Jason Plummer Insists He's No Cohen

Plummer's age and inexperience an issue

By Andrew Greiner
|  Tuesday, Feb 16, 2010  |  Updated 12:21 PM CDT
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Seeing Red: Republicans Who Could Reshape Illinois Politics

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The Republican nominee for Illinois Lt. Governor, Jason Plummer, would like to make one thing perfectly clear: He’s not Scott Lee Cohen.

Cohen was essentially forced to step aside as the Democratic nominee for the job because of a shady past that included drug use, domestic violence and generally poor life decisions.

"I don't think there's anything in my past," 27-year-old Plummer, told the Daily Herald. "I'm proud of what I've done. I'm proud of what my family's done."

That’s not to say Plummer is without controversy.

The young political hopeful has been accused of egregious resume boosting and inflated campaign rhetoric.

For example: Plummer said that he served as a Navy intelligence officer, when in actuality he has yet to undergo training.

Or, the fact that he talked up his role in creating a wireless Internet provider, when it was his father who did it.

Or that he touted his experience working in U.S. Senator Patrick Fitzgerald’s office, when he actually interned in that office.

Granted, it’s small potatoes compared with holding a knife against your former prostitute girlfriend’s neck, but it’s still a campaign liability.

But the biggest concerns about Plummer concern his age and inexperience, and the appearance that he bought the election by spending $1.44 million of his family’s money on the race.

Are voters honestly prepared to have a 27-year-old a heartbeat away from running the state?

Plummer thinks so.

"Someone who's saying that probably hasn't met me and probably doesn't know much about me," Plummer said. "There's a difference between age and experience."

"For the thousands and thousands of people in the state that are unemployed," he said, "I don't think they care how old the person is in Springfield that's fighting to get them a job."

It’s something the Democrats are sure to ask, over and over and over again anyway.  

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