For Immediate Release:
Monday October 1, 2018
Toby Trimmer, Communications Director
(217) 622-7547 |


Background: Vandals damaged the offices of the Winnebago Republican Party sometime in the late hours between Saturday, September 29 and Sunday, September 30. The criminals spray-painted the words “rape” and “shame” multiple times on the exterior of the building. It is reasonable to interpret the vandalism as some kind of statement regarding the U.S. Senate’s confirmation hearings on Judge Brett Kavanaugh. The issues surrounding Kavanaugh have stoked the emotions of millions of Americans.

Late on Sunday, Doug House, President of the Illinois Democratic County Chairs’ Association, and Charlie Laskonis, Chair of the Winnebago Democratic Party, issue the following statements in response to the news and images of the vandalized building.

Doug House, President of the Illinois Democratic County Chairs’ Association

“The act of destruction in Winnebago County is unacceptable and unforgivable.

Whoever is responsible for this callous, cowardly criminal act should know that they will find no welcome mat in our county Democratic parties. What was done in Winnebago County lacks logic or sanity and anyone who has information regarding the criminals should contact the authorities immediately.

I urge all candidates, activists, volunteers, partners or self-affiliated alliances within our party to take a moment to reflect on the very clear line between disagreement and destructive indecency. If your passions lead you to consider the destruction of property or harm to another person, you are unquestionably wrong.

County-level political organizations – Republicans and Democrats alike – rightfully cherish their offices and campaign headquarters with pride. These are places where we come together to exercise the freedoms of our democracy among our like-minded fellows. Destruction and vandalism are acts of senseless intimidation and small-minded intolerance that we condemn on the highest order.”

Charlie Laskonis, Winnebago County Democratic Party Chair

“Regardless of one’s partisan preferences, if any, Winnebago County is first a community. Elected Democrats and Republicans work together to improve our way of life. Our children go to school together, we patronize one another’s businesses and we all want the best for the future. Criminal vandalism is not how we express the differences of opinion in our community.

I’m disgusted at the vandalism and view it as an act at intimidation. Through direct correspondence, I have offered to Winnebago GOP Chair James Thompson the willingness of Democrats to help in the quick clean-up of the damage. In addition, I encourage anyone, with even the smallest bit of information, to take it to law enforcement immediately.”

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Note: Prior to issuing a media statement, Laskonis directed correspondence to GOP Chair Thompson highlighting his condemnation of the vandalism.


About the IDCCA…

The Illinois Democratic County Chairs’ Association (IDCCA) is a statewide, grassroots Democratic Party organization comprised of the elected Democratic County Chairs in all 102 counties in Illinois. The mission of the IDCCA is to help elect Democrats in every county and region of Illinois while continuing to grow the Democratic Party throughout the state. Rock Island County Chair Doug House is the President of the IDCCA.

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