Royally Kranked

Monday, February 20, 2006

It's always so enjoyable when the GOPbots eat their own young

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Republicans go after front-runner

With a month to go until Election Day, Republican candidates for governor Bill Brady, Ron Gidwitz and Jim Oberweis teamed up today in an aggressive attack on front-runner Judy Baar Topinka, questioning her ethical credentials just a day after she proposed a sweeping reform package.

Following a mostly genial debate on public radio, Brady, Gidwitz and Oberweis bashed Topinka, the state's three-term treasurer, for taking hundreds of thousands of dollars in contributions from firms that do business with her public office.

Topinka said she'd "love" to promise not to take contributions from firms that do business with the treasurer's office but said she couldn't, given the fact that her three major opponents in the GOP primary are millionaires. She also said the firms go through a competitive bidding process to receive work with her office.

Good observation about her opponents all being millionaires, and a good reason why campaigns should be publicliy financed only, but that's another issue for another post

And more of the circular firing squad this primary campaign is sure to engender

The attacks on Topinka occurred mostly with the front-runner in the Republican primary out of the room immediately after the hour-long debate aired on WBEZ-FM. After about 20 minutes of the three major opponents questioning her qualifications to lead on ethical issues, Brady said aloud, "Judy should answer these questions. Where is she?"

Topinka's handlers had escorted her out of the room after the debate and for about 10 minutes said she wouldn't reenter until after her opponents had cleared the area. Seizing on that, Jim Oberweis yelled, "What is she afraid of? If she can't handle this, how can she take on (incumbent Democratic Gov. Rod) Blagojevich?"


During the debate, Topinka challenged her opponents to release their personal tax returns for the last 10 years.

Brady, a state senator from Bloomington who made millions as a developer, said he would only release his 2004 tax returns, while Gidwitz, former CEO of Helene Curtis, and Oberweis, head of Oberweis Asset Management and Oberweis Dairy, said they would consider Topinka's challenge.

But there is one good reason Topinka should win the Primary

Topinka defended her support of gay rights, including the state's anti-discrimination law, which other candidates have said they oppose. She said her support of gay rights doesn't set her apart from other Republicans.

Striclty from a "taxation without representation" argument, Topinka's EXACTLY right

But since the US Taliban are firmly in control of the GOP at almost all levels, that view probably won't stand if she wishes to be the GOP Primary Winner


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