By John Ruberry

Donald Trump received during the 2016 general election campaign, only two of them came from publications that have more than 100,000 subscribers. Those papers were the Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Florida Times-Union. There were nine anti-endorsements–eight of those urged “Not Donald Trump–” and 64 “No Endorsements.” Most of the rest, 243 of them, were for Hillary Clinton.

In Illinois, all four of the newspaper nods so far for next month’s Republican gubernatorial primary have gone to incumbent Bruce Rauner. But as I wrote late last year at Da Tech Guy, Rauner has failed miserably as governor of America’s fifth-most populous state. Oops, make that sixth-most populous, as Illinois’ people exodus has allowed Pennsylvania to surpass it. National Review calls Rauner the nation’s worst Republican governor. During Rauner’s 2014 campaign he touted a 44-item turnaround agenda. None of them have been enacted into law. And after overriding the governor’s veto, the man who has destroyed Illinois, House Speaker for Life (in all but name) Michael Madigan (D-Chicago) last summer rammed through a 32 percent income tax hike.

Running against Rauner in the GOP primary is Jeanne Ives, who I support. A West Point graduate, Ives entered the race after Rauner signed into law bills that angered Land of Lincoln conservatives, including sanctuary state legislation, a bill that allows Illinoisans to change the gender listed on their birth certificates, and legislation that expands taxpayer funding for abortions. On that last one Rauner broke his promise to Illinoisans--including Cardinal Blase Cupich–that he would veto it.

Jeanne Ives

Rauner’s endorsements are milquetoast testimonials.

“You say you wish more had been accomplished during Rauner’s first term to fix finances, to grow jobs? So do we,” the Chicago Tribune shrugs.

A “flawed incumbent” laments the Daily Herald.

“As we approach this primary election, we have fundamental concerns about the governor’s ability to lead in this incredibly difficult time,” the Bloomington Pantagraph unloads.

“With a handful of exceptions, we believe he has been a failure as governor, and he has only himself to blame. He promised what he could not deliver,” says the Chicago Sun-Times.

In not choosing Ives, each paper mentions her conservative stance on social issues and the Pantagraph specifically cites a controversial TV ad where actors, including a man wearing a dress, “thank” Rauner for signing social issue legislation.

There has been only one poll so far in the GOP race and it’s a month old. At that time nearly 70 percent of likely voters hadn’t heard of Ives. But a few days later Ives’ TV commercials, including the one that has so angered the media and Democrats who have no intention of voting for a Republican candidate for governor, began airing.

The “experts” said Trump couldn’t even win the Republican nomination for president, let alone defeat Hillary Clinton. Sure, Illinois is a blue state, but the Land of Lincoln has been destroyed by the Democratic hegemony led by Madigan. And as I told the Prairie State Wire last week, Illinois hasn’t had a real conservative governor in the modern era.

Are enough Illinoisans fed up with failure?

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

by baldilocks

First off, I never have, at least explicitly.Baldilocks mini

There is no way of guessing which candidate, if elected, will keep his/her word after getting elected. Promises—like rules—are made to be broken among those of the political class. Endorsing a candidate implies that I think that a single person would make the best president from among the choices available and even when I very strongly supported a candidacy—President Bush’s in 2004—I never formally endorsed him. In 2008, I very strongly opposed then-Senator Obama’s candidacy, so it was a given that I supported that of Senator McCain.

Now? I could go on about the pros and cons–no pun intended–of Senator Cruz and Mr. Trump, but to quote the presumptive 2016 Democrat front-runner, what difference at this point would it make?

This is what’s going to happen: the country is about to take a huge financial fall and whichever party is in control at that time will take the blame for it. Wait. Scratch that. If a Democrat is in the White House, he/she will find a way to blame the Republicans and the Mainstream press will help bolster that notion. It goes without saying that the GOP will shoulder all the blame if there is a GOP president at the breaking point. There will be another Civil War–and only among the political elite, if God is merciful to us.

In short, I think that we are past the point where it matters which person and which party is in the White House, so any endorsement coming from me would be a waste and would draw needless annoyance from those who worship the Political Candidate Idols and who engage in “bumper-sticker-level mudslinging” whenever their god is blasphemed.

I prefer to keep developing and improving my faith life, my critical thinking skills, and writing my novel. There will time enough for choosing. And for finger-pointing. And for chaos.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng blogs at baldilocks. (Her older blog is located here.) Her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game, was published in 2012. Her second novel, tentatively titled, Arlen’s Harem, will be done in 2016. Follow her on Twitter.

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