Sen. Sullivan blasts PAC ad
9 months ago by Bob Gough
Third party cable television ad tries to link Rushville Democrat to Chicago interests
State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) is on the defensive today regarding the first television ad of the 47th District State Senate campaign.
“I’m extremely disappointed that my opponent is starting his campaign with false, negative attacks,” said Sullivan referring to Adams County Circuit Clerk Randy Frese of Paloma . “The fact that he refuses to make these attacks himself is especially cowardly. I hope he has the good sense to call on his supporter to remove these distortions from the airwaves.”
Adam Andrzejewski, a fiscal conservative who ran for governor in 2010 and lost in the Republican primary to Bill Brady, paid for the cable television ad through his Political Action Committee. Sullivan’s campaign called Andrzejewski, who is from Herscher, Illinois, a “deep-pocketed Chicagoland influence peddler and failed gubernatorial candidate” and said the claim that Sullivan voted to raise his own pay is false.
“I have never voted for a pay increase and I never will,” said Sullivan. “In fact, I have voted to cut my own pay, taken furlough days to reduce my pay and refused to accept travel reimbursements for special and extended sessions like today in Springfield.”
Kimber Beckler of the Frese campaign released the following statement:
“Senator Sullivan was supposed to be in session today, but he had time to release political statements,” Beckler said. “Randy was working for the taxpayers this morning.”
Beckler said third party ads are “constitutionally allowed to put out whatever message they like” and the Frese campaign was not going to stand in the way of someone expressing their rights.
Sullivan, who receives a sizeable amount of his warchest from Chicago Democrats, continued to assail Frese’s connection with Andrzejewski.
“I have always been willing to work with anyone wanting to help Illinois residents—regardless of party,” Sullivan said. “I had hoped that this campaign could be about the issues and ways to move Illinois forward. I’m saddened that my opponent is only willing to participate in distortions and so quickly sold out to the deceptions of failed Chicago-area politicians in order to get elected. I’m not for sale and the people of Western Illinois aren’t either.”
Andrzejewski called Sullivan's response "political theater."
“We stand by the facts of the commercial,” he said. “Sen. Sullivan voted to raise his own pay three times and the bill numbers are in the commercials. On a day when he’s supposed to be solving the long-term problems he helped create, he instead issues a press release to attack me to distract from his record of abject failure.”
He was also on WTAD’s Morning Meeting on Friday and discussed the Sullivan race.
"Here we have a State Senator who masquerades in the district as a conservative," Andrzejewski said. "Yet, when Barack Obama came into Quincy in 2010 he said that John Sullivan was his 'best friend and strongest supporter'."
Andrzejewski said that he, along with State Sen. Sam McCann, will bring that message to Quincy on September 4 in order to "educate independents, conservative Democrats and the Republican base on John Sullivan."
"People are tired of hypocrites. They're tired of people that talk one way in one venue and go someplace else like Springfield and talk in a completely different way and hang out with a completely different sort of person. I think once people locally understand who John Sullivan is, they're gonna vote against him just like they're gonna vote against Barack Obama."
Frese issued his own response late Friday afternoon
“Senator Sullivan supported the most recent campaign finance reforms that established new rules for independent expenditure committees, so I find it highly disingenuous and self-serving that he would criticize an independent expenditure committee operating under the guidelines he helped establish,” Frese said.
“What's clear is that Senator Sullivan would rather shoot the messenger than defend his record of taxing, spending, borrowing, and awarding pay raises to himself and other Springfield politicians. In less than two years, Senator Sullivan voted yes on three bills that funded pay raises for elected officials, including himself and Governor Blagojevich.
Even Comptroller Dan Hynes, a fellow Democrat, acknowledged that pay raises could not be enacted without an appropriation from the General Assembly. ‘We cannot implement the pay raises without an appropriation,’ Hynes said. “I challenge Senator Sullivan to dispute the facts. If he cannot dispute the facts, then I expect him to continue attacking the messenger.”