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The Doctor is In!

By Kevin Robinson in News on Aug 2, 2007 1:00PM

Yesterday Willowbrook family practitioner Steve Sauerberg announced his candidacy for the United States Senate, hoping that he will be the lucky Illinois Republican to challenge Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin for his seat in Congress.

_2007_8_whip_it_good.jpg“Sen. Dick Durbin has been on the government payroll for the last 37 years.... Quite simply, he is part of the problem in Washington, D.C.” Sauerberg told Crain's Chicago Business earlier this week. With no other name-brand Republicans willing to step forward to challenge Durbin, Sauerberg may have a clear field ahead of him in this race. Although he lacks the wealth of a Jim Oberweis, or the name recognition of an Andy McKenna, he has managed to put up about $200,000 in seed money to get his campaign running. He'll have to do much more than that to challenge Durbin, at least on the money front.

On the ideas front, Sauerberg notes on his website, "I can no longer stand back and watch the lack of foresight, the poor judgment, and the mismanagement in the United States Senate without taking action." Considering that Congress has been held by the GOP (with the exception of a brief stalemate in 2001 -02) since 1994, we can only assume that a statement like this means that he supports many of the values that Republicans embraced before becoming the federal supermajority - small, unintrusive government, reduced government spending, and transparency in the public sector. In fact, he thinks marriage is between a man and a woman, but doesn't want to change the constitution to reflect that. He doesn't support gun control, but does support an assault weapons ban. He thinks women should have access to abortion under certain circumstances, but hasn't said what they are, and he's opposed to "socialized medicine" - it won't work according to him. A victory for Illinois centrists? Maybe. But if this guy is going to take on one of the more witty and experienced politicians in Illinois, he's going to have to do better than that. Dick Durbin isn't untouchable (few Senators are - especially after 10 years). But this is the best the state GOP can do? Wouldn't it be better for the party to focus on building victories here in the state, than sending lambs to the slaughter? With a governor a few steps shy of a federal indictment and no state budget, we're stunned that the state party is so inconsequential. Until the Illinois GOP gets it's act together enough to run someone against the Democrats that are dragging this state down the drain, those of us that wish there were a reasonable opposition party may just have to wait.