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Keep an eye on Kinzinger

Monday, Jan 11, 2021

* My weekly syndicated newspaper column

“This isn’t their Republican Party anymore!” Donald Trump Jr. declared on Jan. 6 during a fiery speech near the U.S. Capitol.

“This is Donald Trump’s Republican Party,” the president’s son insisted. “Today, Republicans, you get to pick a side for the future of this party. I suggest you choose wisely.”

And then, later in the day, all heck broke loose. A large number of furious cretins stormed the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to stop a legitimate presidential election from being certified. Five people died in the resulting melee, including one member of the U.S. Capitol police force.

Freshman Illinois U.S. Rep. Mary Miller, a Republican, was at a rally the day before and made a bizarre comment about how Adolf Hitler was right about kids being the future.

Both Miller and U.S. Rep. Mike Bost (R-12) represent Southern Illinois, and after Congress reconvened that evening, they voted against certifying the presidential election results.

Bost and U.S. Rep. Darin LaHood (R-18) signed on last month to a doomed attempt to convince the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn the election results.

While U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-13) did not go as far as his three GOP colleagues, he has been an ardent President Trump supporter for the past four years.

Those are not the public faces the party needs in the Chicago suburbs. And you simply can’t win statewide in Illinois without carrying that region.

U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-16), on the other hand, has made a national name for himself by occasionally yet forcefully criticizing the president, and he has stepped up his game ever since it became clear that Trump lost the election. He took it to a much higher level on the day of the insurrection, however.

“I outright condemn this garbage,” Kinzinger said of Rep. Miller’s speech. He called the storming of the Capitol a “coup attempt.” He slammed fellow Republicans for refusing to certify the results. And he said the president is a “weak, self-absorbed man” who was attempting to “overthrow the will of the people.”

“He is no longer the leader of our party,” Kinzinger said of Trump. “And our party must reject these treasonous acts.”

Back when then-Congressman Ray LaHood (Darin’s father) was thinking about running against Gov. Rod Blagojevich, I wrote that “moderate” Washington, D.C. Republicans usually have voting records which don’t look at all moderate when they run statewide here. Kinzinger has voted with Trump 92% of the time and definitely has a conservative record.

But, man, those statements could erase a whole lot of whatever can be thrown at him if he decides to run for governor or U.S. Senate, especially in a state that Trump twice lost by 17 points.

One should never make predictions during times of massive upheaval and change, so let’s not anoint him yet. Plus, we’ve all seen politicians rise like rockets only to fall like meteors. And I’ve seen plenty of very solid, hard-working candidates fail simply because they lived in the “wrong” district or state.

With that being said, Kinzinger has a sharp wit and obviously knows how to land a hard punch.

Kinzinger won a McLean County board seat when he was just 20 years old and then joined the Air Force after college and went on to fly missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. He won his first congressional race against an incumbent Democrat and then soundly defeated a longtime Republican incumbent in a post-remap primary. The dude has serious chops.

I was impressed with the way he rhetorically knocked Gov. J.B. Pritzker back on his heels last month over the LaSalle Veterans’ Home debacle, where 35 residents died of COVID-19. Then again, Kinzinger has not exactly been out front about warning his constituents to take precautions during the pandemic. The virus was raging through the surrounding community when it found its way into the facility.

The money to fund the Republican Party is in the Chicago area, where most corporate types tend to shun the far-right’s views. Those folks are definitely not going to want to reside in Donald Trump’s GOP going forward, no matter what the president’s son says. So they may be eager to embrace someone like Kinzinger.

But Kinzinger went so far out on a limb on Trump (even calling for his removal from office) that he may have seriously damaged his chances of winning a statewide primary. And even if he does win that round, a significant chunk of his party’s base might angrily choose to skip over him in a general election.

Keep watching.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

65 Comments »
  1. - truthteller - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:15 am:

    Kinzinger made us and all of us who value democracy in Illinois so very proud, the polar opposite of the the despicable Il-15th representative who needs to go


  2. - Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:17 am:

    Last week, Bailey stated Kinziger wasn’t a Republican because he didn’t support Trump’s attempt to overthrow the election.
    Wednesday didn’t change the fact that Bailey will be able to beat Kinzinger over the head with that in the primaries, and it will play like a fiddle south of I-64.


