Sunday, April 8, 2012

McSweeney Agonistes?

the spittin imageLake County has its hands in a wringer -- at least that part of Lake County, west of the Route 53 Extension, that nobody talks about. Lake County has been wringing its hands over David McSweeney's upset victory over incumbent Kent Gaffney in State Rep District 52. In particular, everyone is wondering how perennial losing-candidate McSweeney was able to beat Gaffney -- the hand-picked successor to Mark Beaubien -- in the Republican Primary.

Although politically a centrist, Gaffney had been voting in Springfield like a Joe Walsh, and at the same time gathering an elephantine trunk-full of conservative endorsements, to get the Republican voters to like him. Your LakeCountyEye knows better, however, and could have advised Gaffney that he was wasting his time. The typical voter does not care about how their Rep votes in Springfield or who endorsed him. That's because the typical voter does not know who their Rep in Springfield is. For that matter, the typical voter does not know what a Rep in Springfield is.

Your LakeCountyEye would've advised Gaffney to raise a trunk-full of campaign cash and carpet-bomb the mailboxes in his district with campaign lit. Which is exactly what McSweeney did. The end.

Or is it?

Now the Daily Herald reports that Dee Beaubien is making plans to run against McSweeney:
Dee Beaubien, wife of the late Republican state Rep. Mark Beaubien of Barrington Hills, is considering a run for Illinois House as an independent, she said late Thursday. "Considering is the correct word," Beaubien said.
Dee Beaubien thinking about House run
Local pundits think it is a given that Beaubien will run -- the real question is: As a Democrat or an Independent?

A Democratic candidate would need to gather 500 petition signatures to qualify for the November ballot. An Independent candidate for the same office needs to obtain three times as many -- 1,500 petition signatures. On the other hand, Independent candidate Beaubien would be the odds-on favorite in a head-to-head match against McSweeney. No amount of lit-bombing on McSweeney's part would make a dent in Beaubien's enviable name recognition at the ballot box. If Beaubien did opt to run as a Democrat, however, McSweeney might be able to use that as a wedge to peel off enough votes from Beaubien to squeak out a victory in November.

Your LakeCountyEye is convinced: the I's have it.

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