I hope everyone had a very merry Christmas yesterday. It was quite a busy one around the TA household, and thanks given for blessings received and shared, but now it's time to get back to business. This morning the Tribune reports in on what we've been tracking for some weeks, that is, that Senator Kirk is charting a course right of center, but nevertheless down the middle, as Kirk gets going on his Senatorial career. The Trib notes that Kirk will not be up for re-election until 2016, so the Jim DeMints of the world are not going to have a lot of impact on Kirk for a long time, if ever. Who knows what the world will look like in five years anyway?
A lot of people in my professional life know I'm identified with Mark Kirk as a strong supporter, so lots of people like to give me their $0.02 about issues, assuming I can take that right to the Senator (sometimes yes, sometimes no, is the answer to that). But one comment I have been hearing over the past few weeks, from way more than just one person, is that they are hopeful now that the election is over, that Mark Kirk will be the kind of Senator that resembled the Congressman "he used to be." To that I say, yes, I understand what you mean, and I hope so too, but it's up to all of us to make it known that we support people like Mark Kirk who are a vanishing breed of independent, thinking Republicans, and that it's OK not to be a hyper-partisan fire-breathing right-winger if you want to get re-elected. I then usually lecture the person on the perils and sad state of partisan politics in this country until their eyes glaze over and they make an excuse to get away, but I've made my point.
If you like a thoughtful, independent politician, let your friends know about Mark Kirk. Eventually, he'll be up for re-election, and then it will be time to let the dogmatists know that we want to keep our independent-minded Senator around.