11/07/2011 06:03 pm ET Updated Jan 07, 2012

Pat Brady and Tom Cross Can't Even Run a Coherent Scam

For some reason I'm on the email list for the House Republican Organization ("HRO"). That's the political arm of Illinois House Minority Leader Tom Cross' Republican caucus in Springfield.
The HRO sent an eblast yesterday pushing the Illinois straw poll that is State GOP Chairman Pat Brady's sole focus leading into one of the most important election years of our lifetime.
It sounds like things are getting pretty desperate. Pat Brady had been trying to maintain the pretense that his straw poll would be clean and fair. Brady never exactly said there would be controls in place to ensure only one vote per person, but he certainly gave people that impression.
Brady has also repeatedly compared his event to the Iowa Straw Poll, which is very insulting to Iowans to say the least. At the Iowa event in Ames they utilize real voting machines. But they don't stop there. After each Iowan votes, her or his finger is dipped in that indelible ink like you've probably seen used in the elections over in Iraq. That pretty much makes it impossible for the same person to even think about coming back to vote a second time.
And of course to vote in the Iowa Straw Poll you have to attend in person, and they first make certain you are an Iowa resident.
Well forget all of that ballot integrity stuff for Illinois. It's now official. The Illinois straw poll is for sale to the highest bidder. They're not even pretending anymore.
What's almost funny is the way Pat Brady and Tom Cross can't seem keep their stories straight. While Brady's been trying to keep up the fairness charade to hook the maximum number of suckers, Cross has decided the heck with that.
The paragraph below is copied from HRO's eblast yesterday:
"The best part:  it's only $5 to vote; you can vote multiple times to 'run up the score' for your favorite candidate..."
Unbelievable.  My advice to Pat Brady and Tom Cross would be that before the next attempted con, maybe go rent The Sting for some pointers on teamwork and planning. Just a thought.
But just like Pat Brady, Tom Cross is another guy who doesn't want Republicans to have a real vote for the Illinois Republican Party's top officials.
But he is willing to sell you an unlimited number of fake votes at five bucks a pop. Once again we see why he's known statewide as Tom Double Cross.
I didn't think this straw poll could be more meaningless or embarrassing to the Party, but I was wrong.
Doug Ibendahl is a Chicago Attorney and a former General Counsel of the Illinois Republican Party

This column was originally posted on "Republican News Watch