Chicago, 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.
“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.”
In 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.
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – January 3, 2013 – Pro-family leaders in Illinois are lashing out at GOP Chair Pat Brady in response to his statements Thursday opposing the GOP party platform on gay marriage and his calls to GOP lawmakers urging them to vote along Democrat party lines on new “marriage equality” legislation for same sex unions.
William J. Kelly, Chairman of the Safer Families Coalition, has released this statement following a press conference held this morning calling for the resignation of GOP Chair Pat Brady:
“Pat Brady’s statements in support of same-sex marriage insult the GOP’s pro-family base. His statements and actions are in direct conflict with the Republican Party platform’s position on marriage and reveal, once again, the failure of leadership within the Illinois GOP to represent Republican voters. Illinois GOP voters deserve representation and they deserve better than Pat Brady’s lies and duplicity,” said Kelly.
Kelly says Brady’s record of failure as GOP Chairman is also clear: Brady was hastily appointed by party insiders to the GOP chairmanship in 2009 – without opposition. In 2010, he bungled the GOP’s chance to retake the governor’s office in a landslide Republican year. That failure meant Illinois Democrats retained exclusive re-map control of Illinois districts.
Earlier this year, Kelly called on Brady to resign after he interfered in state GOP primaries. Brady has also been widely criticized for the state GOP’s participation in a funding scheme involving top donors to Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
At the State Convention in June, Brady and members of the State Central Committee also blocked the resolution on direct elections from going to a floor vote, which would have allowed GOP voters to directly elect their party leaders.
Regarding finding a replacement for Brady, Kelly had this to say: “GOP voters deserve a fair and open process to find a new chairman, a process that allows numerous candidates to present their credentials and not the state central committee hand-picking another insider with no loyalty to the party platform or the voters. We don’t need another GOP Chairman who as is as bad as Pat Brady.”
“In Republican majority states, we don’t see Democrat party leaders telling their members to adopt Republican Party principles. So why should Republican voters accept their leaders telling party officials to vote the Democrat party line? We need a party chairman who believes in and promotes Republican principles, not Democrat ones. Pat Brady does not believe in Republican Party principles and should resign effective immediately.”
Kelly is a longtime Republican activist and former statewide candidate for Illinois comptroller in 2010.
SEE THE NEW TV AD SPOT PREVIEW: “THE ILLINOIS GOP ISN’T BROKEN, IT’S FIXED”
KELLY: Conservatives finally waking up to Proft
CHICAGO, IL – Once again the ethically and morally-challenged Dan Proft was evasive when questioned publicly about his deep connections to crime-connected Cicero officials and top campaign bundlers to Barack Obama and Rahm Emanuel.
Proft spoke before TAPROOT organization at the Naperville/Lisle Hilton Saturday. It was the same exact David Mamet speech he has given for the past 9 months; I’ve heard it at least three times. The same combination of questions and answers. The same boring platitudes. Nothing new.
Since I made it clear I would be attending the meeting to ask Proft questions, he came prepare to evade them:
1. Dan, why are all the things you say so different than what you actually do?
2. Why would anyone who calls themselves a reformer – especially a so-called conservative one – be in bed with crooked Cicero Larry Dominick and the mob-connected Pesek brothers?
5. And why did he aggressively promote CPAC instead the Illinois GOP Convention at a critical time – when conservatives and tea party activists needed to demand direct elections and hold the Republican Party to account for their recent actions on passing ObamaCare, higher taxes, and gambling expansion?
As any member of TAPROOT who was present at the forum can attest, Proft’s smug evasiveness was glaringly apparent to the audience and it definitely did not help him. Arrogance should never be mistaken for eloquence; that is the mistake Proft continues to make. The audience wanted him – for once – to just answer the questions.
Illinois conservatives – having been at the mercy of crooked Illinois Democrats – don’t find “corrupt conservatism” especially appealing.
William F. Buckley was a hero of mine; but Proft is no Buckley.
When I mentioned Proft’s relationship to Obama’s top campaign bundlers, he tried to level some strange put-down about there being a “William Kelly purity test.” But would Ronald Reagan ever have taken money or given money to a Barack Obama or a Rahm Emanuel?
