Rich Miller at the Capitol Fax has a look at the latest polling numbers for IL governor, as well as a host of other IL race round-ups. The polls put Topinka down from Blagojevich anywhere from 4-15 points. The average of all of these polls shows 44-35-11, with that 11 going to Green Party candidate Whitney.
I've read or heard several times that people are voting for Whitney to "send a message" that they're sick of the usual batch of politicians and various political shenanigans.
You know what message it actually sends? That 11% of the electorate is dumb enough to waste its vote on a lost cause.
I don't know much about Whitney. And I'm sure that some of that 11% is voting for him based on his positions and proposed policies (though those voters are most likely coming from Blagojevich's pool, not Topinka's). But Whitney is relatively unknown amongst the electorate and has virtually no chance of beating out Rod. Yet most of the people who will vote for him do so because they don't want to see Blagojevich elected to another term.
That being the case, why vote against Blagojevich's strongest competitor?
This is another one of those cases of the perfect being the enemy of the good. Topinka may not be everyone's ideal choice for IL governor, but how could she be any worse than Blagojevich?
If you don't like the choices you're presented with in November, then start paying attention during primary season and vote for the person you actually think will make a good choice. And even if your perfect choice doesn't end up on the ballot, try to keep in mind that American politics is about compromise. You can't always get everything you want, but you vote for the person who will give you more than the other person. If you're tired of corruption in the governor's office, voting for someone who isn't Topinka will only send one message to Rod Blagojevich: "Keep up the good work."