Reporting John Cody
Filed underCampaign Center, Heard on WBBM 780, Local, News, Politics, Seen on CBS 2, Watch + Listen
CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago has been given a new unofficial title: home of “America’s Nastiest Political Ad.” That’s the charge from the Guardian, England’s most liberal newspaper.
CBS 2 Chief Correspondent Jay Levine takes a look at the ad in question to see if it’s as rough as critics charge.
Gov. Pat Quinn’s ad attacks his Republican opponent, State Sen. Bill Brady, for sponsoring legislation that would lift a ban on mass euthanasia of stray animals. So far, the ad is running only on the internet.
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Brady also twice voted against the original law that banned mass animal killings, but now says he’s against it. But Quinn keeps hammering away.
Under the bill Brady sponsored just two days after the February primary, groups of ten unwanted, stray or dangerous cats or dogs could be euthanized at the same time.
The bill failed and Brady recently changed his position, saying he realizes the people of Illinois don’t support the proposal.
But on Tuesday, in response to questions from the media, Quinn went even further in his criticism of Brady. He used terms he said were taken from the bill Brady once sponsored, but that are also usually associated with Nazi death camps.
“What’s nasty is coming up with an idea of putting 10 dogs and cats in a gas chamber all at once and killing them in a mass way that I think is revolting,” Quinn said. “Many people, their dog or their cat is part of their family, and they don’t want to see their living creature put in a gas chamber with nine other dogs or cats and … subject to execution.”
The Guardian wrote, “never has a candidate stooped so low as to accuse his rival of wanting to kill dogs.”
On Tuesday, Brady acknowledged the issue is important to “anyone who is an animal lover and has beloved family pets, but he said it’s also “a distraction.”
He said that “families are losing their homes … families are worried whether they’ll get a job tomorrow … Quinn doesn’t want to talk about his failed record.”
TV ads for both candidates now saturate the airwaves, financed by campaign contributions. Today, final campaign cash reports show that Brady has raised $9.3 million since July 1 and Quinn has raised $8.7 million.
Brady’s biggest donors have been business leaders and Republican politicians. Quinn’s biggest donors have been labor unions and Democratic politicians.
With just two weeks to go until Election Day, the money is pouring in to both campaigns, with about $26 million between them financing the increasingly heated campaign ads.
Maybe it’s a stretch to quote from notoriously colorful British tabloids, but remember a whole country and the whole world can see them on the Internet.