By Mark Weyermuller -
Gubernatorial hopeful Bruce Rauner spoke Friday night to a few hundred at the Annual Corn Beef and Cabbage Dinner at the Winnetka Community House. It was sponsored by the New Trier Republican Organization.
The group is headed by Committeeman Bill Cadigan who introduced a variety of local candidates running in the April 9, 2013 elections. They included Bob Bielinski running for Wilmette President, Gene Greable running for Winnetka President, Glenn Farkas running as a write in for District 34 in Glenview, Mike Levitan running for Wilmette Library Board, and a crowd favorite, Jasmine Hauser running for Wilmette District 39 School Board.
Jasmine has generated much interest as a newcomer but with much emphasis on controlling growth of taxes and a voice of reason who will listen to the whole community. Mike Basil, another conservative, is running for Wilmette Village President missed the meeting but Bill Cadigan spoke for him.
In addition, another Governor Hopeful spoke, current Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford, followed by Commissioner Dan Patlak from the Cook County Board of review then followed by former Congressman Bob Dold. Real Clear Politics reporter Heather Wilhelm spoke also. She spoke of the possible need for republicans to move to more moderate views. This was not well received as there was a fair number of conservatives and tea party people in the room, not to mention establishment republicans who want to get the Illinois Party back on track. Still Miss Wilhelm gave a interesting prospective on the current state of Illinois.
Bruce Rauner was the highlight of evening who spoke while the crowd dined on the corn beef, cabbage, roasted potatoes, and apple pie. He explained that he is going all over the State of Illinois on a "listening tour". He feels there is hope to get Illinois on track and he may be the person to do it as governor.
There was much networking going on in the room as some talked about "licking their wounds" after the disappointing results in November 2012. One of the main themes was if the republicans can get back on message since their vision of the economy will be better for all Illinois residents.