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Rate Anna Valencia’s first TV ad

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

* Press release…

Weeks before the U.S. Supreme Court announces a major decision that is expected to overturn Roe v. Wade, Democratic Secretary of State Anna Valencia today has launched her first TV ad, “Consequences,” that highlights her staunch advocacy for reproductive rights.

The ad contrasts her record with Alexi Giannoulias’ support for Republican Tom Cross, who sponsored anti-choice legislation in Springfield and specifically changed the language of the ban on partial-birth abortions to limit the exemption to instances where the procedure was necessary to save the life of the mother, instead of the life of a mother. The bill was intended to maintain a limit on choice for persons in Illinois, and continued to lack an exemption for rape or incest under the amended language that Cross sponsored.

The ad also highlights Giannoulias’ 2016 op-ed urging Illinoisans to unite behind Donald Trump – whose Supreme Court picks are the reason why abortion rights are about to be rolled back. The ad will run on Chicago broadcast and cable TV, as well as on digital platforms throughout the state.

* Spot…

* Script…

“After 50 years, a women’s right to choose is being torn away.

“My opponent, Alexi Giannoulias, has supported an anti-choice candidate and even lectured us to unite behind Donald Trump.

“Trump’s the reason we are facing this crisis today.

“Elections have consequences. That’s why Democrats statewide are standing with me.

“No woman should face jail time for seeking an abortion. And no politician should make medical decisions for us.

“Not in Illinois.”

* The Sun-Times looked at the ad

In her ad, Valencia is referring to Giannoulias’ endorsement of former Illinois House Republican Leader Tom Cross, who ran for state treasurer four years after Giannoulias had left the office.Cross, a moderate Republican from Oswego, however, has a history of endorsements that show he supported abortion rights and also same-sex marriage.

He also ran a 2014 television ad in which he said, “I’m pro-choice.” Cross was endorsed by Personal PAC in 2008 and by Equality Illinois in 2014. He was also just one of three House Republicans who voted to legalize same-sex marriage in 2014.

Valencia’s campaign also referenced a bill sponsored by Cross, as House GOP leader, in 2003, describing it as an “anti-choice” bill.

The legislation, a so-called “shell bill,” was designed to amend “the Partial-birth Abortion Ban Act,” according to its synopsis, making “a technical change to a Section prohibiting partial-birth abortions.” Shell bills are typically filed as a way to move legislation often on unrelated issues along more quickly. Budget bills are often moved through shell bills that have already been introduced. […]

Valencia’s ad also features a Chicago Tribune op-ed that Giannoulias wrote in 2016. The words on the screen read, “Alexi Giannoulias ‘Let’s All Help’ Trump.” The op-ed, however, ran two days before the election was called for Donald Trump over Democrat Hillary Clinton, and the headline actually read, “Let’s all help our president-elect unify a divided America.”

Nobody was gonna use that shell bill to move something unrelated because the topic was just too hot and the title couldn’t be changed, and it also wasn’t an approp bill. He did what he did, but his endorsement by Personal PAC does say quite a lot. And Cross was also endorsed by Personal PAC in 2010 and in 2012. Tough to call him anti-choice after that.

* From Giannoulias’ Tribune op-ed

The hatred and vitriol in this presidential campaign are unparalleled, and our country is deeply and dangerously divided. Hillary Clinton supporters contend they will leave the country if Trump wins (which is the same exasperated refrain we heard when George W. Bush was elected). Some Trump supporters are actually dangerous in their rhetoric, even threatening to take up arms against a Clinton administration.

As it turned out, a few loudmouths threatened to leave and didn’t, but some Trump supporters did, in fact, take up arms after the 2020 election and stormed the United States Capitol Building. He was calling for calm, but used himself as some sort of shining light because he had a drink with Mark Kirk after getting thumped. And the same people who ran Kirk’s race, who went on to run Bruce Rauner’s first race are now running the Griffin slate and salivating at a repeat Giannoulias performance this fall (although, to be fair, they’re also quite pleased with the oppo that has emerged from Valencia’s recent past).

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Ron Burgundy - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 9:56 am:

    I might feel differently if she was running for something else, and I don’t like Alexi, but it’s a D for me. Secretary of State has nothing to do with this, she knows it, and it’s dishonest to suggest it does.

  2. - Here we go - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 9:59 am:

    Not bad - maybe a C. I think she missed an opportunity to include the names of key Democrats who’ve endorsed her (Pritzker, Durbin, Duckworth). This is a Democratic primary. Drive your big names home. It’s all politics.

