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Sen. Kirk lashes out at SEIU

Friday, Mar 21, 2014

* Sen. Kirk probably should’ve stopped with this

“With Rauner’s victory, it showed that a pro-choice Republican can be nominated by the party and go on to win,” said U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., who also supports abortion rights. “If you are a social moderate and a fiscal conservative, you’re likely to win in Illinois.”

* As we’ve discussed before, Rauner has abandoned his constant attacks on organized labor, but Kirk may not have received the memo or acted as a surrogate

“I would say that the national significance of this race for governor is that the toxic left … would do anything to make sure that Illinois stays safely in the dull, gray, union-controlled, dumb economy that we have,” he said.

Kirk singled out the Service Employees International Union, calling the group “particularly corrupt.”

“I would particularly say that there’s been one union that’s run the state of Illinois called the SEIU, a particularly corrupt union,” Kirk said. “The SEIU — it’s no mistake that Rod Blagojevich wanted to leave his job as governor and go work for them. It’s because he saw the SEIU as more powerful than the state of Illinois.”

* Beniamino Capellupo, executive director for the Service Employees International Union Illinois Council, responded

“It is obvious that this politically motivated attack was orchestrated by the Rauner campaign. Rauner’s surrogate in this matter, Mark Kirk, did not harbor these same feelings toward SEIU as a Congressman when he asked for, and received a $2,500 contribution from us,” Capellupo said in a statement released to the Sun-Times. […]

“Just two days after the primary election, it is clear that billionaire Bruce Rauner will continue his attacks on the working men and women of Illinois. Only now he is using surrogates like Senator Kirk to level false accusations that malign the thousands of janitors, security officers, healthcare and child care workers and educational support staff that make-up the more than 150,000 members of Illinois SEIU.”


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Mittuns - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 10:50 am:

    Kirk is destined to be a one-termer, and stuff like this does not help his cause.

  2. - Normalite - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 10:51 am:

    Use TV to convince the Tea Party that you’re a conservative in the primary and then take off your mask 2 days into the general race. Pure genius, national dems claimed the feat to be impossible. This guys got better crossovers than Jordan, which is fitting because he owns a part of the bulls.

  3. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 10:52 am:

    Maybe the Raunerite talking points went to “Spam”?

    To the Post,

    Class warfare is going to be an issue, it appears. Rauner may have to watch both Kirk and Oberweis at this rate.

    This is what happens… when your “pivot” is really a 180 Degree shift.

    When you stand for polls and not issues, they can come back to haunt all who don’t get “Memos”

  4. - Wensicia - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 10:57 am:

    The hypocrisy of Mark Kirk never ceases to amaze me. He’ll fit in well with Rauner’s people.

  5. - Louis G. Atsaves - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:07 am:

    A token $2,500.00 donation? Be still my beating heart! Some retort there! How did THAT donation stack up with others made by that same union?

  6. - Demoralized - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:09 am:

    Toxic left? Corrupt? This is indeed going to be a nasty campaign.

  7. - Walker - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:11 am:

    Kirk claims that SEIU runs the state of Illinois.

    So SEIU sued themselves over their over their own pension diminishment? or lost pay? or removal of certain positions from their rolls?

  8. - Johnny Q. Suburban - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:16 am:

    Strange. Didn’t IEA back Kirk too? They backed Dold so I would assume Kirk got support as well.

  9. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:20 am:

    Kirk saw the numbers Truax put up with no money or exposure.

    Protecting his right flank, which is shaky from guns and gay marriage stances.

  10. - LincolnLounger - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:22 am:

    He shouldn’t have said it, but he was exactly correct. Lots of us are sympathetic to labor, but SEIU is a whole different ballgame.

    They were already bad, but Blago gave them free rein. “Corrupt” seems apt to me, and I am from a labor background.

  11. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:27 am:

    ===Protecting his right flank, which is shaky from guns and gay marriage stances.===

    Probably the most truthful reason it was said.

