Illinois GOP chairman: Get behind winner, even if it's Trump

  • Illinois Republican Party Chairman Tim Schneider says the state organization will get behind the nominee for president, even if it's Trump.

    Illinois Republican Party Chairman Tim Schneider says the state organization will get behind the nominee for president, even if it's Trump. Associated Press

  • Illinois Republican Party Chairman Tim Schneider says the state organization will get behind the nominee for president, even if it's Trump.

    Illinois Republican Party Chairman Tim Schneider says the state organization will get behind the nominee for president, even if it's Trump. Bob Chwedyk | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 3/8/2016 10:53 AM

Illinois Republican Party Chairman Tim Schneider says the state organization will get behind the nominee for president whoever it is after the March 15 primary election.

"We do that or we don't win" in November, Schneider, a Cook County commissioner from Bartlett, said.

 

Some Republicans say backing businessman Donald Trump, if he wins, could hurt other Republicans facing tough races in the November general election. For instance, U.S. Rep. Bob Dold of Kenilworth, who is running for re-election, said he won't back Trump in November.

Schneider said the party shouldn't try to overrule the will of voters.

"You can't turn your back on who's elected, whoever the candidate is," he said.

Most of the big-name party leaders in Illinois are behind either Ohio Gov. John Kasich or Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz is looking to make a strong play here, too.

Schneider, Gov. Bruce Rauner and Sen. Mark Kirk haven't endorsed, and other Republican office holders are delegates for candidates who have left the race.

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Kasich, Cruz and Trump all have events scheduled in Illinois in the coming days.

Schneider is set to emcee a Chicago fundraiser Friday where Cruz is scheduled to appear. He said Rubio is clearly prioritizing his home state of Florida that votes the same day, but said it's possible the senator could stop in Illinois before Tuesday's primary.

Kasich will be in Lisle and Palatine tomorrow. Cruz will be in Rolling Meadows on Friday, and Trump will be holding his own Chicago rally the same day.

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