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State Politics Thu Sep 17 2009

Thanks but No Thanks Andy...

So Andy McKenna is going to run for governor as a Republican.

Well if you want my post-mortem on his senate run back in 2004 you can go here. Suffice to say I wasn't real impressed with Andy's senate run back in 2004.

I guess I don't understand why he wants to run. Did he look at the field and see some sort of chance to win against guys with bigger organizations? Does he see a chance of winning against guys who in some cases have been running for months? If he does he is seeing something I must be missing (big time).

To win in this primary and to win in the general a successful candidate is going to have to be aggressive. In the primary you are going to running against candidates who have built up statewide followings, who have spoken at Republican events at all ends of the state. When they and finished speaking at these events they have had people think 'hey I wish that guy would run for governor'. I have heard Andy speak at more than one Republican event over the years, nice guy, but he wouldn't stand out at a convention of stereotypical accountants. I doubt anyone has heard Andy speak at a Republican event and thought "I wish this guy would run for governor."

This is the same Andy McKenna who shot a TV ad that showed him tossing the football around while wearing a tie (Andy being a regular guy). It came across like the middle school assistant-principal trying to act cool.

In order for a Republican to be elected governor the candidate is going to need to be someone who is going to make people listen, that isn't Andy McKenna. We need someone with a compelling story and/or a strong theme. "I built my own company." "I am going to un-fix Illinois." "I stood up against the powers that be even when it cost me politically." None of these are Andy McKenna.

But wait you say, Andy hasn't been in government isn't that going to be in an advantage? Somewhat but we have plenty of candidates running who fit that bill and Adam A built his own company, much more compelling that someone who has worked for his dad.

One of the major keys of success for any Republican in the general election is going to be to make the argument "These folks have had control of everything down in Springfield and the state is totally screwed up, you can't trust them to fix it because they created the problem in the first place". You may not agree with that statement, but it's the logical argument to make to get a Republican back in the mansion. It's an argument that has to be made forcefully and at the end of the day I just don't see Andy being able to do that.

Andy, I don't know how much you are going to end up self funding in this adventure, but if you want my advice and I suspect you don't. Save your money.

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