Saturday, December 08, 2007

Former State Rep Bill Edley might toss his hat in ring for 18th District run

I spoke by phone to former State Rep. Bill Edley (D-95, Macomb) a few moments ago. He was just as shocked as everyone else by Dick Versace's decision to drop out of the race for Congress. In fact, he had sent a campaign donation to Versace's campaign a week or so earlier.

But the former state representative might consider asking the county chairs of the Democratic Party in the 18th District to place his name on the ballot for the general election.

"I would think the Democrats would find many people Interested in running," Edley said. "If they don't, I would consider it."

Edley thinks Versace's campaign wobbled at bit at the beginning, but the ideal strategy for the Democrats is to let the Republicans beat each other up in the primary, spending time and money and generating hurt feelings within their party. That's still going to happen between now and when the Democratic Party chairs pick a replacement after the primary election on February 5. The general election happens nine months later on Nov. 4, giving the eventual Democratic candidate plenty of time.

"In some respects it really not a bad situation for the Democrats," Edley said. "We've made these things way too long, anyway."

Edley did not have kind words for Aaron Schock, the current 92nd District state representative who is considered by some to the the most likely nominee from among a field of three in the GOP primary. Jim McConoughey, CEO of the Heartland Partnership, and former Peoria City Council member John Morris also are putting up credible campaigns to be the one to replace Ray LaHood in the 18th District.

"He's in way over his head. He's a self promoter," Edley said of the 26-year-old Schock. Edley complained that Schock is basing his decisions on conservative ideology, not practical experience, as demonstrated by the positions taken during his campaign kick off speech. One such position was that the United States ought to use the threat of nuclear weapons sales to Taiwan to pressure China to change it's behavior with Iran.

"You could see the kid written it himself and never vetted it with any one."

ALSO: Kudos to the Journal Star's Brenda Rothert for breaking the story about Dick Versace dropping out. Karen McDonald, whose beat includes the 18th District race, managed to get reaction from state and local pols. She also bylined this story, based on a Congressional Quarterly report, about how Aaron Schock is one of the top donation-getters in this year's congressional races.

Oh, and you know that totally unfair and unfounded rumor that Cindy Ardis-Jenkins was running for the Republican nomination for Aaron Schock's 92nd District Illinois House seat only because she would be willing to drop out of the race is he didn't win the GOP nomination for the 18th District seat in Congress? After all, she works for Schock as his neighborhood liaison. Well, the deadline for dropping out is Wednesday, and she considering dropping out. Good catch by Karen McDonald, who had a busy day yesterday.

Adris-Jenkins' brother is Jim Ardis, who happens to be mayor if the City of Peoria, the biggest city in the 18th district. He's endorsed Jim McConoughey. One hopes politics doesn't come up during holiday get togethers.

Cross posted to Peoria Pundit.


Anonymous,  10:47 PM  

The Democrats will band together behind Steve Waterworth, who was their nominee in '04 and '06 This time, however, it's an open seat Waterworth can win! The Democrats are going to go with a name that people know and who knows how to campaign. This is Steve Waterworth's year. Schock doesn't want to face him.

Edley couldn't even hold on to his old House seat.

Prof. Goldblatt Ph.D. 4:56 PM  

Anonymous, this is the year of the unexpected.

Lets hope the GOP can stop Schock in the primary. Or Down State Illinois is going to look like Texas.

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