  3. - the Edge - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:20 am:

    By the 2022 elections the GA will have solidified into law law enforcement reform and any remaining social issues. There will be no right leaning issues that could be implemented, and Kinzinger could indeed be a “moderate” voice for the suburbs possibly winning the primary.


  4. - Cool Papa Bell - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:21 am:

    /south of the Wisconsin state boarder….

    Don’t pin that level of Trumpness just on downstate folks. Its seeped into every corner, crevice and county in this state.


  5. - Six Degrees of Separation - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:24 am:

    ===Kinzinger went so far out on a limb on Trump===
    From where I sit, no statewide Republican has a chance of winning in either the pro-or anti-Trump camp due to the damage that would be accrued either way. I see Kinzinger’s actions as a precursor to a coming long-term political realignment that might bear fruit in a decade or so.


  6. - PublicServant - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:24 am:

    === But, man, those statements could erase a whole lot of whatever can be thrown at him if he decides to run for governor or U.S. Senate ===

    Except voting with Trump the traitor 92% of the time. I think he’s stepped up now, don’t get me wrong. On him, it’s still very much wait and see for me, and yeah, he’ll definitely be on the out’s with insurrectionists.


  7. - Guzzlepot - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:25 am:

    Twenty or thirty years ago there was a clear lane for moderate Republicans or Democrats who wanted to run statewide. These days not so much for moderate Republicans. I like the guy and I am a Democrat. I even think that he would make a good Governor. But Trump is more popular than oxygen among people who vote in Republican primaries, and that will really hurt Kinzinger.


  8. - Candy Dogood - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:27 am:

    When United States House of Representatives member Adam Kinzinger fulfills his Oath of Office by signing onto Articles of Impeachment.


  9. - RIJ - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:31 am:

    Half a backbone is better than none, I suppose. We do need to be careful about thinking he’s some new, better Republican just because he pointed out absolutely egregious behavior by Trump a few times, though.


  10. - Meechum - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:33 am:

    Even if Kinzinger can find a path through the primary, the GOP will have to work hard to unite their wings by the General. I can’t say who the great unifier would be, but it’s certainly not Mark Shaw.


  11. - Anon E Moose - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:34 am:

    Kinzinger voted with Trump like 95% and voted against impeachment. This is all puffery.


  12. - Been There - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:35 am:

    Kinzinger running for another office makes the rest of the repub delegation breathe a sigh of relief. With the state losing at least one congressional seat at least one or two of them were toast anyway.


  13. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:37 am:

    This is… spot on… wow.

    === But Kinzinger went so far out on a limb on Trump (even calling for his removal from office) that he may have seriously damaged his chances of winning a statewide primary. And even if he does win that round, a significant chunk of his party’s base might angrily choose to skip over him in a general election.===

    It reminds me of Rauner in only this context;

    Barely got out of the primary, lost the base in the General, his opponent already cornered the market on the moderate view.

    In short, no constituency.

    Great read, Rich, context to things, on point.

    To the post, Kinzinger, a take,

    I need to reconcile that Kinzinger, when it mattered, he voted with Trump 90% of the time, and come to terms when Kinzinger had the chance to impeach, Adam Kinzinger voted against impeaching Donald Trump.

    That’s on me to reconcile, that’s on me to put in a context to what I not only applaud from January 6th, and from Kinzinger’s own interview I saw where he, paraphrasing, was fine if it costs him his seat in Congress standing up now as he is.

    I’ve said, Kinzinger has my curiosity.

    How does he get my attention? Shouldn’t he already have it, the first and lone (for quite a while) voice in Congress to call for the president’s removal or resignation? Should that make me give Kinzinger attention?

    To these times, Kinzinger does. I’ve applauded, I’m heartened.

    To the future, well, Rich says this best, why try to change it;

    === One should never make predictions during times of massive upheaval and change, so let’s not anoint him yet. Plus, we’ve all seen politicians rise like rockets only to fall like meteors. And I’ve seen plenty of very solid, hard-working candidates fail simply because they lived in the “wrong” district or state.

