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Question of the day

Monday, Sep 28, 2015

* Greg Hinz on the Mark Kirk campaign’s document dump last week

In an extraordinary action, his campaign manager, Kevin Artl, leaked a memo to my colleague Rich Miller at Capitol Fax castigating an upcoming Trib story that is said to allege that the senator harshly treated staff members, with aides “physically and verbally abused,” as Miller put it.

In the memo, which promptly went national, Artl charged that the Trib’s Todd Lighty had even harassed Kirk’s 79-year-old mother with repeated calls in an effort to substantiate the story. At least one staffer involved has given the campaign a sworn affidavit denying any misconduct by his boss. The memo also suggests anti-Kirk bias by Lighty, who has done a series of critical pieces on the senator, including one about charges that the senator put his ex-wife and girlfriend on his campaign payroll. That story appeared just a few months after Kirk suffered a severe stroke.

The Trib hasn’t gone with the story, at least so far. And it released a statement strongly defending it and Lighty.

It’s impossible to know for sure what’s going on without reading the story and talking to those involved. But it would be a brave staffer–at least one who wants to continue to work in politics–who would publicly slam the boss.

I do hear reliably that Kirk can be difficult and demanding. But many pols are. The joke at City Hall used to be that one of the job requirements to be Richard M. Daley’s chief of staff was to come in each morning and be yelled at about what went wrong since the day before.

Assuming the Trib eventually publishes, Kirk will have drawn more attention to its article.

The only point of disagreement I have with Greg is that I think the Tribune story would’ve been a bombshell regardless of whatever Kirk did. Forget about the verbal abuse stuff. A sitting US Senator accused of physically abusing his staff is most definitely a man bites dog moment.

* From the Democratic SuperPAC American Bridge 21st Century…

Vulnerable Senator Mark Kirk has been making a lot of news over the last week — though not for reasons he’d like.

Kirk allegedly bullied staff members, subjecting them to both physical and verbal abuse — or so reports a thus-far-unpublished Tribune investigation, according to the Associated Press.

Predictably unhappy about the story, Kirk’s campaign launched an “unusual” counter-attack — threatening “legal action” against the Tribune in an attempt to suppress the report, the AP reported.

But the Kirk campaign’s effort backfired: The threatened lawsuit became public, and Mark Kirk is now publicly defending himself over the alleged bullying.

Here’re some coverage highlights:

    Associated Press: Kirk campaign launches unusual attack on Chicago Tribune

    Huffington Post: Senator Mark Kirk’s Campaign Pre-Emptively Bashes Chicago Tribune Ahead Of Negative Story

    Sun Times: Mark Kirk’s office launches preemptive strike against reporter

    Politico: Kirk camp goes on offense against upcoming Chicago Tribune story

    Chicago Tribune: Kirk campaign attacks Tribune before any story is published

    The Guardian: Mark Kirk campaign: reporter ‘bullied’ staff with questions about abuse claims

Notice how they gave the AP all the credit for the story. That could be because the AP itself neglected to mention where the info came from.


But I don’t see Kirk yet defending himself against the bullying allegations. So far, the coverage has mainly been about the unusual tactic.

* And just in case you’re wondering, I decided to run the piece because I thought it was a truly unique move with some special circumstances and gave my readers a fascinating look behind the scenes at how stories like these can develop.

In other words, it was most definitely newsworthy, as the national coverage clearly shows. My responsibility isn’t to the Kirk campaign or the Tribune. It’s to my subscribers and my readers. Everyone else can go pound sand, for all I care.

* The Question: While it is arguably too early to judge, at this very moment do you think the Kirk campaign’s preemptive strike at the Tribune will turn out to be a good move or a bad move? Take the poll and then explain your answer in comments, please.

online survey

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Tournaround Agenda - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:24 pm:

    I think it’ll be easier to judge that once the Trib’s story comes out. When we have both sides, I’ll have an easier time judging which narrative holds more water. Whatever the case, Artl’s move has guaranteed a much larger audience for Lighty’s piece whenever it does hit news stands.

  2. - dr. reason a, goodwin - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:24 pm:

    Always best to be out ahead of a story, even if it’s negative.

