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Dark money group launches new TV ad attacking Pritzker’s tax plan

Monday, May 6, 2019

* Sun-Times

A dark money group opposing Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s “fair tax” plans to launch a lengthy TV ad attack Monday that calls the tax shift “unfair” and dubs the billionaire governor untrustworthy in light of a reported federal investigation into his own property tax savings.

With just three weeks to go before the Illinois General Assembly adjourns, Ideas Illinois fired off a six-figure media blitz — with a TV ad to run in Springfield on broadcast and cable TV until the end of the legislative session — to try to thwart the Illinois House from passing Pritzker’s preferred graduated income tax plan. The buy also includes digital ads in Chicago, and more mailers and digital ads in six targeted districts.

* The ad

* Script

ANNC: JB Pritzker says his tax plan is all about fairness:

PRITZKER NEWS CLIP 1: “A fair tax…”

PRITZKER NEWS CLIP 2: “Fair tax…”

PRITZKER NEWS CLIP 3: “I choose fairness.”

ANNC: Can we trust him? The feds don’t:

ABC7’s CRAIG WALL: “The FBI is investigating Governor Pritzker…

“Pritzker got $331,000 in tax breaks… by having the toilets ripped out, claiming the home was uninhabitable.”

ANNC: That’s not “fair” – that’s fraudulent. Maybe even criminal.

PRITZKER NEWS CLIP 4: “The wealthy aren’t paying their fair share.”

ANNC: But you will if Pritzker gets his way.

Tell legislators: Don’t let him cheat us again. Say no to his unfair jobs tax.

No Madigan? /s

* Meanwhile, the Center for Illinois Politics took a look at the spending so far. This doesn’t include what’s purported to be the new six-figure buy from Ideas Illinois

Our analysis has found that nearly $4 million has been spent since March 18 on commercials in five media markets throughout the state - Champaign, Chicago, Rockford, Peoria and St. Louis. […]

The Chicago media market - the state’s largest media market where about two-thirds of the state’s voters live, goes up to the Wisconsin border, as far west as Dekalb and LaSalle counties and as far south as Kankakee County. There, a track of spending from broadcast and cable stations within the market shows Think Big has spent $2.8 million on broadcast and cable advertising over the last several weeks on three commercials - all 15 second spots. Illinois Policy Action has spent $43,236 on anti-tax ads, while the Coalition [Ideas Illinois] has spent $292,976 on anti-tax ads. […]

The next biggest market, Champaign/Springfield/Decatur, covers 8 percent of the state’s population and includes Springfield, where lawmakers may be watching television before, after (or even during) session. Here, Think Big has spent $177,009 on broadcast and cable ads. Illinois Policy Action has spent $23,840 on broadcast and cable ads opposing the tax. […]

In Rockford, Thing Big has spent $66,111 on ads. The anti-tax groups haven’t spent any money in the market at all.

In the Peoria-Bloomington media market, Think Big has spent a total of $110,187 on cable and broadcast ads, while neither anti-tax group has spent money in that market.

In St. Louis, Think Big has spent $139,126, while the Coalition has spent $80,664 - an indication that this is a market where they think they can make a dent by spending a bit more.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

18 Comments
  1. - Reality Check - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:17 am:

    Not sure why an opponent would allow the governor to give his own message for the first third of the ad, but as a supporter, it works for me. And the end makes it sound like “the wealthy aren’t paying their fair share, but now they will”.

    Not as bad as the laughable convertible ad, but still not very effective for opponents IMO. Grade D+


  2. - Grandson of Man - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:18 am:

    It sounds like the same robotic-sounding voice on one of the other anti-tax ads I recently saw or heard.

    It’s the same old playbook and attack that failed badly in the last election. It’s just talking to the same shrinking base of voters.


  3. - Skeptic - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:19 am:

    Well, in their defense, you can’t spell “ad hominem” without “Ad”


  4. - Chicago Cynic - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:19 am:

    Did they really mean to say this? Seems like a Freudian slip on their part.

    “PRITZKER NEWS CLIP 4: “The wealthy aren’t paying their fair share.”

    ANNC: But you will if Pritzker gets his way.”

    Yes. Exactly. The wealthy will pay their fair share of Pritzker gets his way. It’s the whole freakin point.


  5. - illini - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:24 am:

    I got an email this morning touting this ad and asking me to share and sign their petition. Still not certain how they got to my email. The letter was signed by Greg Baise. Enough said.


  6. - Shytown - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:25 am:

    This is just intuitive, but this tactic and messaging doesn’t seem to be working or changing the debate. They need to update their playbook. But either way, voters are ready for this. Time to pick another fight.


  7. - Generic Drone - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:26 am:

    Well I guess when you got money to blow on ads like this, go ahead. Gotta tell ya though, this just makes the rich look greedy to me.


  8. - Steve - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 11:55 am:

    The guy’s voice in the ad is very, very annoying.


  9. - Arsenal - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 12:02 pm:

    Kinda all over the place with the narration, but if you do the sound-off test it works a lot better.


  10. - Dotnonymous - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 12:10 pm:

    I got… “Don’t let JB make the Rich pay their fair share.

    I heard a backfire?


  11. - Illinois Resident - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 1:11 pm:

    Yea, we all feel really sorry for the 1% paying a little more state tax.


  12. - Jocko - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 1:26 pm:

    To the ad, is there any truth to Craig Wall saying ” FBI is investigating Governor Pritzker…” or are they ‘piling on’ to NPR’s law enforcement source?


  13. - Downstate - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 2:03 pm:

    As long as Illinois voters are comfortable that the politicos in Springfield will spend this new-gotten booty in the same responsible manner that they have in the past, the amendment will pass overwhelmingly.


  14. - Rich Miller - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 2:04 pm:

    Downstate, your framing won’t be the only framing used.


  15. - Downstate - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 2:21 pm:

    Rich,
    I may be naive. But I’m not THAT naive. :)


  16. - City Zen - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 3:52 pm:

    The Fair Tax should sponsor the Illinois State Fair and allow 97% of the entrants in for free.


  17. - Oswego Willy - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 4:34 pm:

    The trust factor, as an overarching theme is probably the best way to marry many prongs that in the end beg the audience to consider trust;

    * Pritzker’s own tax issues, income and property

    * Springfield’s history of money management

    * The “waste, fraud, abuse” ruse

    * Bond ratings

    Pivoting off the disastrous “Millionaire Tax” description has been the biggest positive for their cause.


  18. - Barrington - Monday, May 6, 19 @ 6:33 pm:

    The tone of the narrator says I should be upset about something. But not sure what: income taxes, property taxes, taxes on rich, FBI, Pritzker, jobs tax????


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