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Edgar to Republicans: Don’t “scare the folks up north”

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* WGLT

The Lincoln Club of McLean County on Thursday evening hosted its inaugural event at the Bloomington Country Club. Billed as an educational forum, the event was entitled “Can Illinois Be Fixed?”

As debated by a panel of GOP leaders, that question centered largely around another question: Can Republicans unseat Gov. JB Pritzker in the 2022 gubernatorial race?

The answer, according to former Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar is … maybe.

He was joined on the panel by state Rep. Dan Brady of Bloomington and former Illinois Republican Party Chairman Pat Brady. The event was moderated by state Sen. Jason Barickman, also of Bloomington.

Edgar said the problem facing Republicans in a gubernatorial race is the growing chasm between a state that’s moving left and a party that’s moving right.

* Pantagraph

“One of the things I found as a downstater running is you can’t scare the folks up north,” Edgar said. “Now, I could get votes up there and there’s some I didn’t get. But, for the most part, they weren’t scared of me. They didn’t think I was going to be evil, so they didn’t go out and try to beat me. So, if we have candidates who sound pretty harsh and talk about ‘well, let’s [kick] Chicago out of the state.’ that’s not going to play well.”

That was an implicit dig at state Sen. Darren Bailey, R-Xenia, who co-sponsored a resolution last session calling for Chicago to be made its own state. Bailey announced his gubernatorial campaign in 2022. […]

Edgar, when asked about prospective candidates who might have a shot against Pritzker, named U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, and Barickman.

Barickman, first elected to the House in 2011 before moving over to the Senate in 2013, said he’s not ruling out a gubernatorial campaign and will make a decision “later this summer.”

Thoughts?

posted by Rich Miller
Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:36 am

Comments

  1. There are plenty of people not up north who would be scared off by the likes of Bailey too.

    Comment by Skeptic Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:39 am

  2. St. James of Edgar your GOP is gone, never to return.

    Bailey, Schimpf, or who ever comes out of that primary views your brand of Republicanism as liberal.

    Dude, you’re irrelevant.

    Comment by Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:40 am

  3. I have zero confidence in GOP primary voters.

    Comment by Chicagonk Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:43 am

  4. Edgar is correct, but I don’t thi k anyone is listening.

    Comment by RNUG Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:44 am

  5. I’m always with Edgar. Probably now more than ever. The only way to fight off the racists, insurrectionists, and conspiracy theorists is recognize that those folks leading any party won’t win any statewide races.

    Thing about Edgar, Edgar is and was about winning, and not beating yourself needlessly.

    Dunno if you say the “quiet stuff” out loud like he did helps, but pointing out warts that you see is important to remove those warts in the end.

    For me, my thought to this hasn’t changed since 2013.

    Democrats are not the “enemy”, and Republicans I agree with 80% of the time are not the enemy either.

    Illinois needs a functional two party political and governmental touchstone. The Raunerites ruined that, Trump burned those ruins, now it’s a regroup.

    Embracing racists, insurrectionists, conspiracy theorists as the ILGOP is actively doing… Edgar is warning… his words speak for themselves.

    How this will end, well, for me, Bailey ain’t building or adding me, Trumpkins for sure won’t add me, and Edgar knows it too

    Comment by Oswego Willy Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:49 am

  6. Any GOP candidate in that primary not named Bailey will have to convince GOP voters south of I-70 that they are to the right of Bailey.

    If they win, good luck with the general.

    Comment by Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:49 am

  7. If you recall, George Ryan’s initial ads in the Chicago/suburban market portayed Glenn Poshard as some gun nut.

    It works on both sides.

    Comment by Asteroid of Caution Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:49 am

  8. Edgar isn’t wrong. This system works with 2 parties in direct competition. Right now one of those parties is off the rials nationally and those fringe elements, that have been there for decades are setting the message. They need to straighten out, or go the way of the whigs and something new comes to contrast the Democrats.

    Trump isn’t the problem, he’s the symptom. The problem is the white nationalist Qnon fringe has too much of the party right now. Say what you will about the country club republicans and moderates. They governed, made deals and got stuff done.

    Comment by frustrated GOP Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:49 am

  9. Rodney Davis, Darren Bailey’s toned down ideological brother.

    Comment by Collinsville Kevin Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:49 am

  10. Jim Edgar sounded like a Democrat to many up North. He’s even voted that way at the presidential level in 2020. If voters are happy with Democratic party policies they don’t need Jim Edgar’s advice. Just vote Democratic.

    Comment by 49the Ward Jogger Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:51 am

  11. I’d vote for Barickman. I’d vote for Cheri Bustos in a primary, too.

    Comment by ;) Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:52 am

  12. In the immortal words of St. Benatar, “It’s a little too little, it’s a little too late.”

    Comment by Dysfunction Junction Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:54 am

  13. === a party that’s moving right===
    That’s one way to describe it. I’d call it going off the rails.

