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Sour Grapes In Southern Illinois Over Brady's Defeat

By aaroncynic in News on Nov 5, 2010 9:05PM

2010_11_5_Illinois.jpg The editorial board at the Southern Illinoisian is quite dismayed at Bill Brady’s loss to Pat Quinn this election. So much so, they penned some scathing commentary calling for an end to Chicago’s “choke hold” on state politics by developing an electoral college. As Rich Miller from Capitol Fax points out, the Southern Illinoisian’s editoral board has lost its collective mind. They’re not the only ones either. On a Champaign radio station, a Brady supporter called in to say “I wish Cook County would just secede from Illinois” and Brady also said in a debate that voters should want Illinois to look more like Indiana or Tennessee.

While there’s no denying Chicago has a much larger population than downstate, Miller rightly asserts: “Empty acres don’t vote. Counties don’t vote. Townships don’t vote. Regions don’t vote. Citizens vote.” Chicago’s citizens are just as unhappy with high taxes, corruption and political paralysis, but slightly more voters believed Pat Quinn could handle those problems better. Many of them came from Chicago, but over 800,000 came from outside Cook County. When Mark Kirk took the Senate, he did it with nearly half a million votes from Cook County. Without those votes, he wouldn’t be headed to Washington.

It’s understandable for southern Illinois to feel marginalized because its population is sparse. It’s however, quite anti-democratic to believe that a vote from a southern county resident should carry more weight than one from Cook. To suggest a radical change to our electoral system because a candidate lost in a close race is simply sour grapes.