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Former gov calls "Fire Madigan" push by GOP "gimmick"

Mon, 29 Oct 2012 09:28:45 CDT

This election season, the Illinois Republican Party has spent a lot of money and energy urging voters to "fire Madigan," that's Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan. But an elder G-O-P statesman is questioning that strategy. Former governor Jim Edgar called the effort a gimmick. Republicans are betting that by tying Democratic candidates to the Chicago politician who's been Speaker of the House for most of the last 30 years, they can pick up a few seats in the legislature. But there might be a problem with that strategy:

"I think there was a poll the Tribune did, really a lot of folks don't even know who Mike Madigan is."
Indeed, half of the people polled either hadn't heard of Madigan, or had no opinion about him. Edgar says when he was governor, he sometimes worked with Madigan and sometimes fought against him, but he still has a lot of respect for the speaker:

"I don't get quite as upset about Mike Madigan as I get upset about, I think we Republicans have to a little better job winning elections so Mike Madigan doesn't have that much power."
Although he calls the "Fire Madigan" push a gimmick, former Governor Jim Edgar also says campaigns need gimmicks.

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