CHICAGO
08/27/2012 04:50 pm ET

Illinois Republicans Set Up 'Fire Madigan' Web Store After State Fair Feedback

Turns out Gov. Pat Quinn might not be the only Illinois Democrat who'd prefer to forget a markedly less-than-stellar showing at the State Fair earlier this month.

One day after Quinn made a pair of bizarre gaffes on Governor's Day at the Springfield, Ill. event, the Illinois GOP debuted a new "Save Illinois. Fire Madigan." sign to accompany their consistent skewering of the veteran state House Speaker and Chicago Democrat Michael Madigan's political record, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

The sign apparently proved so popular that state GOP leaders on Monday unveiled a CafePress web store offering up bumper stickers, buttons, yard signs, magnets, hats, coffee mugs, golf balls, t-shirts (for both humans and dogs) and more emblazoned with the slogan.

Items available through the "Fire Madigan" shop are being sold "at cost" and at no financial profit or less, according to the shop.

"They'll be the hottest, trendiest thing in the state of Illinois in the next four years," state GOP chairman Pat Brady told the Chicago Sun-Times' of the store in Clearwater Beach, Fla., where the state's delegates are staying during the Republican National Convention in Tampa.

Madigan spokesman Steve Brown downplayed the new website to the Chicago Tribune.

As Illinois Watchdog's Jayette Bolinski reports, the targeting of Madigan is part of the state GOP's larger strategy to attempt to link a vote for any state Democrat this fall with a vote for Madigan, whom they are depicting painting as "the ultimate corrupt politician."

That strategy is one Brown told the Illinois Watchdog will prove "a swing and a miss" as it is not new.

"They’re not giving anybody a reason to vote for Republicans. And that’s the first thing you need to do," Brown continued.

Nevertheless, some -- including the Capitol Fax blog's Rich Miller -- have begun to question whether the plan could prove effective for the state's GOP this election year.

Miller writes in the Sun-Times earlier this month:

The bottom line here is that there are some real dangers for the Democrats concerning the House speaker’s negative public image.

Hat tip to Capitol Fax.

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