Shimkus: Blame National Parties for Negative Tone
By Jeff Bossert
Congressman John Shimkus says there are plenty of other campaigns for the US House that carry the same negative tone that the retiring Tim Johnson cited recently.
The Republican Congressman Johnson recently slammed the ads of those vying to succeed him in the 13th Congressional District, Republican Rodney Davis and Democrat David Gill, saying he’s ‘aghast and horrified’ by the level that each campaign has fallen.
Shimkus, a Collinsville Republican running in the 15th District, contends that kind of negative rhetoric would have been avoided if Johnson had run for re-election.
Shimkus blames national party organizations and Super PAC’s, and not candidates, for the campaign ads.
"Every race that's a close competitive race in this country, is unfortunately getting down in the mud just like the 13th (District)," he said. "We just had a debate yesterday (Thursday) in California with two Democrats, and they almost went to blows. Tim would have run that race walking away, so the national money wouldn't have been involved."
The Springfield State Journal-Register quoted Davis, who was with Shimkus at a campaign event Wednesday, as saying the blame lies with a campaign finance system that’s beyond control of the candidates.
Former Republican Congressman Tom Ewing recently defended Davis’ campaign ads, saying he was proud of the way Davis has conducted himself. Gill said he too was disappointed by the negative tone of Super PACS.