Sunday, November 16, 2008

GOPUSA ILLINOIS Daily Clips - November 16, 2008

GOPUSA ILLINOIS Daily Clips - November 16, 2008

-- Get up, GOP - Greg Hinz
(THE ARTICLE: On "Jay Leno" last week, a smiling but serious John McCain said that the Republican Party - "just back from the woodshed" - has "a lot of work to do." The same could be said about its Illinois affiliate. Under the leadership of Chairman Andy McKenna Jr., the Illinois GOP scored one big election win, pouring its resources into and hanging on to Mark Kirk's hotly contested 10th Congressional District seat in the northern suburbs. That was no sure thing, given the Barack Obama tidal wave. But the party dropped two U.S. House seats earlier this election cycle, Jerry Weller's and Dennis Hastert's, and is down to just 22 of 59 seats in the state Senate and 48 of 118 in the state House. Worse, Democratic mapmakers will reapportion it into at least a decade of wandering in the deep desert unless it can pull itself together in time for a 2010 election cycle that's already unfolding. What to do? I'm going to write a lot about that in coming months because, as Chicago private-equity mogul and maybe future gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner puts it, "Anytime any one party gets too much power, bad things happen." Even Mike Madigan might buy that. Ergo, my mission is to save the Republican Party from itself - a group that can be as cantankerous as a poker table full of 50-something white guys who have run out of booze. Gary MacDougall, who served as state party chair a few years ago, says the organization Abe Lincoln built first needs to admit that something's wrong - "It would be hard to create a model less likely to succeed than we have now," he puts it - and then ramp up its appeal to minorities and women. The latter can be done without compromising party principles, he says, by focusing on issues like school choice and helping small business. Having a full-time state chair wouldn't hurt either, he adds. Doug Ibendahl, former general counsel of the state party, writes in his blog that the real problem is that the conservative grass-roots base of the party keeps being dissed by "sleazy political hacks" more interested in doing business than adhering to core beliefs. The party needs to reform itself, starting with electing its central committee in the precincts rather than the offices of party power brokers, he argues. Judy Baar Topinka, the last Republican to hold statewide office, as Illinois treasurer, and the GOP nominee for governor in 2006, has a different take. "It all goes back to the recipe for success," she says: "moderation on social issues, fiscal constraint and responsibility. . . . If we intend to forever cater to an ever-shrinking base, we will fade away as a party." But former state Sen. and current United Republican Fund chief Steve Rauschenberger says the solution is fiscal conservatism and sensible tax reform, combined with a few issues like higher standards for public schools. Topinka-esque "dancing polkas" won't work, he says. "We have to start talking about what people care about." Former URF chief Larry Horist likely would agree with much of that. He'd position the party as libertarian populists and crusade against insurance companies, credit unions, banks et al., "those institutions that are hurting people's lives." A "good salesman" with ideas like that might be able to revive the GOP in quick order, he says. Chris Robling, a former GOP member of the Chicago Board of Elections, says better strategy is the answer. The party needs to do what Mr. McKenna did this year: concentrate its resources like a laser on just a few races, in particular for governor, president of the Cook County Board and a Democratic-held congressional seat, he says. But Illinois Business Roundtable President Jeff Mays says something more fundamental is needed: an end to the GOP's identity crisis. "What is it we stand for?" he asks. "We need to have that discussion." That I agree with. I'll try to continue that discussion on my blog,, and in future columns. Though some will hate me for saying it, Illinois needs a Republican Party that works.)

-- Cellini connections could touch every somebody - John Kass,0,4612076.column
-- Illinois loses Senator Obama after less than 4 years - Christopher Wills,0,975115.story
-- Broadview woman owns Obama's old Dodge Neon - Stacy St. Clair,0,7706049.story

-- DuPage County Board losing half century of experience - Jake Griffin
-- Saying goodbye; five DuPage County Board members left their mark - Jake Griffin
-- Illinois voters still need recall power - Editorial
-- DIERSEN HEADLINE: In an editorial unethically made to look like a news article, the Daily Herald again promotes the Democrat Party in Kane County.

