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Rabine: Don Tracy and the IL GOP Should Reimburse Gubernatorial Candidates for Postage

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By Gary Rabine
 
Running for any office, especially for governor of the 5th largest state in America is expensive. And for the candidates who didn’t have a billionaire writing giant checks, many of us funded our campaigns with our own, hard-earned money.
 
Growing up, we didn’t have a lot of money, but my parents taught us something much more valuable than fancy possessions: that if you have a strong work ethic, you are disciplined and accountable, then the sky’s the limit in this amazing free country.
 
So as an 18-year-old man with a few thousand dollars I began in the driveway maintenance business by knocking on doors in Northern Illinois. And over time, I worked hard with my team to build this little company into one of the largest parking lot paving companies in America.
 
Today I have over a dozen companies under the Rabine Group, and we do business in all fifty states. But it took literally, blood, sweat and tears to get there.
 
The decision to run for governor was not an easy one, and it took lots of time consulting with family and friends. My family and businesses would be an automatic target by our political enemies, and so I wanted to make sure I was making the right decision.
 
Protecting my family was my number one priority – even above running for an office as important as governor.
 
Our state is in so much trouble.

Crime is skyrocketing; over 100,000 residents leave our state annually taking billions of dollars of tax revenue with them; high taxes are killing homeowners and businesses; and our economy is now one of the worst in the country.
 
Much worse than that, we have a governor who’s abusing his COVID-19 emergency powers and acting more like a dictator than a representative of, “we the people.”
 
That’s why I was one of the lead plaintiffs who sued the Biden Administration, challenging the constitutionality of their employer vaccine mandate – a mandate that would have impacted over 80 million hard working Americans.
 
We never gave up the fight – taking our case all the way to the US Supreme Court.
 
And we won on Jan 14, 2022.
 
But that shared victory came at a price, and I’m not talking about a monetary price, although that was expensive too.
 
Since that Supreme Court victory, I have been the target of “cancel culture,” audits and lawsuits. But those attempts to silence me only strengthened my resolve to fight harder and do what’s right for the people of Illinois and the country as a whole.
 
And so, when I learned in a recent Illinois Review article that IL GOP chairman Don Tracy allowed so-called Republican Richard Irvin’s campaign – the same man who pulled Democratic Primary ballots in 2014, 2016 and 2020 to use the IL GOP postage discount for his mailers, I was angry.
 
While the rest of us were out on the campaign trail, spending our own hard-earned money to get our messages out, the Irvin campaign, funded by billionaire Ken Griffin, was getting preferred postage discounts compliments of the IL GOP.
 
This is outrageous.
 
During my primary campaign I felt Don Tracy’s leadership was weak for not taking a stand against the IL GOP’s preferential treatment for Richard Irvin.
 
For example, at the August 2021 State Fair in Springfield, the Republican candidates for governor were not allowed to speak. Not coincidentally, Irvin entered the race just a few months after the State Fair.
 
At the Sangamon County Lincoln Day Dinner in April 2022, Richard Irvin was a no-show, and once again myself and the other Republican candidates for governor were not allowed to speak.
 
Turning Point USA Founder Charlie Kirk was the main speaker at the Lincoln Day Dinner – and prior to taking the stage, Kirk was asked not to mention my name as he often does during speeches – as I’m one of the original founders of TPUSA and the candidate for governor of Illinois whom Kirk had endorsed.
 
But it was okay for Irvin’s Lt. Gov. candidate Avery Bourne to go on stage and pitch the 1,000-plus in attendance on why they should vote for her and lifelong Democrat Richard Irvin in the Republican primary.

Illinois Lt. Gov. candidate and Richard Irvin running mate Avery Bourne addressing the Sangamon County Lincoln Day Dinner at the Bank of Springfield Center on April 19, 2022. (Photo credit: Avery Bourne / Twitter)

Now that I have learned that Don Tracy only allowed Irvin’s campaign to use the IL GOP postage discount proves that he was either bullied by former House GOP leader Jim Durkin and IL GOP national committeeman Richard Porter or bought by their billionaire backer, Ken Griffin. 
 
And so, I am calling on Don Tracy and the IL GOP to reimburse every 2022 Republican gubernatorial campaign in the primary for their postage. Including my campaign.
 
The collusion between the Irvin campaign and the IL GOP is a disgrace, and our leaders should be held accountable – in addition to reimbursing our campaigns for postage.
 
In February, Tracy had this to say, 

“The Illinois Republican Party has been neutral and will always be neutral in the GOP primary for governor. Any accusation that we are coordinating with a particular campaign is absolutely false and I find it personally offensive to suggest otherwise.”
 
So much for Don Tracy and the Illinois Republican Party staying neutral during the Primary. The postage discount, among other things, proves otherwise.
 
Gary Rabine is an entrepreneur and businessman. In 2022, he ran in the Illinois primary as a Republican candidate for governor.

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