    Comment by Bruce( no not him) Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:54 am

  14. Yep, exactly what IL-GOP needs is to run a campaign from 30 years ago. I’ll be sure to get my mimeograph and fax machines out of storage for the coming election season.

    Comment by Raygun democrat Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:56 am

  15. When your ideal candidate profile is an angry Earnest T. Bass…

    Comment by PublicServant Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:58 am

  16. I don’t think Sen. Barickman can win a statewide GOP Primary.

    Comment by Hot Taeks Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:59 am

  17. Bailey might be the poster child, but Bailey didn’t introduce the bill to kick out chicago. Halbrook did.

    I understand why Bailey needs to be the lightning rod, but he isn’t the source of the problem. He is just a symptom of it.

    Comment by TheInvisibleMan Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:59 am

  18. I voted for Edgar back when he ran for governor and I still do not regret that vote. But, I am not a party-politics person and never have been.

    I didn’t think too much about this until reading Edgar’s comments, but how can a guy run for governor when he wanted to cede from the state/force a part of the state to secede?

    I used to think Barickman was someone who would make a good governor, I don’t anymore. The last few years have shown him to be a panderer rather than a serious leader.

    Comment by JS Mill Friday, May 14, 21 @ 9:59 am

  19. These are three issues I see as what the IL GOP primary will be fought over: 1) are you pure enough in your Trump support? 2) what are you doing/have you done to fight against COVID regulations? 3) what are you doing to battle the “defund the police” people?

    When I talk to Republicans, the things they badmouth the state and Dems about the most are not supporting police enough and being mad about COVID shutdowns/regulations. And they complain a lot about things they say are happening under Biden that never happened under Trump.

    In this scenario, I fail to see how a Bailey type does not rise to the top with GOP voters over some establishment person who just wants to win suburban voters back by talking about taxes and spending.

    The progressive income tax referendum failing has kind of taken that off the table as an issue and besides there’s no disagreement in the GOP on tax issues at all so not really something that can be made hay of in a primary.

    Comment by hisgirlfriday Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:00 am

  20. === Jim Edgar sounded like a Democrat to many up North. He’s even voted that way at the presidential level in 2020. If voters are happy with Democratic party policies they don’t need Jim Edgar’s advice. Just vote Democratic.===

    Textbook… cult-like thinking. It’s… wow.

    I think back to… Goldwater, Humphrey, McGover, Ford, Carter, Mondale, Geo. H. W. Bush, Dole, Gore, Kerry, McCain, Romney… the losing Presidential Nominees here never took over the party to lead it as a cult, and as cult leader, in some exile, still dictating party and governing politics.

    It’s scary, but when you lose, the party usually moves on… unless it’s a cult it seems.

    Comment by Oswego Willy Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:01 am

  21. ===Glenn Poshard as some gun nut.

    It works on both sides.===

    It’s about upstate versus downstate, not party.

    Upstate has more voters. Scaring them by geography isn’t helping vote totals. Edgar gets that.

    Comment by Oswego Willy Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:03 am

  22. To Barickman, I’ve said it clear today;

    When it mattered most, Jason Barickman voted consistently against fully funded higher education, while, almost mockingly, touted his role at a state university.

    Maybe Barickman will wait to see what Rauner wants him to say about this before saying anything. I’m sure Barickman doesn’t want a repeat of saying something only to retract it because Rauner said so.

    Oh, I know… “it doesn’t matter”… like no budget for two years either… (sigh)

    Jason Barickman purposely hurt social services, his own district, his own university, and did it with a happy heart for Bruce Rauner’s agenda, disguised as a party agenda.

    A mea culpa to the severe damage he did might change my thoughts, but seemingly everyone wants to “move on” forgetting all they hurt… again.

    Comment by Oswego Willy Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:08 am

  23. Not sure ‘we need to kick Chicago out of the state’ really plays with suburban moms.

    Kick Chicago out of the state and the collars become the next thing they are going to want to kick out and have to fund their roads.

    Comment by OneMan Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:09 am

  24. You were a good governor, Jim, but it’s a different hyper political world now than when you ran and held office in the pre-social media era. I am not sure how much of your well- intentioned advice is useful now.

    Comment by Responsa Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:12 am

  25. Both parties are becoming extremists. Edgar had several qualities that are rarely found in todays politicians.

    1. Moderate.

    2. Honest.

    Comment by DuPage Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:16 am

  26. Can’t remember when Illinois would have last elected a conservative Republican for governor. Edgar and Thompson were considered moderate Republicans in their day. Weicker and Rockafeller were liberal Republicans.
    Edgar and Thompson by today’s Republican standards would be considered liberal Republicans if they were welcomed at all just starting out. Weicker and Rockafeller would probably be conservative to moderate Democrats.
    Heck, I even wonder if Pat Buchannan might be considered a liberal Republican by today’s Republican party.

