One more pre-election short post.
There are a number of fine people who think Republican Darren Bailey can win the governor’s race and “fire Pritzker.” Smart people like Steve Cortes have been saying for some time that “Illinois is in play.” Others will look at the state of the state and say there’s no way voters here want more of the same:
- Illinois is one of the highest taxing states in the country when it comes to income, property, and gasoline taxes.
- Chicago’s record high crime rate is now spilling out into the suburbs.
- The state has been insolvent for over a decade. Bankrupt.
- Only one state has more people moving out than Illinois, splitting up families against their will.
- Businesses continue to leave as well, and many other businesses choose not to expand here.
With less than two weeks until election day, it’s time for a pre-election quiz for students of Illinois politics: If Pritzker wins by a bigger percentage over Bailey than he did over Bruce Rauner in 2018, why will that have happened?
Will it be because Darren Bailey is “too extreme” for Illinois. Is it because Pritzker is doing a fine job and deserves another four years?
Will it be because the Illinois Republican Party and its legislative leadership are feckless, vision-less, and clueless?
Or will it be because the big Republican donors are, like Steve Bannon says, “morons”?
J.B. Pritzker sees himself as a 2024 presidential candidate. He’ll obviously have a friendly Illinois and national media backing him and running interference for him, just like they do for “President” Joe Biden and all other Democratic Party candidates. So any negative things on his record as governor (which amounts to almost everything) will be ignored.
But with a larger margin of victory against Bailey than against Rauner, we’ll be told that the numbers prove that the nation should seriously consider J.B. to take his successes and obvious popularity in Illinois to the White House.
Nationally, Republicans—especially MAGA candidates—are doing well this year, gaining ground in swing states like Pennsylvania and Michigan, and in blue states such as Oregon, Washington, New York and Vermont. But as I’ve noted previously, big GOP years nationally usually skip over Illinois.
Why is that?
That question is also on the table for students of Illinois politics.
Is it because a majority of Illinois voters are morons? I don’t believe that. I would say less than a majority are foolish or stupid or need to learn how to get real news, and start ignoring the fake news. The dominant Illinois media acts as a public relations arm for the Democratic Party.
Here’s another question: how safe and legitimate are Illinois elections?
The amount of willful blindness on our side in Illinois answering that question is astounding. I hate to say it, but that kind of voluntary blindness is the very reason this state is in the mess its in in 2022.
Is there proof of voter fraud in Illinois? Illinois is famous for its political corruption. Is it possible that that rampant corruption would be kept out of the election process?
When a government employee or an elected official tells me that everything is on the “up and up,” I don’t take their word for it. I want proof that Illinois elections are real. The only way to accomplish that is to require voter I.D., paper ballots, and do a hand count on election night. (Illinoisans will volunteer in droves to help.) If everything is legit, the Democrats have no reason to fear voter I.D., paper ballots and a hand count.
I’ve been around politics too long to just trust without verification. If the word of bureaucrats and politicians is good enough for you, I’m guessing Steve Bannon might have an opinion about your judgment like he does about big Republican donors.
And to answer the question in the headline, Pritzker will win by as much as the Democrats think they can get away with.