  3. - Norseman - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:30 pm:

    Bad move. Prepare the response for when its released.

    P.S. Contacting Mom is bad form on the reporters part.

  4. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:31 pm:

    ==- Tournaround Agenda - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:24 pm:==

    It will definitely guarantee a bigger audience for the story, which people are now eagerly awaiting across the spectrum of politics and journalism. People not otherwise interested in this story, particularly in media, will now flock to it.

  5. - How Ironic - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:31 pm:

    I think in this case, it made sense. Kirk pushed back, with what appears to be credible information favorable to his side of the story.

    That the Trib has yet to run the story shows they are either re-considering the story as written, or decided to hold it because his (Kirks) rebuttal has sunk the Bismark before it left port.

    I don’t even like Kirk, and haven’t/won’t vote for him. But this was plucky, for sure.

  6. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:32 pm:

    A “very good bad move”…

    I’ll get to my vote, but it’s a very good bad move, which only turns bad by;

    - Proving in the long run the accusations are true
    - Losing the benefit of doubt from reporters later who think personal attacks on colleagues is bad form
    - Kirk publicly exhibits the behavior
    - Another story, unrelated, having behavioral underpinnings
    - Staffers themselves exhibit the behaviors Kirk is accused of

    So, my vote? “Good Idea”, until the inevitable happens during the next 13 months that allows this move to be a catalyst for pilling on another issue, exacerbating that issue needlessly.

    It’s good… until it’s really not good at all.

  7. - 47th Ward - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:32 pm:

    Never repeat the charges against you in your response. Right now, the only reason we know about the allegations of Kirk’s behavior are from Team Kirk. And because of the odd way it was released, it’s a national story.

    Big mistake.

  8. - AC - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    I think getting in front of the story will minimize the damage to Kirk. Time will tell if this strategy is successful enough for people to label him a bro with an effective M.O.

  9. - 47th Ward - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    ===Contacting Mom is bad form on the reporters part===

    I generally agree, unless the mom has been on the campaign payroll for years.

  10. - L.A. - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    It’s been a good move so far; the Tribune didn’t print the story. However, the overreaction, in my opinion, by Artl definitely gave it legs it maybe wouldn’t have had had the Tribune printed the article.

  11. - Political Animal - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:35 pm:

    Good move.

    When you’re explaining, you’re losing.

    This lets Kirk go on offense and frame the debate. Now the story isn’t about the allegations and Kirk’s response, it’s about Kirk’s strategy and/or the reliability of the sources.

  12. - walker - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:35 pm:

    No. Appears to already be hurting Kirk, without even a story in the paper. His image of being such a “nice guy” will be harmed regardless.

    How exactly does a reporter “bully” a staffer or former employee, (as Artl claimed)? With what?

    Much easier to buy that an employer can “bully.” They have the means.

  13. - anon in illinois - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:40 pm:

    Neither is a good move, but preempting the story is a better move…

  14. - D.P.Gumby - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:41 pm:

    Made it a bad move by jumping the gun. Might not have been a story. But guaranteed high visibility by bringing our your side too soon. Should have been ready to jump IF there was a Trib story. Now, Trib has high ground if it doesn’t run a story and the info is already out for some one else to use.

  15. - @MisterJayEm - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:41 pm:

    There is an oft-told story that Lyndon Johnson, in an early campaign, told one of his aides to spread the story that Johnson’s opponent took certain liberties with swine. The aide responded “Good Lord, Lyndon! We can’t call the guy a ██████████ — It isn’t true!” To which LBJ supposedly replied, “Of course it ain’t true, but I want to make him deny it!”

    The moral? There probably isn’t one.

    But the political lesson is that a candidate can’t publicly deny doing something without implicitly asking voters to consider the possibility that the candidate really did do it.

    – MrJM

  16. - Horse w/ No Name - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:46 pm:

    It’s a good move if the pressure forces the Trib to hold the story. But if it comes out anyway, it won’t matter that they got out in front of it. The damage will be done. Close, but I’m saying Bad Move.

