Commentary on mailer which gets a grade of “B+” as campaign begins to show signs of life
As report on McHenry County Blog Saturday, Jim Oberweis’ first mailer hit the streets of the 14th congressional district. According to the Oberweis’ campaign’s Facebook page, the nominee was walking precincts in McHenry County with about a dozen volunteers.
The mailer graded a “B+” mainly because for the first time, Oberweis has engaged Underwood on her voting record with actual, specific bills and votes, backed up by the congressional record.
Additionally, it was a good piece to reintroduce himself to General Election voters in McHenry County, whom he has not communicated with since the 2014 U.S. Senate race. While the readers of this blog know Oberweis backward and forward, the general electorate, mainstream voters have not heard from him directly in six years.
While the liking his ice cream line could use some work, the positives included Oberweis showing himself serving the community during the pandemic, and has him and his wife center stage.
The meat, and the most positives of the mailer, is the comparison piece on the back page:
- Last three points utilized Underwood’s actual voting record in Congress, including the H.R. 1 “For the People Act”
- All of the points are valid comparisons to varying degrees
- Effectively begins to deconstruct the Underwood record
- Madigan used twice – 2nd reference should have been aimed at Governor J.B. Pritzker who is the real force behind the progressive income tax amendment
- COVID-19 footnote appears to be directed at the wrong bill, H.R. 1425 which was a healthcare bill, not a COVID relief bill
- Tax increases uses a nearly 2 1/2 years old Daily Herald story to an interview long before Underwood was elected to Congress (7 months) and while the tax increase comparison is valid, a more up-to-date reference would be in order.
Overall, the mailer is the first signs of life his campaign has shown, and the first time Oberweis is taking on specific votes of Underwood. It could have been better, and hopefully, Oberweis’ campaign will focus on the issues, including the more radical bills the House Democrats have passed during this Congress.
As was published from the Huntley Republican gathering on Wednesday in McHenry County Blog, Oberweis’ newspaper mailings will be returning for the fall campaign, and this is where it is hoped Oberweis can greatly expand upon Underwood, especially her pattern of behavior that she does not tell the whole truth.
But the biggest sign of life Oberweis’ campaign must show, and soon, is to be on TV with commercial advertisements during September, prior to the start of early voting on September 24. As many of Oberweis’ primary opponents learned earlier this year, a TV presence early, before the start of vote-by-mail ballots hitting the street, is crucial for a winning campaign.