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Will GOP Declares Independence From 'Chicago Machine'

Infuriated by new district maps in Illinois, Will County Republican officials and candidates signed a "declaration of independence," calling on voters to stop the "tentacles of Cook County" from reaching into Will County policy.

Area Republicans rallied Monday to declare independence from "the tentacles of Cook County and Chicago politics" reaching into Will County. The gesture was symbolic but served to fire up a crowd of well over 100 people as the Nov. 6 election nears. 

Last year, Illinois Democrats drew new state and congressional districts that Republicans say could remove any Will County representation in Congress.

"We have to take back what's ours and make sure we stand up for it," said Dave Carlson, the Republican candidate for Will County state attorney. "To implement what we believe in, we need the voters' support in November."

Want to blog about politics on Patch? Email michael.sewall@patch.com.

Various elected officials and candidates for office spoke outside of the , with 39 signing the declaration of independence. Bolingbrook resident Raquel Mitchell, a political coordinator for two Republican candidates, read the declaration to the roaring crowd. 

"The new congressional map sliced Will County into pieces," she said. "Half of all Will County congressional districts will likely be represented in Congress by a Chicago politician ... Will County Democrat elected officials stood silently as their home county was cut apart."

The signees included state and congressional candidates, as well as local candidates for Will County Board and other positions such as the Lockport school board.

Redrawn maps extended the 1st Congressional District, represented by longtime incumbent (D-Chicago) all the way to rural Jackson Township in Will County. Democratic Rep. Dan Lipinski's 3rd District moved into much of what had been 's 13th District. Biggert is now in the redrawn 11th District, which was previously held by Tea Party favorite Adam Kinzinger (R-Manteno). His district shifted west to allow for the 1st District to extend south. 

Officials have questioned whether a congressman from Chicago could truly represent the interests of Will County. During a 2011 meeting in Frankfort to discuss county pipelines, .

“This is a forerunner of what I plan to do,” Rush said. "I've always represented the suburban area. This is not my first time being in Frankfort."

All of the re-mapping could leave Will County without a resident representing congress. County Republicans said the larger problem was that local officials haven't done enough to protect Will County's interests on the issues of redistricting, taxes and a . 

County executive candidate Cory Singer (R-Frankfort) attacked opponent Larry Walsh (D-Joliet) for inactivity on these issues. One Singer mentioned was a Regional Transportation Authority tax increase that helped fund Chicago Transit Authority pensions. 

"Why did they do that? Because they could," he said. "You know what local officials did?"

Singer let his silence represent his take that they did "nothing." 

The redrawn maps didn't discourage 2nd Congressional District candidate Brian Woodworth, who will face off against Jesse Jackson Jr. 

"We are going to go to Washington and represent the people of the district ... not special interests," Woodworth said. "That's the machine we're up against. The mysterious beast known as the Chicago machine." 

A call to Will County executive Larry Walsh's office was not returned as of Monday afternoon.

