Is the race for the Republican nomination for governor getting dirty? One former nominee thinks so. Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka was the Republican candidate for governor in 2006, losing to Rod Blagojevich. She’s concerned that this year’s Republican candidates are going too negative against rivals from their own party.
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“You’ve got four fine fellows who are running,” Topinka said, “and it is a sad thing that our elections have come to this, where you literally have to destroy people who run for public office.” Topinka says a negative campaign will scare off future qualified candidates.
In regard to specific attacks, such as the allegations of misconduct against State Treasurer Dan Rutherford, Topinka says she only knows as much as what has already been reported. Topinka is no stranger to attacks in a primary. One of her Republican opponents in 2006, Ron Gidwitz, was officially rebuked by the Illinois Republican Party for a negative ad campaign aimed at Topinka.