Tag Archives: mark kirk

Tammy Duckworth on John & Ray Wednesday Morning

Senator-Elect Tammy Duckworth talks about her plans when she becomes Senator including seat belt laws on school buses.

“Is this unsafe to have children in seatbelts,” Ray Stevens asked on Wednesday morning.

Duckworth addressed the fact that the majority of deaths associated with school bus accidents have been passengers “being flung out of seats,” or due to the bus rolling over.

U.S. Senator-Elect Tammy Duckworth takes over for Mark Kirk in January.

Kirk participates in stair climb at Willis Tower

(CHICAGO) Republican U.S. Senator Mark Kirk hopes that walking up 37 floors of the Willis Tower in Chicago will send a message that he’s physically capable to handle another term in office.

Kirk is being challenged by Democratic U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth and one of the issues that has emerged is whether Kirk’s 2012 stroke compromised his ability to do the job.

Kirk has released a letter from his physician that says he’s made a full cognitive recovery and before Sunday’s climb he said he hoped the climb would demonstrate his physical ability to serve a second term in the Senate.

Kirk completed the climb along with others participating in SkyRise Chicago, an event that benefits the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. Kirk was treated at the institute after his stroke.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Fallout from Kirk’s comments weakens bid for 2nd Senate term

(CHICAGO) Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois enters the crucial final week before Election Day weakened by comments about his opponent that critics are calling racist and “beyond reprehensible.”

Two organizations whose endorsements Kirk had touted withdrew their backing over the weekend, saying they’re now supporting Democratic U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth.

Human Rights Campaign and a gun-control group led by ex-U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords cited Kirk’s remarks during a debate last Thursday. Kirk mocked Duckworth’s immigrant background and her family’s history of military service. He apologized Friday.

Campaign Spokeswoman Eleni Demertzis called the reversals “unfortunate.” She says the decisions were “based on politics instead of reality.”

Kirk spent the weekend outside of the public eye, while Duckworth had a full schedule of campaign events.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Rob Johnson talks about veterans and their feelings about Mark Kirk and Tammy Duckworth

Rob Johnson of CBS 2 joins the show to talk about his story about veterans feeling as if they are pawns in the Senate race between Mark Kirk and Tammy Duckworth.

Some Military Veterans Feel Like Pawns In Fierce Senate Race Between Kirk, Duckworth


Kirk, a former Naval intelligence officer, is attacking Democrat Duckworth, a former Army helicopter pilot who was shot down.

“I’ve worked on veterans’ homelessness, care for female veterans. For him to cynically attack my service to veterans just shows how insecure he is about his own service,” Duckworth says.

Read the full story by Rob Johnson here: Military Vets Feel Like Pawns In Senate Race Between Kirk, Duckworth « CBS Chicago

Mark Kirk campaign site falsely calls senator ‘veteran’ of Iraq war

By Manu Raju, CNN Senior Political Reporter

Sen. Mark Kirk’s campaign falsely asserted on its website that the Illinois Republican was a veteran of the Iraq war, a misstatement that comes six years after exaggerations over his military record nearly cost him his state’s Senate seat.

The Republican, now battling for a second term in a tight race in Illinois, stayed in the United States during the Iraq War when he served in the Navy Reserves. But on a public web page on his official campaign website touting his record on veterans’ issues, Kirk was listed as a “veteran of the Iraq war.”

