The campaign for the Democratic nomination to succeed retiring state Sen. Susan Garrett (D-Lake Forest) became a little more heated ahead of Tuesday’s primary as one of the candidates questioned the Democratic credentials of the other.
sent an automated telephone call into the 29th State Senate District Saturday claiming his opponent, West Deerfield Township Supervisor Julie Morrison, was a Republican until recently.
“I was told by voters when I met them this was important,” Sumption said. “Many Democratic voters care about a life-long commitment to Democratic principles. They have concerns about the fact that my opponent was a Republican who switched parties.”
state Sen. Terry Link (D-Waukegan), state Rep. Karen May (D-Highland Park), state Rep. Elaine Nekritz (D-Northbrook) and other Democratic leaders, was first elected as a Republican in 1997 and switched in 2008. She was chosen as a Democrat in 2009.
Garrett was quick to defend Morrison’s commitment to Democratic values, making comparisons between Sumption’s statement and the attacks by outside groups in the battle for the 10th Congressional District Democratic nomination.
“This is last minute gotcha politics,” Garrett said. “We’ve seen way too much of this in the last couple of weeks. She (Morrison) has stood up for Democratic values and has the support of nearly all elected Democrats and Democratic organizations in the 29th District.”
Morrison had her own explanation when Patch first questioned her about the switch in October. “I didn’t leave the Republican Party, it left me,” she said at the time.
Most of the time Morrison and Sumption spent the weekend doing what they will do today and Tuesday, going door to door and asking citizens for their vote. Both had volunteers doing the same throughout the area. Each candidate was in Highland Park Saturday.
One of Sumption’s volunteers was Highland Park resident Ben Seitelman, who met the candidate while gathering signatures for another contender for a different race. “I like his financial background to fix the budget and the economy,” Seitelman said of Sumption.
Morrison is spending much of the time with Garrett. “I’ll be here as much as she needs me,” Garrett said. They were learning voters are getting the candidates’ messages and coming to decisions.
“People are reading the mail pieces,” Morrison said. “They understand the issues.”At one Highland Park home the resident let her know she had received the advertising and asked for a yard sign. “It’s all about boots on the ground,” Morrison added about the final days of the campaign.
The winner will face Highland Park pediatrician Arie Friedman in the Nov. 6 general election. Friedman is unopposed in the Republican primary.