GOP gov candidate takes aim at Madigan

September 22, 2009 3:24:09 PM PDT
A Republican state senator and candidate for Illinois governor is taking aim at one of the most powerful Democrats in Illinois politics as he outlines his campaign for governor. Bill Brady says Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan is his strongest reason for why the state needs term limits. Brady, of downstate Bloomington, wants limits on campaign contributions, wants to redistrict Illinois, and he wants term limits for office holders and legislative leaders.

"Government in Illinois has become all about the politicians and not about the people," Brady said.

To make his point about the need for term limits, Senator Brady took aim at Southwest Side State Rep. Michael Madigan, the powerful Democratic party chairman and speaker of the Illinois House for 24 of the last 26 years.

"There's no question that the speaker of the house, representing little over 100,000 people, has had absolute control over the entire state of Illinois," said Brady.

Brady is the second state senator-candidate for governor to offer a reform package, following Naperville's Kirk Dillard, who presented his plan a couple of weeks ago.

DuPage County executive Robert Schillerstrom, who is also running in the Republican primary, is not impressed.

"Those two guys have been in Springfield for over 30 years together. I contend that they're part of the problem," said Schillerstrom.

Brady, Dillard and Schillerstrom are joined by businessmen Dan Proft and Adam Andrzejewski in the race, with former state Republican party chairman Andy McKenna reportedly poised to join any day now.

In a statement, Andrzejewski took a double shot at Brady and Madigan, writing: "Brady has been in office since 2002 and has since not been willing to address Illinois' major problem for the last 24 years: Michael Madigan. It's appalling."

Also Tuesday, Brady repeated his claim to be the chosen candidate of downstate conservatives, who he says have had enough of Chicago-area politicians, Republicans as well as Democrats.

"What I hear throughout Illinois, including Chicago, including the Chicago metropolitan areas, people are tired of the centerrf point of influence in the Chicago metropolitan area," said Brady.

But Schillerstrom says the problem is not in Chicago or its suburbs.

"Springfield has failed the people. There needs to be a change down there. And he's part of the problem," said Schillerstrom.

Schillerstrom also criticized former state chairman McKenna, who quit his party job last month and reportedly plans to join the primary in the coming weeks. Schillerstrom says McKenna used his role as party chairman unfairly to get information about the other candidates and their campaigns.

These are just the beginning fireworks in what promises to be a very heated race for the Republican nomination for governor.


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