Looking at photos from our 2009 trip to Springfield’s Old Capitol Art Fair brought back the memory of when I was running for Governor on the Libertarian Party ticket against Democrat Rod Blagojevich and Republican Jim Ryan.
The two power party candidates, as I labeled them then, refused to allow me to appear on the same stage with them.
It started with my polling over 5% in a late August or early September, 2002, poll of over 1,000 people (the largest taken during the campaign).
The Illinois League of Women Voters traditionally had sponsored a series of debates with all of the statewide candidates.
Any candidate polling at least 5% was invited.
Blagojevich and Ryan agreed not to participate.
Little wonder, considering I had more governmental experience than both of them combined.
I went to all the debates anyway.
Starting in Rockford, we rolled out JimRod, the Two-Headed Chicken.
When the Illinois radio association was sponsoring its debate in the Old State Capitol, JimRod was stationed on the sidewalk outside of the north entrance.
That was the same place that the TV vans were parked and local Democrats were gathered.
Republicans were on the sidewalks in front of the Old State Capitol.
Just before the debate was about to begin we noticed that the Democratic Party stalwarts were moving toward the road north of where we and they had been standing.
We soon figured out that Blagojevich was going to enter the Old State Capitol through the underground garage.
To do that he had to go down the stairs you see below.
Later Governor Blagojevich made it a habit to take the Capitol elevator to the basement, thereby, escaping questions from the media.