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Reprinted with permission from William J. Kelly and the Washington Times Communities/24/7:

Chicago, Illinois, May 27, 2012 (as originally published) – Pulling a ‘Specter’ has become shorthand for an act of political betrayal against your party’s fundamental principles. This week, sixteen Illinois Republican lawmakers with the encouragement of state GOP leaders did just that when they approved Democrat legislation that would implement ObamaCare two years ahead of schedule in the cash-strapped state.

Back in 2009, then Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) was one of only three senators to break party ranks and vote for President Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, that the president’s Council of Economic Advisors have now estimated cost taxpayers $278,000 per job created.

In April that same year, Specter suddenly announced he was joining the Democrat Party, the switch giving Senate Democrats a filibuster-proof majority of 60 seats. In December 2009, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), informally known as ObamaCare, passed in the U.S. Senate by a vote of 60-39.

But Specter paid a serious price for his Republican betrayal; voters do not seem to react well when a politician changes his stripes for a political gain. In 2010, Specter lost his seat to Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) in the bruising 2010 midterm elections and the successful sweep of Tea Party-backed Republican congressmen into office.

Ever since the Specter betrayal, Republican primary voters have become increasingly astute at discerning Democrats-in-Republican-clothing.

The sneaky late Thursday vote on Illinois bill HB 5007 this week – right before the start of Memorial Day weekend – may have forced some of these Illinois “Republicans” out of the proverbial political closet.

In 2011, Illinois lawmakers agreed to a moratorium on expanding the failing state Medicaid program. But HB 5007 – sponsored by State Senator Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago) (who took over former State Sen. Barack Obama’s seat) – circumvents the moratorium by enabling “expansions approved by the federal government.” The bill actually implements ObamaCare’s expansion of Medicaid two years ahead of schedule and could add as many as 250,000 people to the already overburdened state Medicaid rolls.

The expansion is based on ObamaCare’s eligibility rules and has built-in safeguards if portions of the law are ruled to be unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court this year.

The bill passed both houses in Illinois and included the support of 11 House Republicans and 5 Senate Republicans, five of them lame ducks.

But Republican voters, outraged at the perceived betrayal by the Illinois GOP leadership, are speaking out. Earlier this week, Tea Party organizations across Illinois issued statements condemning House Minority Leader Tom Cross for “cutting deals with Chicago Democrats” on ObamaCare. Senate Leader Christine Radogno has come under fire for permitting 5 lame duck Republicans to vote for the ObamaCare expansion

The political sleight-of-hand has left some to wonder: with Republican leaders like these, who needs Democrats?

Illinois GOP Party Chairman Pat Brady also has remained silent on the issue. But the Republican defection appears to be in direct conflict with the current Illinois Republican Party platform which states in pertinent part:

Illinois Republicans reject the socialized healthcare schemes being promoted by our two United States Senators (Sen. Dick Durbin and Sen. Barack Obama) and a majority of the Democrats in Springfield. Healthcare policies should: …foster accessibility by lowering costs and putting individuals and families in charge of their own healthcare decisions.”

Twenty-four Illinois Republican lawmakers also voted to pass gambling expansion in Illinois this week – another betrayal of the party platform. SB1849 authorizes five new casinos – including Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s city-owned casino in Chicago.

Rep. Dan Brady – cousin of GOP Party Chair Pat Brady – also voted for the measure.

Will there be a backlash against the Illinois GOP establishment for its support of these controversial measures? Will a robust movement of taxpayers unite against this latest encroachment of big government in Illinois? And will RNC Chairman Rence Priebus condemn Illinois Republican leaders who supported ObamaCare when he comes to speak before the Illinois GOP Convention on June 8th and 9th?

Read the rest of the story at the Tea Party Report at Washingtontimes.com. 



OUTRAGE: Republican Group Demands Recall of Illinois GOP Chair Pat Brady



Statement by Illinois Citizens for Ethics Reform Spokesman, William J. Kelly

Chicago, Illinois – For the last several weeks, GOP Party Chairman Pat Brady has come under fire following a series of news reports from Illinois Citizens for Ethics Reform and other media raising serious concerns about potential violations of state campaign finance law involving tens of thousands of dollars and other irregularities in the handling of Illinois Republican Party finances.

Embarrassing much? To say the least.

Read Crain’s Chicago Business and Huffington Post stories here.

