* Someone sent me a recording of Rep. Darren Bailey (R-Xenia) over the weekend. You can hear the Eastern Bloc member and candidate for Illinois Senate talking about the push to separate Chicago from Illinois…
I am a co-sponsor of the bill. And that is a way to, kinda like what I acknowledge, you know, you have your boyfriend or girlfriend, husband and wife, get kind of mad, you know, and you say ‘Hey, I’ve got problems here and I’m tired of this.’
The conversation, I was told, took place a few weeks ago at a Charleston Chamber of Commerce dinner.
Chicagoans, Rep. Bailey is heard saying, “wouldn’t really acknowledge southern Illinois,” so, he said, “We are doing things that will eventually get their attention.”
* More from Bailey’s chat…
Separation cannot take place involuntarily.
But if you’re a representative, represent the desires and wants of the people. So, fifty years ago, Chicago wanted to separate from Illinois. So every year, every year, someone introduces one of these bills and it’s kind of a, you know, maybe a media pop or whatever. But realistically, the House and the Senate, the state would have to pass it by a two-thirds margin and then it has to go to the federal, I mean, so it’s not gonna happen.
You find out sometimes when… you’re being a legislator that sometimes you can introduce a bill, then you get some attention.
* I reached out this morning for comment and here’s Rep. Bailey’s response…
While I do not appreciate having my conversation surreptitiously taped and leaked to the media, I stand by what I said.
I am a co-sponsor of the legislation to create a New Illinois. I, like so many of my constituents, am concerned about the direction our state is headed. We have to live under rules and laws we do not support and are not reflective of our priorities and values. The District boundaries are drawn in a such a way to maximize the power and influence of the City of Chicago in our state politics and there simply is not enough votes to defeat the bad policies the Chicago majority supports.
Those of us in rural Illinois have different values and a very different way of life. The New Illinois movement is intended to accomplish two things. One, it is hoped that legislators from Chicago will see the support this legislation has in downstate precincts and stop going out of their way to force their policies on us. Two, it is hoped that in time, there will be enough support to form a New Illinois.
What is happening in Illinois is similar to efforts in California and now Virginia.
I know that in the world of media, there is always a desire to have a “Gotcha” moment. My comments about the viability of the New Illinois movement is based on the political realities in Illinois. We are a long way away from getting the support that is needed to create a new state. Accepting the political realities of our state is hardly a “Gotcha” moment. I support the New Illinois effort but in the short term, the real value of this movement is to show Chicago legislators the harm they are doing to rural communities with their bad policies. This is the message I have consistently been communicating to my constituents.
By the way, I checked with an attorney before posting this.