    Primary problems are Kirk’s first concern; especially from the “Right”.

  12. - prisoner of cook - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:33 am:

    The SEIU bosses are desperate. They are unsuccessful in signing up private sector members and are fearful that the dues gravy train from public employees will stop and end their 1%-er type salaries and perks.

  13. - Norseman - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 11:46 am:

    Kirk clearly appears to be following the path of another politician who named “Kirk,” who thought he needed to placate the radical right. It didn’t work for him and it won’t work for this Kirk. The other Kirk only became relevant in the campaign after he embraced the support of unions.

    Mark Kirk, shame on you!

  14. - Arizona Bob - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 12:09 pm:

    =Kirk is destined to be a one-termer, and stuff like this does not help his cause.=

    I agree. He’s way to much of a lefty on most issues to get the nod again. Time for him to retire and let Roskam replace him.

  15. - Aldyth - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 12:15 pm:

    Going anti-union and their benefits? This from a man who had the privelege of taking a year off of work with full pay and benefits to recover from a stroke? That’s not how it would work out for the rest of us.

  16. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 12:32 pm:

    ===I agree. He’s way to much of a lefty on most issues to get the nod again. Time for him to retire and let Roskam replace him.===

    Which is probably why this quote is to address the “lefty” aspect with a target the “Right” love to bash as the focus. Please keep up.

    ===The other Kirk only became relevant in the campaign after he embraced the support of unions.===

    Agree. It’s far worse to be seen pandering, and in the long run, dangerous come election time.

    Kirk is dangerously getting close to being “poll-talker”, just speaking to what polls well, and not having a clear base of beliefs as his own.

    But, lots of Raunerites could rescue Kirk with their cash…

    You are on it, - Norseman -.

  17. - Will Caskey - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 12:35 pm:

    God, everyone and Jerry Morrison’s Facebook comments can attest I’m not SEIU’s biggest booster.

    However I would never describe them as corrupt in any way. In fact I’d say they’re the sharpest union in the state.

  18. - shore - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 12:37 pm:

    According to media reports Kirk did not endorse rauner in the primary and there’s absolutely nothing in that statement that’s wrong.

    It’s also important to point out that Kirk is right about the social conservative/fiscal moderate point. Kirk Dillard had what seemed like a smooth move in 2012-he endorsed conservative turned tea partyer rick perry for president giving him what looked like an unbeatable combo of moderate looking jim edgar and conservative rick perry-both wings of the party-and yet he flopped. As did conservative bill brady.

    If we want to get technical, please note rauner is a millionaire not a billionaire and for the “we’re for hardworking americans seiu crowd” unlike the 2010 democratic nominee for us senate he made his own money he did not inherit it.

  19. - AFSCME Steward - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 12:37 pm:

    ““I would say that the national significance of this race for governor is that the toxic left … would do anything to make sure that Illinois stays safely in the dull, gray, union-controlled, dumb economy that we have,” he said.”

    Senator, I am a union member. I am a Republican. I am not a part of the “toxic left”. I voted for you. That mistake will not be repeated.

    The villanizing of union members by the GOP needs to stop. A sizeable portion of the GOP voting bloc are union members. Statements like this are why the ILGOP is a minority party, with a shrinking base. Keep attacking your supporters Senator. Soon you will be able to fit all of the ILGOP in a small closet.

  20. - circularfiringsquad - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 1:03 pm:

    Wonder if CommandoMakeItUp could share with us exactly how he knows the group is corrupt?

  21. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 1:05 pm:

    –Time for him to retire and let Roskam replace him.===

    You mean that guy who had the “Obama Voters for Roskam” website back in 2008?

    It must graw on Dillard that Roskam got a pass for that.

  22. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 1:28 pm:

    Within today’s context of Republican voters, I think shore’s onto something in his second paragraph though I’m not going to get into details. Rauner, either through analysis or instinct seems to be the only one who understands. While it could be both, it’s the latter that’s most important.

