"Pat Brady, a former state GOP chairman, said most people in his party — at least in Illinois — wouldn't argue with recognizing Obama.
"The reality is he's the first African-American president in the history of the country. I think Democrat or Republican, we should take some pride in that," Brady said, adding that while commemorative holiday or recognitions are appropriate, having a government day off is a stretch.
A government day off in Illinois would cost $3.2 million, according to the state budget office. "The most important issue is the financial crisis here,” Brady said. “I think most people see [a debate over a day off] as: 'why are we talking about this now?'""