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Rate the new Rauner digital ad

Friday, Jan 12, 2018

* Press release…

Today, Citizens for Rauner launched a new digital ad to complement the 60-second TV ad released on Wednesday.

Pritzker was caught on FBI wiretaps encouraging Blagojevich to engage in a quid pro quo with Mike Madigan, opening up a statewide position to which Pritzker could be appointed.

Wednesday’s ad is just part of a much longer tape containing conversations between Blagojevich and Pritzker. Those tapes and transcripts can be found at

The ad released today focuses on the core themes from the longer 60-second version: Pritzker hoping for a jumpstart to his political career by helping Blagojevich’s campaign bank account.

It’s time for Illinois to know the truth about JB Pritzker.

* The ad

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - NIU Grad - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:18 am:

    Very brief, but so brief that can any Pritzker-bots deny those allegations:

    -Blago wanted cash
    -Pritzker wanted an appointment (I believe Treasurer was on the table clearly at a point)

    The tapes spell those two points out clearly.

  2. - PublicServant - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:22 am:

    If this is the best that the Legionnaires Governor has got, then he’s in trouble.

  3. - Pundent - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:22 am:

    It’s effective in the sense that it starts what we’ll be a constant narrative of connecting Pritzker to Blagojevich. This and “but Madigan” is the only campaign that Rauner can run. He has no choice but to do everything that he can to make the alternative look far, far worse than the last 3 years. And he also has to hope that if he spends enough money doing so it will either distract anyone from his record or muddy the waters up so much that it won’t matter.

  4. - Real - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:23 am:

    Rauner is grasping at straws and hoping people really care about these Blago tapes over his failure at being Governor.

  5. - Northside Southerner - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:24 am:

    I think the points are strong, but the ad is poorly produced. Too much movement, I can’t read anything. If I’m browsing my phone with sound off I’ll miss most of the message.

  6. - 360 Degree TurnAround - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:24 am:

    I agree with NIU Grad. Not sure that is what the tapes said. I have only heard what was in the longer Rauner ad, all I really heard from Pritzker was “yeah, uh-huh”.

  7. - Annonin' - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:28 am:

    Very poor effort by GovJunk.
    Just aired on CNBC and viewer barely looked up until 1/2 over
    Probably not enough to make us forget 13 DEATHS at Quincy or payin’ GovTrim $100K

  8. - Soapbox Derby - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:28 am:

    You need a lot of detergent to clean a Blago stain off your reputation.

  9. - PosterBoy - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:28 am:

    The TV version is much better. It doesn’t tell you what to think. It doesn’t have to. Just play the tape and let the viewers discover it for themselves. That’s what makes it so powerful. This version takes the edge off because it’s a pretty typical political ad.

  10. - Earl - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:29 am:

    So now republicans LIKE the FBI?

  11. - Colin O'Scopey - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:31 am:

    Try as they might, I don’t think that this ad — or any ad for that matter from Team Rauner — will derail Pritzker. The reason I believe this: Rauner is so far off the rails himself, voters have to ignore that fact.

    This type of negative political targeting only works if both candidates are starting out equal. Rauner is so far in a hole that this is not the case.

  12. - m - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:31 am:

    Seems like it meets its goal. But, for some reason Republicans have never had much success sticking Blago on Democrat candidates, especially compared to how well Democrats used Ryan against Republicans for several years. So not sure if this will move the needle.
    This does fit in to a larger narrative that Rauner and the other Democrat candidates are trying to create of Pritzker as the corrupt insider. This would certainly seem to add another angle to that.

    Illinois being Illinois, voters are kind of used to corrupt insiders, and they may well be ok with choosing a corrupt insider over Rauner’s record.

  13. - wordslinger - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:31 am:

    By “complement,” I think they mean trying to explain what they think is going on in the :60 version.

    I thought the :60 was ambitious, in that it was very different from usual campaign spots so it might have some stopping power.