    With that being said, Kinzinger has a sharp wit and obviously knows how to land a hard punch.===

    If Kinzinger wants my attention beyond these dark day and the dark days ahead… and towards 2022… not only “more” like these days after January 6th, more towards a rebuild that means dismantling and disavowing the actions and actors that enabled, prodded, and applauded insurrection in DC, and promote division, regionalism, and monolithic thinking to policy and race in Illinois.

    That will keep my attention. That will have a great deal of my attention.

    The rest is up to Adam.


  14. - knownothing - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:38 am:

    If Kinzinger doesn’t vote to impeach this time around all of this posturing will fall flat.


  15. - Rich Hill - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:43 am:

    Given how some of the “good people” who stormed the Capitol wanted to treat VP Pence, Kinzinger will have to tread carefully to survive some of the “good people” of his party after this week’s comments.


  16. - NastyNader - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:48 am:

    I was classmates at ISU with Adam. Solid guy


  17. - Greta - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:50 am:

    After seeing how Lindsay Graham and Mitt Romney were treated by the Trump rioters in airports over the weekend, Kinzinger has zero chance of winning a Republican primary. His only hope to become Governor is to run as a 3rd Party Candidate with a Pro-Choice, anti-gun Lt. Gov candidate.


  18. - 47th Ward - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:53 am:

    Kinzinger chose the right path, in a plainly self-serving manner. So good for him but he can only do that once. Now he has to show he’s a thoughtful, moderate, center-right candidate. He might learn a thing or two from previous Republican governors like Jim Edgar and Jim Thompson. He can also learn a bit from Judy Barr Topinka’s legacy. There are some good role models for him now that he’s dumping Trump.

    But I’ll never forget he voted against impeachment. After that, it’s too late to give him a profile in courage award. When it counted most, he was with Trump.


  19. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:55 am:

    - Greta -

    Illinois is neither South Carolina or Utah.

    Judy Baar Topinka won her primary by a divided party in the primary, can Kinzinger hope for such a playing field… then try to regroup the base against his opponent?

    Dunno.


  20. - DuPage Saint - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:57 am:

    I do not get how voting with your president (either party) is supposed to be a bad thing. I would think as a Democrat you would tend to vote with a Democratic president and vice versa. I would think you pick a party or n the ideas you supported rather than the man. Picking the manga every us Trump and Ruaner sticking with your beliefs may make you support your party leader most of the time. And I thought he has now said Trump should be impeached. I do not see how he can’t sign on to impeachment now. And I hope he does. Party needs to be purged of nut cases.


  21. - Moe Berg - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 10:59 am:

    So desperate to find some elected national Republicans who behaved honorably during the Trump years that we’ll set the broom a centimeter off the ground and throw a celebration that they hopped over it.

    Gotta have that “both sides” balance.

    Talk about the soft bigotry of low expectations.

    Maybe Kinzinger could spend at least as much time as the Trump presidency in a period of atonement and reflection for the fact he was mostly complicit. He could help some of the people and communities that Trump hurt with Kinzinger’s support. Then, perhaps, he can credibly consider future office. Or, just recognize he blew it and we’ll be ok if he doesn’t hold office ever again.


  22. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:00 am:

    === I do not get how voting with your president (either party) is supposed to be a bad thing.===

    You think running on Trump policies he voted for will help statewide in Illinois?

    Further, if we learned anything about Rauner, it was an agenda, not a platform of beliefs or policies, as we saw having no budget was policy, and only regional support followed.


  23. - Just Reading - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:08 am:

    Kinzinger is running scared.

    He is cravenly trying to endear himself to Illinois democrats for the sole purpose of avoiding being redistricted into an existing congressional district.

    Remember, he’s a 95% Trump guy and voted against impeachment.


  24. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:10 am:

    === He is cravenly trying to endear himself to Illinois democrats for the sole purpose of avoiding being redistricted into an existing congressional district.===

    Mary Miller did more to help Kinzinger in these days to that than anything Kinzinger thinks he has to do,

    The Miller district was *always* vanashing. Miller’s actions these past days all but guarantee it.


  25. - The Ford Lawyer - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:10 am:

    For a Republican, Kinzinger is going way out limb by doing the right thing. If he remains in the House, he will have a primary challenger. If he runs for higher office, his primary will be a bloodbath. I would vote for him, though. As for his previous record, most of Trump’s policies were conservative Republican stuff. Of COURSE Kinzinger voted for them 92% of the time, he’s a Republican. I would also point out that the impeachment vote in the House got zero GOP votes and didn’t even get all of the Dems.


