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The Mechanics
« AppointmentWatch! AP Cites Progress Illinois' Budget Impact Tracking »

Illinois Mon Jul 13 2009

Kirk In; Conservative Support?

Looks like Kirk will run for Senate and Illinois GOP chairman Andy McKenna, a failed Senate candidate in 2004, will not oppose him. Right wing blogger Paul Kroenke had this to say about Kirk:

Pre-Cap-and-Tax* was a time when I would have backed Kirk wholeheartedly. He talked the talk on fiscal conservatism, and at a deeper level than most. He's lost my confidence for now, but he's got some time over the next year or so to once again start walking the walk. Whether he does or not is up to him, but from where I sit, he's our next US Senator in any case. Given his tendency to follow the polling (backup in the "coward" link) I figure it's probably best to start hoping to have some effect at that level sooner rather than later.

I don't know the contours of the Illinois GOP activist base outside of Chicagoland well enough to know if Kirk's positions on social issues and Cap'n Trade will sink him with the base and keep him from raising the money and volunteers he'll need to counter Democratic support in Cook County (the most Democratic big county in the country). In Chicagoland, GOP activists tend to be anti-government, with pockets of "pro-life" activism (as differentiated from pro-Life sentiment, which is everywhere, obviously); this is also where the organized money is, so regulatory issues rate fairly highly, too. In the exurban areas--Aurora, Elgin, Joliet, Carpentersville--there is a not insignificant collection of immigration reform activism going on as well. Kirk's opponent will have to dampen support in the well-off Cook County townships by playing to support of Obama while boxing Kirk in with his positions on immigration and the environment to keep the exurban activists at home. Also, raise lots of money.

Predictions now are pretty worthless. We know one thing for sure: if the GOP nominates a moderate for the governorship, Kirk will be the "top of the ticket" and the GOP's right wing will be wholly unrepresented on the ballot.

*This is the new "framing" of what was called cap-and-trade, or what I prefer to call Cap'n Trade.

 
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Evert Evertsen / July 13, 2009 5:41 PM

Mark Kirk is rapidly becoming the next Arland Specter. I will not support any candidate with views as liberal as Mark. I will work very hard for any candidate who is a true conservative.

Ramsin / July 13, 2009 5:46 PM

Hey Evert. Would you go as far as to not vote for Kirk in a general election against a Democrat?

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