First, Giannoulias released a video suggesting Kirk and Palin are “going rogue” together. Why? Because Kirk endorsed the McCain/Palin ticket, voted against health care reform, and wants to beat Obama in 2012. But those aren’t Palin-o-lithic positions. Every Republican in America voted against health care reform and wants to beat Obama.
Now, Giannoulias is asking supporters for twenty-five bucks to keep Palinism out of the Senate.
“Can Sarah Palin see Illinois from her house in Alaska?” reads an e-mail from Giannoulias’s campaign manager, Michael Rendina. “Well, she got to see Illinois up close and personal yesterday at a fundraiser for Mark Kirk and the Republican Party. Republicans paid at least $500 a plate -- some up to $25,000 -- to hear Sarah Palin unload on President Obama and the Democratic Party.
The email goes on, trying to tie Sarah Palin and Mark Kirk together, and reminding readers that Giannoulias will work with Obama.
The e-mail sounds a little desperate. Not because it’s asking for $25, but because it emphasizes that Giannoulias can’t make any of his attacks on Kirk stick. Not the Wall Street connection. Not the vote against health care reform. Those were drowned out by the Broadway Bank story. That story is over, so Giannoulias is taking another mighty swing at his opponent, hoping to connect this time.
Kirk has been artful in dodging Palin, knowing that any buddy photo will end up in a Giannoulias campaign ad. While Palin was making an ass of herself in Rosemont, Kirk was in Washington, D.C., dutifully voting on legislation. As far as we know, the two Republicans have never actually met. Palin didn’t even mention Kirk in her speech. In fact, she bashed “moderate Republicans.”
Giannoulias does have a point, though, when he calls this week’s event “a fundraiser for Mark Kirk and the Republican Party.” Kirk may not want to stand next to Palin, but he’ll take the money she raises from the party’s nativist, angry-white person wing … and use it to attack Alexi Giannoulias.