  26. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:13 am:

    === I would also point out that===

    … when it mattered, Adam Kinzinger voted against the impeachment of Donald Trump.

    If you’re explaining “everyone else did it”… that will be a losing argument


  27. - 47th Ward - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:14 am:

    ===I would also point out that the impeachment vote in the House got zero GOP votes and didn’t even get all of the Dems.===

    Lucky for him, it looks like he’ll have another chance tomorrow.


  28. - Home - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:15 am:

    It’s pretty wild how low the bar is at this point that not attempting to overturn a free and fair election and participate in a coup is considered the height of statesmanship.


  29. - Flyer - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:17 am:

    I don’t think , after all this, Kinsinger needs to worry about redistricting.


  30. - tdavs1 - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:19 am:

    Does anyone know if IL Dems will try to redistrict Rodney out as well?


  31. - anonamoose - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:20 am:

    He’s running.


  32. - Occasionally Moderated - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:21 am:

    Could Thompson/Edgar/Topinka be elected today?

    Even asking that question makes me sad- my gosh we needed Topinka when but we got Blago. (That was an early warning sign for me.)

    When all heck broke loose Wednesday I was longing to hear what Roe Conn and his many excellent and insightful guests would have to say. Adam would have been one of his guests at some point.

    Adam may have voted with the president 90% of the time. Yet his comments on the radio were so full of pragmatism and it has been clear for a very long time that he did not approve of how Trump did business.

    I always noticed that had I only knew of Adam through his tweets I would not given him a passing glance. When I heard him interviewed by Roe, I knew it was worth stopping what I was doing to listen

    Colin Powell/Condoleeza Rice (any order) used to be my dream ticket. After watching 60 Minutes last night I think it’s Kinzinger/King.


  33. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:23 am:

    === redistrict Rodney===

    The Bost/Miller/Davis districts will become 2 districts.

    The Dems have 13 seats to protect, draw 4 GOP seats… that’s pretty lopsided and “approveable” to the incumbents.

    No need to be greedy, to make others look at process, stay the course, eliminating a GOP seat… easily.


  34. - TheInvisibleMan - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:25 am:

    ===Its seeped into every corner, crevice and county in this state.===

    Will county board member, and former plainfield township trustee Debbie Kraulidis was at the events in DC, and earlier in the day was on stage pushing qanon conspiracy theories of election fraud and calls to prevent the counting of legal electoral votes.

    It’s not a south-of-80 problem anymore.


  35. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:26 am:

    === Adam may have voted with the president 90% of the time. Yet his comments on the radio were so full of pragmatism and it has been clear for a very long time that he did not approve of how Trump did business.===

    Voting is all that matters. A voting record follows. The rest is lip service.

    That’s not helping.


  36. - Responsa - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:26 am:

    Interesting column. It has become kind of obvious that Kinzinger’s ambition frequently outpaces his actions. I had very high hopes for him a decade ago. Not as much anymore. His need to run toward any available microphone and say something (often contradictory) frequently hurts him. I think it has become more and more obvious that no one really knows who he “is” or who his potential constituency is or might be. He is going to have to figure that out soon if he is to be successful running for other/higher office in Illinois.


  37. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:37 am:

    oh Adam, you had a chance to show what you claim to think when an impeachment vote was up…before. The House voted to impeach, you did not. Choices. You chose the wrong one. Think about if you had led the charge from the right to get rid of Trump. Maybe you could have started his end. Oh, and on NARAL you have a zero score, so no concern for women’s agency.


  38. - JakeCP - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:42 am:

    ===== - Greta -

    Illinois is neither South Carolina or Utah.

    Judy Baar Topinka won her primary by a divided party in the primary, can Kinzinger hope for such a playing field… then try to regroup the base against his opponent?

    Dunno. ====

    And the divided base abandoned her in the general election.

    I agree, I think Kinzinger is definitely positioning himself to run for higher office in Illinois.


