Bailey’s campaign manager profiled
Thursday, Jul 14, 2022 - Posted by Rich Miller
* I’m glad to see Darren Bailey’s campaign manager Jose Durbin get some recognition. You might not believe this, but the young man is very easy to work with and understands a lot…
How did you come to meet Darren Bailey? “For a few years, I worked for [former state Sen.] Kyle McCarter as his legislative aide and chief of staff. He asked me to go to Kenya with him,” where he served as an ambassador during the Trump administration. “But my wife refused. To be fair, she was getting her undergrad degree to be a teacher. … Then Kyle introduced me to Darren. I’m his longest staffer,” having worked on his state House and Senate campaigns before the governor’s race.
The biggest challenge? “Darren being an outsider. When I’d start talking to people about Darren for governor, people would say a candidate from southern Illinois didn’t have a chance. They’d say, ‘He’s a great guy, but he can’t win.’”
What’s your take on the Democratic Governors Association ads that described Bailey as far right? “I didn’t like the meddling. More than the DGA, it was help from the Super PAC [headed by Dan Proft and funded by Dick Uihlein] that really made a difference. … We tried not to pay attention to that and just kept our noses to the ground.”
What strategies helped you in the primary? “Facebook was huge, but it didn’t start as a campaign strategy. When JB shut down the state [because of the pandemic], Cindy [Bailey’s wife] went on Facebook to pray with people. Then Darren started going on and talking about different subjects and it just blossomed. We don’t spend a lot of money on it. Darren had to get used to it. But now, if you ask Darren Bailey one thing, he’ll tell you he loves social media.” […]
What’s the biggest challenge going forward? “Pritzker’s money. But honestly, I don’t think money wins the race. We have a great staff. We won’t be outworked. We’ll leave everything on the ground.”
Say what you will about Bailey, but this young man is going places.