State Senator Darren Bailey, currently the commanding leader of the pack for the Republican nomination for Illinois Governor, made an appearance at the Guns Save Life Sangamon County meeting last night. The meeting, held at SCHEELS in Springfield, drew a packed crowd approaching 135 in attendance.
Darren Bailey dazzled folks.
We’ve known Darren Bailey for a long time. He has been a GSL member for years and has made appearances at the Charleston GSL meeting, the region closest to his district on a number of occasions over the years – yes, even when he wasn’t running for office. With last night’s meeting, Senator Bailey is now a life member of the Guns Save Life family.
Like most of our members, Darren’s a gun owner and a very vocal supporter of gun rights and self-defense. He says he’s got more than one (okay, three) gun safes at home packed with iron. He tries to keep the overflow down by gifting guns to his kids and grandkids so they can share gun culture in their families. Bailey says he wants Constitutional Carry in Illinois and looks for the FOID to be struck down by the courts or legislated away at some point, hopefully sooner rather than later.
Bailey covered a lot of ground in his remarks. He addressed the negative text spamming his opponents have levied against him as well as the mailings that have started appearing in mailboxes. “They’ve spent $5.2 million attacking me and I’ve gained 3 points in the polls,” Bailey said.
The mailings suggest that he supported Dems in the past, and Bailey laughed. “Yeah, as part of Operation CHAOS,” he said, recalling back to Rush Limbaugh’s plan to held create chaos in Democrat primary races. As for “splitting with Trump,” Bailey again laughed. He’s been honored to participate in very small groups with President Trump more than once, including dinner at Mar-a-Lago with both President Trump and Don Jr. And he remains a very strong and proud supporter of Trump and MAGA.
At least some of the mailings failed to have the legally-mandated disclosures identifying who paid for them. Asked if he would like to publicly speculate on who is sending those mailings, he said that Irvin’s campaign copped to the campaign violation and instead of paying a big fine, they will likely spend far bigger bucks remailing them with the “paid for” disclosures.
Nobody really wants him to win…
Meanwhile, back in the present day, neither side wants him to win. He’s been a major thorn in the side of Pritzker and state Democrat leaders since his arrival to the Illinois House. He successfully sued and challenged the governor’s unconstitutional mask mandates. He’s needled Democrats while gaining respect and popularity through articulating clear conservative, pro-gun messages across Illinois.
And he’s definitely not been part of the “go along to get along” caucus among the establishment Republicans in Springfield. He was mildly critical of some of those at the top of the establishment Republican party in Illinois. They don’t like him either – enter Richard Irvin.
Bailey noted how he’s twenty points ahead of both Sullivan and Irvin, neither of which are Republicans but who are running for the Republican nomination. (Interestingly, neither Sullivan or Irvin have responded to requests to attend Guns Save Life meetings.)
Asked how his administration would be different than Gov. Bruce Rauner’s administration where Democrats controlled both houses of the General Assembly, Bailey noted that Rauner wasn’t really a Republican. Rauner was never in politics before spending tens of millions of his own money to help get himself elected. And then he went on to alienate unions and others. In contrast, Bailey noted how he served 17 years on his local school board before running for the Illinois House. During that time, he and the other board members kept the tax levy for their schools at one of the ten lowest in the state.
Recalling why he got involved in politics, it all began when his then-state representative voted for a huge income tax hike. Darren ran, won that seat and later an Illinois Senate seat. His district, in southern Illinois, have never had a voice among the people from Chicago who are running Illinois.
He noted how poorly Governor Pritzker and his appointees are running the state. Everything from our state’s hard-core woke universities, to floundering state agencies, to even the Prisoner Review Board. It seems even the Democrats thought a couple of Pritzker’s nominees to the Prisoner Review Board were too radical and they, along with Republicans in the Illinois Senate, refused to approve them. Others were withdrawn, including the double-murderer. Now, there aren’t enough on the PRB to hold a quorum. “This means they can’t release any more prisoners early!” Bailey noted with pride.
We anticipate seeing more of Senator Bailey at other GSL meeting locations as his time and availability permit.