Tracy resigns as Illinois GOP Chairman


Don Tracy

SPRINGFIELD – Don Tracy, who presided as the chairman of the Illinois Republican Party, resigned from the position Wednesday after three-and-a-half years.

Tracy, a Springfield attorney, was unable to rally a party that sits in super minorities in both chambers of the Illinois General Assembly and hasn’t held a single statewide elected position since Democrat JB Pritzker defeated Republican Bruce Rauner for governor in 2018.

Illinois Republicans have lost power in suburban Chicago counties such as Lake and DuPage, where they used to have sizable advantages. The party’s strength has shifted downstate, where the population is lower.

In a news release, Tracy said Illinois Republicans would “rather fight other Republicans than engage in the harder work of defeating incumbent Democrats.”

He also blamed “grassroots” activists who had been calling for his resignation for months and those calls had gotten louder after several controversies at the party’s state convention in Collinsville last month.

Tracy also had issues with the action taken on Monday, when the Illinois Republican Party State Central Committee – the governing board of the IL GOP – voted to remove to Mark Shaw as vice chair.

Shaw was accused of attempting to unfairly leverage his position with the party and a job as a paid advisor to Republican presidential candidate and former President Donald Trump into the post of Republican National Committeeman from Illinois.

Tracy said the way Shaw was removed was “without due process and without taking any step to disciplining others for alleged or admitted Convention misconduct, portends a direction of the State Party I am not comfortable with.”

Tracy said his resignation was effective upon the election of a new chairman or “no later than July 19.”

July 19 is the day after the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee ends.

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