  17. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:49 pm:

    I forgot to add this;

    Like I said at the time, I wouldn’t have had the courage to suggest or do it. Even now, that has not changed. At all.

  18. - The Captain - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:51 pm:

    Bad move.

    Am I really supposed to be less likely to believe that Kirk regularly lost his temper with his staff after watching him lose his temper with the Tribune, one of his most consistently reliable allies?

  19. - Wordslinger - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:53 pm:

    Incredibly bad move. The story hadn’t run.There’s a chance it would not have. Regardless, the allegations are now out there.

    Why would you do that? The exact thing you didn’t want out, is out.

  20. - A Jack - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:55 pm:

    Bad move. Calls attention to an article that the general public probably wouldn’t have known about.

    However it’s likely to boost paper sales when it does come out.

  21. - Chicago Cynic - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    Bad move. Made what might or might not have still been a big story once lawyers got involved (harsh stories tend to mellow with legal fees) into a big national story regardless of what the Trib publishes.

    You may know something we don’t about the story which leads you to a different conclusion, but from a crisis comms standpoint, seems like a really bad move.

  22. - Father Ted - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    It’s a good move in that it more than likely created doubt about the Tribune’s story among those people who read Cap Fax on Friday. I also like seeing the media get tweaked for lazy and/or slimy use of unnamed and unsubstantiated sources and taking statements out of context.
    It’s a bad move because of the old adage, “You don’t pick fights with people who buy ink by the barrel.”
    Artl may win this battle, but the Trib may see this as war.

  23. - A guy - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:57 pm:

    It altered the timing of the story. It’s not out. It’s altered the story. How, is yet to be seen, but it has. At this point, Mr. Lighty will be lucky to be the 5th person to publish anything about “his” story. These things don’t gain impact with the 5th or 6th retelling.

    It was a dangerous move that turned out great so far. That might be reduced to “good” at some point.

    I said it the other day, and will repeat it today. On some level this is traditional print media vs. contemporary electronic media. As has been the case more and more; electronic is winning.

    Not a recommended move, but in this case, it turned out to be a good one. Artl would be very smart to holster this weapon and not believe it will work repeatedly.

  24. - Dan Johnson - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 2:58 pm:

    Give Republicans credit — they do a much better and more aggressive job ‘working the umpire’ with the most prominent media outlets. I think this is part of that fairly successful effort.

  25. - Arsenal - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:02 pm:

    Bad move. If the Trib spikes the story, the Kirk campaign has already injected the idea that Kirk is abusive to his staffers into the campaign blood stream.

    If the Trib waters the story down, you look like you’re flying off the handle.

    If the Trib runs the story as is, you’ve helpfully set up a spotlight for them.

    Best case scenario, everyone forgets the whole thing by New Year. But for a campaign that’s already behind, every day spent standing still is a day lost.

  26. - Arsenal - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:05 pm:

    It’s also a bad move ’cause it turns a natural Kirk ally into an enemy, or at least discredits it. Maybe Kirk can publicly call out Rauner next!

  27. - Ahoy! - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:14 pm:

    No story at all would be the best. However, since it’s out there, i thinking attaching the media is actually a politically smart move. People don’t trust the big national media. They don’t like politicians or trust them either, but if my choice is to sit back and play defense or go play offense, I’m going to play offense.

  28. - Wordslinger - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:16 pm:

    “It altered the timing of the story. It altered the story.”

    Says who? What story?

    The only thing that has happened so far is that the Kirk campaign is denying allegations of verbal and physical abuse that no one has made.

  29. - Ghostbusters - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:19 pm:

    Did Artl forget that Mark Kirk reporter Suzi Kuczka got pink slipped from the Trib?? (Kirk wasted no time hiring her as spokeswoman after the Trib let her go)

    This whole thing is bizarre amateur hour from Kirk’s new campaign staff. Capitol Hill ain’t Springfield.

    An oldy but a goody from when Elk still had a Kirk reporter embedded at Ma Tribune –

  30. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:19 pm:

    ===it turns a natural Kirk ally into an enemy===

    Oh, please.

    People who can’t tell the difference between the editorial board and the news staff drive me nuts.