    Good for him.

  23. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 1:35 pm:

    word’s got a great point, too, regarding Truax. I wasn’t happy about Rauner’s lifting the cap, but I’m starting to believe that it’s not going to be “all about money” in the General election.

    Again. Good for Rauner. I’m starting to believe that he “gets it” and for the right reasons. And as long as he can manage to stay focused on “it,” I think he’s going to do extremely well.

  24. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 1:46 pm:

    I think Truax would be wise to take his numbers and shop them around to the Club for Growth and those like them.

    And Kirk would be wise to try and nip it in the bud.

    Truax put up very respectable numbers for a guy who didn’t have a dime or name recognition.

    He got more votes than Rauner. I understand the difference between a two and four-way race, but, c’mon man. Rauner spent $12 million.

    Kirk definitely better keep an eye on Truax.

  25. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 1:59 pm:

    =And Kirk would be wise to try and nip it in the bud. =

    Well, if any of this plays out as you’ve suggested, word, I hope Mr. Kirk will go about it in a “gentlemanly manner” because if not, that could backfire on him, too.

  26. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:13 pm:

    –Well, if any of this plays out as you’ve suggested, word, I hope Mr. Kirk will go about it in a “gentlemanly manner” because if not, that could backfire on him, too.–

    Dude, contested races in America haven’t been “gentlemanly” since Adams versus Jefferson.

  27. - Not Five Thirty Eight - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:15 pm:

    SEIU’s mistake was that they supported a Republican with a $2500 contribution.

    Wasted money.

  28. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:22 pm:

    =Dude, contested races in America haven’t been “gentlemanly” since… =

    I’d disagree with that. I think we’ve had a few “throwbacks” throughout the decades, but I won’t get into the details.

  29. - A. Nonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:24 pm:

    @ Arizona Bob, Mittuns, et al - “Kirk is destined to be a one-termer”

    He has rubbed off his own moderate patina yet has not jerked far enough right to appease the GOP base which is now nominating the likes of Susanne “Angry God” Atanus for Congress in a suburban district - much of which used to regularly nominate and elect Kirk for Congress.

    “Senator-elect Tammy Duckworth defeats GOP nominee Peter Roskam” has a nice ring to it.

  30. - A guy... - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:27 pm:

    If I were advising Kirk, I’d advise he give them back the $2500 plus some interest. I gave him half that amount and I don’t have any members to take it from. He went a little too far as Rich suggested. The problem is; that’s what he’s hearing from constituents. Illinois is currently a national punching bag with as many governors going to jail as Dentists who recommend Dentyne to their patients who chew gum.

  31. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:41 pm:

    =The problem is; that’s what he’s hearing from constituents.=

    Interesting. His 10th District constituents or has he expanded his base since he won his Senate campaign? And if so, just how far was it expanded.

    I don’t envy anyone in that position. That’s always seems to be a tough one in the GOP.

  32. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:47 pm:

    =The problem is; that’s what he’s hearing from constituents.=

    No, that has nothing to do with it. He’s scared to death of Club for Growth and their ilk.

    And he should be. After November, Kirk will be their top target in the next cycle. Guns and gays, daddio.

    That’s why Kirk is so snuggly with Rauner. That dude has an awesome fundraising network.

  33. - Wholly Mamouth Republican - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:54 pm:

    Maybe Senator Dillard, who is no longer a member of the State Senate, could go to work for the SEIU.

  34. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 2:58 pm:

    =That dude has an awesome fundraising network. =

    Based on those who in the past have called Mr. Kirk a “money-making machine” and have judged his performance based on same, you’d assume there’s quite a bit of an overlap, wouldn’t you?

  35. - Donkey Dem - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 3:02 pm:

    Dillard may have to go to work for SEIU to repay his debts aka campaign contributions for his last two unsuccessful attempts to become Governor-in-Chief.

