Wednesday, May 8, 2013

A woman? As party chairman! Only the GOP could think this was a radical step

It has been known for quite a while that Illinois Republican Chairman Pat Brady would wind up stepping down from his post on account of the fact that his thoughts about gay marriage (“accept it,” he says) have offended a segment of the GOP faithful.

BRADY: Will anyone take his advice?
So when he tendered his resignation on Tuesday, the fact that he’s gone wasn’t really news. What caught my attention was the fact that Brady made a point of saying he thinks he should be replaced by a woman.

“I REALLY THINK we need a different face than an old white guy,” WBBM-TV reported Brady as saying. “I think it’s time for a woman.”

Not that it would be a first. Let’s not forget that Judy Baar Topinka held the post about a decade ago – only to manage to offend the same ideologues who were determined to dump Brady; one way or another.

Which means I’m sure that the people who wanted Brady out aren’t going to be the least bit interested in who he thinks should succeed him. This whole fight over leadership of the Republican Party in this state is ideologically-inspired.

At a time when some elements are trying to tell the Republican Party to moderate their views more in line with the bulk of society, there is the other element tightening its grasp to ensure that the party stays totally in line with the way they want to view the world.

AFTER ALL, THAT’S why they became Republican Party members in the first place.

Personally, I don’t place faith in any government institution to “do right” 100 percent of the time. I also realize that the concept of “compromise” means that I’m never going to get absolutely what I want all of the time.

Although I suspect that the ideologues who are behind this GOP leadership battle are more interested in seeing to it that their opponents NEVER get what they want Which is another reason I have trouble sympathizing with them.

TOPINKA: Who remembers 1st woman chair?
So it will be intriguing to see which direction the party leadership goes. Which faction of Republican partisans will prevail?

I DON’T SEE a return to the days of old when a life-long Chicagoan like James R. Thompson could get elected to a record-setting consecutive number of terms as governor.

Personally, I always thought that Thompson’s electoral success was due to the fact that Chicagoans found him acceptable enough that they could focus their attention on supporting Democratic politicians running for offices they were more concerned about.

Now, that very acceptability would probably cause the GOPers from rural parts of the state to revolt against “Big Jim” – or anybody like him!

DONOVAN: The 'radical' pick?
Which is part of the reason why I find it amusing that – for the time being – the Illinois Republican Party is being led by a woman from Chicago.

CAROL DONOVAN IS the current vice-chairman of the Illinois GOP. She will be in charge until party officials figure out who they want to put in charge for the long-haul.

Nobody expects Donovan to get the actual pick. She’s the equivalent of David Orr when one runs through a list of people who have served as mayor of Chicago – or have you forgotten his week-long stint 26 years ago as the “Man on Five?”

But a part of me thinks she would be the radical pick who would appease the ideologues. After all, anybody who lives in Chicago (even if she is a Champaign native) yet persists in working for the GOP is obviously in it as an act of the heart. Because with the way the Democratic Party dominates the local scene, she obviously doesn’t get anything in the way of a job or any other political perks from her party duties.

 A Chicago Republican? How much more hard-core can you get!


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