  3. - Pundent - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:06 am:

    I’d give it a C-. This is not the issue that will decide the Democratic primary for SOS. One of many wasted opportunities for Valencia.

  4. - Wow - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:13 am:

    A life long D.. I will be voting for the R in November in the SOS race

  5. - TheInvisibleMan - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:14 am:


    She doesn’t appear to know the duties of the position she is running for.

    Focus on the job you want, and what you can bring to the table. I get it’s a primary ad and has to hit the buttons, but these buttons don’t really have anything to do with the position she is running for.

    As for;

    “Hillary Clinton supporters contend they will leave the country if Trump wins”

    That’s an understandable but reactionary and short term response. It takes more long term planning than just up and leaving. A more prudent approach would be to see if you can acquire dual-citizenship in any of your grandparents or great grandparents countries of origin. Once that step is done, then you can get a passport from that country based on your now new dual-citizenship. Just as an example.

  6. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:18 am:

    If she doesn’t have an endorsement ad featuring Jesse White and others already in the can then she doesn’t deserve to win.

    This ad stinks. There is a lot that can stick to Alexi, but not this.

  7. - Honest Abe - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:18 am:

    On the Richard Irvin Honesty Scale, it registers as an A+. All around banner year for Truth in Political Advertising. /s

  8. - Retired SURS Employee - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:20 am:

    For a first TV ad for the office of Secretary of State, I give it a D, at best, bordering on an F. The ad distorts facts and is simply wrong and I’m not a fan of Alexi! As previously noted, a wasted opportunity.

  9. - Give Me A Break - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:20 am:

    She will protect reproductive rights the same way Irvin called out the National Guard.

  10. - yikes - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:21 am:

    C- at absolute best. Only positive I can see is it might help with female voters.

    Production value is weirdly low for a TV ad, she doesn’t feature her face next to Jesse White’s which is insane to me, and in general it’s just a very boring watch.

    With the endorsements of Pritzker, White, Durbin, and Duckworth she should be running away with this race - it’s a true testament to their campaign’s incompetence that this is even a contest.

    Doesn’t necessarily bring me much hope for what she’ll do as SoS if she does win.

  11. - levivotedforjudy - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:24 am:

    I wanted to like Valencia, but she is making it darn near impossible. I rate it a “D” for not being truthful. She needs to be called on this. I would love to see her with Carol Marin or Mary Ann Ahern trying to explain this ad.

  12. - Getyup - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:30 am:

    Does she think that the Secretary of State is in charge of abortions?

  13. - Henry Francis - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:31 am:

    Pretty weak ad. Weak hits against Alexi. And what does the office have to do with the abortion issue? Is she going to roll out pro choice license plates as an option for drivers?

  14. - Dirksen - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:41 am:

    When you straight up lie in your first spot, it’s either an F or an incomplete. I’ll let her decide.

  15. - Because I said so.... - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:41 am:

    If this is the best this campaign can produce, as a first commercial, she is in bigger trouble than I thought. I give it a D. I’m guessing some of those major endorsements have back away from Valencia.

    I’m another loyal Dem who will be voting for a Republican in the General.

  16. - Streator Curmudgeon - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:47 am:

    Jesse White has to be the toughest act ever to follow in Illinois government, but to imply that the SOS’s office has anything to do with abortion is blatantly dishonest.

    She needs to tell voters she’ll continue White’s service and innovation instead of using this kind of bizarre finger-pointing.

  17. - Amalia - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:47 am:

    a B because it attracts the current attention and clearly their polling shows that. I’m assuming she will follow up with topic of the office and endorsements. there are plenty of people who use the topic and other topics and visuals to run for an office where there is no connection. for example, what do small children playing basketball have to do with the office?

  18. - Lincoln Lad - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:52 am:

    Give it a D. The more I see her and the more I learn, the less likable she becomes. I also don’t think it’s up to Sec White to carry her to victory… I hope he doesn’t try.

  19. - Bridgeporter - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:59 am:

    I’m tired of highly misleading political ads. D.

  20. - Pundent - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 11:04 am:

    =what do small children playing basketball have to do with the office?=

    I don’t think that Alexi said they did or that he and his opponent had a different view on kids playing basketball. And to be clear I’m not an apologists for Alexi. I had hoped that Valencia would be able to show a clear contrast between herself and Giannoulias particularly given his history with Broadway Bank. The fact that she was able to garner meaningful endorsements including Jesse White’s gave me even more optimism. But Anna unfortunately has her own challenges in the area of ethics and integrity and the campaign apparatus has been one of the worst in recent memory. And in that context the ad is more about deflecting and distracting from the candidate and campaign flaws. And sadly when an issue like abortion is interjected into the Democratic primary for SOS, it distracts from how significant the issue is in other races and between the parties. It will not decide the Democratic primary for SOS nor should it.

