(CBS) — Republican gubernatorial hopefuls Bruce Rauner and Dan Rutherford traded denials as they faced each other over a potentially damaging complaint lodged by one of Rutherford’s employees in the State Treasurer’s office.

State Treasurer Dan Rutherford told the Chicago Tribune editorial board he believes rival Bruce Rauner instigated a complaint by one of his workers that he asked the employee to do political work on state time.

Rutherford says it is absolutely false and he has never had any allegations against him before.

“We have got this thing brought up, number one. An attorney that had some work for Mr. Rauner, we have got this outside political action committees that are now taking on the rest of us. We have got this having happened in the past. I think it is an accumulations of those that I think Mr. Rauner is behind it,” said Rutherford.
Rauner’s response was direct.

Svenson’s motives, saying he was told this could be kept under wraps before she made a request for $300,000.

“It is ridiculous, but again this is politics. Dan attacked me last week with these allegations I know nothing about them and having to do with,” said Rauner.

But the businessman agrees there are outside groups in the race. Rauner blames them and denies being allied with them.

Rutherford says the issue is helping him gain support.

“When other Republican candidates for governor look dysfunctional, I think it does help me. I’m tested, I’m prepared,” said Kirk Dillard.

“There is no question whether Mr. Rauner is behind these problems for Treasurer Rutherford or whatever, it’s not helpful,” said Bill Brady.

Sources tell CBS 2 an EEOC complaint will be filed Friday. Attorney Christine Svenson did not return calls for comment.

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