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County commissioner says Rauner camp threatened him with a smear campaign

Wednesday, Aug 15, 2018

* The Southern

A Williamson County commissioner says the push for a gun control advisory question on November’s ballot has nothing to do with letting the voters speak and everything to do with heavy-handed Springfield politics.

Commissioner Ron Ellis said when the Williamson County Board first started talking in June about letting the voters decide if the board should oppose specific gun control bills that were being debated in Springfield, he was all for it. In fact, the three-person board voted unanimously to put the question on the ballot, they just had to finalize the language. […]

Ellis said that board meeting put the political machine in top gear, and the pressure was on him particularly. He said he got a call from Joe Hackler, the Southern Illinois director for Citizens for Rauner Inc., about his support of the measure.

“I was literally told that if I didn’t put this on the ballot that there would be repercussions,” Ellis said. He said he later heard from a local Republican official that if he wasn’t careful, it was possible there could be a smear campaign launched against him for standing up to Springfield, making his political life very difficult in the future.

“I was told later … that they would put press releases out against me, make me out to be anti gun, that I was NOT a true Republican and make sure that someone ran against me in the primary in two years,” Ellis said in a text message to The Southern on Monday.

The GOP didn’t exactly deny the claims of intimidation. Go read the whole thing.

As I told you before, I expect to see several of these local referendums in order to help gin up GOP turnout.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

23 Comments
  1. - factchecker - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:25 am:

    No doubt that Madigan is the cause of the culture of bullying within the GOP party.


  2. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:30 am:

    “Mighty nice country seat you have. Would be a shame if something happened to you keeping it”


  3. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:35 am:

    Can someone at BTIA(TM) give us a ruling on the ethics and corruption of these tactics against Republicans?

    “I was told later … that they would put press releases out against me, make me out to be anti gun, that I was NOT a true Republican and make sure that someone ran against me in the primary in two years,” Ellis said in a text message to The Southern on Monda–

    You can have your own opinions in the Illinois GOP, as long as they’re the ones Rauner gave you.


  4. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:37 am:

    It’s more than ironic that Mr. Taxpayer-Funded Abortions and Sanctuary Cities is threatening anyone who won’t support a conservative agenda.

    Rauner’s trying to manufacture a constituency by force, a symptom of four years of failure and lies. This I would think presents an opening for McCann, who was also allegedly threatened by Rauner, to stand for social conservative policies while slamming Rauner as the phony extorter he is.


  5. - Leigh John-Ella - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:37 am:

    As if it would be hard to get Williamson County to put this on the ballot. But the first move is threats? That tells you something.


  6. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:38 am:

    This is how Rauner works


  7. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:39 am:

    Best team in America, at it again. Unnecessarily threaten a republican official into doing something he was already going to do anyway? Sounds about right. Republicans might actually be more relieved than dems when Rauner gets thrown out of office this fall. Following orders this way, folks like Hackler might have to start looking into a career change.


  8. - Real - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:43 am:

    I’m voting JB in the governos race.. I’m not volunteering for JB but things like this move me to want to volunteer. Who does Rauner think he is? Then he has the nerve to speak about corruption and Madigan all day as if he is a saint. Rauner is more worst than the worse politician. This type of stuff motivates me to volunteer and get Rauner ousted in November. Keep it up Rauner


  9. - Not Rich - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:44 am:

    there is ANOTHER Republican family that will not be voting for Brucie.. NO PATH, ZERO.. Italy by Christmas..


  10. - Texas Red - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:44 am:

    Rookie mistake was leaving the voicemail..

    “read the message, which appeared to come from State Rep. Dave Severin’s cellphone”

    You can FOIA an email, and a voicemail which are “documents”… a friendly but persuasive phone conversation would have been the way to go.


  11. - Anon - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 9:56 am:

    Either work with us or were going to put you in the same sentence with Madigan.


  12. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 10:13 am:

    Corrupt Rauner.

    Bruce Rauner is Mike Madigan’s favorite GOP candidate for governor.


  13. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 10:16 am:

    –Rookie mistake was leaving the voicemail..–

    LOL, that’s the problem you see. The threats and intimidation to someone who is in fundamental agreement with you is not a mistake?

    Not a quick learner, this governor. He went after McCann with everything, simply because McCann voted his district on one bill that already had a super-majority in the Senate. McCann’s vote was literally meaningless.

    How did that work out?


  14. - Texas Red - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 10:21 am:

    Word

    “The threats and intimidation”, tell that to any of the many Dems on the junk pile of history who dared to stand up to MJM.


  15. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 10:37 am:

    ==“The threats and intimidation”, tell that to any of the many Dems on the junk pile of history who dared to stand up to MJM.==

    And once again we arrive at the conclusion that Rauner’s only real problem with Madigan’s “corruption” is that Rauner wanted in on the action.


  16. - Ike - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 10:45 am:

    Texas red - so, support Rauner because he acts like Madigan?


  17. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 10:54 am:

    –“The threats and intimidation”, tell that to any of the many Dems on the junk pile of history who dared to stand up to MJM.–

    You do know that Rauner’s entire campaign is based on his claim that he’s not like Madigan?

    Give it a few minutes, see if that seeps in.


  18. - Anon - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 12:34 pm:

    Remember what Rauner said in the meeting at the Italian restaurant in Springfield….with us or against us


  19. - GOPgal - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 2:26 pm:

    Silly referendums being pushed all over the state. Wording terrible. Just a lazy gimmick, horribly executed. IL GOP run by incompetents.


  20. - Chappy - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 3:03 pm:

    look out, he might have somebody deliver is motorcycle to your county and then run you over.


  21. - strawman - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 3:18 pm:

    Who cares. It’s not as if Rauner has proven his ability to run a successful smear campaign.


  22. - Arthur Andersen - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 4:47 pm:

    Straw, you might ask Aaron Schock his opinion on that, if you can find him


  23. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Aug 15, 18 @ 8:10 pm:

    –Who cares. It’s not as if Rauner has proven his ability to run a successful smear campaign.–

    Straw, you might ask Aaron Schock his opinion on that, if you can find him–

    And Brady, Dillard and Rutherford.

    That dark-money, strip-mall Cincinnatti lawyer spent a whole lot of cash exercising his free speech in Illinois politics bashing those cats.

    But strangely enough, not Rauner.

    Rauner said he had nothing to do with it.

    Do. You. Believe. Him?

    On anything?


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