But rank and file Republicans in Illinois are also fed-up with Brady’s direct interference in GOP primaries in the 2012 election season and his stunning electoral failures in 2010 – including the loss of the Illinois governor’s race and remap control – a remap that resulted in the loss of longtime conservative Rep. Don Manzullo (R-IL).

It must have been a different Brady that was “elected GOP Party Chairman in 2009 who said:

“The reason I think I won [State GOP Party Chairman] is because they [Illinois Republicans] want ethics, they want reform, they want this office to maintain the highest degree of integrity,” said Brady when he was first elected to his position by the Republican State Central Committee on August 20, 2009.

Ethics? The highest degree of integrity, eh?

So has Brady lived up to the ethical bar he said his election i.e. appointment established? Many Republicans would argue the answer is “no.”

On Tuesday, the Illinois Center Right Coalition (“ICRC”), a Republican organization, passed a resolution calling for the Republican State Central Committee to recall Brady from his position as Chairman if he fails to resign.

The ICRC Resolution reads in pertinent part:

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the members of the Illinois Center Right Coalition call upon the Illinois Republican State Central Committee to produce and publicly disclose Chairman Pat Brady’s Ethics Disclosures, since he is required to submit a statement of his interests or potential conflicts of interest to the members of the Central Committee; the ICRC calls for Chairman Brady to resign immediately. If he refuses to do that, we call for the IL GOP State Central Committee to recall Pat Brady from his official position as State Chairman effective immediately.

The resolution outlines ten reasons for the recall, including Brady’s controversial decision to act as campaign manager in the race for Kane County Board Chairman against longtime Republican Sen. Chris Lauzen; his failure to recruit Republican candidates for office, leaving numerous races uncontested (21 of 59 (36 %) State Senate seats have no Republican Candidate and 43 of 118 (36 %) State Representative seats have no Republican Candidate); and his participation in a downstate fundraising scenario with major donors to Rahm Emanuel ($200,000 in 2011) and Barack Obama (bundled $231,000 in 2008) which has called the State GOP party’s finances into question.

See the full text of the MODEL RECALL RESOLUTION here.

Proponents of the resolution say that it could serve as a model and urge others conservative and Republican groups to adopt similar resolutions.

“We have to keep the pressure on,” said one Republican activist who feels betrayed by Brady. “If Republican voters voted for their party leadership, we would have accountability. As it stands, we don’t.”

After review of he circumstances surrounding Brady’s election to GOP Party Chairman in 2009, the troubling patterns continue to emerge.

Backstory: Andy McKenna succeeded Judy Barr Topinka as State GOP Chair, who presided over the failed U.S. Senate races of Jack Ryan and Alan Keyes against Barack Obama. She tapped Dan Proft as an overpaid consultant on the campaigns – both efforts were bungled.

McKenna resigned abruptly on August 20, 2009; the former GOP Chairman was under pressure to resign after the party’s political failures mounted. By the time McKenna was done, Democrats held every statewide office, a super majority of seats in the Illinois Senate, and a 70-48 seat edge in the House.

McKenna has since been deeply involved with seeding the so-called tax-exempt Illinois Policy Institute and the John Tillman-Dan Proft political action committees, which funded questionable candidates against conservatives in the recent primary elections. Both McKenna and Proft mounted failed campaigns for governor in 2010.  Read more about the George Soros-Barack Obama-tainted Illinois Policy Institute political shell game here. Read the Springfield Journal Register story here.

Brady was named his McKenna’s successor within hours of his announcement in a closed door session of the State GOP Central Committee. He was unopposed.  Previously, he served as Republican National Committeeman. He had succeeded the unindicted Bob Kjellander, who was named in a federal trial and accused of participating in a $500,000 kickback scheme involving convicted felons William Cellini (another Republican powerbroker) and Antonin “Tony” Rezko and former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, now serving a 14 year term in prison.

This is what not having direct elections has done for the Republican Party in Illinois. This is what happens when you strip Illinois Republicans of their right to vote for their own party leadership: abuse of power and no accountability.

For this, we can thank liberal Republican Gov. James Thompson and then State Party Chairman Al Jourdan for engineering an unusual change in the Illinois Election Code back in the 1980s to permit the Republicans – not the Democrats – to use an undemocratic process to choose its state party committee members. Until then, Republican Party central committee members had been directly elected by primaries among their registered voters.

