Tag: Pat Brady

Brady’s Resignation is Opportunity to Unite Republican Party, Kelly Says

illinois-republican-party-chair-backs-same-sex-ma-1-10027-1357172718-1_bigUrges Open Process to Elect New GOP Chairman

Chicago, Illinois, May 7, 2013 – William Kelly, a leader in the conservative Republican movement in Illinois, commented today on the resignation of embattled former Republican Party Chairman Pat Brady.

“There are times in politics when you wish you weren’t right,” Kelly said of his months long effort to have Brady replaced.   Kelly was the first conservative leader to call for Brady to step down more than a year ago. “Pat Brady had the mistaken idea that the party worked for him, instead of the other way around.”

Kelly, a conservative columnist for national publications, said that the media has predictably turned the crisis in Brady’s failed leadership into a crusade for their own agenda.  “The media has consistently blown the gay marriage issue out of proportion,” Kelly said. “The hard-cold truth about Pat Brady’s failed era as party chairman is a story about a world-class ego being put before the well-being of the Republican Party.”

Kelly, a long-time leader on conservative issues, said that even more egregious than Brady betraying the party on a key issue, the former chairman foolishly and routinely inserted himself into party primaries-always against the conservative candidate, and worse yet, was the architect and mastermind of the disastrous statewide performance in the 2012 election.

“The party lost four congressional seats, and enough legislative seats to provide Democrats a veto-proof majority in both the Illinois Senate and House,” Kelly said.  “It was a defeat of historic proportions. There was no message, no plan, and no path to victory under Brady’s leadership.  It’s as if Pat Brady piloted the Hindenburg right into the Titanic.”

“It is time for the Illinois Republican Party to come together,” Kelly said.  “The way forward to party unity and victory is to pick a new leader who actually believes in what the party stands for, can effectively communicate that message, and leaves personal grudges out of the electoral process.”

Kelly, a potential candidate for statewide office in 2014, said he has no preference on who the party picks to replace Brady but says that the process should be an open one with full transparency and an opportunity for all candidates to present their credentials.   

“I stand ready to work with the new party chairman to unite the Republican Party to defeat Democratic candidates in Illinois, which should be the one and only mission of the new chairman.”



VIDEO: Illinois GOP Chair Pat Brady Owes Republicans an Apology


Dear Fellow Republicans,

There has been some “controversy” about the State Central Republican Committee meeting on April 13. But out of respect for the victims of the bombings at the Boston Marathon  and their families, I waited to speak about it.

Now it is time to put the protest in its true perspective. Make no mistake about it: April 13th was a major turning point for Illinois Republicans. To the everyday Republicans that came to speak out, let me say how very proud I am of you.

GOP chairman Pat Brady’s arrogance was on full display as he – one again – disrespected rank-and-file Republicans. He lied. He denied public comment until after executive
session. He told people that it would be 20 minutes and, instead, made people wait three hours to deliver a two minute statement. Even grandmas in wheelchairs and
walkers. He called the police again and again and treated Republicans like less than animals.

Here is the full account of what happened with links to video.

But an amazing thing happened that day: Republicans stood up and made their voices heard. We bore witness to why the Illinois GOP continues to fail. People took photos,
posted comments on Facebook, tweeted, and shared videos – and people saw with their own eyes what really transpired. Pat Brady may have some good friends and supporters
in the liberal media – but pictures and video don’t lie. Republicans made a difference and finally things may be beginning to change.

Now, there are some who were upset about the chanting and the protest. To those people, I say that this is just the beginning. Pat Brady and some of the members
of the State Central Committee have lied to Republicans for too long. Brady has made it his mission to work against conservatives, sabotaging them behind-the-scenes.
He has divided the party. What kind of GOP Chairman calls the police on little old Republican ladies?

No, GOP Chairman Pat Brady has no right to civility after what he had done to hurt Republicans.

What happened on April 13th is what we, as conservatives, need to do more of – not less. We have been “respectful” for too long and have been taken advantage of.
We haven’t engaged in enough protest to keep the pressure on GOP leaders on issues ranging from pension reform and taxes to drivers licenses for illegal immigrants
to Obamacare. That’s why we have GOP leaders helping Democrats pass bad legislation. And that’s why, if we hope to win elections in 2014, we cannot stop our protest  until GOP Chairman Pat Brady resigns – now and not later.

Voters deserve a two party system. They deserve a real Republican Party in Illinois – not one that has ceased to be relevant. Voters deserve more than a choice between
the Democrats and a corrupt Republican Party controlled by donors to Rahm Emanuel and riddled with cronyism.

The 2014 elections are just around the corner. The governor’s office and a U.S. Senate seat are at stake. We cannot let GOP Chairman Pat Brady spoil any more elections
for Republicans this time around.