    But there’s a lot of wandering around the barn in any taped conversation. The :60 never really conveyed the message that this shorty does. So it serves its purpose like a 2×4 to the head. Nothing wrong with that.

  14. - Moe Berg - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:36 am:

    The Pritzker people haven’t even scratched the surface of what they can do with the Quincy veterans’ deaths. The only death that Blago had arguably any accountability for was Chris Kelly. And, those circumstances were much different from Quincy.

    A case will be made, but there’s really nothing compelling about the one for Rauner. And, political consumers are finicky. They got tired of the Quinn brand, understandably, so they switched to Rauner. That’s been even worse.

    There’s no compelling reason not to switch brands again. It’s a big part of the reason Trump is president. Why not give Pritzker a chance?

    Also, I’d put the Pritzker families’ decades of philanthropy up against the Rauner Family Foundation any day. Another story JB has yet to really tell about himself, but might after the primary as part of his introduction to the general election audience.

  15. - Toucan - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:37 am:

    If - after 8 weeks - voters think of Gov. Blagojevich when they see/hearJB’s name than these ads have done their job.

  16. - Happy Retiree - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:38 am:

    It kind of loses it’s teeth once you realize that Illinois is in much worse shape under Rauner than it ever was under Rod.

  17. - slow down - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:39 am:

    This reminds me of Kirk’s playbook with Duckworth. When you have no rationale for reelection and you’re in a blue state, your only real chance is to make the election about your opponent’s weaknesses.

    It didn’t work against Duckworth and I suspect it won’t work against Pritzker. Any connection to Blago is a vulnerability but there’s just not a whole lot of meat to this stuff.

    If this is all that Rauner has, he’s in serious trouble.

  18. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:42 am:



    The challenges of the tape are simple enough to see and hear.

    The problem that Pritzker’s Crew has/d was not laying a marker down far earlier than the two response Ads that were very good, both in timing and content, going after Rauner, as Rauner went after others who attacked him in 2014

    Why do I keep going back to this marker thingy?

    The Pritzker Crew could default to “asked and answered” by now and at such a clip, the continued use of the tape is framed as tired and old news.

    They didn’t put to bed the simplistic narrative that can be a pivot seem as an “old news” attack “and we’ll give you the response we gave you weeks and months ago”

    There’s also a very large and significant difference between responding to the content and context to an attack ad, abc responding to the ad.

    The two ads yesterday, exceptionally done and used in counter to the tv ad, they were in response to the ad.

    That doesn’t mean they responded to the content or context to the ad, and further, clarifying a position on countering the ad is best with a “marker statement” that is the official response, and far outside the media and media strategy.

    What was fun was that response to the “possible responses” that the Pritzker Crew could give to the ad.

    The opening was there because no marker was down.

    To your question and your take on the tape and what was heard… looking at it objectively…

    Lisa was never appointed. JB was never appointed. The US Attorney never thought enough of these Pritzker tapes to do anything with them, or go any further with exploring their content. Are you questioning the US Attorney with your question(s)?

    For “Skyhook, in reverse” to work, a prong was… never surrendering the messaging or media to hit pieces, but dismiss them, then press forward forcefully and pointedly at the attackers, and using their message as the swamping message.

    Rauner has the current President of the United States to contend with, Pritzker has a federal prisoner who never followed thru on anything with Pritzker and hasn’t been governor for 9 years. This tape won’t make these things untrue. So, there’s that too…

  19. - JoeMaddon - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:49 am:

    **Too much movement, I can’t read anything. If I’m browsing my phone with sound off I’ll miss most of the message.**

    Totally disagree. I watched without sound. Here is what I saw: JB. Blago. FBI watching. Blago wanted cash. JB wanted appointment. Corrupt deal.

    That’s pretty good.

  20. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:53 am:

    We’ve got ten months and tens of millions of dollars in advertising to go before this will be over. If Rauner thinks a ten-year-old recorded conversation about politics will outweigh 13 deaths at the Quincy Veterans home that occurred on his watch, he’s fooling himself and wasting a lot of money.