  31. - VanillaMan - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:21 pm:

    Good move.
    Now Kirk can now turn it into a story about how as a stroke patient, Kirk had to battle back from the effects his stroke had upon his emotions, as well as his physical challenges.

    Make a public apology with staffers he “abused” and turn the narrative around.

  32. - perry noya - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:26 pm:

    Strange that no one has brought up an historical parallel. Maybe it was too long ago–1981. The Archdiocese of Chicago tried very hard to shoot down the Sun-Times’s investigation of Cardinal Cody before the paper had published a word about it. The paper published; the archdiocese survived, but probably did itself little or no good with its tactics.

  33. - Sir Reel - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:27 pm:

    Bad move. Think about all the politicians who attack the messenger (most recently the Donald). Think about how many times it works. A simple denial if it comes out with a request for the Tribune to prove it could work better.

  34. - Robert the Bruce - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:27 pm:

    Tough call but I voted Good move.

    I do see the strong argument that the Kirk campaign is responsible for this being a story the last few days.

    But I’m doing this under the assumption/guess that Artl was correct that the Trib really was planning to run the story Sunday. To me,if they weren’t planning to run the story, Artl wouldn’t have taken this action.

    And if the story was going to come out anyway, I believe it was going to be national news that a Senator may have physically abused his staff (the allegations did include, but went beyond, yelling at someone for being late to an airport pickup).

    By getting in front of the story, they’ve muddied it. It gives the Kirk campaign a chance for Trib higher-ups (those more likely to be friendly to republicans) to soften part of the story.

  35. - A guy - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:27 pm:

    === Wordslinger - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:16 pm:

    “It altered the timing of the story. It altered the story.”Says who? What story?====

    Was it scheduled to run, splashy style this past Sunday or not?

    My reading of this showed Artl told the Trib what he had to rebut the story and they were ready to go anyway.

    Someone is doing all the defending today for someone and it ain’t Artl for Kirk. It’s the Trib for Lighty.

    The rare exception has outperformed the rule so far on this one. If you’re the subject of a story this big, you know it. Everyone of those aides started chirping. His mom was being called. And yet you ask “What story?”


  36. - Robert the Bruce - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:29 pm:

    ==People who can’t tell the difference between the editorial board and the news staff drive me nuts.==
    Yes!!! Though I wonder on something this controversial, does the publisher’s office get involved with the news staff (at the Trib, does this story go more than one level higher than Lighty?)

  37. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:33 pm:

    perry, that’s an excellent point. That’s kinda before my time, but were there any allegations that the CS-T was ignoring sworn affidavits? I do recall them saying the paper was biased against the church, but not much more than that.

  38. - quicknote - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:36 pm:

    Very good move. The original story, whenever it gets published, will have lost much of it’s impact. It’s no longer a bombshell, as the element of surprise is gone. It’s no longer incredible, as the claims have been logically refuted already. It’s no longer a national story, except as a follow up to what’s already been published. And I think it’s safe to say that, were the pre-emptive attack not made, the “abusive senator” story would have been national, ongoing news.

    Plus, I suspect the story is being re-written to include reference to the emails and sworn statements. Those can’t be ignored by the Tribune, and so the story gets watered down.

    Given the Trump-is-a-bully/angry GOP narrative that’s going on nationally, this could be/could have been the story that sunk the campaign. My sense is the campaign realized this and released the hounds accordingly.

  39. - perry noya - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:38 pm:

    Rich, the Chicago Catholic was editorializing against the Sun-Times investigation a full year before the paper published anything, if memory serves. I don’t remember anything about affidavits. The paper was able to hang its stories on the fact that the U.S. attorney was looking into Cody’s dealings. But then, the paper might have taken those allegations to the feds in the first place. There were hard feelings all around.

  40. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:43 pm:

    ===Those can’t be ignored by the Tribune===

    You don’t know the Tribune very well.

    Just sayin…


  41. - Be careful out there - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:44 pm:

    Lots of speculation about how the campaign changed the timing or tone of the story, or maybe blocked it. But look at Friday’s post:

    Artl called yesterday and said he was sending the stuff over because the piece is likely coming out Sunday.
    * Here is a memo that the Mark Kirk campaign plans to distribute after the Tribune story is published.