Sorry Dan, but it shouldn’t be too much to ask that people who represent themselves as “conservative reformers” not make their living through mob-connected Cicero thugs, assorted criminals, or Obama bundlers. You’ve set the bar just a little too low.
Yes, Proft uses “conservative window-dressing” to advance himself. But who really knows if believes anything?
We are coming upon the most important election of our lifetime: an opportunity to defeat President Obama and his extreme left-wing progressive policies that threaten to fundamentally change America. An America we won’t be able to recognize.
But we are fighting an Illinois Republican Party that is, arguably, in collusion with corrupt Democrats. At its best, our party is ineffective. At worst, they are doing it on purpose. (See a preview of our new TV ad spot: “The Illinois Republican Party isn’t broken; it’s fixed”)
We are also fighting people who cast themselves as conservative reformers; but their actions speak more loudly than their false conservative words.
If you are a Republican voter in Illinois, read on to join the lawsuit.
IL ELECTION CODE VIOLATES EQUAL PROTECTION SAYS GOP ACTIVIST
Chicago, IL – GOP activists say they will file a legal challenge to the Illinois Election Code, contending it violates the equal protection of Republican voters and denies them the right to vote for their party leadership.
“Illinois election law treats Republican and Democrat voters differently,” says longtime GOP activist William J. Kelly. “Why is that Democrat primary voters directly elect their party leadership, but Republican voters do not? With this lawsuit, we are going to challenge the constitutionality of that law.”
Under 10 ILCS 5/7-8, the Illinois Republican Party is currently run by a 19-member State Central Committee, one member from each ofIllinois’ congressional districts – none of whom are directly elected.
But Kelly says that, in the late 1980s, two party bosses, Republican Gov. James Thompson and party chair Al Jourdan engineered a sudden change to the Illinois election code to consolidate their power, stripping GOP voters of the right to vote for their party leadership. Illinois Republicans had that right for more than a century.
Conservatives argue that this has resulted in a lack of any accountability to GOP primary voters and party corruption.
To date, state GOP bosses have successfully thwarted any attempt to return to direct elections both legislatively with the passage of SB600 and SB35 and, most recently, at the Illinois Republican Convention.
At the Illinois Republican convention last week, state GOP leaders in an unelected 11-7 committee decision determined that delegates would not be permitted a floor vote on “direct elections” – a move that would have restored voting rights to the Republican electorate.
Kelly points out that convention rules are determined by unelected party representatives and committee members are also appointed by unelected party officials – which bolsters the legal argument to restore equal treatment of Republican voters in the political process.
Republican voters have also complained that they were denied delegate credentials and conservatives are now questioning the validity of the convention proceedings in general.
“In 1724, Catholics inIrelandwere denied the right to vote. Prior to 1870, Black Americans were denied the right to vote. American women marched in the streets for decades for the right to vote,” says Kelly. “But in 2012, Illinois Republicans do not have the right to vote for their party leadership.
Kelly was involved with another federal legal challenge to voting rights. In 1995, his political action committee filed a lawsuit against the First and Fourth Congressional Districts, charging that they were gerrymandered and unconstitutional and reached the U.S. Supreme Court.
“We lost 6-3 in that decision,” said Kelly of that suit. “But we fought. Hopefully, we will have better luck this time around. The law is definitely on our side.”
After ICER’s reports, Crain’s Chicago Business, Springfield Journal Register and Republican News Watch, among others, reported on a questionable funding scheme – a shell game of massive contributions between these Obama-linked donors and downstate political organizations – contributions that eventually funneled their way back to the Illinois Republican Party’s coffers and went unreported. Unfortunately, the funding scheme has put the Illinois GOP’s finances under scrutiny, and for that, GOP Party Chairman Pat Brady must take full responsibility.
However, in light of the vote on ObamaCare last week, the relationship between Obama’s top donors and members of the Illinois GOP raises even more questions. Questions that include:
– Rodney Davis, who was just “named” by Illinois GOP leaders to be the ballot replacement for Rep. Tim Johnson in the 15th district, has admitted he was behind the scheme between the Soros-linked Griffins and downstate political organizations to funnel money to the Illinois GOP. Coincidence?
