After the Republic

It’s making the rounds.  People who wonder why Constitutionalists find all the candidates in this election repellent could read it usefully.

I’d like to look backward a moment, to two elections to the Senate, the first in 1998 and the second six years later, in 2004.  By 1998, the Illinois Republican Party was on its uppers, scrounging for candidates able to self fund their campaigns. By blind stupid luck, Illinois managed to elect Pete Fitzgerald to the Senate in 1998. Party honchos didn’t like him very much, and by the end of his term he’d had enough.

2004’s Senate election was one of the weirdest I’ve been through. On the Donk side, the early leader was Blair Hull, a major donor to Donk politicians and causes who had decided he wanted to hold office. He led Barack Obama in polling until the Chicago Sun-Times managed to get hold of the sealed divorce files of Bull and his ex-wife, Brenda Sexton. Ms. Sexton alleged abusive behavior on Mr. Hull’s part, Mr. Hull sank in the polls, and Mr. Obama won an easy victory in the primary. It’s curious that Mr. Hull recommended his ex-wife to Illinois boy governor Rod “Rod” Blagojevich as head of the Illinois Film Office.  In 2003.  Are we a weird state, or what?

The Heffalump nomination was between two rich guys, Jim Oberweis and Jack Ryan (really). Ryan won. He was, to be sure, a silver spoon type, but he did offer a clear choice of political style. He ran as a pro-life, balanced budget candidate, versus the usual and predictable from Obama. Again, the Heffalump honchos weren’t happy about him, but he didn’t need them.

The Chicago Tribune, jealous of the Fun-Times’s  success in torpedoing Blair Hull, decided to take a run at Jack Ryan and snooped around the divorce files between Ryan and his ex, the actress Jeri Ryan. In a sealed custody file, somehow unsealed by a judge in California, the Tribune was delighted to find that Ms. Ryan stated that while they were still married, Mr. Ryan took her to “sex clubs” in Paris.  Quelle Horreur!  After much agita, the Heffalumps dumped Ryan, drafted Alan Keyes to get clobbered by Obama.

Let’s look at this cooly.  Neither “scandal” had any objective verification. Absent the journalistic intervention (and they did not investigate, both papers just slung . . . mud at the candidates) Hull may well have defeated Obama in the primary. If that had happened, no Obama presidency. If Obama had won the primary, a campaign against Ryan was at best 50-50.  The Heffalump honchos denied the good people of Illinois a chance to make a clear choice. We could have voted for a genuine pro-life candidate. We could have voted for a balance budget advocate. Rather than allow that, the honchos saw to it that Barack Obama, already seeking higher office, was given the platform of the Senate.

So just why are “constitutionalist” rank and file alienated?

By the way, the Wikipedia articles about Blair Hull have been edited to eliminate any reference to his divorce “scandal.” A fossilized remnant can be found here.



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