Jack Franks Prospects Among Republicans in Crystal Lake

As readers know, I have been watching State Rep. Jack Franks (D-Marengo) prepare to run for Congress in a newly reapportioned 2010 district.

Should he succeed in capturing a congressional seat which contains all of McHenry County, one can almost predict a continuing downward spiral of the obviously deeply split Republican Party.

Franks was intimately involved in the township election cycle, even sending out campaign pieces which boldly proclaimed his political action committee paid for them.

But, here’s a canny new twist.

The 10-year legislator, who is superb at garnering publicity, whether it be with a bulk-buying prescription drug program or hinting at running for governor, was advancing his congressional ambitions in Algonquin Township this fall.


The Franks campaign sent out invitations to his Bull Valley Country Club fund raiser to Republicans.

I’m talking hard core Republicans.

I didn’t make the list, but avoiding an article like this might be the reason.

But, it wasn’t just a mailed fund raising pitch.

A while later someone called on the phone to ask for a donation.

So, why would a state representative try to raise money in the hometown of the McHenry County Republican Party Chairman and fellow state representative Mike Tryon?

If one were planning on running for United States Representative in a district that contained all of McHenry County, how would a candidate do it?

Now, remember that Franks has hundreds of thousands of dollars that he cannot spend on a congressional campaign.  There are campaign limits on Federal contributions, but not for state campaigns.

But, he can spend it on a state legislative race.

Franks used part of that money to introduce himself in the Mike Tryon part of McHenry County.

And with Republican opponent John O’Neill running against him for state representative (not known until after the fund raising pitches in Algonquin Township), it is easy to predict that a lot of money will be spent identifying every possible supporter in his own district. That information, of course, will form the basis for his 2012 campaign for Congress.

No one has ever said that Jack Franks is not a canny politician.

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