That is when things changed for the worst in Illinois.

So how do we change this destructive pattern? How do we end the vicious cycle of abuse?

We need to give the Illinois Republican Party back to the people. On June 8th and 9th, Republicans will have the opportunity to do just that. Please join like-minded conservatives and Republican organizations in the effort to restore Republican voting rights today.

Read now about how you and your organization can become delegates to the Illinois Republican State Convention and vote on June 8th and 9th to take back your vote.

The next installment of this Illinois Citizens for Ethics Reform will trace the patterns of corruption in party political circles, who is involved, and who is getting what in return.


The full text of the Illinois Center Right resolution reads as follows:

 WHEREAS, the platform of the Illinois Republican Party contains the following: “To conduct ourselves in such a way as to rebuild the public trust in the Republican Party” and

WHEREAS, the platform of the Illinois Republican Party contains the following: “our party will not stand for the slightest compromise in the ethics of our political leaders” and

WHEREAS, the platform of the Illinois Republican Party contains the following: “The Republican Party supports the citizen-led effort to institute a process for recall of elected officials.” and

WHEREAS, the platform of the Illinois Republican Party contains the following: “Party officials must act in such a way as to avoid even the appearance of impropriety.” and

WHEREAS, the platform of the Illinois Republican Party contains the following: “Illinois Republicans call on all citizens of Illinois to join us in restoring to Illinois government the principles enunciated in the Platform, principles which have guided our Party and which motivate us to active involvement in the political arena.” and

WHEREAS, when Pat Brady was elected as the Chairman of the Illinois GOP he made the following statement: “The reason I think I won is because they want ethics, they want reform, they want this office to maintain the highest degree of integrity.” and

WHEREAS, the Chairman of the Illinois Republican Party is responsible for raising money to support Republican candidates and ensuring the success of those candidates in the General Election; and

WHEREAS, 21 of 59 (36 %) State Senate seats have no Republican Candidate and 43 of 118 (36 %) State Representative seats have no Republican Candidate

WHEREAS, Pat Brady, the current Illinois Republican Party Chairman has failed to meet the stated requirements of the platform by:

• Participating in a fundraising scenario with downstate Republican organizations that has called into question the Illinois Republican Party’s finances

• Directly involving himself in contested Illinois Republican primaries

• Directly acting as campaign manager for a candidate in a contested Republican primary

• Misusing state Republican funds to support embarrassing candidates in Chicago city elections

• Failing to organize statewide political and grassroots resources to enable a Republican gubernatorial candidate to win office in an election year highly favorable to Republicans;

• Failing to recruit adequate candidates for State Office

• Failing to secure Illinois Republican party victories, which was responsible for the loss of political remap control affecting local, state, and federal offices

• Failing to win key Republican races and any races of import

• Creating an atmosphere of distrust among members of the Illinois Republican Party and subjecting those members to the derision brought by successive and numerous political losses.

 NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the members of the Illinois Center Right Coalition call upon the Illinois Republican State Central Committee to produce and publicly disclose Chairman Pat Brady’s Ethics Disclosures, since he is required to submit a statement of his interests or potential conflicts of interest to the members of the Central Committee; the ICRC calls for Chairman Brady to resign immediately. If he refuses to do that, we call for the IL GOP State Central Committee to recall Pat Brady from his official position as State Chairman effective immediately.



1. Post this article and VOTING RIGHTS POSTER on your facebook page. Send the poster to your like-minded conservative friends. SPREAD THE WORD.

2. If you are planning on going to Chicago CPAC – don’t. It is highly unfortunate that they planned Chicago CPAC for the same weekend as the Illinois Republican State Convention.

3. Call your local GOP County Chairman. Here is a list of them from Republican News Watch. Scroll down and to the right you will see a list that says “Republican County organizations.” Find your county and click it.http://republicannewswatch.com/wp/?p=755

If you are from Cook County, call your Republican township or ward committeeman. Here is the list:http://cookrepublicanparty.com/leadership.aspx

4. Ask your County GOP Chairman (or if you are from Cook, your committeeman) to name you a delegate.

5. If you are denied the opportunity to become a delegate, contact me at williamjpkelly@gmail.com.

6. Once you are named a delegate, register as a delegate for the Illinois Republican Convention here:http://ilgopconvention.eventbrite.com/

7. When the vote for direct elections is called, vote to restore direct elections and the right for Illinois Republican voters to choose their own leaders.

