Kane County Shines Amidst Illinois Politics

29 May, 2024

Observations from an ILGOP State Convention Delegate

By: Pam Carr, Vice Chairman and Secretary

Kane County GOP

As a first-time delegate to the ILGOP State Convention, I wanted to share my observations and perspectives, and highlight some valuable learning opportunities. Overall, Kane County should be extremely proud of how we conducted ourselves at the convention, especially leading the initiative to elect our very own Dean White as RNC National Committeeman. Our grassroots groups made history that day by selecting someone outside of the establishment.

Kane County Shines Amidst Illinois Politics

When you think of politics in Illinois, corruption and shady dealings often come to mind. Unfortunately, the recent State Convention confirmed these perceptions. There were reports of bribing committee members for votes, frequent changes to voting rules to mislead the public, voter suppression tactics to intimidate delegates, and even incidents of physical and verbal assault, and at least one person being drugged and robbed. It was a chaotic environment where many seemed to have sold their integrity for power.

Amidst this turmoil, Kane County stood out as a force for good. Our delegation, one of the largest with over 50 members, was situated at the center of the convention floor among 500+ peers from other counties. Our mission was clear: to ensure that all delegates, many of whom drove over five hours to be there, had a chance to vote and have their voices heard. While electing Dean White was a priority, giving the vote to the delegates instead of a select committee was our primary goal. Inspired by our example, other counties were motivated to do the right thing. Despite the surrounding corruption, the vote eventually began to favor the delegates, thanks in part to the steadfast, united leadership displayed by Kane County. We were a beacon of hope to the grassroots delegates who ultimately emerged victorious. For instance, Cindy Bailey, wife of former gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey, messaged me saying, "This was an amazing day for the grassroots and IL!!!! God bless Kane Co."

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

In Kane County, we don't always agree on everything, and sometimes personal interests can overshadow organizational goals. However, at the State Convention, everyone set their egos aside and worked together as a cohesive unit. Each person selflessly contributed their strengths to the team effort. When new voting instructions became available, we immediately disseminated the information to our friends and contacts across the 100+ counties present at the convention. I personally reached out to friends in Cook County and recent acquaintances in Will, Kendall, and Lake Counties. Communication flowed seamlessly through texts, messenger notices, emails, and in-person updates. No one complained about stepping on each other's toes, duplicating messages, or taking credit for updates—we just got it done.

A unique perspective for me was temporarily becoming the proxy Kane County Chairman. Initially, I was nervous about possibly having to stand in front of 500+ people to make a motion since our county was essentially leading the resistance. However, our high-performing team of PCs and grassroots members worked seamlessly together, and we all felt comfortable in our roles, driven by camaraderie and support as we aimed to get Dean elected.

How Can We Transfer This Knowledge to Win Elections in Kane County?

First, our county is now in the spotlight across the state as a role model, not only because of our performance at the Convention but also due to our innovative approaches to attracting new members, fundraising, protesting Democrat policies, partnering with grassroots groups and other counties, and employing unique marketing and media techniques. We need to build on this momentum to recruit new volunteers, increase event attendance, and grow our fundraising efforts. Additionally, we should share this successful formula beyond St. Charles into all other townships.

Next, we need to remember the selfless teamwork we displayed during the State Convention and continue working together without egos to achieve our mission of winning elections. Leaders and volunteers alike must focus on our shared goals, rather than personal gains. We must thank volunteers for their efforts, no matter how large or small, as every contribution leads to our collective success. Ultimately, our results are what matter, not the individuals who achieved them.

Finally, we are just a few months away from a major election that will shape the future of Kane County. Each of us must step up and take more responsibility for the outcome, rather than operating under the status quo. Ask candidates how you can help them, attend scheduled events, volunteer to join one of our committees, donate a few hours a week to moderate our social media or write a blog article, help post candidate signs, or simply start talking to your constituents about the candidates and record how they plan to vote for future follow-up. It is never too early to start.

Let’s continue to make Kane County a role model for other counties to follow, and help turn Illinois red.