Local Republican and Democratic Party leaders think 10th Congressional District voters are too smart to be influenced by all the negative advertising bombarding the local airwaves criticizing Rep. Robert Dold (R-Kenilworth) and his Democratic opponent, Brad Schneider of Deerfield.
Nevertheless, both campaigns and a number of outside groups are investing millions of dollars in commercials betting state Sen. Susan Garrett (D-Lake Forest) and Moraine Township Republican Chair Lou Atsaves of Lake Forest are overestimating their neighbors.
Earlier: National Democrats Shine Spotlight on 10th
Garrett said in January when outside groups supporting Democratic primary candidate Ilya Sheyman were criticizing Schneider. She sees no difference now.
Though Atsaves is specifically critical about what he sees as distortions by Democrats about Dold’s record, he nearly echoes Garrett’s words. “The 10th District voter is far too smart to fall for these deliberate distortions,” he said. “The National Democrats who put together these ads have seriously misread those voters.”
Though the campaigns themselves are putting forth positive messages like Schneider’s wife, Julie Dann, telling voters why her husband should be elected. Dold appears in a conversation with his mother as she tells people why she thinks her son is the best candidate.
Despite those spots, groups affiliated with the Democratic Party have committed to spending $2.4 million on three local races including the 10th District. Republican leaning groups are doing the same though Patch does not have specific dollar amounts.
See the Five Attack Ads Against Dold, Schneider
Patch has assembled five commercials with this story and sought the opinions of leaders of both parties. Some are critical of Schneider and others attack Dold. Wheeling Township Democratic Outreach Chair Renee Shapiro blames laws which now allow unlimited spending.
“If our fellow suburbanites are sick and tired of the sheer amount of these political ads they have no one to blame but the conservative Supreme Court and the Tea Party-controlled House,” Shapiro said. “Without them the faulty Citizens United decisions would not be allowing millionaires to try and buy Rep. Dold's re-election,”
Shapiro did not mention the millions being spent by the Democratic .
Commercial Ties Dold to Walsh
A series of the Democratic leaning ads labels Dold as a Tea Party Republican and attempts to tie him to Tea Party favorite Rep. Joe Walsh (R-McHenry) running in the 8th Congressional District. New Trier Township Republican Committeeman Bill Cadigan is quick to call it a false distortion.
“Bob Dold is the kind of fiscal conservative and social moderate our area likes to send as its voice in Washington,” Cadigan said. “While many politicians on both sides like to shout across the aisle at one another, Bob is always ready to work with anyone with good ideas to grow our economy and create jobs.”
Shields Township Democratic Chairman Carol Jones of Lake Forest discounts the effectiveness of the advertising. She does think they will help highlight what she considers an attack on women by many members of the Republican Party. She did not mention Dold by name.
“I can’t believe the videos are persuading many people,” Jones said. “As a woman, I am appalled at the war declared on women by the right. So maybe a few more (commercials) linking Walsh’s outrageous comments to the whole party is a good idea.”
One commercial attacks Schneider for running as a businessman when the financial disclosures he has filed with Congress do not show evidence of significant income. Dold has disclosed tax returns and Schneider has not causing Atsaves to discount the negative message in that spot.
“The Business Background ads about Schneider fairly highlight his refusal to disclose his business activities since January of 2010 and his refusal to disclose his tax returns,” Atsaves said. “His refusal to become more transparent about himself and his background legitimizes those questions.”