  36. - roscoe tom - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 3:03 pm:

    Does Rauner have the same “corrupt” opinion of the SEIU as Kirk? Why doesn’t someone in the press ask him? Maybe Rich Miller?

  37. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 3:15 pm:

    Kirk used the corrupt to describe SEUI. Lol.

    Kirk has voted against unemployment benefits even though he was “sick” for a year, didn’t do any work, and still made $175,000.00 by the taxpayers. Corrupt.

    Kirk got “sick” and almost died. He has voted against health insurance for everyone. And he had the taxpayers pick up the entire tab for his illness and rehab — well over $1,000,000.00 — and counting! Corrupt.

    Kirk — who has “worked” for less than 2 years in the private sector — riles again SEIU. There are many words to describe Kirk but I will not get banned.

  38. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 3:17 pm:

    ===The problem is; that’s what he’s hearing from constituents.===

    Nope. Not close.

    This is a way to insulate himself, and to make himself attractive to those he is going to need when it comes to being on the Limb with Pat Brady (Rauner Supporter), “and alot of other things …”

    Aaron Schock felt the opposite of a Rauner embrace, Mark Kirk is not going to make that mistake, especially being on the ballot … and vulnerable… twice, in the Primary and possibly in the General.

    Lessons …there is always a lesson to learn.

  39. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 3:25 pm:

    =There are many words to describe Kirk but I will not get banned. =

    I supposed that works just as well as being polite in some instances.

  40. - Anonymous - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 3:42 pm:

    Listen, I know Kirk has been living a lie his entire life. But to “walk” around DC and Chicago with the sad health conditions his life has seen the last two years and to literally not care 1 iota about anybody else…..again I will not get banned. There are millions of Americans who have lost their jobs or had illnesses and very few of those people get to continue their almost $200,000, free health care, and a fat pension — that is against…..except when its for himself. Hey, I could say the same thing about Lipinski. And Kass, lol. When you’ve never labored one day in your life and sit on a pot of gold, that really upsets me.

  41. - railrat - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 3:51 pm:

    Is it just me or does it seem that when most folks go to D.C. they must drink different water and sniff different oxygen? Same could be said for Judges…. HUH Judge Evans? :

  42. - Grandson of Man - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 4:07 pm:

    “That’s why Kirk is so snuggly with Rauner.”

    I don’t mind their cozy relationship, but Rauner might not be happy about it, especially after statements like this:

    “toxic left … would do anything to make sure that Illinois stays safely in the dull, gray, union-controlled, dumb economy that we have”

  43. - wordslinger - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 4:32 pm:

    –”toxic left … would do anything to make sure that Illinois stays safely in the dull, gray, union-controlled, dumb economy that we have”–

    Why would Rauner have a problem with that?

    It’s cynical, of course, coming from a couple of North Shore dudes.

    I imagine they’ve both been up and down Lake Cook Road a couple of times and noticed those corporate hqs that aren’t indicative of a “dull, gray, union-controlled, dumb economy ”

    And life in Winnetka and Highland Park ain’t exactly “Grapes of Wrath.”

    Kirk is scared of his right flank. And he should be.

    Look, they went after Dick Lugar before, and now some of them are going after Mitch McConnell and Thad Cochran, for crying out loud.

    Kirk will be the number one apostate to the true believers in 2016. And they have an up-and-comer in Truax to put their money behind. And they will.

  44. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Mar 21, 14 @ 4:35 pm:

    I call Shenanigans!

    Tom Cross Contributions from SEIU: $58,800
    Jim Durkin contributions from SEIU: $5,000 (10/13!)
    Radogno contributions from SEIU: $45,000

    I don’t think Kirk is necessarily “off script.” If Rauner thinks he can send surrogates out to do his dirty work for him while he plays Mr. Nice guy….um, not today Chip.

    It takes a lot of audacity to criticize “special interests” while you cash their checks.

    Kinda like criticizing government retirement systems while you rake in millions.

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