June 30th, 2010
12:23 PM ET
4 years ago

Kirk strikes back with 2 new ads

Senate hopeful Mark Kirk is up with two new ads in Illinois.
Senate hopeful Mark Kirk is up with two new ads in Illinois.

Washington (CNN) – Less than twenty-four hours after his admission that he misrepresented his military record, the campaign of Senate hopeful Mark Kirk has released two ads that slam his Democratic opponent.

Kirk, the Republican nominee hoping to capture President Obama's old Senate seat, admitted during a news conference Tuesday that he had mischaracterized his military record.

"I am not perfect, and I was careless. I will do better and make sure this never happens again," Kirk said.

But now his campaign is striking back at Alexi Giannoulias, the Democrat who earlier this year waged a public relations battle of his own following the failure of a bank owned by his family.

The two ads, titled "Risky" and "Stand," both warn that Giannoulias will raise taxes.

Updated 1:00 p.m.: Read the Giannoulias campaign response after the jump.

But that's where the similarities end.

"Risky" focuses on the failure of Broadway Bank, where Giannoulias was employed before being elected Illinois State Treasurer.

"Alexi Giannoulias is only 34 years old," the ads narrator says." But what a 34 years it's been."

The 30-second spot then turns to loans made while Giannoulias was employed at the bank and his investment decisions as state treasurer before the narrator asks, "Alexi Giannoulias. Trust him with your money?"

"Stand" makes reference to the oil spill currently plaguing the Gulf of Mexico, and highlights Kirk's environmental record, which includes efforts to stem the pollution of Lake Michigan.

"Mark Kirk won praise for helping stop BP when it tried to pollute Lake Michigan," the narrator says.

The Giannoulias campaign shot back Wednesday afternoon, releasing a statement and an ad of their own.

"By his own admission, Congressman Mark Kirk has lied repeatedly about his military record and other parts of his professional life, and now he is lying about Alexi," Giannoulias spokesman Matt McGrath said. "After promising the people of Illinois a renewed commitment to honesty and transparency, Congressman Kirk couldn't even make it a single day before lying again."

Titled "On and On," the Giannoulias ad is a video compilation of instances in which Kirk has stretched the truth about his military record, coupled with news reports detailing the allegations against the five-term congressman.

Kirk and Giannoulias are seeking the seat currently held by Sen. Roland Burris, who decided not to pursue the Democratic nomination.


Filed under: 2010 • Alexi Giannoulias • Illinois • Mark Kirk
soundoff (48 Responses)
  1. Riley

    Haven't you learned yet? You cannot trust any democrat from Chicago...Blago and Obama included.

    June 30, 2010 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  2. Pam

    Kirk is not "careless".
    He is a liar!!
    And there is no such thing as an 'enviroment-friendly' Republican!

    June 30, 2010 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  3. carlos

    KIRK is DONE for the Illinois senate seat......goodbye hypocrite

    June 30, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  4. Stacie

    Oh, my, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! Kirk puts out an ad with the words "REAL TRUTH" in them. Kirk wouldn't know the truth if it jumped up an bit him in the.....

    June 30, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  5. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    I'm not following this race, but I sure wouldn't vote for a guy who LIED about his milirtary record. if this were a job interview, and you lied to the employer, you wouldn't get the job. Same goes here.

    June 30, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  6. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Kirk deserves to lose for being such a Jerk. As if he somehow "forgot" he really did NOT win medals or awards for being in combat? That was on purpose and he doesn't have the integrity to admit it. At least Blumenthal served during the Vietnam War – but didn't actually see combat. Kirk though went a step beyond by claiming he won medals, when he really didn't???

    June 30, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  7. carlos

    kirk, please do not try to spin your own stupidity...........you are done, PERIOD

    June 30, 2010 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  8. Stacie

    Sorry Riley, but George Ryan proved that corruption and lying in Illinois isn't a Democrat or Republican thing. That famous Republican is will spend the rest of his life in prision for corruption.

    Krik's lies (careless civilian speak) over the past 10 years and his attack ads are par for the course in Illinois.

    June 30, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  9. Steve (the real one)

    ...At least Blumenthal served during the Vietnam War – but didn't actually see combat...
    ------------
    Nice attempt at covering up. Blumental stated he served IN Vietnam. He didn't , which means he also lied. I am guessing that is OK with and HE does not deserve to lose. Could that be because of the (D) behind his name?

    June 30, 2010 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  10. norma

    People running for a specific political office put out ads. This is not news! This is free publicity for a specific candidate.