    But at least he’s not fooling anyone else anymore.

  21. - Cheryl44 - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:54 am:

    If the FBI was going to charge JB with anything they would’ve done it by now.

    Being a former suspect isn’t anything.

  22. - Hottot - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:55 am:

    I went to and listen to the full 10 minute conversation. Rauner’s ad, at least with me, backfired and I’m now considering voting for JB Pritzker. I didn’t hear Blagojevich making any promises, and I didn’t hear Pritzker ask to be appointed to any position, just him saying it would make more sense to appoint him to the Illinois Treasurer’s office because he’s a businessman. When Blago said appointing Lisa Madigan to the US Senate would put him in a moral dilemma, I could hear the concern about the 35,000 people Blago mentioned in Pritzker’s voice. He would be a governor who could get things done, and who I believe would care about average Illinoisans. I’m not pleddging to vote for him, but I’m giving him serious consideration.

  23. - A Jack - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 10:58 am:

    I agree with OW on this one. We have a non-event from nine years ago versus a series of serious problems with Rauner’s administration. Is this ad supposed to convince Democrats that disliked Blogojevich that they would be better off with four more years of Rauner? Or is Rauner grasping at straws to convince Republican voters not to jump ship?

  24. - m - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:02 am:

    =Totally disagree. I watched without sound. Here is what I saw: JB. Blago. FBI watching. Blago wanted cash. JB wanted appointment. Corrupt deal.=

    After reading that, I went back over with sound off. You’re right. It’s much better with sound off. Maybe because you assume the text is being honest if there’s real audio behind. Not sure. But better with sound off.

  25. - Langhorne - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:04 am:

    The content ofthe ad doesnt have to be crystal clear. Blago hurt judy simply by showing her dancing the polka w george. This is similar. It is enough to have blago and pritzker on a tape, sounding like schemers,

  26. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:05 am:

    The FBI was listening…

    … nothing came of it.

    Is Rauner saying the FBI, US Attorney, they were wrong?


  27. - 47th Ward - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:09 am:

    ===Being a former suspect isn’t anything===

    Agreed, except Pritzker was never, ever a suspect. The FBI was recording all of Rod’s calls. I’m sure they have recordings of Rod talking to his kids, or their school, or the babysitter. Rod talked to a lot of people, about a lot of stuff and the FBI has hours of tapes. Most of it boring and benign. They played the relevant stuff at trial, which notably did not include this tape, or any of dozens more conversations that Rod had with a host of people.

  28. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:12 am:

    === ===Being a former suspect isn’t anything===

    Agreed, except Pritzker was never, ever a suspect.===

    It’s things like this… it’s things like this why not putting to bed a marker on the tapes will continue.

    “You say it once to get it on the record”. - Lt. Weinberg.

    It’s the chasing of this interpretation that was left dangling.

  29. - Louis G. Atsaves - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:12 am:

    Strong ads. Pritzker in effect dancing with Jailbird Governor Blagojevich.


  30. - Anonymous - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:14 am:

    Yikes for Pritzker

  31. - DuPage Bard - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:17 am:

    This will be the airwaves for the next 2 1/2 months as Rauner tries to make sure JB is not the candidate.
    JB needs to go hard and run failed Governor ads. This will help Jeanne get some steam then make Rauner have to deal with that.
    Rauner is only dealing with JB because Jeanne is no threat.
    An ad showing Rauner standing with Cardinal Cupich then put up the headline from the Trib - he lied to a Cardinal.
    While the Catholic vote isn’t as large as it used to be every religious person knows what a Cardinal is and what that role means in the Church. Right wing conservatives need to be reminded over and over in the next 70 days Rauner lied.
    JB needs to make Rauner focus on his GOP primary not the Dems.

  32. - Jocko - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:23 am:

    When you have to rely on a voiceover (instead of JB or Blago talking), it weakens the ad.

    I’m waiting for JB to say, “Rauner mismanaged Illinois so badly that his own wife came to me to get bailed out.”