-- What's next for the St. Clair County GOP? Party suffered major losses this year - Mike Fitzgerald

-- 'We'll make a great team' Senger, Connelly think experience leaves them well prepared for state rep. job - Paige Winfield,6_1_NA16_REPS_S1.article

ABC7 & NBC5 & CBS2 & JG-TC
-- DIERSEN HEADLINE: Promoters of homosexual activity stage illegal rally

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES-- DIERSEN HEADLINE: Everyone on the planet earth knows full well that any threats against Obama and any threats against Obama's supporters will ultimately be blamed by Obama's supporters on old white male conservative men. So what does that say about those who threaten Obama and threaten his supporters?,election-racial-obama111608.article

-- FROM THE ARTICLE: State Sen. Gary Dahl, R-Granville, hasn't made up his mind yet, but said the ideal candidate needs to understand the demands to travel and to raise money and campaign for the party. "We need someone who will keep us all together," he said. "They're all good people. I think any one of them would make a good Senate leader, however I would have to wonder what the motivation is for some of them." Dillard said it's time for some new faces in leadership. "We have a cake that hasn't risen in the last four or five years down here and we need new ingredients," he said. "The two new Senate leaders, regardless who's chosen, will hopefully move us towards an end to this gridlock and stalemate in Springfield."

-- State budget process a mess - Ryan Keith
-- Will lawmakers heed Hynes' warning? - Doug Finke

-- The GOP Needs a New Perspective on Self-Funded Candidates - Kathy Michael

-- Just how blue is Illinois? - Fran Eaton

-- Illinois Citizens Rally in Support of Proposition 8; LaBarbera Assails Gay Activists’ Escalating Intolerance against Christians and Churches - Peter LaBarbera

-- Senator Carol Pankau gives outstanding presentation at TAPROOT breakfast meeting - Dave Diersen
At TAPROOT's breakfast meeting Saturday, November 15, at the Old Country Buffet in Lombard, Senator Carol Pankau gave an outstanding presentation on current issues that involve the Illinois Senate, including the leadership races, and fielded many outstanding questions. Look forward to a report on the Senator's outstanding presentation from TAPROOT Communications Director George Kocan. Attendees included Elden Brauer, Wally Brown, Carolyn Connell, Bob Graham, Chuck Kern, Wayne Lela, Preston Noel, Byrd Parmelee, Carl Segvich, Bob Schelstrom, Mark Stern, and Tim Whelan. Please mark your calendar for December 7 and plan on attending the TAPROOT Christmas party.

-- Say goodbye to BlackBerry? Yes he can, maybe Restrictions on presidential e-mail mean Obama may have to sign off - Jeff Zeleny

-- Corruption in the Land of Lincoln These should be heady days in Springfield, but state politicians have been jolted by unseemly accusations. - Michael Isikoff
-- Can Obama Save The Media? How the president-elect has reinvigorated newspaper and magazine sales. - Johnnie Roberts
-- A Way Out of the Wilderness We've been walloped in consecutive elections, but we can't just dwell on the past. The future is already here. - Karl Rove

-- Emanuel pick 'refutes' Obama call for bipartisanship - Andrea Billups

-- Whose President Is He Anyway? "Practically everyone wants to claim Mr. Obama these days. African-Americans, obviously, but also Hispanic-Americans, Jewish-Americans, Muslim-Americans and even white Americans purging feelings of racial guilt. The youth, the netroots, the bipartisan consensus builders, the East Coast elites, the Hollywood crowd. Liberals, centrists and even some conservatives who see Reaganesque qualities. The British, the Germans and other foreigners disaffected with Bush’s America." - Peter Baker

-- Auto industry bailout needs to happen - Editorial

-- The Ten Best Car Songs of All Time - John Matras

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