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William J. Kelly

Kelly Calls on Pat Brady to Apologize for “Treating Republicans Like Animals”


Chicago, IL, April 14, 2013 – Activist William J. Kelly releases this statement concerning the treatment of Republican voters at the State Central Republican Committee meeting at the Tinley Park Convention Center Saturday April 13th:

Illinois GOP Chairman Pat Brady’s treatment of Republican voters and activists at Saturday’s State Central Committee meeting was nothing short of disgraceful. Today, I am calling on Chairman Brady and the members of the State Central Republican Committee to apologize to all the Republicans you treated with such utter contempt and disrespect.

A diverse gathering of Republicans, both young and old, of many races, ethnicities, and creeds, some in wheelchairs or with walkers, came in unity to join the call to oust Pat Brady from the chairmanship. Collectively, we have experienced Brady’s election failures. We have experienced how he tries to destroy Republican candidates. We have witnessed how he involves himself personally in Republican primaries. And we have seen how he disrespects the GOP party platform – a platform which he was charged to support and serve.  As chairman, he is also supposed to serve the Illinois GOP – which means the people. The Republican rank-and-file.

But on Saturday he disrespect the people instead. Now, we can add what happened on Saturday to the list to all of all the reasons why Pat Brady needs to resign.

Pat Brady began the meeting by droning on about all of his accomplishments. He spoke for about 45 minutes or more. Other speakers followed. There was no mention about the controversy over his chairmanship or his ouster.

After I asked him about public comments, Brady told Republicans that they would need to leave the room for 20 minutes so that the Executive Session could begin. Instead, the Executive Session lasted more than three hours. Pat Brady lied to Republicans. He was hoping that Republicans would just leave and he wouldn’t have to hear their comments.

We began our own speeches in the hallway. We chanted, “We have rights,” “Let us in,” “Support the platform,” and “He must go.”  Four minutes later, Pat Brady and the members of the State Central Republican Committee called security who told us “to shut up.” A few minutes after that, the police began to arrive. I guess they were afraid of the grandma in the wheelchair. Member Jim Oberweis came out and offered people ice cream from his company. I felt like I was on a Carnival Cruise line.

The minutes became hours and still the people waited and waited and waited. Then Pat Brady came out and stood at the back of the hallway, in the corner, wearing a jacket. The members were voting on something related to him and his chairmanship. A security guard came and made sure Republicans didn’t approach Brady. Then five squad cars showed up and police came into the building. They forced Republicans out of the hallway and locked the doors behind them. Is that respect? Is that how Pat Brady treats Republican voters? Is that how the State Central Republican Committee treats Republican grassroots activists and candidates?

After more time passed, the SCC began allowing mainstream media outlets into the room but they barred members of the conservative media – including Fran Eaton of the Illinois Review and David Diersen of GOP USA.  So the Daily Herald is allowed into the room to cover but conservative media are not? Whose party is this? This certainly isn’t the Republican Party.

Conservative media and others began banging on the locked doors. We deserved some answers – none were being given. They were treating Republicans like animals.

We noticed members of the SCC were leaving the parking lot – having exited the back way.  They finally let Republican voters back into the room. Brady chastised Republicans and called for some adherence to “the rules.” He called for some “respectfulness.”  Did he mean how he and the SCC had treated Republicans for the last three hours? With lies and police squad cars?

The crowd booed him and shouted out comments. He didn’t like it. He told Republicans they had two minutes each to speak. John Fogerty, Pat Brady’s lawyer, then told people they only had one minute to speak…from the back of the room. Many former candidates and current office holders who came to voice their disdain for Brady, among them Paul McKinley, Rich Grabowski, Carl Segvich, Sherri Griffith, Lori Yokoyama, and numerous candidates for school board. During the public comments – which were directed at him – Pat Brady decided to take a bathroom break. People were outraged and told him so. As more comments continued, he walked to a corner and started having a conversation with someone. One Republican told him to “wipe that dumb grin off his face.”

Respect is a two-way street. But Pat Brady and the SCC think it is just a one-way. They demand civility but they then they treat us without any civility. Brady attacks Republican candidates behind-the-scenes and regularly disrespects the grassroots.

The Republicans who attended the meeting are the people who get the petition signatures, make the phone calls, and walk the precincts. They are the real Republican Party. But Pat Brady and the SCC doesn’t recognize the real Republican Party. Real Republicans shouldn’t recognize them.

I am very proud of the Republican activists and voters who came on Saturday. You were seen and…heard. You made a difference and it is just the beginning.


