If you asked someone to delve into the realm of utterly impossible jobs, they’d probably come up with something like this:
- Donald Sterling’s press secretary
- Kanye West’s therapist
- Fox News fact checker, and
- Illinois Republican Chairman
So when GOP State Chair Jack Dorgan announced he’d rather not serve a second term, it was the least surprising thing anyone’s told me since someone said I’m bald. C’mon! Who’d want a job that makes a Korean ferry captain look good?
Doubt me? Though I could go into all sorts of detail, all I have to do is remind you of the recent GOP gubernatorial contest. Instead of letting it descend into a debacle, some strong leader shoulda sat Messrs. Dillard, Rutherford and Brady down and basically told them this:
“Dis how it’s gonna be! I don’t care if we have to draw straws, one a yas is gonna run and duh udder two are gonna gleefully support him. After we win, you’s twos won’t be forgotten.”
(I should be writing movie scripts) But no! Because the Illinois GOP is more fractured than a West Virginia mining site, they only managed to squabble among themselves to the point of serving up Bruce Rauner, the only candidate who can’t beat Pat Quinn.
It’s gotten to the point where I’m thinking Mike Madigan is getting far too much credit for the other side’s abject ineptitude. Please tell me, how is it that state Republicans cannot make hay with that Democratic fiscal Sword of Damocles hanging over each and every one of our constituent heads?
But getting back to business, Dorgan is moving on to become Rauner’s campaign finance chief and you have to give him credit for two things. The first is bailing out of the burning plane while there’s still time, and the second is understanding that state party chairmen can’t play favorites.
Though one does have to wonder if Rauner really needs someone to keep track of all those checks he writes himself.
Even though I’ve used this joke way too much, the fact that Cook County Commissioner Tim Schneider so eagerly wants to wade into this morass should summarily rule him out. Don’t get me wrong, Tim is a decent guy and a good Republican, but he’s too nice. He’s certainly not the kind of sledgehammer the Illinois GOP needs right now.
You see, Leo Durocher was right! There’s a reason folks like Richard M. Daley, Rahm Emmanuel, Pate Phillips and Michael Madigan succeed – their friends fear them more than their enemies. And if you can find that semi-rare guy (or gal) who knows where the bodies are buried, isn’t afraid to throw a political punch, and knows just where the limits lie, not only can the dreaded ancillary players be neutralized, but those boundless politico egos can be kept in check long enough to get something done.
When wielded correctly, fear is an amazing and powerful political tool. The problem is, the capacity to motivate your “friends” in that efficient manner isn’t something I see in Schneider’s arsenal. Sadly, I don’t see a better possibility either.
And the wheels on the bus go round and round!