WE ARE ILLINOIS
GOP Straw poll message: Illinois not a Dem writeoff
By Kerry Lester - Daily Herald
Illinois shouldn’t be considered an electoral write-off for President Barack Obama.
That’s the message the Illinois GOP intends to spread with its largest straw poll yet, across the state’s 102 counties.
Illinois GOP Chair Pat Brady, of St. Charles, and the party’s highest-ranking officer, U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, of Highland Park, formally announced the poll’s launch in Chicago Monday morning.
In 2007, a much smaller poll was held by the Illinois GOP at the state fairgrounds in Springfield.
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won that time around, with 40 percent of the 922 votes, with former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson coming in second.
This time, the poll will be larger and more comprehensive, with online voting taking place across the state through Saturday and in-person voting taking place at township GOP headquarters throughout the suburbs.
It will also serve as a fundraiser, costing $5 per vote, with proceeds going to help congressional and state Republican campaigns in the 2012 election.
While Illinois went for Obama in 2008, Republican presidential candidates’ recent actions show they’re not ignoring the Land of Lincoln, especially the traditional Republican strongholds in the suburbs.
TeaCon, the recent Midwest tea party convention in Schaumburg, served to stoke Godfathers Pizza CEO Herman Cain’s recent surge in the polls Oct. 1 and Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s stop in Carpentersville earlier this month came in between crucial debates, and just a day before he outlined his economic plan in Pittsburgh.
Republican strategist Collin Corbett says between 2,000 and 5,000 votes are expected in the straw poll.
Votes will be tallied Nov. 5, precisely a year before the 2012 election, and in advance of the traditional presidential campaign kickoff Jan. 3 in Iowa.
“We want to generate some enthusiasm among our voters,” Brady said.
SOURCE: Daily Herald
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