Note: There were numerous candidates and office holders who stood united in protest against Illinois GOP Chairman Pat Brady – too numerous to mention every one of them. But I want to thank every one of them for attending and having the courage to stand up and speak out.

Conservative columnist William J. Kelly is a lifelong Republican and a former 2010 candidate for  Illinois comptroller. He currently writes for the Communities at Washington Times and national publications like the American Spectator. He is an Emmy award-winning TV producer with offices based in Chicago.


This is a critical week for the Illinois Republican Party. On Saturday, the State Central Committee will vote to determine whether or not to oust Pat Brady as GOP party chairman.

This important meeting will take place at the Tinley Park Convention Center. I will be holding a Rally for the Future of the Illinois GOP beginning at 11:00 AM and am calling on all Republicans and conservatives of conscience to join us. There will be speakers. People will have their opportunity to be seen and heard. Freedom is what we celebrate. The future is what we fight for.

The facts are not in dispute:  Brady has been a failure as chairman. He has lost election after election. Under his failed leadership, Republicans have now lost remap control over the state for the next decade. He is responsible for the loss of key congressional districts in 2012. He has divided the party. He has personally involved himself in primary races and routinely targets good conservative candidates for office. He disregards and disrespects the GOP party platform. Everything that a good and honorable GOP party chairman should be – Pat Brady is not.

Pat Brady was forced to pressure Cicero’s Craig Pesek to resign his position at the State Central Republican Committee – even after his connections to criminals became apparent.

Why would anyone support such a failure of leadership? Why would anyone want it to continue?

The Illinois Republican Party cannot afford another election cycle with Pat Brady as chairman. But the party also cannot afford another Pat Brady, a Pat Brady wannabe, a Pat Brady clone, a dupe, or a stooge.

Yes, the goal is to replace Pat Brady but we need an open process to finds his replacement. We need a transparent process and GOP voters deserve to participate in that process.

I heard rumblings that Angel Garcia is a possible replacement to Pat Brady. But has Garcia been vetted in an open process? He aggressively supported the bill to grant driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants in Illinois in November. Encouraging illegal immigration is against the GOP party platform.

If GOP leaders are unhappy about Pat Brady’s support for gay marriage, then they also need to question Garcia about this issue. Under Garcia’s leadership, the Chicago Young Republicans have participated in numerous Gay Pride Parades, shirtless and appearing on floats for the Log Cabin Republicans sporting marriage equality political slogans.

CYRs appear on floats for marriage equality at Chicago's Gay Pride Parade
CYRs appear on floats for marriage equality at Chicago’s Gay Pride Parade

This is not an attack on Garcia.  This is an example of why the Illinois GOP needs to vet the next GOP party chairman in an open process and have candidates present their credentials. We  need some honesty. We need to know what people believe – and if they support something other than the GOP platform -voters deserve to know why … before they are appointed.

Any candidate would deserve to be vetted. What are their conflicts of interest? How many suspect no-bid contracts have they received? Who have they been aligned with politically in the past? Do they have a record of ethics or corruption?

The future of the Illinois GOP – and the 2014 elections – this is what is at stake.

Depending on Saturday’s outcome with Pat Brady – I will have two press releases in my pocket. My own political intentions 2014 will depend on whether Brady remains as chairman.

In my opinion, Brady will ruin the party’s chances in 2014 and beyond. Real Republicans will need to field their own slate of candidates in party primaries. The challenges will be more challenging. But we will meet them.

That is why this Saturday is so important. If you are a Republican of conscience, join us. If you are a conservative or tea party voter fed-up with the status quo, join us. If you are an independent voter that sees how the political establishment works to undermine positive change, you need to join us this Saturday at the Tinley Park Convention Center at 11 AM.

The details are at https://www.facebook.com/events/557606694280018/.


Bill_headshot_1Chicago, Illinois, March 19, 2013 – On April 13, Republican William J. Kelly will make an updated announcement about his plans for the 2014 election season. In 2010, Kelly ran for Illinois comptroller, coming in second in a three-way race.

“It is no mystery that I have been exploring another bid for Illinois comptroller in 2014,” Kelly says. “On April 13, I will give my supporters an update about my intentions.”

Kelly says he would take on Topinka again in 2014. “After four more years of Topinka, Illinois is worse – not better off. The state’s fiscal situation has grown dire. Illinois has been downgraded again and again. Our pension system is in crisis. And Topinka shares a big part of the blame.”

Kelly points out that Topinka, as a state legislator, regularly supported budgets that skipped pension payments. She served three terms as state treasurer and supported the ill-conceived 1994 pension ramp-up bill. She still maintains one of the highest political pensions in Illinois, having pocked hundreds of thousands of dollars, and has defended the gold-plated pensions of state bureaucrats.

