Burr Ridge mayor says state is 'on the wrong path'
Mickey Straub wants to take Burr Ridge to Springfield.
The second-term mayor of Burr Ridge largely credited with revitalizing the business community in the Chicago suburb is now hoping to take some of those same business-friendly principles downstate.
“Businesses are the life-blood of our country and that’s what I plan on bringing to Springfield,” Straub, who recently filed petitions to take on Rep. Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs) in the 82nd District, said during a recent appearance on the "Illinois Rising" radio show.
“Illinois is on the wrong path, and the party has lost its way," he said on the show.
Over the years, the 60-year-old Straub said he has grown tired of what he calls “surrender Republicans” giving in to Democrats and House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago) the way they did in joining forces with them to vote in favor of the state's new $36.1 billion budget.
“[T]he governor also jumped on the Madigan team by voting for HB 40,” he said of the abortion-expansion bill that allows women on Medicaid and on state health insurance to receive taxpayer-funded abortions. "Unfortunately, we have a lot of Democrats wearing Republican clothing.”
After 18 years in office, Straub hinted that he’s become convinced Durkin now also fits that profile. He notes that five members of his leadership team were among the 15 GOP members who voted in favor of the new budget that carries a permanent 32 percent income tax hike.
“He was not happy with my running,” Straub said of Durkin. “He was very upset about it. Part of my motivation for running was his response to it.”
More recently, Straub accused Durkin of using his power as a lawmaker to put forth legislation that helps his law firm fattening its profits.
“Jim Durkin was elected nearly 20 years ago to represent Illinois families but, unfortunately, records show he is more focused on representing his law firm by passing legislation to increase local government debt,” Straub said in a press release. “Illinois families expect him to act in their best interest, not to create business for his law firm and cash-in on bad legislation. It’s clear from his actions that Jim isn’t really working for taxpayers, he’s working for himself.”
Meanwhile, Straub said he is proud of all the unwavering support he has received in launching his Republican primary run, including one recent fundraiser that was attended by Chicago Bears legend Dan Hampton.
“The love of God and country was so thick in that room that you could cut it with a knife,” Straub said. “Dan Hampton is one classic example of one patriotic Christian, a man that believe in Illinois and our country’s future.”
As for the people of Burr Ridge, Straub said they, too, are a special breed.
“There are a lot of kindred spirits,” he said. “ I'm always amazed at Burr Ridge. I describe it as a small team with a deep bench, a lot of incredible people there that share a lot of the same values.”
The 82nd District covers parts of Cook, DuPage and Will counties, including Darien, Homer Glen, Lemont and Willowbrook.
"Illinois Rising" is co-hosted by Dan Proft, who also is a principal of Local Government Information Services, which owns this publication.