* After revealing that he planned to vote for Joe Biden, former Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar talked to several reporters about his decision. Turns out, this won’t be the first time he’ll cast a ballot for a Democratic presidential candidate. Bernie smoked him out…
Edgar, who was a state representative and secretary of state before serving as governor from 1991-1999, has broken with his party previously. In 2016, he said he wouldn’t vote for Trump, but didn’t reveal his vote at the time.
Edgar said Monday that he had always voted for Republicans for president until 2016. Asked if he marked Democrat Hillary Clinton on his ballot, he said, “I think you could guess that, yeah.”
“I had hoped when he got elected, he’d kind of grow into the job. I think it’s been a very unfortunate four years — there’s a lot more turmoil than there needed to be. He doesn’t act like a president — his character is lacking. The presidents of the past, none of them have been perfect, but this is unusual,” Edgar said in a phone interview.
So is it a vote against Trump? Or do you like Biden? “It would have been hard for me to vote for Trump no matter who the Democrats would have” nominated, Edgar tells The Spin. “He never was around government. Some people like that. I think you need to understand the relationship between the federal government and the states. You have to watch what you say. What the president says really matters, and the president, it’s not in his DNA” to edit himself. “Do I agree with all his policies? No,” Edgar said of Biden. “But I do think he’s a decent guy and he’ll steer a moderate course.”
* Back to Bernie…
“I have been very disappointed,” Edgar said. “We’ve had chaos for four years we didn’t need to have. I mean, there’s always going to be some turmoil, but he stirs it up. He bullies. You can’t believe what he says because he’ll do the different thing the next day. … He’s bungled the virus, there’s no doubt about that. He continued to stir up division in the country, (when) a president should be trying to bring people together. I mean, the list goes on and on.” […]
A spokesman for the state GOP did not respond to Edgar’s statements.
* Dave McKinney…
“I think he bungled the pandemic thing. He undercuts our allies. I don’t understand his relationship with [Russian President Vladmir] Putin. The list goes on and on.
“But I think the biggest thing is his character. He’s a bully. He doesn’t tell the truth. Just all kinds of things,” said the former two-term governor from downstate Charleston who served between 1991 and 1999. […]
Edgar, who had high approval ratings that once topped out at 73%, said he understands how Trump’s message resonates among downstaters. But it is a losing ideology for Illinois Republicans, he said.
“All the downstaters are going to vote for Trump, but it’s not going to matter because they’re going to get out-voted by the suburbanites and Chicagoans,” Edgar said. “For the Party to be able to win in Illinois statewide, we need to divorce ourselves from the Trump thing.”
* Amanda Vinicky…
“He has been more of a disappointment than I thought he would be four years ago, and I was definitely bummed out when he won four years ago. But I’m just – I think this country has suffered a lot that going to take a while to take care of.”
While Trump is popular in much of downstate Illinois, Edgar said the President hurts Republican candidates who run statewide, in the city of Chicago and in the suburbs.
“If Trump would lose in November, then I think the Republican Party in Illinois statewide has a better chance of coming back,” Edgar said. “Republican candidates have to answer everything Trump says and does. … It hurts them in the suburbs and in the city.”