* 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.