  39. - Shytown - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:43 am:

    Kinzinger said last week and repeated it again just a couple days ago that he was disappointed in the outcome of the election – the presidential election. What does that say about this guy? He can’t have his cake and eat it too. He voted down the line with Trump nearly 100% in the first two years and then in the low 90s the second two years. He doesn’t get a pass now and he can’t just walk away from that record. None of these Republicans in Congress do who failed to speak up when it mattered the most. He enabled Trump as much as anyone else. Whether he decides to run for Senate or governor he’s going to have one hell of a time convincing a far more conservative Republican primary electorate to get the nod and if he does, he’ll have one hell of a time explaining himself in a general.


  40. - Disgruntled IL Democrat - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:45 am:

    ===Kinzinger could indeed be a “moderate” voice for the suburbs possibly winning the primary.===

    Certainly, the suburbs would be his base in a primary. However, Trump won solid pluralities in the collar counties in the 2016 primary and Ives competed with Rauner in the suburbs in 2018. The Trump Republicans did well in 2020 in the suburbs too. I’d bet on Kinzinger being the favorite in the suburbs, but no slam dunk. I think the most important factor would be how many Trumpists would be in a hypothetical primary with him, and how effective of campaigners they are.


  41. - SAP - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:45 am:

    ==Kinzinger has voted with Trump 92% of the time and definitely has a conservative record.== No escaping that fact, but if he runs statewide he has the opportunity to vote with Biden 92% of the time for a couple years before election day.


  42. - H-W - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:47 am:

    I am not so sure I agree with the conclusion. I suspect that there will be a reckoning of Illinois Republicans over the next two years, in which the GOP regains control from the Tea Party. I am not so blind as to think the Tea Party will go away, but in Illinois at least, I think they will accept a subservient role to the GOP in the next year or two. Then again, I am not attuned to politics and thus almost surely wrong.


  43. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:48 am:

    === However, Trump won solid pluralities in the collar counties in the 2016 primary===

    LOL, for the love of Pete, who was left campaigning when Illinois came around in 2016?

    === he has the opportunity to vote with Biden 92% of the time for a couple years before election day.===

    Narrator: that wold make him a Democrat, even by the Reagan Rule and have no base in any party.


  44. - Candy Dogood - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:51 am:

    ===Could Thompson/Edgar/Topinka be elected today?===

    Thompson and Edgar engaged in some pretty shady practices that are squarely in the illegal activity column these days.

    So, no. They couldn’t.

    ===Topinka===

    Of course she could. What a silly question.


  45. - Back to the Future - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:56 am:

    Awful early.
    I’d rather wait and see who is running in the Democratic Primary.
    I am a life long Dem, but in a race with the current Governor I would think the congressman would have a excellent chance.


  46. - SAP - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 11:56 am:

    Yeah, I was going for sarcasm with the 92% of the time. But, he can distance himself from Trump over the next couple years.


  47. - Responsa - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:00 pm:

    == .. but if he runs statewide he has the opportunity to vote with Biden 92% of the time for a couple years before election day.==

    lol. That reminds me of the great song from My Fair Lady when the two gentlemen are commiserating, “Why can’t a Woman Be More Like a Man?” In your example, it’d be “Why Can’t a Republican be More Like a Democrat?”


  48. - The Snowman - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:00 pm:

    For conservatives, Kinzinger sweet-talked us during his first run for Congress in 2010. Right after his swearing in, he took to the Establishment culture of DC like a duck to water. I look forward to him running in a Republican Primary so I can vote against him. If he makes it to the General, someone would have to work very hard to convince me to vote for this guy.


  49. - Jake - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:02 pm:

    Kinzinger won’t even make it out of the primary!


  50. - Red Ketcher - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:20 pm:

    Regardless of Kinzinger’s aspirations or the impact upon him , the Statements Kinzinger made regarding the events on and surrounding Jan 6 were On Target.
    The columnist’s ” serious chops ” designation is On Target too.


  51. - Astonished - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:21 pm:

    = Kinzinger is running scared.=

    Kinzinger has literally been under fire in battle on numerous occasions. “Scared” of any of these folks on the right he is not. That take is both laughable and inaccurate.

    Consistently calling Trump a clown and voting on fiscal policy, for example, that Kinzinger finds appropriate are not mutually exclusive. Kinzinger has consistently done what few Republicans have been unwilling to admit - Say out loud that Trump is unfit for office.