  33. - Leonard Washginton - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:25 am:

    Oh my Mr. Pritzker.

    Money can’t buy happiness, but can spell embarrassment.

    Here’s an excerpt I found from the Political Genius Mr. Sabato:

    *Rauner seems like a sitting duck, and if the election was today, we’d likely pick against him. But the election is many months away, and the likeliest Democratic nominee, J.B. Pritzker, doesn’t provide much of a contrast with the incumbent: both are uber-wealthy businessmen*

    Couldn’t have said it better, Larry. Rauner and Pritzker are like pees and carrots.

  34. - Blue dog dem - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:33 am:

    Nice gesture that team Rauner is spending money for GOP gubernatorial candidate Ives.

  35. - Veil of Ignorance - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 11:54 am:

    I think the Rauner ad where they just play the audio of the call is more powerful. Just show a photo of the two with captions identifying Blago as convicted X months later and Pritzker. The response to that is difficult because it speaks for itself. Pritzker proactively reached out to Blago and tried to get something. At some point, somebody’s going to ask Pritzker whether that was a mistake and didn’t he know that Blago was under federal investigation.

  36. - Anon221 - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 12:03 pm:

    This isn’t Watergate, and Pritzker isn’t Erlichman. my questions are- who leaked these tapes in the first place, and was that person or persons connected to Team Rauner in any way. If I’ve missed this in the news, I’ll take the lashes. If not, then these ads and websites are using illegally obtained Federal court materials. And while the Trib may be able to take comfort in the fourth estate, a political campaign is not the press- even though Proft has tried that take over and over again.

  37. - Arlo - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 12:15 pm:

    I just listened to the whole Blago-Pritzker tape on the website.
    Maybe not guilty of a crime, but Pritzker comes across as a real political jock sniffer of a guy most people now find really creepy and weird.

  38. - walker - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 12:21 pm:

    When I first saw this ad, I watched and listened hard to see what it claims Pritzker asked for, and what he agreed to. Even with them calling out selected words graphically, it just didn’t leave me with anything memorable to grab on to.

    Maybe the grainy image, gravelly tone, and squishy claim, are enough to bog down Pritzker.

  39. - VanillaMan - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 1:51 pm:

    Rauner is such a poor governor, he makes Rod Blagojevich look good.

  40. - State worker - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 2:05 pm:

    This is sort of a Rorschach test. For people who want to dismiss Pritzker, here’s a reason. For people who want to believe in him, this doesn’t make a dent, particularly given all the serious drama the state has been through in the past 2 years.

    Plus most everyone in politics talked to Blago, and most of us more or less said, “Yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever.”

  41. - Southwest Resident - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 2:08 pm:

    Is this all the Governor Rainer has is a video which has no meaning in fixing up the economic instability of Illinois and being self-center in protecting his own reputation who has one of the lowest approval rating in the nation and probably one of the worse governors in Illinois history. He lost my vote. Worrying to much about Mr. Speaker Madigan who is a man with integrity and looking after the working families. Mr. Speaker has the best services in his district and very gracious with the working families especially with the children who he is great with them. Mr. Speaker lives upon the residents of his district and understands the real issues on hand for Illinois.

  42. - zatoichi - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 3:17 pm:

    So Rauner’s arguement is not look at my accomplishments, but look at who he talked to 9 years ago. Rauner better hope there is no picture of Rauner and Blago close to each other in some building openning pics from 10 years ago.

  43. - Anon0091 - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 3:37 pm:

    One other question I’d have for Team Rauner. Do you think you’ve got a kill shot that’s going to deliver the race to Biss or Kennedy? If not, why you blowing your shot on the tapes now?

  44. - downstate commissioenr - Friday, Jan 12, 18 @ 4:06 pm:

    This seems to be the only post today related to Rauner ads: Channel 20 Springfield is still running the Madigan attack ad featuring surrounding state Governors, including the Missouri governor; thought this ad was being pulled….

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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