The Illinois Race for Governor: First, Do No Harm

Barb Wire

There is much to say about the Bruce Rauner/Evelyn Sanguinetti GOP governor/lieutenant governor ticket in Illinois and it’ll take a handful of posts for me to lay out why I am not voting for them.

Right there I’ve lost many readers because they think that while the Rauner/Sanguinetti ticket isn’t perfect, it is the proverbial lesser of two evils. In this series of articles I will explain why they are absolutely not the lesser of two evils.

With all due respect to the good conservatives who support Rauner, I’d suggest that they don’t understand one simple thing: You can’t rescue Illinois from its current decrepitude without a healthy and growing Illinois Republican Party. It is Rauner who will do severe damage to the Illinois GOP, not Pat Quinn. Without a strong party, we will never move public opinion on the scale necessary, and we will never attain majorities in the state house and senate.

Rauner can claim all he wants that he’s something new — that he’s an outsider — but the truth is he’s the rightful heir of a losing and corrupt Republican Party tradition in Illinois whose patriarchs are people like former governors Jim Thompson, Jim Edgar, and George Ryan, as well as former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert. Other dignitaries include several hapless Republican Party Chairmen, many vision-less Illinois legislators and legislative leaders, and an honor roll of lobbyists, consultants, payrollers, and others who have done quite well for themselves even as the economic and liberty climate in Illinois has declined.

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In this series I’ll also deal with topics such as…

  • Rauner’s choice for lieutenant governor: Really, Bruce, in a state of over 12 million people, this is the person you chose to be a heartbeat away from the governor’s mansion?
  • Rauner’s budget numbers do not add up and they do not reflect fiscal conservatism. As one friend of mine says, November looks more like the Democratic Party primary.
  • Rauner’s proposed education policy: The most wasteful, theft-ridden, and oppressive aspect of state and local government needs more money according to Rauner. And this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to his education policy confusion.
  • Rauner’s veracity on the campaign trail and his management ability as reflected in the history of his business career. Making a lot of money isn’t a measure of a person’s ability to successfully navigate and show effective leadership within the political and governmental process, and it certainly isn’t a measure of a person’s virtue.

Have you noticed that I haven’t yet mentioned the issues that have been whipped up by rabid political lefties since the late 1960s? The notion that social conservatives started the culture war is laughable. The only thing more hilarious is the idea that there is such a thing as a social issues “moderate.” Use of the word moderate is the height of dishonesty. They’re social liberals.

Rauner says he has no “social agenda.” That’s a statement which reveals extraordinary ignorance about the Cultural Marxism that Rauner supports by default. Here’s a clue, Bruce: Cultural Marxism is an enemy of limited government and fiscal restraint.

The problem in Illinois for the past few decades has been an incompetent and ill-motivated Illinois Republican Party. Fixing the IL GOP is necessary if we’re ever going to straighten out Illinois. Continuing to elevate leaders who are disingenuous about policy, poor judges of character (more on that in later posts), and hostile to the party’s social conservative base is a recipe for continuing the present disaster.

Next time let’s take a look at Rauner’s first big decision as a candidate for governor – the choice of Evelyn Sanguinetti as his running mate.

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

John Biver
John Biver is a writer, activist, and analyst with over twenty-five years of experience in the political arena. John is a Christian, an American citizen, and he currently works in the field of applied political science. His personal website is

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