CHICAGO - IL GOP Chairman Pat Brady notified ILGOP officials over the weekend that a reception to honor Exelon's retired CEO John Rowe scheduled for March 19 has been postponed. The event, which was to have been attended by RNC Chairman Reince Priebus and was supposed to have raised $250,000 for the party March 19th.
The event postponement, sources report, was due to the State Central Committee scheduling a meeting in Tinley Park March 9th to discuss the possible ousting of Chairman Brady over the supposed gay marriage flap. But others wonder if there was more to the postponement than meets the eye.
In addition to Illinois Review's report that Rowe had given significantly more support to Illinois and Chicago Democrats than to Republicans, in 2012 the New York Times pointed out that under Rowe's leadership, Exelon employers had donated over $395,000 to Barack Obama.
Why had Exelon been so generous to Obama? One of its board member was a college roommate of Michelle Obama's brother and the Obama Administration's energy policy would create an especially difficult challenge for Exelon's competitors. Rowe pushed hard for cap and trade tax policy in 2010.
The New York Times reported about the Obama - Exelon ties in 2012:
The administration’s tightening of clean air rules was a particular boon, since it took aim at Exelon’s main competitors — coal-burning power plants in the Midwest and mid-Atlantic regions. In 2010, Exelon estimated it would earn an extra $400 million annually because the regulations would force dozens of coal-burning plants to close.
“We were the hyena looking for the dead stuff on the road,” John W. Rowe, Exelon’s recently departed chief executive, told Wall Street analysts this year.
In addition, Rowe signed on with several other businessmen to a letter encouraging Illinois lawmakers to support same sex marriage. He also has publicly opposed the IL GOP platform's position encouraging "legal, front door" immigration policy.
But it was about the March 9th meeting, Brady told local papers, saying: "The timing of this (special) meeting was not well thought out a week before a fundraiser and in a difficult fundraising cycle anyway," Brady said.
Committeeman Gene Dawson said the postponement was not an embarrassment.
"With this issue being so up in the air, it would be hard to have Pat be the sponsor, if he is promoting this now as chairman and may not be chairman in a few weeks," Dawson said.