Another group to buy ads criticizing Gill

Another group to buy ads criticizing Gill

Another so-called "independent" group has entered the 13th Congressional District race in opposition to Democrat David Gill.

The American Action Network announced it would spend up to $350,000 on anti-Gill television and digital advertising in the congressional district that runs from Champaign-Urbana southwest to the Illinois suburbs of St. Louis.

The Federal Election Commission reported that the American Action Network already has spent $183,748 on television and Internet advertising to oppose Gill. The Bloomington physician is opposed by Republican Rodney Davis and independent John Hartman in the 13th District.

Two other groups — the National Republican Congressional Committee and the New Prosperity Foundation — have spent nearly $225,000 on television commercials against Gill.

But the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has spent $304,728 on anti-Davis commercials.

Overall, more than $710,000 has been spent, mostly on attack ads, in the 13th District race since early August.

The American Action Network broadcast commercial, called "Radical Ideas," is to run on St. Louis television stations for two weeks, the group said. It focuses on Gill's support for a single-payer national health care plan.

"It's clear that time after time after time, Illinoisans reject David Gill and his radical policies," said AAN spokeswoman Brook Hougesen. "The 13th District simply cannot afford a dose of his costly liberal agenda."

According to the website, the American Action Network has received $4.5 million from the Pharmaceutical Research & Manufacturers of America, and $4 million from the Republican Jewish Coalition. PhRMA represents the country's top pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies. The latter group is headed by Sheldon G. Adelson, principal owner of the Las Vegas Sands Corp., the parent company of the Sands, The Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino in Las Vegas, and the Venetian Macao Limited in Macao. Adelson has pledged to spend up to $100 million to defeat President Obama.

Aetna Insurance also is a contributor to the American Action Network.

"Clearly, when Aetna Insurance paid for a barrage of false and deceptive ads against me, they extracted a promise from Davis. The promise is Davis' support for a return to the bad old days, when health insurers could freely deny coverage and impose lifetime caps. Those so-called 'market-based' tactics insure only one thing — the death of patients," Gill said in a prepared statement Monday.

The AAN also got $500,000 from Crossroads GPS, an independent group affiliated with famed GOP strategist Karl Rove.

Gill is currently the AAN's No. 4 target for 2012, according to

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Joe American wrote on September 18, 2012 at 8:09 am

" called 'independent'..."

So tell us how you really feel.  Way to stick to objective reporting, Tom.  Or are they only paying you for your opinion?

alabaster jones 71 wrote on September 18, 2012 at 12:09 pm
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He's only pointing out the blatanly, brutally obvious, that there is nothing "independent" about any of these super PACS floating around.  Tom has written his articles in this style for as long as I can remember.  If you don't like it, you shouldn't read them.

Joe American wrote on September 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm

Thank you for clarifying that these are opinion pieces, not reporting of the news.

GeneralLeePeeved wrote on September 18, 2012 at 9:09 am

Approximately 1 out of every 5 kids in this country go to bed hungry every night and yet people like Mr. Adelson have $100 million to spend on negative political ads........pretty pathetic

Sid Saltfork wrote on September 18, 2012 at 9:09 am

GeneralPeeved;  I agree with you.  If the hidden political donors would come forward, and donate their PAC money to charitable causes; their endorsement of a candidate would carry more weight with voters.  It is easier for them to prey on the most ignorant of voters with the negative, and mostly untruthful ads.  If they are so desperate for their candidate to win, why don't they just buy votes by giving each voter cash?

Joe American wrote on September 18, 2012 at 10:09 am

Peeved......please point me to the latest discussion string that you railed on George "Obama Puppet Master" Soros for doing the same, but a much more grandiose scale.

alabaster jones 71 wrote on September 18, 2012 at 11:09 am
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Oooh, oooh, some guy on the other side did it, so that makes it OK!  Right?

Such simple minded tribalism, the whole country over.  How about nobody on either side gets to buy elections? That sure would be nice.


This November, we have three choices.  We have a perennial loser of elections who I can only assume is funded by a lot of trial lawyers and bloated unions, and we have a career politician funded by bloated health insurance conglomerates and by Sheldon Adelson who wasn't even picked by the voters to be the nominee.  The third choice is John Hartman, who figures to be the only choice in the race who might actually be an independent and principled voice for us in Washington.  But he doesn't have any billionaire buddies who can help him buy the election, so he will finish third.

read the DI wrote on September 25, 2012 at 2:09 am


alabaster jones 71 wrote on September 26, 2012 at 12:09 am
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Thank you for your detailed and exhaustive critique of what you find objectionable about Mr. Hartman's candidacy.

read the DI wrote on September 26, 2012 at 5:09 pm

You're welcome.

GeneralLeePeeved wrote on September 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm

If Mr. Kacich had ever written an article that discussed Mr. Soros, I would have railed on him too, as I am an equal opportunity malcontent....but to the best of my knowledge that hasn't occurred (maybe I missed it).  As an independent, I have disdain for all of the money wasted by all candidates on negative ads.  When was the last time a candidate ran an ad that actually stated what they were going to do to provide help to a given issue?   Now that the Supreme Court has made their supremely stupid decision re: corporations being equal to individuals with respect to campaign dollars......we, the people, are totally screwed.

rsp wrote on September 19, 2012 at 10:09 am

Maybe you should look into why Adelson is willing to spend so much money. First with Newt and now with Romney.

alabaster jones 71 wrote on September 18, 2012 at 12:09 pm
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I've seen the Davis ad described in the article already.  It ran on Monday Night Football last night.  It's your standard attack ad as I recall, a lot of grainy black and white images of David Gill paired with a concerned, monotone female voice-over.  The only part that really caught my attention was when it mentioned Gill's "Washington buddies."  I found that mildly hilarious coming from Davis, given that he is a career Washington insider who hasn't lived in Illinois in a long time.  Gill has actually lived and worked in this district within the last decade.  Unlike Davis, Gill has actually had a real job recently too.  I wonder if Davis has ever had a job outside of politics.  Not necessarily a reason to support Gill, just food for thought.

mankind wrote on September 19, 2012 at 9:09 am

I just can't make up my mind who to vote for! A couple hundred more attack ads will definitely help bring some clarity to the issue.   

STM wrote on September 19, 2012 at 11:09 am

It's interesting how some rich guy with a boatload of anonymous cash, an attorney, and an advertising agency are now referred to as a "group."  It's presented by our incurious media as though there is a groundswell of disgruntled electorate and the target candidate is somehow going to make their lives worse.

These ads do not have to be grounded in reality or dignity...and they aren't.

These "groups" aren't either.

One thing is certain, with all the money being thrown at ads against Gill, you can bet he's making some big-money guys very nervous (and some ad agencies very happy).

Sid Saltfork wrote on September 19, 2012 at 7:09 pm

The ex-Miss America would have been a better choice.  Negative ads would have bounced off of her crown.  How could anyone crticize Miss America?  It would be like someone mocking Wonder Woman.  The leadership messed up by not appointing her instead of Davis.