New Lenox Mom September 11, 2012 at 03:13 PM
Aaawwww!!! Poor rethugs, are you worried that your stranglehold on Will County is being threatened? What's next? Are you going to secede from the State? What a joke!
Mrs Kellog September 11, 2012 at 04:34 PM
Hahahha. Whenever I see Will County in action (oxymoron), I think there should be the theme from 'Benny Hill' playing in the background. It'd be funny if they weren't stealing so much money from me on a yearly basis (property tax). Yes- stealing is the term for when someone takes your money and provides no services in return.
518 September 11, 2012 at 06:24 PM
Couldn't agree more, personally, I can't wait to get out of Illinois when we retire!
Brent Brambleton September 11, 2012 at 06:59 PM
Want to make sure this doesn't happen again? Then support the idea that the state legislature should not have the authority to re-draw the congressional districts. It should be done by a non-partisan panel. That way, it protects residents from some of the partisan machinations that occur. Let's not fool ourselves into thinking that things would be any different if Republicans were in charge. This kind of gerrymandering happens all across the country, and both Democrats and Republicans are to blame.
Nikki Eken September 11, 2012 at 07:05 PM
Haha!
Edward Ronkowski September 11, 2012 at 09:27 PM
The Will County Board redistricted all of Will County without gerrymandering, and reduced the size of the County Board by one seat. So Brent is wrong about Will County Republicans. They could have voted for a gerrymandered map, but instead voted in a non-partisan map.
V. Scheurich September 11, 2012 at 09:31 PM
Which way is it Mr. President. We have not seen you on the picket line in Chicago yet! What's the hold up? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SA9KC8SMu3o
New Lenox Mom September 11, 2012 at 10:02 PM
What exactly does your comment have to do with this article?? Stop trying to read and go back to faux news!
New Lenox Mom September 11, 2012 at 10:12 PM
Let's all applause...oh wait, it doesn't really matter how the county is districted when you can go ahead and knock off 8 democratic candidates from the ballot in November so the repugs can run unopposed for that sure win! You don't need a non-partisan map now do you? Kind of like the New Lenox trustees being independents...really, every one of them is a registered repug!
FrankfortWorkingMom September 11, 2012 at 11:41 PM
Wow. Angry New Lenox Mom. Very unattractive.... why don't you make an attempt at mature dialog and/or respectful debate? Your vitriol leaves your comments empty, boring and laughable.
FrankfortWorkingMom September 11, 2012 at 11:57 PM
The people of Will County should be represented by people who live in Will County. Thus the word "Representative." Bobby Rush is my new Congressman. Now I'm sure Bobby Rush and I could agree on many things, but how to achieve those ends is debatable. I believe in SMALL government and Congressman Rush believes in BIG government. In this day and age, that difference in ideology is significant. Also, Bobby Rush will be more than happy to confiscate my tax dollars and spend it on the folks in Cook County because the Cook County Democrats have mismanaged their checkbook badly. With a strong Conservative Will County Board, our finances are in pretty good shape. Let's keep it that way by removing Larry Walsh AND keeping the Cook County Congressmen out of our pockets. This is an important election. Get out and vote for Will County Conservative candidates.
New Lenox Mom September 12, 2012 at 12:14 AM
Oh I am so very sorry, I didn't know asking the obvious was angry comments. I apologize if the facts ring laughable to you.
Mike September 12, 2012 at 12:42 AM
Good comment FWM
Steve September 12, 2012 at 12:43 AM
That's a lie, Ed. Will County Republicans did not act like good sports and volunteer a non-partisan map. The truth is that they no longer have a super-majority and couldn't ram another gerrymandered map through the county board.
Steve September 12, 2012 at 12:48 AM
Hmmm. No Republicans are protesting DuPage County resident Judy Biggert representing a sizable portion of Northern Will County for 14 years. I want to protest outsiders too. Please send us Republican protesters to stop the scourge from DuPage County too. When can you guys get here?
Franklin Marshall September 12, 2012 at 01:17 AM
Good comment Steve - I've had to endure 2 years of smiley-face-no-brain ADAM KINZINGER in the 11th, and now Judy Biggert is the Republicon choice? What a joke! Look out northside district! Kinzinger will nothing for you, too! Its time to live by one simple rule; NEVER VOTE REPUBLICAN - THEY ALWAYS LIE.
FrankfortWorkingMom September 12, 2012 at 01:20 AM
You make a good point, Steve. However, DuPage County is similiar to Will County demographically. With the exception of our abundant farm land, the neighborhoods, business and schools are very similiar. ..and I'm not a fan of Judy Biggert either. I think she's just another 'polished' politician.
FrankfortWorkingMom September 12, 2012 at 01:24 AM
No, Franklin - they don't 'always' lie. There seems to be a trend from the left leaning Patch readers of hyperbole and thoughtless, nonsense comments. It's like trying to have a serious discussion with a 4 year old...
Mrs Kellog September 12, 2012 at 05:14 AM
WON'T GET FOOLED AGAIN We'll be fighting in the streets With our children at our feet And the morals that they worship will be gone And the men who spurred us on Sit in judgment of all wrong They decide and the shotgun sings the song I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday And I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again Change it had to come We knew it all along We were liberated from the fall that's all But the world looks just the same And history ain't changed 'Cause the banners, they all flown in the last war I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday And I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again No, no! I'll move myself and my family aside If we happen to be left half alive I'll get all my papers and smile at the sky For I know that the hypnotized never lie Do ya? cont.
