Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Pollgate update: Andy "Me"Kenna ducking debates

I just returned home from dropping Little Marathon Pundit at school, and during the short drive I learned that WLS-AM is hosting a debate between the Republican candidates for governor tomorrow afternoon. My immediate thought was, "How will Andy McKenna respond to 'Pollgate?'"

Well, we won't find out, as the Jim Ryan campaign tells us:

Andy "Me"Kenna is ducking all three debates this week as he tries to escape questions from the scandal he left behind as Illinois GOP chairman.

The scandal exploded further late yesterday when State Journal-Register columnist Bernie Schoenburg got his hands on the full report done by the party's ethics committee regarding "Poll-gate." The results reveal stunning new details that go far behind the joint statement issued by the party and "Me"Kenna on January 8:

  • "Me"Kenna ordered a $28,300 poll that highlighted various Republican political figures without ever informing the Republican State Central Committee, the entity that governs the State Party.

  • The poll included "Me”Kenna and, indeed, was specially focused on “Me”Kenna. A special one-page graphic was prepared for “Me”Kenna and none of the other candidates. Those other hopefuls included an an incumbent congressman and two-time statewide nominee.

  • The report states: "The fact that information contained in the poll was specifically tailored only to Andrew McKenna reveals both an apparent and an actual conflict of interest between his own potential political aspirations and his obligations as a State Central Committee Member obligated to serve the Illinois Republican Party and the general public without any suggestion of service promoting their private interests."

  • The report concludes: "Thus, Andrew McKenna compounded one ethical misstep with another."

  • Just Sunday, DuPage County State's Attorney Joe Birkett, one of the hopefuls in the poll, said "Me"Kenna "flat-out lied" to him when Birkett asked him face-to-face on June 16 last year whether the party had any polling pertaining to him.

    "Me"Kenna is laying low, hoping to avoid questions on the scandal. He has declined to participate in the WTTW gubernatorial debate tonight, a WLS Live gubernatorial debate on Wednesday and a one-on-one mini-debate with Jim Ryan on Fox News on Friday.

    This guy wants to take over the reins of an ethically challenged state. He needs to answer about his own ethics before he faces voters on Tuesday.

    During the same drive, I heard a new Andy McKenna commercial--in which he once again made the ridiculous claim that he is a political outsider.

    Related posts:

    Pollgate: McKenna "compounded one ethical misstep with another"

    Ill gov race: Joe Birkett on Andy McKenna's deception

    Marathon Pundit endorses Jim Ryan for Illinois governor

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