  21. - Sister Sister - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 11:06 am:

    from Imgflip Meme Generator

  22. - Almost the Weekend - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 11:11 am:

    You’d think with the market fluctuating she’d go after Alexi and his oversight of Bright Start.

    DC consultants living in the K street bubble.

  23. - B Team - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 11:42 am:

    For those Republicans wanting Alexi in the fall…it’s not 2010 and you don’t have Mark Kirk. Btw Crossroads ran better ads that helped get Kirk into the Senate. I don’t see downstaters Rep. Brady or the Trump appointed Milhiser standing much of a chance this fall.

  24. - NonAFSCMEStateEmployeeFromChatham - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 11:49 am:

    ==You’d think with the market fluctuating she’d go after Alexi and his oversight of Bright Start.==

    That, and try to find and interview people whose children was forced to go into astronomical student loan debt because of Alexi’s mismanagement of Bright Start. Or even people who went into debt to pay for their kid’s college due to Alexi.

  25. - MisterJayEm - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 11:59 am:

    “A life long D.. I will be voting for the R in November in the SOS race”

    You’d have us believe that a “life long D” is going to cast their general election ballot for the Republican candidate no matter who emerges from the GOP primary?

    Smells like bunkum to me.

    – MrJM

  26. - Wildcat - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 12:15 pm:

    I give it a D it has nothing to do with the office she is running for. Feels like a last ditch effort to gain traction with Dem primary voters

  27. - Just Sayin - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 12:19 pm:

    David Moore is also available.

  28. - Bruce( no not him) - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 12:30 pm:

    When I’m elected SOS there will not be a ban on abortions at any drivers facility.
    Come get your plates and an abortion.

    Wait, what do mean the SOS has nothing to do with abortions?
    Never mind.
    Hat tip to Emily Latella

  29. - DuPage - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 2:33 pm:

    Does she support making giant truck-cranes buy weight-based truck plates like every other truck in Illinois? Yes, or no?

    Does she support abolishing the license plate requirement for the smallest trailers, typically used for small boats? Yes, or no?

    Somewhere along the line, these 2 types of vehicles have been reversed in reasonable license plate requirements.

    I will vote for whatever candidate comes out in support of making the giant truck-cranes pay their fair share for weight-based truck plates and lowering or abolishing the plate costs for smallest trailers.

  30. - Sonny - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 3:32 pm:

    What do the Rauner consultant chuds think about how we drummed their guy out of the state?

  31. - Seats - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 3:59 pm:

    What are some common differences between Republican and Democrat SoS policies? Is it not largely a nonpartisan position?

  32. - Rockford area Dem - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 4:46 pm:

    I think one key thing is the focus on inclusivity, particularly for Valencia. Her commitment to inclusivity–across all races, gender identities, living/housing situations, etc. makes her stand out, and I am proud to be voting for her.

  33. - New Day - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 6:26 pm:

    “- 47th Ward - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 10:18 am:

    If she doesn’t have an endorsement ad featuring Jesse White and others already in the can then she doesn’t deserve to win.”

    Ding. Ding. Ding. Every dollar she spends that doesn’t feature Jesse White at this point is a dollar wasted. I get the choice issue motivating women but this is super weak.

  34. - Responsa - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 7:02 pm:

    D. I agree with all the commenters above who basically called this ad dishonest. It is dishonest, because its content holds no bearing on the important duties of the Illinois Sec of State. I am wondering if Jesse White has privately asked her not to focus on his earlier endorsement now that so much more is publicly know about her ethical issues.

  35. - Pundent - Wednesday, May 18, 22 @ 9:21 pm:

    =Her commitment to inclusivity–across all races, gender identities, living/housing situations, etc. makes her stand out, and I am proud to be voting for her.=

    Is she really differentiating herself on these issues from Alexi? Because I don’t see it. And is inclusivity enough to ignore her ethics issues and generally poor campaign?

  36. - Rockford area Dem - Thursday, May 19, 22 @ 8:38 am:

    =Is she really differentiating herself on these issues from Alexi? Because I don’t see it. And is inclusivity enough to ignore her ethics issues and generally poor campaign?=

    Yes, she is, because she has demonstrated it as Chicago City Clerk. It’s not just a campaign platform, it’s what she has lived by in her career.

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