* Mark Kirk is airing radio ads…
U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk of Highland Park has started running radio ads touting his opposition to Obama’s push for government-run public health insurance as part of his health care reform measure. Kirk has been attempting to win back Republicans who have been upset with his occasional votes that go more along Democratic lines.
* Kirk’s not only bashing the health insurance proposal, he’s also whacking the GM bailout…
Citing revelations that taxpayers have lost nearly half of the $49 billion government bailout of General Motors (GM), U.S. Representative Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) and 19 colleagues will send a letter to President Obama today calling for more accountability of taxpayer funds.
“Despite this Administration’s pledge of transparency, the terms of the ‘Bridge Loan to Nowhere’ remain secret,” the lawmakers wrote. “Taxpayers are in the dark on the basic details of the taxpayers’ money at GM.”
Good primary fodder, questionable general election material.
…Adding… From the DSCC…
“Mark Kirk continues to show that he is willing to put politics ahead of helping the people of Illinois, and that he is solely worried about covering his political bases and pandering to the right-wing” said Kathleen Strand, Senior Advisor to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. “All evidence shows that Americans want health care reform, but all Kirk is offering them is the same old political games that people have gotten fed up with. The next Senator from Illinois will be someone willing to stand up for Illinois families, not a flip-flopping Washington insider who is only looking out for number one.”
* Gov. Pat Quinn responds to an Andy McKenna line that the accidental guv is “Rod Blagojevich with a little bit less hair“…
“I think the people of Illinois know I’ve been here nine months,” he said. “It’s serious. This is not a joke. … There’ll be a lot of name-calling in politics. I don’t particularly get into that. … I don’t call people names.”
But how about the time he referred to his main opponent in the 2010 Democratic Primary for governor, Comptroller Dan Hynes, as one of the “ankle-biters over on the sidelines?”
“I didn’t call anybody a name,” Quinn said. “I just said there are ankle-biters out there, and if the shoe fits, wear it.”
To which Hynes spokesman Matt McGrath later replied: “Dan doesn’t think the families that are struggling in this economy and across the state are worried one bit about the name-calling between the people running for office. So we keep that in mind whenever we hear whatever new, bizarre name the governor calls Dan.”
“I know you are, but what am I?”
You ever get the feeling that these two guys really don’t like each other?
* Hinz gently mocks Andy McKenna’s claim of oustider status…
I’m not sure I buy the underlying message, that McKenna’s “the outsider who can hold government accountable.” Someone who has served for years as chairman of the Illinois Republican Party isn’t an outsider, no matter what he says.
* Chuck Sweeny boosts Jim Ryan…
On his Web site, Ryan features an “image” commercial from his 2002 campaign. It says, “He’s faced his share of challenges. Some he could prepare for, some he couldn’t. But he never quit, and he never let us down. A man of integrity and strength, a governor who will make us proud.”
If I were Dan Curry, Ryan’s campaign consultant, I’d run that commercial again. I’d label it “2002” and add these words: “Remember what could have been? It still could be. Jim Ryan for governor.”
* Democratic US Senate candidate David Hoffman has revamped his website and included a Twitter feed at the bottom. The feed appears to include tweets about Hoffman from anybody, so one can’t help but wonder if this feature might eventually be “invaded” by rivals. [Hat tip: Progress Illinois.]
* I’m not quite sure what this means because her campaign just started…
Austin Weekly News asked, “Are you sick and tired of questions that are asked of you as a black woman that are not posed to other candidates?”
“You know it’s because I’m different,” she replied, “and it’s OK. People have lots of questions about things that are different, and I don’t mind being different. If being different means that I understand people’s problems better, then that’s OK, they can ask those questions. If being different means that I know having a special insight and perspective of problems facing people today, like joblessness, fighting to keep the doors open in small businesses, fighting to access to health care, foreclosures, veterans who have been overlooked and forgotten about, then that is OK. I’ll accept those questions and answer them every time.”
* More talk about diversity in the US Senate…
A Chicago lawyer who was in line Monday morning to file his own petitions for the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate is not shy about that fact that if elected, he would be the only openly gay member of the upper chamber of Congress.
“I think Illinois is ready for it,” said Jacob Meister, 44, a Milwaukee native who has spent most of his adult life in Chicago.
His spokeswoman, Karen Craven, had mentioned Meister’s sexual orientation in the past, and when I asked him about it, he made it clear that it is just part of who he is.
“I have brown hair, I have four siblings, and I happen to be gay,” he said.
* Essence Magazine names Cheryle Jackson an emerging leader for 2010
* Fund-raising precedes filing period