Today's Chicago Tribune carries a story on Denny Hastert's (not really) hand's off role as de facto leader of the Illinois State
GOP. (FYI, John Roberts Jr boarding school buddy and papermaking heir Andy McKenna is the head of the IL GOP -- a job not many wanted.)
For those who don't know, the IL-GOP is plagued by scandal, beset by infighting and generally in a shambles (see
Keyes, Alan, United States Senator ...oops, I mean Keyes, Alan, perennial carpetbaggin' candidate and general malcontent gadfly).
But what I found interesting were some of Hastert's toss-away quotes. Maybe he thought Trib Politico Maven Rick Pearson wouldn't run the soundbytes... but he did.
Read 'em in the all their wackiness below the fold...
Denny Hastert quotable quotes, for your enjoyment....
From the Sunday, August 28, 2005 Chicago Tribune Metro section, page 1:
Hastert is hands-off leader of state GOP
By Rick Pearson
Chicago Tribune political reporter
Published August 28, 2005
(non-sequential and any emphasis is mine...)
"There are a lot of differing ideologies and it's a 'my way or no way' type of situation with some of these groups out there," [Hastert] said. "The greater whole doesn't benefit until the people on the fringes can come together and move forward."
I wonder if Denny had fringe groups like these in mind when he said that.
And here's a quote that's a little more sublime...
"I see my first political responsibility as keeping the House of Representatives (in Republican control) and running the House of Representatives. That consumes about 99 percent of my time, every day, every night," Hastert told the Tribune in an exclusive interview. "I'm playing palace politics in Washington, in a sense, and if I started playing palace politics in Illinois, I couldn't do this all. It's not possible."
....Yep, it sure is tough work wrangling all those fringe groups together and ignoring mainstream Americans and their honest, basic needs while playing palace politics in order to continue grabbing for more and more power and control...
I leave you with this gem from the sultan of slurp and coach of all wrastlin' coaches...
"I think that if you're going to take on the national responsibility of the party, then you have to build and pull that party together," Hastert said, noting that he doesn't know Kjellander personally. "But I think if you are taking on a major responsibility, I think there probably are a certain ethic issues that are not necessarily against the law, but the party ought to set these parameters and people ought to abide by them."
Now, dingbat Denny's talking about Bob Kjellander, Illinois State GOP national committeeman, National Republican Committee Treasurer and Friend of Rove (College Republicans buddies in fact -- by the looks of 'em they may have even bunked together during some collegial retreat). Kjellander's been dipping his hand into "consulting fees" for state-run pension boards to the tune of millions of dollars (this under a Dem governor...). Not illegal, but questionable ethically to be sure.
But why wasn't Denny this concerned about ethics while trying to protect Tom "Get Outta Jail Free" DeLay?
Takes one to know one I guess.