    Comment by Tommydanger Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:17 am

  27. - “ I voted for Edgar back when he ran for governor and I still do not regret that vote”

    So you’re OK with the pension ramp?

    Netsch saw the need for a small tax increase and instead we now have billions of debt to pay for.

    Comment by Chicago 20 Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:23 am

  28. -Thing about Edgar, Edgar is and was about winning, and not beating yourself needlessly -

    It’s hard to see what policies Edgar won that helped the Illinois GOP after his tenure. Give Mike Madigan credit, his policies won the day in Illinois.

    Comment by Vanguard Morrison Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:27 am

  29. PublicServant @9:58

    Sir/Madam, that’s gold. ;)

    Comment by Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:29 am

  30. The pre-social media world is gone and isn’t coming back, heck, Edgar wouldn’t make it out of the Republican primary in any state these days, we are too polarized and and I’m not sure what will change that. Liberals want liberal policies and conservatives want conservative policies and few want compromise. Most of us are live and let live libertarians at heart (not the anarchist variety), at least those of us who believe in America and the constitution are…

    Comment by Em Etib Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:31 am

  31. === Give Mike Madigan credit, his policies won===

    60, 30, signature.

    Look at SSM, look at HB40, look at *any* policy, many times it was Madigan slowing the train till it was ripe, the sponsors and advocates chagrin… but like any governor or any legislator… the bottom line is 60, 30, signature… and one leader of one chamber ain’t dictating all that much without that reality as the frame.

    Comment by Oswego Willy Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:31 am

  32. Thinking back over the past few elections, my vote choices were probably more about voting against someone and their policies than voting for someone. I suspect the next Governor’s race will be the same, picking the candidate I think will do the least harm to the State.

    Comment by RNUG Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:32 am

  33. Why should today’s GOP listen to the last Republican to win two terms in Illinois? What does he know?

    Comment by NotAnonymous Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:34 am

  34. ==Democrats are not the “enemy”, and Republicans I agree with 80% of the time are not the enemy either.==

    That sums it up for me. Purity test politics do not grow a party.

    Comment by SAP Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:37 am

  35. “What does he know?”

    Therein lies the problem.

    Today’s GOP isn’t real big on institutional knowledge, experience, science, data…..

    Comment by Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:37 am

  36. “Can’t remember when Illinois would have last elected a conservative Republican for governor.:

    Maybe Rauner? I don’t know that he was really conservative. He struck me as a moderate who took some really bad advice from the IPI fringe. His administration was really a giant missed opportunity for Illinois Republicans.

    Comment by duck duck goose Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:42 am

  37. =Kick Chicago out of the state =

    When they say “Chicago” downstate, they mean the whole metro area. Ask them.

    =So you’re OK with the pension ramp?

    Netsch saw the need for a small tax increase and instead we now have billions of debt to pay for.=

    Yes, I am ok with the ramp. Was is a great plan? No. But it was a plan and a process and would have worked if it was followed.

    The ramp didn’t leave us with billions in debt. Underpayment left us with billions in debt. The ramp tried to address that issue that began in the early days of the 20th Century, some 80 years before the ramp was conceived. The ramp didn’t increase the debt, not following did.

    Netsch’s plan was probably better, but it wasn’t ever going to get the votes. They have tried to do the same thing since and it has not gotten anywhere. In 2005 there was a plan based on research from the CTBA and Ralph Martire and never got out of the house.

    I am still fine with my vote because I actually understand the issue.

    I would probably vote for Edgar today if he ran. His advice might be from a time gone by, but it isn’t wrong.

    Comment by JS Mill Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:47 am

  38. === His administration was really a giant missed opportunity for Illinois Republicans.===

    Bruce and Diana Rauner bought the ILGOP, bought both caucuses for $50 million, pushed Diana’s uber-left, costal, limousine liberal agenda as Diana’s social service first sued Bruce, then got bailed out by JB Pritzker, his family, and their foundations, so Bruce can have a whole General Assembly without a budget, and only signing ONE budget in 4 years, and in the end Rauner had no constituency.

    “…a giant missed opportunity for Illinois Republicans.”

    My gosh, Rauner buying a party isn’t a missed opportunity except for Bruce and Diana.

    Comment by Oswego Willy Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:47 am

  39. ===we are too polarized and and I’m not sure what will change that.===

    All the cell towers going down at once?

    Comment by Six Degrees of Separation Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:50 am

  40. Quick fact Jim Edgar was the last Republican candidate for Governor to win Cook County. Could a Republican candidate do that in ‘22?

    Comment by Levois J Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:51 am

  41. I liked Edgar better when he was a Republican.

    Comment by Soapbox Derby Friday, May 14, 21 @ 10:53 am

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