    From: Kevin Artl, Campaign Manager
    Kirk For Senate
    Re: Chicago Tribune/Todd Lighty
    For the past five weeks, Chicago Tribune Reporter Todd Lighty has called over 15 current and former staffers of Senator Kirk [etc.].

    So this is an important topic and the Tribune is spending weeks on it. But who’s our source that, 1, the Trib thinks the reporting is solid enough to ever publish, and, 2, it will be published which means it has cleared editing process and lawyering, and, 3, here’s the likely publication date?
    There’s only one source for those three pieces of information. Why do we give him credit for knowing those three things? What if he guessed wrong about any one of them?

  42. - Anon - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:44 pm:

    Probably a good move in the short term to blunt the effect of a negative story, but a bad move in the long run, picking a fight with a major news outlet in the early stages of a long 2016 U.S. Senate Campaign where you might want that endorsement to put on TV and hand out at train stations the day before the election.

  43. - Anon - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:44 pm:

    I think the major mistake that the Kirk Campaign did was by pushing out the response to the story when the Tribune had an opportunity to pull it from the press, so to speak.

    Aside from creating a national news story about the allegations once, whenever the Tribune publishes whatever it publishes about it, it will create another national news story about the Tribune story because it already is national news.

    Regardless of whether or not the allegations are false and the story is about false allegations the existence of the story will create the impression in some folks minds that he is physically and verbally abusing his staffers.

    At some point where you’ve put yourself in a situation where you’re denying it, you’ve done yourself a lot of damage. This isn’t really how I would have handled it at all and it makes me wonder whose call it was to handle it this way. “Getting out in front of” a negative story isn’t terribly effective when the negative story doesn’t happen.

    To the subject matter itself — my how times have changed. There was a time when a U.S. Senator roughing up their staff wasn’t really considered news worthy at all. So I guess that’s a positive take away?

  44. - Century Club - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:54 pm:

    I voted Good Idea. Although it’s impossible to know what was going to happen, I agree with those who are guessing that the story was pushed off the Sunday front page, and that any story that does come out will have to give serious weight to the Kirk camp’s rebuttals.

  45. - Just Sayin' - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:57 pm:

    It may have been good for some preemptive striking. However, laying all your cards out on the table could be a mistake as now Lighty could tailor his story around those affidavits to make the message from Team Kirk seem less believable (even if accurate).

  46. - Voted bad - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:59 pm:

    Worked for Rauner right? Voted bad because it’s bad for our country and journalism in general when the pol can call for a squash on a story.

  47. - Wensicia - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 3:59 pm:

    Bad move. You don’t block the story by reciting the story.

  48. - @MisterJayEm - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:03 pm:

    “Was it scheduled to run, splashy style this past Sunday or not?”

    We don’t know. All we know is that Kevin Artl said he thought it would be in Sunday’s paper. And it wasn’t.

    So maybe Artl was right about the Trib’s plans. And maybe it was only his bizarre pre-buttal that kept the story out of the Trib.

    But it’s also possible this wouldn’t be a story at all if not for the actions of the Kirk staff.

    – MrJM

  49. - Arsenal - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:04 pm:

    ==People who can’t tell the difference between the editorial board and the news staff drive me nuts.==

    Okay, go find one of those people and talk to them.

    My point has nothing to do with E Board v. Newsroom. It’s about attacking the paper’s credibility. When you do that, the paper, well, loses credibility. Which will suck when they do you a solid later.

  50. - Cook County Commoner - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:04 pm:

    Seems like a good move. Sen Kirk is a military man, and knows the best defense is sometimes a good offense. And the alleged story becomes more trivial as time goes on. My second grade nun dished out more “abuse” before lunch than the alleged Trib story threatened to expose. But those that want to give Sen. Durbin a like-minded playmate will play this for all it’s worth.

  51. - Arsenal - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:06 pm:

    ==Someone is doing all the defending today for someone and it ain’t Artl for Kirk.==

    Well, only in the most technical sense, because Artl sent out the defense on Friday.

