Skip to comments.Illinois’ Timothy Johnson to Retire
Posted on 04/05/2012 9:54:06 AM PDT by Clintonfatigued
Local Republican officials in the 13th district will now select a new nominee to replace Johnson, who was first elected to the House in 2000.
A senior Illinois GOP operative immediately pushed Rodney Davis, the former Illinois Republican Party executive director, as a potential successor to Johnson. The source also suggested Davis would have the support of his former boss, Rep. John Shimkus (R). Shimkus currently represents much of the redrawn 13th district but is seeking re-election in a nearby safe Republican district.
State Reps. Chapin Rose and Adam Brown as well as state Sen. Sam McCann are also considered potential candidates, according to Capitol Fax. Two of Johnsons current and former top aides, former Chief of Staff Jerry Clarke and current Chief of Staff Mark Shelden, could also be contenders. Shelden did not immediately return a voice mail message and email seeking comment.
Updated 9:37 p.m.
Johnson prefers Clarke to be his successor, according to a top Illinois Republican source. Clarke currently serves as freshman Rep. Randy Hultgrens (R-Ill.) chief of staff, and the source said he was one of only a few people Johnson called about his decision before the news broke.
House Republicans were stunned by Johnsons decision. A loner in the delegation, Johnson did not tell top House GOP staff about his plans ahead of time. He scheduled a conference call with his staff Thursday, but the topic was unknown.
(Excerpt) Read more at atr.rollcall.com ...
This is a surprise. Johnson has a mediocre record, but he represents a district that’s marginal and which voted for Obama. Rodney Davis seems to be well-regarded by political insiders, but has he ever been elected to anything? The one big plus is that the Democrat nominee is a leftist perennial candidate.
Chapin Rose just won the primary to run for state senate I wouldn’t think he would be in line for this nomination. TJ isn’t the most charismatic rep but he has been rock solid on most conservative issues.
The nominee will probably be either Jerry Clarke or Rodney Davis. Both of them are legislative staffers and I know nothing about their views.
Rep. Johnson is conservative. He’s pro-tax cuts, pro-spending cuts, pro-life, and pro-gun rights. However, I’m glad that he’ll retire, since he’s been in Congress long enough. I hope that Sen. Brady will run for Congress and that State Rep. Poe will run for Brady’s senate seat.
Johnson is not a Conservative. His voting record is closer to the left (36% liberal as of 2011). Only the execrable Mark Kirk has a lower lifetime Conservative rating (ACU). It’s unfortunate Don Manzullo can’t serve as a replacement, as he lives in the adjacent district (and Constitutionally-speaking, he’s not required to move).
I believe that state laws that prohibit someone from running for Congress, for any reason other than those that disqualify persons from being elected to Congress under the U.S. Constitution (in the case of the House, the only disqualifications are being under 25, not being a U.S. citizen for at least 7 years, not residing in the state as of Election Day, or having engaged in insurrection against the U.S. after having taken a U.S. oath of office) are, prima facie, unconstitutional. No state can add to the qualifications for Congress set forth in the Constitution, and preventing someone from running for office is the same as placing a new qualification; the fact that such person could get elected as a write-in should not be deemed to cure the problem and allow states to impose “sore-loser” requirements, any more than states can pass a law saying that persons under 50 may not be on the ballot for Congress (or, something that states tried to do and got slapped down by SCOTUS, preventing persons who have served more than X years in Congress from appearing on the ballot). Don Manzullo meets the constitutional requirements to serve in the House, and if the GOP wants to choose him as its nominee to replace Tim Johnson and the state government tried to prevent it, the party and Manzullo should sue immediately in federal court.
In the summer of 2009, I researched some of Rep. Johnson’s interest group ratings. At that time, he had high (at least 80%) ratings from Citizens Against Government Waste, National Right to Life Committee, and Gun Owners of America. Maybe, he became more liberal, since then, but he’s more conservative than Rep. Biggert.
I agree that it’s unfortunate that Rep. Manzullo can’t run, because of Illinois’ sore loser law.
Generally speaking, if a right-leaning group gives you an 80% rating, that’s considered “moderate.” I know the ACU considers anyone not at or above 85% in their ratings to not be a Conservative. That begs the question at what % do they become a liberal ?
It used to be I had my own personal scale, that 75-100% was Conservative, 50-74% was Moderate, 26-49% was liberal, and 0-25 was ultra-liberal (at least for Republicans). But I’d think now moving it 10-15% upwards to meet the given thresholds would make more sense. As such, 85-100% being Conservative, 60/65-85% being Moderate, 40-60/65% being liberal, and below 40% very liberal (and 20/25% below being pure moonbat).
Johnson’s ratings have generally been subpar for most of his tenure (same goes for Judy Biggert):
As you can see, these are fairly mediocre ratings for a Republican, with his topping out at 80% in 2009 (as you cited). With the exception of that year an ‘10, you’ll notice in an election year, his rating would go higher and in a non-election year, slip back again. His overall lifetime rating is a subpar 68.27% (which actually is more liberal than Biggert’s 68.46% lifetime). Remove his votes from 2009 & 2010, and it slips even further (to 66%).
I was always puzzled why Conservatives never chose to primary him in that regard.
The district is not really that marginal, Obama vastly out performed normal rat percentages in IL. Johnson’s new district certianly voted for Bush in 2004 as it was only 55% Obama in 2008.
I would be thrilled if they would consider Manzullo (whom Johnson endorsed over Kingz) but they won’t.
I agree with AUH20 , the state has no authority to apply a sore loser law to federal races so that would not be an impediment. (just like they wouldn’t be able to stop the impeached Blago from running for Congress when he gets out they can only ban him from state or local offices) Rather the impediment is that choosing Manzullo would be too intelligent a decision for IL GOP bosses to make because they are stupid.
In any case good riddance to Johnson, sounds like a nice guy, good constituent services, but not conservative enough. I just hope they don’t choose some assclown.