The reason I want to emphasize my reply in a separate post is that I am not sure many Republican primary voters in Illinois really understand how they lost their right to elect state party leaders and how they can get it back. If you are a Republican and you are serious about wanting to make Illinois GOP leaders more accountable to Republican voters and less a tool of the party insiders, then launch a campaign to attack and repeal Alternative A of the Election Code provision for electing the Republican state central committee. Here's why:
1. Write letters to the editor demanding that GOP leaders stop dissing democracy and promise not to use Alternative A from now on while it remains on the books.
2. Every conservative organization in Illinois should immediately send a letter to every Republican elected state lawmaker in the House and Senate demanding that they co-sponsor an amendment to the election code to repeal Alternative A of 10 ILSC 5-7/8. Even though Democrats control the assembly, hopefully they might not care since Alternative A only applies to Republicans.
3. Write to editors of editorial pages to get them on board as a good government issue to repeal the anti-democratic smoke-filled room provision called Alternative A.
4. Write letters to all elected precinct committeemen and all county chairs demanding repeal of Alternative A. Let them know that you know what they did and demand the right to directly elect members of the state central committee by congressional district in the 2008 Republican Primary.
5. Make sure that repeal of Alternative A of 10 ILCS 5-7/8 becomes a litmus test issue for endorsement of anyone by your organization. That way, you make it a direct attack on the insiders who robbed you of your right to directly vote on members of the Republican state central committee.
6. It is a start at least. Then, in 2008, file to run for state central committeeman in your district the way it used to be done.
7. Alternative A is a travesty against the uniform administration of election laws. There is no reason that one party should be able to use a different method than another party for electing members of the party state central committee when both state central committees have the same duties and obligations under Illinois state law.
8. Get several conservative groups to co-sign op/eds attacking Alternative A. Try to get liberal groups to join you too.
9. Get several conservative groups to hopefully join liberal groups and good government groups if you can find them to file a law suit in FEDERAL district court in Chicago that would raise violation of equal protection issues. Republican primary voters in Illinois do not have the same right as Democratic primary voters in Illinois to directly elect members of the state central committee. The legal duties of both committees are the same. All this because of the sneaky Alternative A loop hole in the law. A federal judge might buy the argument that treating voters of different parties in different ways for the right to elect exactly the same party officers with the same legal duties is a violation of both due process and equal protection.
10. Do all of the above and you might turn up the heat and noise enough to get the direct election of party leaders you deserve in 2008. While you're at it, make them promsie to support an amendment to move the primary to June and get on the good side of a reform issue on that one. That the newspapers will support but Democrats will not because March is an incumbent protection device for them too just as it is for long-time Republicans. (Both parties will now claim March gives them more clout in the presidential nominating process. That's baloney. The real reason they want March is to drag out the election cycle over a year and discourage new people from running because the filing date is pushed back to the end of the year before--11 months before the final election.)
We had the right to vote in a JUNE primary until 1968. Then the mossbacks in both parties slipped "March" into a conference report to protect themselves against challenges from 1969 con con delegates who wanted to run in the primaries of 1970.
Get rid of Alternative A and you have a chance to take back your party leadership. Otherwise, you are not really serious about restoring control and accountability of Republican leadership positions to all Republican primary voters in Illinois.