  52. - Arsenal - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:08 pm:

    ==My second grade nun dished out more “abuse” before lunch than the alleged Trib story threatened to expose.==

    Then why was the war-footing necessary?

  53. - Wordslinger - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:17 pm:

    Yes, Guy, what story? Has the Tribune run a story?

    What do you mean it was “scheduled” to run on Sunday? Yove got the inside dope at the Trib?

    Here’s the deal: Until a story runs, it does not exist.

    The only ones to date who have raised allegations of verbal and physical abuse by Kirk is fhe Kirk Campaign. They’re now on Day 4 of denying allegations no one has made and it’s international news.

    That’s some good p.r. strategery.

    But you’re the guy who gave Schock a “mission accomplished” on the Post story on his Congressional office because it made it a “must-see” on Capitol Hill.

  54. - sal-says - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:18 pm:

    Seems kinda dumb.

    Tribbies could easily change the story & tone it down. Unless Kirk has an original draft then what?

    If Tribbies do, then all Kirk did was bring attention.

    Where’s the win?

  55. - Anonin' - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:21 pm:

    Having a hard time decidin’ this one.
    We all know what this is about with the Tribbies.
    Which has almost nothin’ to do with the actual story.
    Seems like the campaign forgot hardly anyone pay much attention to the Tribbies anymore.
    The campaign should have called in Katrina to help with the rebuttal.
    Now the back and forth appears as a legit story with thte reverved Capt. Fax.

  56. - chad - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:26 pm:

    Good move. Establishes doubt in the balance of the reporting from the start. Calling Mom plays pretty bad, even if she is on the payroll.

  57. - hisgirlfriday - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 4:44 pm:

    it’s a good fundraising move and shores up kirk’s right flank by activating the nerve endings for the republican base’s persecution by mainstream media complex.

    not sure what it does for shoring up kirk with independents or moderates though.

  58. - Chicago Cynic - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 5:43 pm:

    Am I the only one who read the whole thing and thought this was about stroke-driven impulse control problems and so even the physical nature of the abuse was not a huge deal? I visualized Kirk pushing an aide out of frustration, but nothing more serious. It’s part of why I think this was such a bad strategy. Even assuming it’s all true, was it a big deal?

    Also, I don’t find the affidavits recanting their alleged original stories remotely persuasive.

  59. - Blue dog dem - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 7:46 pm:

    I asked each of my three adult,college educated ,professional kids, when was the last time anyone of them had bought any edition of the Tribune. The answer, they couldn’t remember. That ought to tell you the relevance of print media. I have entertained the idea of three subscriptions to the Capitol.fax…….

  60. - anon - Monday, Sep 28, 15 @ 8:37 pm:

    If it’s in the Tribune consider the source.

  61. - NoGifts - Tuesday, Sep 29, 15 @ 6:11 am:

    bad move. “Methinks the lady doth protest too much.”

  62. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Sep 29, 15 @ 9:08 am:

    Good move before the funny paper eats one of its own

  63. - ZC - Tuesday, Sep 29, 15 @ 9:22 am:

    I voted good move because (I predict) Kirk’s in a tight spot come reelect in 2016, and so yes, it’s time for him and his staff to start taking risks.

    Sure it could blow up in their faces, but I predict if Kirk avoids any high-risk high-reward (reward being in this case the Tribune stuffs or runs a story that ultimately blows up in its face) tactics, he probably loses to Duckworth.

  64. - Liandro - Tuesday, Sep 29, 15 @ 11:13 am:

    The story hasn’t run; the reporter’s credibility has been damaged, and the Kirk campaign has made very clear that they will bitterly fight any assertion of abuse. They won’t get swift boated, so for now it’s a good move.

    That whole assessment can and will change if/when the story is released, and if/when we see how his opponents frame it. For now he is completely ahead of the story.

  65. - Shore - Tuesday, Sep 29, 15 @ 1:09 pm:

    He used to run a no drama shop where stories like this weren’t even dreamed up even by opponents. Disappointing.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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