“I have run against Topinka before and I can do it again,” Kelly says.

Kelly says that he continues to be disappointed with the Illinois GOP leadership, who along with Topinka, recently supported a law to give state drivers licenses to 250,000 illegal immigrants. The Illinois Association of Police Chiefs and all but three Illinois sheriffs opposed the law. Kelly’s organization, Safer Families Coalition, led opposition to the law.  He says he is also concerned about top donors and advisers to Rahm Emanuel buying influence within the Illinois GOP. 

Kelly says that his updated announcement will be based on whether Pat Brady is forced to resign his Illinois GOP chairmanship. He has called for Republicans to rally on April 13 at the Republican State Central Committee meeting in Chicago, which will decide Brady’s fate.

“The Illinois GOP needs new leadership now. That is why I have been leading the charge to replace Pat Brady since 2010,” Kelly says. “We need leadership that knows how to win elections and not lose them. We need a GOP that offers real change to the people of Illinois and not the corrupt politics of the past and present. We have an opportunity to rebuild the Illinois GOP and the time to do that is now.”



RNW_Pat-Brady_v1In February, I called for a rally in protest against Pat Brady at a fundraiser he organized for a major Democrat donor. Due to mounting pressures, the fundraiser was cancelled. Now I am calling on conservatives to protest again on April 13th at the next Republican State Central Committee meeting (SCC) in Chicago, which will decide Brady’s future as GOP chairman.

This will determine whether Republicans have any shot at winning any statewide office – including the governor’s office which is up in 2014.

The civil war taking place right now in the Illinois GOP is very real and the stakes are high. The GOP establishment is clinging for dear life to hold on to power. The power to cut deals with Democrats. The power to extract a crumb from the Illinois pie of political largess. The fiscal pie isn’t nearly as appetizing as it used to be but pie is pie.

In the process of trying to extend Pat Brady’s reign as Illinois GOP chairman, many so-called Republicans “leaders” have exposed themselves. Can you be a real conservative Republican and support Pat Brady? No, you can’t.

Of course, the mainstream liberal media has become Brady’s biggest cheerleader, claiming that the Illinois GOP is doomed without him. Last week, Rep. Tom Cross and Sen. Mark Kirk were forced to step in to derail the SCC vote on Brady’s ouster. This is the same Rep. Tom Cross who cut a deal with Democrats to implement Obamacare two years early in Illinois in 2012. In January, Cross joined other Republican “leaders” like Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka, Sen. Bill Brady, and former Gov. Jim Edgar in helping Democrat leaders pass a bad bill to grant driver’s licensees to thousands of illegal aliens – against the protests of Illinois law enforcement.

Is this is what counts as “Republican” leadership? Apparently, the answer is “yes.”

A few Republicans have called Brady the best Illinois GOP Chairman we have ever had. The best chairman we have ever had? The standards must be extremely low.

Brady has lost election after election in 2010 and 2012. He has targeted conservatives for defeat. He has made it personal. He has divided the party. He won’t support the GOP party platform and uses his position to lobby GOP legislators against it. He honors major Democrat donors like John Rowe of Exelon and relies on donors like Ken Griffin, a major bundler for Barack Obama and contributor ($100,000) to Rahm Emanuel. Brady has hanged his hat on his ability to raise millions of dollars for the Illinois GOP in 2012. But how much of that money was from the RNC cannibalizing Illinois for donations for use out-of-state?

By any definition, Pat Brady is a failure.

For too long, the Illinois GOP has been run by liberal Republicans who are more than happy to cut deals with the Democrats. Former Sen. Peter Fitzgerald referred to this corrupt cabal as the “Combine.” And that they are. But, in addition to cutting backroom Democrat deals, these Republicans also aggressively support the liberal progressive agenda.

That is why the GOP leadership has an abysmal track record in Illinois, including Judy Baar Topinka, who gifted the U.S. Senate race to Barack Obama, and Andy McKenna, another failure, who personally tapped Brady for chairman. That is why the Illinois GOP has a sordid history as bad as the Democrats – from Gov. George Ryan to Stuart Levine and Bob Kjellander. That is why people like Brady have targeted conservative candidates for office behind-the-scenes, telling donors not to fund their campaigns. And that is why grassroots organizations that could make the critical difference remain underfunded or unfunded. It’s not just bad management or stupidity on Brady’s part – its intentional.

This civil war is reaching a new level as we prepare for 2014.

Top Democrat advisers and billionaire contributors to Rahm Emanuel are working overtime to influence peddle within the Illinois GOP. As usual, money talks and principles are coming in a very distant second. It is now becoming clear which Republican “leaders” have already sold out their values.

It wouldn’t be the first time.