  52. - City Guy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:22 pm:

    I appreciate Kinzinger making his statements. But it is a low bar when denouncing an attempted coup by white supremists, Qanon wackos, and other deplorables is considered a profile in courage. When he had a chance to impeach, he didn’t just vote against impeachment, he ignored the real concerns about the President’s behavior and blamed the Democrats for being partisan.


  53. - thisjustinagain - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:25 pm:

    Kinzinger’s current stance on Trump can be seen as either political theatre, or the words of a man who realizes he can no longer support someone after they do things even beyond the pale of their own party. I know not which answer is correct. But I do know that down-ballot the Dems lost seats in many states, and some moderacy in the Repub Party (especially in Illinois) would gain them voters.


  54. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:27 pm:

    === Kinzinger has consistently done what few Republicans have been unwilling to admit - Say out loud that Trump is unfit for office.===

    Adam Kinzinger voted for policies promoted by an unfit president.

    The ads write themselves.

    How Kinzinger, and whomever he has as his crew, the campaign folks, that’s going to be the biggest challenge, the voting record that can’t be denied


  55. - markg8 - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:31 pm:

    He voted with Trump 92% of the time and voted against impeachment but has turned on Trump. Who exactly is going to vote for him? I think he’ll be lucky to hang on to his seat.


  56. - Last Bull Moose - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:43 pm:

    The first impeachment was bad politics. There was no chance of conviction in the Senate. To me, not voting for impeachment then was understandable.

    This time is more complex. I would prefer a vote of censure to another failed impeachment. It comes down to counting votes in the Senate.


  57. - Occasionally Moderated - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 12:45 pm:

    @Candy Dogwood

    Can you expand on your answer about Topinka? I’m curious why you think that.


  58. - @misterjayem - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 1:08 pm:

    At this moment, being electable in the Republican primary makes one unelectable in an Illinois general election and being electable in an Illinois general election makes one unelectable in the Republican primary.

    Perhaps Kinzinger can somehow thread this needle, but I have my doubts.

    – MrJM


  59. - AlfondoGonz - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 1:31 pm:

    Kinzinger voted for Donald Trump 2 months ago.

    Any decent thinking person knew that what we’ve seen since then was wholly predictable.

    Kinzinger, if we take him as genuine, is an awful, awful judge of character. And clearly does not value character in his chosen leaders.


  60. - LakeCo - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 1:54 pm:

    Wait he voted against impeachment? Then all of his rhetoric about Donald Trump needing to be removed means nothing.


  61. - JB13 - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 2:13 pm:

    If your position is that a Republican needs to actually be a Democrat before you’ll consider voting for him, I don’t think Adam Kinzinger was exactly counting on your vote.

    So just drop the “He voted 95% of the time with Trump” malarkey. Somehow no one here ever cares that a Democrat voted 100% of the time with Mike Madigan.

    Kinzinger is a Republican, and voted like one.


  62. - Veil of Ignorance - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 2:21 pm:

    Kinzinger’s profile plays pretty well to win over independents and moderates, but as the comments show he’s not going to win over many MAGA folks (for now). Luckily, he’s in IL and if multiple candidates run in a state-wide primary then he could eke out the nomination and give Dems a real scare. If not, then at least he took his shot and didn’t have to be a captive to what’s an increasingly extreme base; Biden could always appoint him to a defense-oriented position (Secretary of Air Force, etc.). He strikes me as somebody who’s overall point is to serve and make impact vs being set on a specific position or office.


  63. - Jocko - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 2:46 pm:

    ==To me, not voting for impeachment then was understandable.==

    So a sitting president attempting to ’shake down’ a foreign power (7/25/19), secretary of state (1/2/21), and sitting senator (1/4/21) weren’t enough?


  64. - Last Bull Moose - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 8:29 pm:

    Jocko. Then was the first impeachment vote. Before the current actions by Trump. At that time there was no chance of conviction. Acquittal seemed to make Trump worse.


  65. - Larry Saunders - Monday, Jan 11, 21 @ 9:48 pm:

    Those of us who are his actual constituents know him as an unresponsive, do nothing politician who can’t be bothered to care about anything.


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