D46 Watchdog Enters Race for 31st Senate District
Lake County Tea Party Chairman Lennie Jarratt will seek the Republican nomination for Suzi Schmidt's seat in March.
The man behind several largely publicized efforts to expose alleged elections and ethics violations in Grayslake School District 46 is the latest to announce his candidacy for the 31st Senate District.
Round Lake Beach resident and Lake County Tea Party Chairman Linwood “Lennie” Jarratt said his campaign to seek the Republican Party’s nomination in March is all about “supporting families, not government.”
“Too many families in the 31st State Senate District are losing their jobs and homes due to the bad policies coming from Springfield,” he said.
“My track record of holding local officials accountable for their actions puts Springfield on notice that I am coming to change the culture and end the backroom deals,” Jarratt said. “Together, we can restore fiscal sanity and once again have Springfield policies supporting families, not government.”
Last month, Republican Suzi Schmidt, of Lake Villa, announced she would not seek re-election to the 31st Senate seat she won in 2010 over Grayslake’s Michael Bond. The announcement followed several domestic incidents at her residence in which police were called. Schmidt, who previously served as Lake County Board president, told the media she wanted to focus more time on her family.
In addition to Jarratt, former Lake County Board member Larry Leafblad, of Grayslake, and Michael White, of Lindenhurst, also will seek the Republican nomination in their bid to win Schmidt’s seat.
So far, Lake County Board member Melinda Bush, of Grayslake, is the only candidate seeking the Democratic nomination.
A former Grayslake village trustee, Bush said she’s always been a passionate fighter for the community and would continue to work in the best interest of the people if elected state senator.
“The people of Lake County and the 31st Senate District are in a state of crisis,” she said. “We are desperate for jobs and tax relief. We must find solutions that address the disastrous impact of the financial and real estate collapse. I am compelled to action out of sheer necessity.”
Springfield is Broke
Leafblad, who served on the county board from 1990 to 2008, said he is running for the Senate because Illinois is in “grave financial danger” and has become a “laughingstock.”
“Per capita, Illinois is the worst in the nation. I am a fiscal hawk that will put the brakes on spending,” said Leafblad, adding that if elected, he would limit his Senate tenure to no more than two terms.
State government, said Leafblad, needs to take a lesson from Illinois families like his own and “cut, cut and cut some more.”
“We need to get spending and borrowing under control first,” he said. “Then, we must reduce the size of governmental bodies in Illinois by combining jurisdictions and eliminating duplication of services.”
Like Leafblad, Jarratt said he is very concerned about state spending and the effect it has on the citizens.
“Springfield is broke, and their only solution is to squeeze more money from families with higher income taxes, high gas taxes, and Internet taxes that destroyed extra income for many home-based businesses,” Jarratt said.
Budgets are shrinking, said Jarratt, and taxing bodies continue to raise property taxes.
“Lake County has the highest property taxes in the Midwest and the 14th highest in the country according to Forbes magazine,” he said. “Families should not be squeezed any more. It is time to restore fiscal sanity to Springfield and reform this state-sanctioned local tax.”
White, a retired military man who ran as an independent for governor in 2010, calls himself a leader who will “get Illinois back on track by cleaning up wasteful spending, focusing on priorities and working in a bipartisan spirit to obtain a balanced budget.”
Teamwork, said White, will be necessary to develop a long-term strategy to control spending, eliminate waste and increase transparency.
“Every citizen has the right to expect open and honest government,” Jarratt said. “We should never have to pay a corruption tax as the price of government graft and backroom dealings.”
Nov. 28 is the first day to file for the March 2012 primary. The general election will be held next November.
- Check back to Grayslake Patch tomorrow for a Q&A article with more information on Jarratt, Leafblad and White