ tax bill last year was an additional $65K thanks to his “leadership”. He only wants to be a Trojan Horse and continue to vote with Liberals. Mr. Shepro places him on the ballot, this Kane County GOP member (and a lot of others I know) will never share a dime with the Kane Cty Republicans. NO, Steve, you are not welcome as our Senator. Go retire and come out of the closet as the liberal you are.


  24. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 3:06 pm:

    ===My business’ tax bill last year was an additional $65K thanks to his “leadership”. He only wants to be a Trojan Horse and continue to vote with Liberals.===

    How will you vite for Rauner?

    He signed a budget with the 32% tax increase… a tax increase needed to balance the budget.

    You voted for Jeanne Ives, I mean, your righteous indignation would only be justified if you voted for her and won’t suoport Rauner…


  25. - Anonymous - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 3:08 pm:

    Good riddance Steve. Don’t let the door hit you in the backside.

    He was one of the most disappointing Republicans for businesses when it came to tax policy, environmental issues, and others where he often sided with the Democrat wing.

    His narrative is all about the social side of which I have no qualms. My frustration with Steve is that he abandoned the Republican Party on economic issues.


  26. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 3:10 pm:

    ===My frustration with Steve is that he abandoned the Republican Party on economic issues.===

    … and yet, Bruce Rauner ran up debt, owed to social services, some even small business, to $10 billion, lowered our credit rating, and signed and validated the 32% tax increase.

    So, voting for Bruce Rauner? Voted for Jeanne Ives?


  27. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 3:20 pm:

    ==Because the Senate needs a patsy or two for Chicago.
    Because Illinois needs more Chicago control.==

    ==To Kane County — do not give this to him. If a Democrat ends up winning in November, at least it will be one honest enough to run as one.==

    ==He only wants to be a Trojan Horse and continue to vote with Liberals.==

    As someone who would much rather have Cullerton running the senate as opposed to Brady, let me say that these are all excellent comments that should be passed along to all R+ voters. Should should add “hates our Great President” for extra oomph.


  28. - Jibba - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 3:26 pm:

    Herein lies the problem. As a Dem, this is a guy I would support. But even in comments here, many Rs would not support these things. And if those other Rs get elected as part of a revitalized party, social issue restrictions become the first items passed, such as abortion limits and right to conscience. Climate change and fiscal responsibility get forgotten, even if Rep Anderssen is trying to lead the way. But shining a light to the middle is welcome any time. Thanks again, Rep. Anderssen.


  29. - Anonymous - Friday, Jun 22, 18 @ 4:18 pm:

    Andersson didn’t run for re-election to the House for a reason: He was going to lose a contested Republican primary. And probably by a large margin. He voted for a large tax increase, after all — and allowed several Dems to stay off of the vote. And moreover, Andersson was actively recruiting other R’s to vote for the tax increase. That was noticed by many. So his decision to retire was welcomed by many, including Republicans in his district.

    Bu thereafter Andersson decided to double-down and became a Dem of sorts, voting as if he were in Madigan’s caucus. Again, that did not go unnoticed. The fact that he thinks he can get “bipartisan” support for a partisan appointment speaks to his naivete as to the damage he did to his party back and his district. No, that’s no record to reward with an appointment to the Senate. HIs public letter will do him no could with the person largely responsible for the appointment.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Krupa roundup
* Rauner taking final swing at AFSCME
* Enyia's spokesperson resigns citing "several unknown and troubling factors"
* Question of the day: Golden Horseshoe Awards
* Where we're heading and where we've been
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY: Transitions
* *** UPDATED x2 *** Emanuel/Emmanuel
* You gotta be pretty gullible to believe a "Departing Taxpayer Fee" is actually a thing
* *** LIVE COVERAGE ***
* Yesterday's stories

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