Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Updated Dec. 7, 2004 at 7:30 pm, revised at 9:40 pm
Now that the United States is bringing some democracy to Iraq and trying to support democracy in the Ukraine, can the Illinois Republican State Central Committee be far behind?
Is Chairman Judy Baar Topinka ready for reform? Will Andy McKenna, Jr. be the next State GOP chair? Is Judy Baar Topinka shy when it comes to taking a position on democracy? Could Ed Brennan rescue the Republican Party from additional self-destruction? Possible AG/GUV/SOS candidate Jim Durkin takes on AG Lisa Madigan, Gov. Rod Blagojevich and much, much more in this week’s suburban edition of “Public Affairs.”
Jeff Berkowitz: What about Andy McKenna, Jr. [for State GOP chair]... The business community seems to favor him…[The candidates for State GOP Chairman, as of Dec. 7, appear to be Andy McKenna, Jr., Steve McGlynn, Jim Nalepa and John Cox].

Jim Durkin: I like Andy. Andy can raise money. I think- my only consideration is that I don’t think it should be someone who is planning on running for office in 2006, and Andy’s name has been mentioned [for that]. I think we need somebody who is going to be completely focused on getting the [Republican] party moving in the right direction.

Berkowitz: Jim Oberweis-- the same problem, he might run for office?

Durkin: Well, exactly, and I think that’s a mistake.

Berkowitz: Ed Brennan [Executive Chairman of American Airlines and former Chairman and CEO of Sears, Roebuck], how would he be? Do you know Ed Brennan?

Durkin: I do know Ed Brennan.

Berkowitz: Would he be a good choice?

Durkin: I think Ed would be a fine choice.

Berkowitz: He is not running for office. He knows people with money.

Durkin: He is not running for office. If they can pull him out of American Airlines-but I am not sure if that is something he would consider.

Berkowitz: Why wouldn’t he consider that? He is raising money for the State GOP [State GOP Finance Chairman].

Durkin: I think he likes his position right now—raising money. I think he likes working in the corporate environment.
Berkowitz: The Democrats elect, I believe, their State Central Committee. The Republicans essentially have these people appointed by the committeemen in each [Congressional] district. Right?

Durkin: That’s correct.

Berkowitz: So, there is no direct election [of Republican State Central Committee members]. Should that be changed.

Durkin: Yes, it should.

Berkowitz: You support that?

Durkin: I do support that.

Berkowitz: What about Judy Baar Topinka? Does she support that?

Durkin: I don’t know.

Berkowitz: Shouldn’t she say?

Durkin: I think that would be important.

Berkowitz: What about Bob Kjellander [Republican National Committeeman from Illinois]? Does he support that? Shouldn’t he say?

Durkin: I think they should say. I think it is important because it is, a representative, you know, type of democracy and I think there has been some criticism within the Central Committee that a lot of them [the Committee members] walk too much in lockstep with the Chairman [Judy Baar Topinka]. I think this will open up the process. I think it will be healthy for the Republican Party to change that system.
Jeff Berkowitz: Say you are running against Lisa [Madigan, the Attorney General], what do you run on?

Jim Durkin: She is a tough one to run against. I am not sure-

Berkowitz: She has done a good job for the first two years?

Durkin: Well, I think she has done a respectable job. She’s-

Berkowitz: She kept a casino out of Rosemont-- Right?

Durkin: I would like to see where she is at on tort reform. She is the state’s lead legal officer.

Berkowitz: She hasn’t talked about tort reform?

Durkin: She hasn’t talked about it at all.

Berkowitz: You think she should?

Durkin: I think she should.

Berkowitz: You think she might not favor caps on personal injury awards [for non-economic damages].

Durkin: If I looked at her D-2s [list of contributors and contributions made to her campaign], I think she would probably say no and she would be as evasive as she could.

Berkowitz: What about casinos? Should she [AG Lisa Madigan] be taking a position on the Mayor’s [Mayor Daley] request to have a Chicago owned casino, Chicago controlled casino? She has taken all of that action [regarding] Rosemont. What about Chicago?

Durkin: Well, it would be consistent. She should be consistent.

Berkowitz: I asked her. She said, “Not my job.” [See blog entry, below, dated November 19, 2004 at 12: 15 am]

Durkin: Well, it was her job-- outside of Chicago it was, and still is, so I think she should step up to the plate and do the same kind of analysis and vetting that she has now done with Rosemont.
Jim Durkin[R- U. S. Senate Nominee, 2002], in a program that was recorded on November 27, 2004, is featured in this week’s suburban edition and next Monday night’s [Dec. 13] City of Chicago edition of Public Affairs [8:30 pm, Cable Ch. 21]. Potential Gubernatorial, Lt. Gov, SOS or AG candidate Jim Durkin debates and discusses with show host and legal recruiter Jeff Berkowitz issues relating to State GOP Chairman Topinka’s role in the continuing decline of the Republican Party, Judy Baar Topinka’s replacement as State GOP Chairman, a very long Republican Gubernatorial Primary cattle call, Governor Rod Blagojevich’s policies re job creation and taxes, Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s performance and leadership, social issues and schisms in the Republican Party, abortion, same sex marriage and gay rights. A partial transcript of that show is included, above. See the conclusion of this blog entry for a detailed suburban airing schedule. The show airs in the City of Chicago this coming Monday night, December 13 at 8:30 pm on Cable Ch. 21 [CANTV].
Back by popular demand, in an encore airing of our show of a few weeks ago, is Pete Giangreco. Next week’s suburban edition of “Public Affairs,” spotlights Giangreco, a Democratic Campaign Consultant who was a senior adviser to the John Edwards for President Campaign in Iowa and a direct mail and media message consultant to Barack Obama during Obama’s U. S. Senate campaign.
The suburban edition of "Public Affairs," is regularly broadcast every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 8:30 pm on Comcast Cable Channel 19 in Bannockburn, Deerfield, Ft. Sheridan, Glencoe, Highland Park, Highwood, Kenilworth, Lincolnshire, Riverwoods and Winnetka.

The suburban edition also is broadcast every Tuesday night at 8:30 p.m. on Comcast Cable Channel 19 in Buffalo Grove, Elk Grove Village, Hoffman Estates, Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles, Northfield, Palatine, Rolling Meadows and Wilmette and every Tuesday night at 8:30 p.m. on Comcast Cable Channel 35 in Arlington Heights, Bartlett, Glenview, Golf, Des Plaines, Hanover Park, Mt. Prospect, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Prospect Heights, Schaumburg, Skokie, Streamwood and Wheeling.
The City edition of Public Affairs airs throughout the City of Chicago every Monday night at 8:30 on Cable Ch. 21 [CANTV].

The “Public Affairs,” show with Jim Durkin will air throughout the City of Chicago next Monday, Dec. 13, 2004 at 8:30 pm on Cable Ch. 21.
Jeff Berkowitz, Host and Producer of Public Affairs and an Executive Recruiter doing Legal Search, can be reached at JBCG@aol.com