    June 30, 2010 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  11. seebofubar

    Kirk lied like a Chicago Democrat, but compared to Giannoulias he's a saint. Giannoulias has ties to the Chicago mob. As a loan officer in his bank (that the Feds had to close due to poor management) he knowingly loaned money to the mob. Besides that, he mis-managed the Illinois college fund so badly, thousands of Illinois residents lost money that they had saved for their childrens education. He's a snake and a crook.

    June 30, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  12. Ken in NC

    Mr.Kirk should realize that when you spin stupidity all that happens is that stupidity gets dizzy.

    June 30, 2010 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  13. Doc

    Were these loans made or approved by Giannoulias? If so maybe there is basis for the claim. I rather doubt that the failure could be laid squarely at his feet. Kind of hypocritical for the Republican to challenge on the basis of failed business when President Bush had a very shaky "military" career and drove two businesses into the ground. And didn't we just hear all sorts of chastising for a Democrat who stated he "served in Vietnam" when he was actually stateside during that war?
    As far as I'm concerned there has never been nor will there ever be an environmentally friendly Republican. It's just runs contrary to the Capitalist and Laisez Faire, deregulatory mantra they espouse.

    June 30, 2010 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  14. Jay

    Sounds like Illinois is going to get a dud in the senate either way but Kirk is the bigger jerk!

    June 30, 2010 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  15. Candy

    Why is this guy still campaigning? Careless? I know a lot of politicians routinely get away with dishonesty, but calling blatant lying about some military honors over a number of years careless? That's a stretch, even by Republican standards.

    June 30, 2010 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  16. John

    To Riley: What about the Republican Governor Ryan who currently sits in jail for corruption so bad it led to the death of a couples children... many of them. The only people who complain about "Chicago" politics are people not from the city of Chicago... Funny how that is! And, oh yes... the Fads have closed hundreds of small banks aronud the country, that is exactly why there is a wall street reform bill!

    June 30, 2010 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  17. harold

    Whats the Republican going to do for you by voting NO if he gets in the senate...And filibustering every piece of legislation to help the worker and their families....Will this fellow do the job to help .you.. ?

    June 30, 2010 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  18. Chipster

    "Mischaracterized?" Seriously? Is that what Kirkfd thinks he did? Interesting that he should mention the oil spill. Republicans have no sense of irony at all. Every Gulf state voted Republican in the last election. The big issue for them? No Big Government! Now, every Gulf state is begging the government to do more, send more, fix more, pay for more...

    No sense of IRONY!

    June 30, 2010 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  19. chris

    you dems are vicious.

    June 30, 2010 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  20. opalka

    Some of you need to know that Kirk is the REPUBLICAN running for this senate seat.

    You obviously do not know that, because some of your comments are referring to him as a democrat.

    I wonder if you would have felt the same if you had understood that fact? I doubt it. You certainly wouldn't have posted your posts as you did.

    June 30, 2010 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  21. Clint, Wa.

    Mr. Mark Kirk, I am a real Viet Nam vet, and I resent your implication of your service in Viet Nam. It was not mischaracterized, it was an out right lie.
    You are not worthy of anything to do with a political career or any more of my time.

    Viet Nam Vet 1966 -1967

    June 30, 2010 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  22. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    "I am not perfect, and I was careless.
    -------------------------------–

    You see? This is the kind of crapola that irks me to no end. You weren't CARELESS. You LIED. Why can't you own up to that?

    And furthermore, what;'s with the "BUTS"? There should be NO BUTS in an APOLOGY! This is the kind iof stuff that grown men should know. YOU, therefore, Kirk, are acting like an infant....at best.

    Wouldn't trust you as far as I could throw you. Luckily for you your re-election has got nothing to do with me.

    June 30, 2010 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  23. Pragmatic

    Kirk has a bad habit of inflating his credentials:

    A review of public comments that Mr. Kirk has made over the last decade shows that while he may refer to himself as a "former teacher" , he does not talk about the brevity of his experience: one year in London at a Private School and part-time in a nursery school as part of a work-study program while he was a student at Cornell University.

    If he'll lie and distort the facts in his own life now ... just what lies will he tell after he's elected???

    June 30, 2010 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  24. In the West

    Let's see.... "I lied to you (over and over) and I was careless, but you should still vote for me." Typical conservative republican politician.

    June 30, 2010 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  25. Connor

    If Kirk says Alexi is a crook, then that should reassure voters that Alexi is the salt of Earth, and an honest, trust worthy candidate. Everything that falls out of Kirk's mouth is a lie. Even the most skeptical of us know that the recession/border line depression is responsible for hundreds of bank failures, not one individual loan officer. And if Kirk thinks Alexi is responsible for Illinois financial status, then that is another reason not to vote for Kirk. Obviously Kirk is delusional.

    June 30, 2010 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
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