by Daniel T. Zanoza, Executive Director
I have been fighting against the slaughter of the innocent unborn for nearly two decades. It is not a political issue, it is a moral issue. But in the world of politics there are those who will say anything to get elected.
Perhaps for the first time since the birth of our nation, the American public is seeing through the political mist. The "promise them anything, but tell them whatever you think they want to hear" mantra isn't working any more.
A perfect illustration of the aforementioned politics is laid out to see in Dan Proft's campaign for Illinois Governor. Proft, who is seeking the Republican Party's gubernatorial nomination, is a political operative, campaign consultant and media guru who has wiled his way into the heart of the conservative pro-family movement. However, Proft's record regarding the issue of abortion and gambling should disqualify this individual from receiving support from those who have worked tirelessly to save the innocent unborn and to stop the expansion of gambling in Illinois.
For a moment, let's look at Proft's background. As a political consultant, Proft helped to elect Beth Coulson (R-Glenview) to the Illinois General Assembly. In fact, Proft led the campaign of this zealous pro-abort who now is in the midst of an effort to replace the liberal Mark Kirk in the 10th Congressional District. Now some might say this is past history. However, earlier this year, at a meeting of the Republican Assembly of Lake County, Proft was asked an important question regarding abortion by a member of the group: "In the future, would you again help to elect a pro-abortion candidate?" Proft's response was stunning, but most telling. Proft told those gathered, "yes". What was Proft's rationale? He said the election of a pro-abort Republican would be better than electing a pro-abort Democrat. A person's character can be judged by those they associate with or, in Proft's case, who he worked for.
This is the type of politics social conservatives have grown to disdain. However, Proft made his bones as a political consultant by cow-towing to both factions of the Illinois Republican Party. While on the payroll of Judy Baar Topinka, as he admitted on Tom Roeser's radio program (WLS AM 890 Chicago), Proft was making important connections in the Illinois pro-family movement. He was skillfully playing on both sides of the political tracks and was rewarded handsomely for doing so.
But most telling to me is what Proft promotes as a political strategy for his business, Urquhart Media, which is titled after a ruthless fictional character.
The following excerpt is from Urquhart Media's web site: http://www.urqmedia.com/name/
Politics is the art of getting someone to do what you want him to do by helping him understand why it’s in his interest to do so. Sometimes that appeal is based on shared interests; sometimes, on pure altruism; sometimes, on greed; sometimes, on fear. But in every case, the successful political appeal is an appeal to self-interest as defined and understood by the organization or individual whose support you seek.
Surely, in the history of the world’s politics, there is no finer practitioner of the art of politics than Francis Urquhart, the late Prime Minister of Britain.
What’s that, you say? There never has been a Prime Minister of Britain named Urquhart -- Francis or otherwise? You’re quite right, of course. We’re referring to the fictional lead character of House of Cards, a political satire about the post-Thatcher succession struggle inside Britain’s Conservative Party... Urquhart -- played to perfection by Ian Richardson -- schemes, dupes, cajoles, seduces, blackmails, extorts, and eventually even murders his way into No. 10 Downing Street in such an awe-inspiring display of cunning and ruthlessness that you find you can’t help but root for this most evil of men...
As to whether it is inappropriate for a communications consulting firm to take as its namesake one of the most malevolent characters in the history of politics... you might think that. We couldn’t possibly comment.
For more, see: "What would you think: Some Questions of Dan Proft Style Politics: Good For GOP Locally or Nationally?" Posted March 14, 2008 http://rffm.typepad.com/republicans_for_fair_medi/2008/03/what-would-you.html
Proft's political philosophy is clearly stated in the above and he has been quite successful, as he implemented this strategy. While being well paid, he has a left a path of political destruction in his wake. Proft has led the campaigns of social conservatives, including Jack Ryan and Alan Keyes, among others. These political efforts went up in flames under Proft's political guidance. Some critics say this was by design.
However, Proft's road to prominence is interesting in itself and should be a warning sign for pro-family conservatives. Proft, who cut his political teeth in former Republican power-broker Lee Daniels' office, joined state Sen. Patrick O'Malley's campaign to secure the Republican gubernatorial nod in 2002. After O'Malley was defeated in the primary, Proft joined forces with pro-gambling interests whose purpose was to bring a casino to southwest Cook County. More recently, Proft held a position as spokesman for the town of Cicero, a long-time hub of political corruption.
Here is a reasonable question: Did Proft's efforts to bring a casino to southwest Cook County play a factor in Cicero's hiring of Proft--where he received $90,000 per year for his work? Indeed, groups like ILCAAAP (Illinois Church Action on Alcohol and Addiction Problems) and SSCAGE (South Suburban Citizens Against Gambling Expansion) have spent the better part of a decade holding off Proft and his well-funded consorts who are still pressing to achieve their goals today to expand gambling in Illinois.
In fact, according to Carol Marin of the Chicago Sun-Times, Proft did his job so well for the town of Cicero, he became a paid spokesman for a BUILDING. See: http://blogs.suntimes.com/marin/2009/06/in_illinois_politics_you_as_fo.html
Of course, we can dismiss all of the above if Proft has had an epiphany like Paul on the road to Damascus. In the last few months, has Proft suddenly seen the light? Or is he a Mark Kirk type politician who when he came under fire for his Cap and Trade vote, told whoever would listen what they wanted to hear. I guess both men admire Urquhart. Proft would certainly support Kirk's candidacy for the U.S. Senate, according to what Proft told the Republican Assembly of Lake County a few months ago.
Again, from Proft's own web site, he writes: "the successful political appeal is an appeal to self-interest as defined and understood by the organization or individual whose support you seek."
The sad thing about it all is the fact Proft has convinced good people to endorse him. I know many of these individuals personally. They are truly dedicated to the pro-family movement, but, unfortunately, they are being deceived. Only God knows what's in a man's heart. But Scripture also tells us "no good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit" and "a house divided against itself cannot stand." Proft's political legacy should be a warning to all.
SOME POLITICAL HISTORY SOCIAL CONSERVATIVES SHOULD NOT FORGET:
In 1994, the Illinois GOP held a majority in both Houses of the state's General Assembly, held a number of statewide offices and held the governorship itself. Yet, amazingly, legislation designed to fight abortion was practically non-existent in the years following. In one case, imprisoned former Governor George Ryan vetoed an important pro-life bill and essentially said, anyone who believed the promises he made during the campaign season was a fool.
RELATED ARTICLE: Illinois Republicans Began Losing Their Moral Base Nearly A Decade Ago Which Led To The Party's Problems Today--At The National Level As Well -- posted July 15, 2008:
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