Would a Trump nomination cause the Illinois GOP problems?

  • Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump reacts to the crowd of supporters during a campaign rally in Springfield last month.

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump reacts to the crowd of supporters during a campaign rally in Springfield last month. Associated Press File Photo

  • The Illinois Capitol rotunda is decorated for Christmas, but there is no Festivus pole in this year of airing grievances.

      The Illinois Capitol rotunda is decorated for Christmas, but there is no Festivus pole in this year of airing grievances. Mike Riopell | Staff Photographer

 
 

Republicans this week are talking about what a Donald Trump primary victory could mean for their candidates on the rest of the ballot, an idea that could be important in Illinois.

Former state GOP Chairman Pat Brady of St. Charles was quoted in The New York Times about a Trump November campaign here, where U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Highland Park will be in a heated re-election campaign: "If he's our nominee, the repercussions of that in this state would be devastating."

It should be noted: Brady backs Ohio Gov. John Kasich for the nomination and vocally dislikes Trump.

Asked about The New York Times quote, Brady said he wanted to clarify he thinks Republicans in Illinois will be strong on their own but that the real estate mogul would damage Illinois Republicans' efforts to be more diverse.

"It's not rocket science," Brady said. "It's common sense."

Illinois' two national Republican committeemen declined to comment, but state GOP Chairman Tim Schneider of Bartlett says candidates are ready to run no matter who is at the top of the ticket.

Trump's Illinois campaign chairman, Springfield attorney Kent Gray, didn't reply to a request for comment.

"Distancing maneuvers?"

This week, a memo from national Republicans about how Senate candidates should handle a Trump nomination leaked.

"It is certain that all GOP candidates will be tied in some way to our nominee, but we need not be tied to him so closely that we have to engage in permanent cleanup or distancing maneuvers," it reads in part.

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Schneider argues any Republican candidate, including Trump, would be better than Democrat Hillary Clinton and that the eventual nominee will be ready for November.

"The candidate will be well-vetted over the next debates and early primaries," Schneider said.

Looking into it

Secretary of State Jesse White's office is investigating whether it's a problem that the two biggest daily fantasy sports companies haven't registered to do business in Illinois.

DraftKings and FanDuel hadn't filed paperwork that many companies do, but it's unclear they're required to, White spokesman Henry Haupt said.

"Every case can be unique," Haupt said.

Haupt said if they should have filed, the likely resolution is that they'd be given the opportunity to do so. He didn't think fines would be involved.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Last month, Illinois Gaming Board Chairman Don Tracy said the state is "actively investigating" whether daily fantasy sports should be considered gambling.

"If in fact it is gambling, which is something that hasn't been determined for certain, it needs to be banned or regulated," Tracy said.

Tax blocked?

State Rep. David McSweeney, a Barrington Hills Republican, says he has enough supporters of a nonbinding Illinois House resolution to block attempts to tax advertising in Illinois.

McSweeney has used resolutions to demonstrate opposition to proposals in the past, such as one to create a graduated income tax in Illinois.

His resolution doesn't block anything, but because more than half of House lawmakers have signed on, people would have to break with that move to get a tax approved in the future.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Feats of strength

The Capitol rotunda this year has a Christmas tree, menorah, nativity scene and winter solstice placard.

"Seinfeld" fans will remember that in some previous years, a Festivus pole popped up in the building to celebrate the fake holiday.

But there is no Festivus pole this year, even though 2015 has been a nonstop Airing of Grievances.

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