First off, Hello Everyone! And also, a huge thank you to Diane for inviting me to write on this blog!
First off, a little about me...after being a life long resident of Peoria (Hines Elementary, Washington Gifted, Woodruff High) I now reside in New York...on Long Island to be exact.
Since I've been out here, which is about 9 months now, I've noticed alot of similarities, and differences, between the two states.
For starters, we've all told someone we're from Illinois, and the first they ask say is, "Oh, how's Chicago?" I always find myself telling them that, believe it or not, there's more to Illinois than Chicago...and now I find myself telling people that there's more to New York than NYC.
Politically, the states are very similar as well. Nationwide, people tend to think of Illinois and New York as two of the most liberal states in the country. If you look at the trends tho, a majority of the states, land wise, are hard working people who enjoy conservative values. I seem to recall Illinois' chosen son saying something about clinging to guns and religion...but I could be mistaken.
Illinois and New York have large urban centers that pull the states to the left. They also are on par with each other in terms of government corruption, and have both lost governors in the recent past.
For the average person, Elliot Spitzer's fall from grace was more interesting, since it involved high priced hookers...but for a life long political junkie such as myself, the theatrics surrounding Rod Blagojevich was pure gold.
Illinois has become a laughing stock nationwide, all this while at a time when, politically, you would think we'd be flying high...a former Senator is president, and he hired just about everyone who ever worked with him in Chicago to work in his administration.
The Chicago Way is now the American Way, and it's costing us personal freedoms at an alarming pace. Between Senate votes on legislation that will make over 16% of the US economy taking place on holidays and in the middle of the night, cap and trade, card check, fairness doctrine...these are scary times for people who have ever read the Constitution.
2010 will be a landmark year in this country politically, and the GOP is poised to make large gains in both the House and the Senate, as well as in countless State House's and Governor's Mansions around the country.
Even in Illinois, who would have thought 18 months ago that a Republican would have a chance at winning the Senate seat once belonging to Barrack Obama. As an aside...I always thought that messiahs levitated...why would Obama even need a seat?
I strongly urge you to stay vigilant, and let's return to the grassroots organizations that swept Obama into office. In Central Illinois you are lucky to have a hardworking man representing you in Washington...Aaron Schock is one of the futures of the GOP, and is working hard for his district.
In closing...if you look at the polls, or nationwide sentiment, we are on the brink of a conservative uprising. People are fed up with big government, and it seems that the only change Barrack Obama has brought to DC is throwing trillions at problems, instead of mere billions. Get out there and make your voices heard...and if you're looking for a little light reading, there's an 18 page document called the Constitution that makes for a fantastic read!
1 day ago