Monday, May 18, 2009

Peoria Chamber of Commerce PAC

After reading and hearing all the comments being made by the Democrats, led by Allen Mayer, a County Board Member, you would believe the Progressive Peoria Political Action Committee is to take turns endorsing Republicans and then Democrats, or vice versa. Gee, I thought the PAC was formed to endorse and financially support the people they believe to be best qualified to serve the public in elected offices.

Don't the unions do that? Well, maybe not the best person but the ones that will favor the growth of unions whose next step after passing the EFCA will be to start attacking the "right to work" states where companies like Caterpillar are moving parts of their manufacturing while states like Illinois, California, New York, to name a few, are losing population and taxpayers.

Perhaps a few Democrats forgot that I, as a Republican, was not endorsed by the PAC the first time I ran. They endorsed Democrat Jim Graves? That was after the liberal JS and the JSEB, led by Drake, Epstein and Bailey tried to ruin me with false and half-truths. also, that tyhe C of C endorsed Democrats Linda Butler, Rachael Parker and Tim Cassidy.

I, too, have not always agreed with the endorsements of the Chamber but I did not make a political issue of it as some Democrats are now doing. I like a lot of people who are Democrats same as I like a lot of Republicans. When I think either are "off track", I, being "not politically correct", will express my facts and opinions.

Let's face it,the Democrats are in power in this city. In turn, their power is causing many registered Republicans to act like Democrats. It is hard to distinguish the parties philosophies at some government levels here in Peoria.

I'm reading comments made and actions taken intended to lead to more minority involvement in county business as partly being a Democrat thing and more votes for Democrat candidates and more Democrat union members. The minorities they are talking about whether they say it or not, are black minorities. And black minorities in this community are almost to a person, Democrats. There are plenty of places that will help a business get started and the county should support them with their concern to make it easier to do business with Peoria County. Many are non-profits such as Scope and ICC. It is not the counties job to train people how to go into business with taxpayer dollars that then permits these newly trained people to be awarded jobs (and accompanying grants, also taxpayer dollars), in competition with those who learned how to start a business and win bids with their own dollars.

In the 8 plus years I've been on the county board, we have made bidding open to all. I will take a "dim" view if we start awarding bids to minorities as politically driven. All bids are currently revieved and awarded on the basis of the best "qualified" low bid. Last year we denied a bid that would have saved the county $50,000 on the pretext that the contractor had not properly met a minor requirement and had made a minor mistake (corrected) on a previous county job. That the contractor was non-union I'm sure had nothing to do with the non-award.


Business, labor, minorities and political and apolitical people should work together and most of you who know me know that I have always asked for and tried to attain a level playing field. Unfortunately, I sometimes made my real feelings known in opposition and then voted with the overwhelming majority rather than the vote being 17 ayes and my one nay. My weakness shows at times. At other times what I say in County Board meetings seldom makes news unless my comments can be used in a less positive way.

For the interest of the reader, all bidders for county jobs must union or, if not, pay the "prevailing wage" scale which in some cases, means certain actions that add to the bidders cost.


Merle Widmer said...

Karl Rove in town? What if had been arch liberals such as Herr Keith, Madam Rachel, Nancy, Charles, Chris, Maxine or Al?


Sud O. Nym said...

The city is run by Democrats? The County, maybe. But I can only think of four (of eleven) City Councilpeople who are Dems: Barbara, Gary, Clyde and Bill Spears.

Merle Widmer said...


Reread paragraph 5, last sentence.

Sud O. Nym said...

Oh, I see. If you agree with Merle = Republican. If you disagree with Merle = Democrat. So tell me, Merle, how many Republicans were acting like Democrats on the museum tax. Whole lot of "Democrats" at Cat, Heartland Partnership, city council, etc.

Merle Widmer said...


Your argument doen't hold water. I've said on this blog and during my elected position that the classification of parties by Democrat or Republican doesn't hold water and hasn't for many years.

If we class people by party, yes, I am a moderate conservative and I sure wouldn't be asking that we become "an Earkmark Nation" as described by one of my favorite writers, Daniel Henninger of the WSJ on 5/14/09.

In describing John Murtha and Ted Stevens, Republican unseated) he writes, "John Murtha, (Democrat, Johnstown, $150 million airport earmark that has just three flights daily to and from D.C.) is the canary in the mine shaft. In politics, the canaries don't die. They adapt and learn to live with the toxic fumes of public spending on scales beyond morality of understanding. We are just about there."

Sure, I know, that the Republicans Leitch and Schock with cross-hitter Ray LaHood are going to bail a sick museum out with more tax dollars, adding up to over $70 million while Caterpillar, whose stock I predict to fall again, fires and layoffs more people, in Indiania this time, scales back on the amount of dollars they will spend on a vistors center and said they won't start buidling this year. but they will, soon as the economy picks up.

Tell us all when, please.

But not the county. They will permit the start of the underground parking garage before this year is over.

In the meantime, the sales tax kicks in for all on Jan.1, 2010 taking $3.6 million out of area spenders pockets each year for the next 20 years.

Then the school tax, the library tax, increased propeerty taxes from several sources, the sewer, the rising water bills, you name it, Civic Center, new hotel, WTVP, the PPD just a few tax increasess yearly.

Rebulicans and Democrats, the wealthy and those with secure jobs, health care and pensions supported this tax.

I have no great love or even respect for many Democrats and Republicans in leadership roles. But I believe the unions have strayed far from free choice. Free choice when the Musuem Committee agreed to use all union labor and the price of the building jumped 15%.

Mark Johnson said "because of rising material costs".


Cal Skinner said...

I'm reviewing a book by Ralph Nader's national campaign manager when he ran on the Green Party ticket and as an independent.

It's called "Grand Illusion," written by Theresa Amato.

Her argument is that there is little difference between the national parties because they are both chasing contributions from the same business interests.

Of course, it is a rare union that contributes much to a Republican, but that concept to chasing the same folks for contributions may do something to explain what is going on in Peoria County.

The two major parties conspire to keep independents and 3rd party folks off the ballot. I wish she called them the "power" parties, because that describes them best, in my opinion.

The book will be available in early June.