Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Pancakes and Politics at State Farm.

Matthew A. Woodmancy (D) was one of two candidates for the 18th Congressional Seat who attended the State Farm Insurance "Pancakes and Politics" event at corporate south this morning. In addition to him and Steve Waterworth (D), there were many others running for Illinois Congressional seats. With the number of politicians in the room, there were at most 30 employees gathered to listen to a brief introduction and comments from each candidate.

Of particular note was Republican candidate Tom Pliura (R), running for the State Senate for the 51st District. Instead of the normal intro and bio, he instead began with a diatribe in favor of Term Limits and a return to Citizen Government. "I'm running because I am fed up!" It was refreshing because the remainder of the candidates had little to say about why they were running, although plenty to say about what needs to be fixed.

In fact, the catch words of "Fiscal Conservative" came up in almost every candidate's presentation. Dan Brady (R), the incumbent from the 88th District, spoke passionately instead of being accessible to his constituency. Keith Sommer (R), the Illinois House Incumbent from the 106th District, bemoaned the size of government, emphasized the need to fight Obamacare, and applauded State Farm for hiring veterans. Bill Mitchell (R), currently the incumbent for the 87th District, showed up in a sweater and blue jeans, claiming he had another event that would be outdoors and apologized for being dressed "down", then proceeded to tell us this upcoming election was one of the most important in decades. He claimed that Public Assistance programs have grown by 96% in the last 10 years, and left us with the question, can we afford it?

Three of the five candidates for the newly formed 106th district were also available. Tom Bennett (R), had no qualms about telling us he has recently been endorsed by the Illinois Farm Bureau, and is in favor of Concealed Carry. He wants to make Illinois more "Business Friendly" to keep the businesses we have and attract more. Richard Thomas (R), a Nurse and outspoken advocate for Fiscal Conservation, was at least entertaining. He has an excellent manner about him and a firm handshake. Brian Gabor (R) was the last of the three to speak, and is a solid proponent of smaller government and lower taxes. He also wants to make Illinois more business friendly.

You may have noticed with the exception of the two candidates for the 18th Congressional District, all of the other candidates were Republicans. Seems like sort of a stacked deck to me. Or, perhaps, the rumors are true and the Democrats have written off the 18th Congressional District. The incumbent, Aaron Schock, did not appear, although there was a placard for him at the atrium at corporate headquarters after the meeting.

Overall, the event was nice, but only a few individuals dropped by the breakfast, and just a few managed to drop by the atrium at corporate headquarters.

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