 Let’s send a message to our corrupt Republicans officials in Illinois that we demand the right to vote and we demand it now. Before it is too late.


Kelly will discuss Tillman-Proft Funding Chart at May 3 Tri-County Tea Meeting

Statement by Illinois Citizens for Ethics Reform spokesman William J. Kelly

Chicago, Illinois – The Cicero bully is at it again. New emails obtained by Illinois Citizens for Ethics Reform reveal that Dan Proft has now stooped to bullying conservative women in Illinois’ pro-family movement.

This week, angry that a woman was circulating information about his funding from major donors linked to Barack Obama and Soros Fund Management, Proft sent her a bullying email that the:

…poorly researched, poorly reasoned and just plain farcical ravings truly diminishes you. It is truly unfortunate that you are so easily fooled by fact-free demagoguery.  I feel sorry for you.” – says Dan Proft to a woman in the pro-family movement

In true bully form, Proft never picks on someone his own size. Instead, he focused his attacks on a person who is known to be a very sweet woman who has been deeply involved in the pro-family movement for decades.

But Proft is a serial harasser. Last month, he was caught sending bullying emails to Illinois tea party organizers who were disinviting him as a speaker to their organizations.  Proft’s appearance at last month’s Chicago Tea Party rally on Tax Day may have been the reason for the poor attendance – a meager 200 or so people.

Now new leaked emails show an unfortunate pattern of harassment. One bullied tea party organizer in Illinois emailed him back, hoping the harassment would end:

 “I cannot believe you are engaging in worthless chatter with me Dan. You have been sooooo condescending. I thought that whatever I wrote would never be worthy of a response. Get on with your life, Dan. I am not stopping you.”  –  Illinois Tea Party organizer bullied by Dan Proft

“I am aware of what you are doing and what you are not doing. I’ll live my life as I chose but thanks for the advice….I am still waiting for a substantive response to my substantive answer as well as to the substantive examples that run in contravention to your fact-free demagoguery.”    – Cicero Dan Proft bullies people with emails

Tea party organizers, who have called out Proft as a traitor, have lined up against him. Proft worked aggressively against Rep. Don Manzullo and used his dubious political action committees to support other questionable candidates in the recent March primary. Many have had the courage to stand up and speak out. 

Interestingly enough, Proft isn’t really denying the facts in any of the bullying emails he has sent. He relies on bullying (and an increasingly laughable use of his computer’s online thesaurus function) to pressure pro-family and tea party organizers who are unhappy with his dirty tactics.

The real problem for Proft, Tillman, and their associates is that the plain facts being exposed are public information. Anyone can search them in the online databases at the Illinois State Board of Elections and the Federal Election Commission websites.

Here are the links:

Obama, Soros-linked contributions to Proft, Tillman 



Proft-Tillman donors’ ties to Obama


Proft-Tillman donors’ ties to Rahm


Proft-Tilman donors’ ties to Soros Fund Management  


Shell game of Tillman-Proft political action committees


Where did Proft’s bullying nature come from? 

How ’bout Cicero? Proft’s longtime shady dealings with the corrupt Cicero town is well-known. It is the place where he cut his political teeth.  Cicero has been making the news almost daily now. Take a look at CBS report on Cicero from last night.

Is this what the Illinois conservative movement and tea party movement is about?

With Dominick’s no-bid contracts to his Urqhardt consulting company, Proft received hundreds of thousands of dollars as spokesperson and consultant to Cicero’s corrupt mayor Larry Dominick. He was given more than $300,000 to represent a Cicero “building.” He loaned those funds to his campaign for Governor.

Also troubling is his relationship with pal, Craig Pesek, who worked with Proft to get Dominick elected. Illinois State Board of Elections records reveal that Pesek, who manages Dominick’s political committee, also contributed to Proft’s campaign for governor. His equally shady brother, Jeff, did too. Here are some links to Pesek’s shady background.

Illinois Citizens for Ethics will continue to report on Proft, Pesek, Dominick and their troubling Cicero relationships.

The oft-repeated quote from Edmund Burke bears repeating, “All evil needs to succeed is for good people to do nothing.” But once good people know about evil and they do nothing, are they still good?  As a conservative activist for the last twenty years, I have grappled with that question.

I am still waiting for the answer.