The problem conservative Republican and Tea Party voters face in Illinois is that it is impossible for us to determine what politicians actually represent our cause. We do not know who is really on our side. At least, Democrat politicians are honest in their dishonesty. We know what they believe in: progressive political policies that empower government, not people.
But too many Illinois Republican officials play both sides of the political fence. They “lie in wait,” amassing political power and, once they have achieved it, they vote with Illinois Democrats on key legislation – legislation that is anathema to the voters they were elected to represent. Like ObamaCare.
In Illinois, the pattern is always the same: Thompson, Topinka, Pat Brady, Tom Cross, McKenna and those that are allied with them.
The reason that this happened is because there is an imbalance of power in the Illinois Republican Party. The power does not lie with conservative, Tea Party, or Republican voters.
So how do we fight back? How do we change this political equation? How do we shift the power away from Democrat-backed Illinois Republican party leaders?
The Illinois Republican Convention on June 8th and 9th. June 8th is when the Republican State Central Committee makes the real decisions about the party’s future. So will Tea Party and conservatives fight back on June 8and show the Illinois Republican Establishment their outrage over Illinois ObamaCare? Or will they go to CPAC Chicago?
Every conservative and every Tea Party activist needs to go to the Convention – regardless of whether they are a delegate or not. We need to speak out and protest on behalf of returning voting power back to Republican primary voters. We need a vote on direct elections at the convention.
I am also running for National Republican Committeeman to represent our state. In this, Doug Ibendahl and Cathy Santos of Republican News Watch suggested to me that – in the spirit of direct elections – the National Republican Committeeman Selection Committee – should offer all the candidates to the delegates at the Convention for a floor vote – not just their “one” selection.
I wholeheartedly agree. Why would the State Republican Central Committee offer only “one” name to the delegates? Does that sound like democracy to you?
If you are truly angry about the ObamaCare vote betrayal, plan to be at the Illinois Republican Convention on June 8th and 9th.
Vote for direct elections and restore voting power to Republican voters and make the Illinois GOP establishment accountable once again.
Demand that the State Republican Central Committee offer all of the candidates for National Republican Committeeman to the delegates for a vote.
We can have a real Republican Party in Illinois– but only if we work together and fight back to restore fundamental Republican principles to our party.
Hoffman Estates,Illinois, May 20, 2012 – The Illinois Center Right Coalition, a conservative group, has endorsed broadcaster and longtime taxpayer watchdog William J. Kelly for Republican National Committeeman from Illinois.
Also in the race are Rich Williamson, the current Republican National Committeeman, and Alexander “Sandy” Stuart, who serves as treasurer for the Illinois Republican Party.
“We need leaders with passion and commitment to the conservative platform of the Republican Party.” says Illinois Center Right Coalition Chairman Frank Napolitano. “As a longtime taxpayer advocate, William J. Kelly has never shied away from taking the courageous stands. He is outspoken on defending the conservative planks in the party platform and the Republican Party needs that more than ever before. That is why the Illinois Center Right Coalition is proud to endorse Kelly for the post of National Republican Committeeman.”
“I’m very proud to have the endorsement of the Illinois Center Right Coalition, an organization that has always exhibited a principled dedication to conservative ideals,” says Kelly. “I will do my best to run a campaign that will honor this great organization and other conservative and Republican organizations acrossIllinois.”
“It is time to free the Illinois Republican Party of the influences of donors that play both sides of the political fence,” remarked Kelly about why he is running for National Republican Committeeman. “We cannot be the party of Reagan, if we are the party influenced and funded by major bundlers to Barack Obama and top contributors to Rahm Emanuel. It is time to give the Illinois Republican Party back to the people – the way it should be.
Kelly is President and founder of an Emmy award-winning TV production house. Formerly, the Executive Director of National Taxpayers United of Illinois, Kelly currently writes for national publications including the Communities at the Washington Times, the American Spectator, and Breitbart.com. He is a graduate of Loyola University of Chicago and theRomeCenterinItalyand received a B.A. in political science. He is a native ofChicago’s South side and now lives with his wife, Laura, in the downtownChicagoneighborhood of Streeterville.