Top Illinois Republicans are no-shows in Cleveland

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Sen. Mark Kirk (file photo)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The quadrennial celebration of the Grand Old Party in Cleveland this week will be missing some key members from Illinois.

Top Republicans from the Land of Lincoln are taking a pass on the Republican National Convention where delegates are expected to nominate contentious real estate developer Donald Trump.

Only U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk has said it’s because he disagrees with Trump’s rhetoric. He’s in a tough re-election campaign with Democratic Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has criticized Trump but says he’s not attending because he’s busy meeting with constituents. Comptroller Leslie Munger — who also has a tough fall opponent — says she’s focused on the state’s fiscal crisis.

U.S. Rep. Robert Dold has an election fight and won’t attend. Nor will Regional Transportation Authority Chairman Kirk Dillard.