Mike Webster to Challenge Jesse White in Secretary of State Race

In a Monday morning press release, the Illinois Republican Party announced that Mike Webster was stepping in to run on the party’s 2014 ticket for secretary of state.  Webster was formerly a 2014 Republican candidate for attorney general.

Monday’s announcement did not come as a surprise to Republican insiders, who received an email from IL GOP Chairman Jack Dorgan last week about the switch.

In the email, Dorgan explained the change, and encouraged party leaders to circulate petitions for Webster in order to obtain enough signatures by the state deadline.

“It’s critical we have a strong statewide ticket with opportunity in every race, and Mike gives us the best chance to capitalize on the steady drip of controversy coming out of Jesse White’s office,” said Dorgan.

According to yesterday’s release, Illinois Republican Chairman Jack Dorgan, State Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno, and State House Republican Leader Jim Durkin influenced Webster’s decision to switch office challenges.  Dorgan, Radogno and Durkin recently met with Webster, to encourage him to challenge White.

The Webster campaign is focusing on the scandals coming out of White’s office, including a recent accusation of patronage hiring.

“The people of Illinois have been shortchanged for too long,” Webster said. “It is time for dramatic change. The troubling reports of serious improprieties show it is time for new leadership. I will end the inefficiency, cronyism, nepotism, and patronage hiring that Jesse White has become infamous for, and I will provide the transparency, efficiency, and accountability that we all deserve.”

Webster, 53, is an attorney, CPA, and President of the Cass School District #63 Board of Education in Darien.  Webster, his wife, Sandy, and their four daughters reside in Hinsdale.

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