Political ad is worst of the worst


Well, the Super Bowl is over for another year, and the much-hated New England Patriots and their quarterback/male model/possible robot Tom Brady were denied ring No. 6.

Now Brady will have to sulk at home in his mansion with his super model wife and wipe away his tears with $100 bills.

Poor guy.

I watched as much of the game as I could take, which was actually into the third quarter this year. I do watch even when a team I don’t like (yes, the Patriots) is playing because I, like millions of others, enjoy the commercials.

No, I am not going to now go into a dissection of those commercials. First, the game was more than a week ago. Second, you can find those snarky pieces all over the Internet the day after the game.

No thanks.

But one advertisement did catch my eye. Honestly, I think it was during the pre-game portion, which I believe started 74 hours before the game itself. This was a political advertisement for Republican gubernatorial candidate, State Rep. Jeanne Ives.

I won’t go into the ad here because it was the lowest form of political advertising that there is – and that is saying something. It mocked immigrants, women’s march folks, teachers and transgendered people in such a nasty way that I was shocked anyone would put their name on it.

The ad was basically an anti-Bruce Rauner ad. Ives is running against Rauner in the upcoming primary and is attacking him from the right. Hey, that is fair and she certainly has room to go after the governor from that direction.

But when your own party members are calling your ad, “racist, bigoted and homophobic,” like former Illinois Republican chairman Pat Brady did, you need to listen, which Ives – at least to this point – seems to have no interest in doing.

Her TV spot was simply disgusting, to me, and I am one who usually enjoys a well-made political ad – even if it punches hard. For example, the one that Rauner himself has made that basically attacks Democratic challenger J.B. Pritzker by using a call between the candidate and disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich is very effective.

For his part, Pritzker has tried to stay on the high road, but mark my words, that won’t last forever.

I also thought the advertisement featuring elected officials from states surrounding Illinois thanking Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan for pushing businesses and dollars to their state’s through horrible policy decisions was well done.

Attacking Madigan is safe, easy and just bringing up his name gets people riled up.

But a nasty, divisive and downright gross ad like the one running for Ives has no place in Illinois or the country in 2018.

Yes, I realize that the politics of division are all the rage in American right now. But I also know that we cannot and will not stand for that forever. It is just too damaging to a country that is known for embracing and celebrating differences. They are a source of our strength.

I don’t believe Ives has a shot at beating Rauner in the primary, and this TV ad will not help her chances. Sure, it will play well with a certain constituency, but that is a small – and ever-shrinking – minority of the people who will be voting.

Thankfully.