Mrs Kellog September 12, 2012 at 05:14 AM
There's nothing in the street Looks any different to me And the slogans are replaced, by-the-bye And the parting on the left Is now the parting on the right And the beards have all grown longer overnight I'll tip my hat to the new constitution Take a bow for the new revolution Smile and grin at the change all around me Pick up my guitar and play Just like yesterday Then I'll get on my knees and pray We don't get fooled again Don't get fooled again No, no! YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! Meet the new boss Same as the old boss
Walker Percy September 12, 2012 at 11:38 AM
My two favorite comments were this one and the one from the guy saying that when he thinks of Will County government, he imagines hearing "Benny Hill" playing in the background. Will County is backwards in so many ways. But, as somebody else said, I'd rather have the local idiot I know running my local government than an idiot from Chicago who really could care less about me.
Conservative September 13, 2012 at 08:09 PM
How can anyone disagree with keeping Crook county out of Will county. We've got enough idiots pretending to be on our side as it is. This article at least shows that the leadership trying to get elected has pledged to do more for the people of will county than the current leadership is doing. I'm grateful for that, and for people that see Chicago as a machine that must be kept in check
New Lenox Mom September 13, 2012 at 11:55 PM
Maybe the will county politicians should focus on the growing heroin problem. I think that should take precedence over partisan politics.
AC September 14, 2012 at 04:14 PM
None of these politicians care about fixing a problem, unless it can get them re-elected. Heroin problem? Watch BOTH parties look around and point at each other and trying to place blame. Why? That's what their parties teach them. It's all about getting elected and serving the party, not represented your community or fixing problems. Lying? If you think that one party has a monopoly on that over another party, then I feel for you. These days, they're all politicians, they all lie, you can tell because their lips are moving. It would be great if we could truly have representatives of our communities represent us in Congress, but more often than not we just have a party pick a lawyer and use them. 43% of Congress are lawyers (even more have law degrees), how is that representative of our country when less than 0.4% of our population are lawyers? What happened to teachers, small business owners, big businessmen, accountants, doctors, construction workers, labor leaders, firemen, policemen, etc. representing us? I know it's all old fashioned, pie-in-the-sky thinking, but I would love to see us get back to real representation, not party representation. Oh well, I'll get off my soapbox and back to the real world.
We The People September 15, 2012 at 05:10 AM
Frankfort Mom, Bobby Rush would be surprised to hear he is your congressman. Adam Kinzinger is your congressman until January. Bobby Rush needs to win an election before he can be called your congressman. Conservatives.....ahhhh.....doing their darndest to turn over control of our government to Corporations. Don't get mad, but I have to tell you: corporations are NOT people, despite what your right winged extremist conservative wealthy politicians keep repeating over and over and over again. "Big government" is their scarey dirty word. Big government is just code for government regulations on Corporate pigs. Corporations are destroying our once great country, and you people want this? Wow.
Tori Watson September 17, 2012 at 08:51 PM
Heroin? Will County Sheriff "lost" 9 POUNDS (or 40,000 doses) from their possession. Nobody was fired or demoted. Tribune October 20, 2011 : A large amount of heroin has been stolen from a shipping container that Will County sheriff's police were using to store evidence, police sources say, potentially dealing a setback to prosecutions, along with the county's efforts to stem surging heroin use. One source said four individually wrapped kilos of heroin, potentially worth $500,000 or more, were stolen from the container, which was left outside a sheriff's substation and secured with a padlock. Other sources could not confirm the amount. Marijuana and some small items, including a saw and a bow-and-arrow set, were also stolen. The container was stored on a fenced lot near Laraway Road in unincorporated Joliet, where police keep impounded vehicles.
Charles Reasoner September 22, 2012 at 02:25 AM
The Southern Suburb Strategy? I wouldn't be proud of this because when you scratch the surface and reveal what is behind it, it gets pretty ugly.
Robert Green October 03, 2012 at 03:53 PM
There is a solution to this problem...the state of IL needs to have a referendum and do what Maryland did (though not for the same reasons). I say we donate Chicago/Cook County to the Federal Government so that it becomes District of Columbia II. The politics of the state would change overnight! IL would become much more neutral and less contentious politically!!!
Tony October 26, 2012 at 01:27 PM
Its time for Biggert and Walsh to move on. They have stolen enough from the taxpayers so let someone else get their share. I really don't care for the people who are running against them but I would rather see some Democrates give it a shot .
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