While Kirk campaign officials said it was a staff error, the issue resembles the controversy that nearly caused his 2010 Senate campaign to implode. Moreover, Kirk is now running for reelection against Democratic Rep. Tammy Duckworth, a military veteran who lost both of her legs during combat in Iraq.
Kirk campaign officials said the web page was not meant to be made public, saying that it was supposed to be a private site while edits were being made to the page.
Campaign officials said a third-party vendor had drafted the language that they said had not been vetted or reviewed by the senator’s staff. The language, they acknowledged, was inaccurate, saying it would be changed when the campaign began a more direct push to court military veterans.
After CNN inquired about the statement, the campaign moved the web page behind a password-protected firewall. It had been accessible publicly and through Google searches about Kirk’s work on veterans issues prior to that.
Kirk campaign manager Kevin Artl downplayed the error — and instead attacked Duckworth over her tenure leading the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs.
“Rather than focus on draft web copy that has yet to go through an approval process, we would welcome the media’s attention on the six military veterans who died waiting for care during Tammy Duckworth’s time at the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs,” Artl said.
Duckworth campaign officials declined to comment.
In 2010, Kirk came under heavy criticism for making a number of inaccurate comments about his military record, including falsely asserting he was the lone member of Congress to serve in Iraq and had been named the Navy’s intelligence officer of the year. He later backtracked, including by saying he served “during” the Iraq war — not “in” the war. He also later acknowledged that a different award was given by the Navy, and it was awarded to his entire unit.
Kirk apologized for his misstatements, including one saying he had been fired on in 2000 while flying reconnaissance missions over Iraq and another saying he was a veteran of Operation Desert Storm in the early 1990s.
During the Iraq war invasion of 2003, Kirk was a congressman representing a district encompassing suburbs north of Chicago. He served in the Naval Reserves at that time but was working stateside, even joking to a reporter in 2003 that he wouldn’t see combat unless the Iraqi army came to Washington.
After a 23-year career in the Navy Reserves where he served as an intelligence officer, Kirk retired from the service in 2013 — a year after he suffered a major stroke that still affects his mobility and speech today.

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Kirk again trails Duckworth in fundraising for US Senate bid

(CHICAGO) Illinois Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk’s campaign says he raised more than $1 million in the most recent quarter for his re-election bid against Democratic U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth.

It marks the fourth consecutive quarter that Duckworth has outraised Kirk. Her campaign said this week she raised $2.7 million between April and June.

Duckworth also has more cash in her campaign fund, with $5.5 million. Kirk’s campaign said Friday he finished the quarter with $3.12 million.

Kirk is considered one of the GOP’s most endangered incumbents heading into November’s election, when Democrats look to retake the Senate.

Kirk spokeswoman Eleni Demertzis says he has raised more than $10 million from almost 30,000 donors this election cycle. She says his “independent voice and thoughtful leadership have resonated” with people in Illinois.


Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Kirk Protesters Despite Support of Vote on SCOTUS Nominee

By Nick Gale, WLS News

(CHICAGO)  A group of activists, including those of Move On Dot Org, who want Senate Republicans to vote on the president’s Supreme Court nominee, protested outside of Sen. Mark Kirk’s Chicago office, despite Kirk being one of the only Republicans to say his colleagues should vote.

Kirk told WLS-AM 890 Friday that his colleagues should “man up” and vote on President Barack Obama’s nominee Merrick Garland. So why the protest?

Robert Naiman is a Move On Dot Org volunteer who drove up from Urbana for Monday’s demonstration. He say’s he’s delighted that Kirk has been a standout on the issue, but says that’s not the end of the story. He says Kirk must pressure Senate leaders, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, for a vote.

“So I would ask people of Chicago to keep up the pressure on Mark Kirk until there is a vote on the nomination of Merrick Garland,” Naiman said. “Mark Kirk is not off the hook until there is a vote on the nomination.”

McConnell, who has said the next president should make the nomination, told Garland Thursday that he would not be meeting with him. Garland is a 1970 graduate of Niles West High School.

@ WLS-AM NEWS, 2016 

Illinois Senator Mark Kirk

Republican and Democratic senators set aside their partisan differences Wednesday to unanimously pass more sanctions against North Korea. The Senate approved the sanctions bill 96-0 after lawmakers repeatedly denounced Pyongyang for flouting international law by pursuing nuclear weapons. Illinois Senator Mark Kirk joined John to talk about the newest sanctions against North Korea, and also responded to comments by Rep. Tammy Duckworth about radical Muslims.