Illinois GOP elects national convention representatives

By Daniel Johnson

There were very few times Demetra DeMonte’s family table in her childhood home was not covered in her father’s precinct papers from the 35th ward in Chicago.

But the Illinois Republican National Committeewoman Elect has used her experience with the city, and with politics in general, to help her earn the nomination for the national body.

“When I was meeting with the election committee over the weekend, I was talking with them about my experiences walking the precinct with him,” she said Tuesday. “He and my mother taught me that we all have a responsibility to give back to society.”

DeMonte, the Tazewell County Chairman, and Patrick Brady were elected Saturday in Decatur to attend the upcoming National Convention and fully represent the party thereafter at all Republican events.

Brady, of St. Charles, was favored going into the weekend, according to DeMonte and Jason Barickman, the chairman of the Champaign County Republican Party.

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“The general belief when I got to Decatur was that it was fairly certain that Pat Brady had most of the vote,” DeMonte said. “The word when I arrived was that people were really looking at the women’s race, because it was so competitive.”

Both the committeeman and woman seat were decided by a first vote, with one of the candidates winning at least 10 votes by a board and then a second majority vote of the floor at the meeting.

While Brady won the first 10-vote election successfully and took the floor, the female vote had to go to a second vote when no woman received the requisite amount of votes.

Carol Smith Donovan was one vote shy of winning the first round of election, a re-vote was held and DeMonte garnered exactly 10 votes, giving her the first vote. DeMonte took the floor vote, and the nomination, by a wide margin.

“She deserved to win that nomination, I was really glad that they had to go to that second vote,” Barickman said. “I’ve worked with Demetra a good deal and I know what kind of person that she is. I got to meet with Pat, too. I like who we have in him … Overall, both the candidates we elected are very good.”