Yesterday over at Cap Fax, Rich Miller asked his readers to rate the new ad by Alexi Giannoulias that tried to turn his family's failed Broadway Bank into an opportunity to get pity points with the common man and woman. The general sentiment among commentors seemed to be that if Alexi had simply stuck with the sob story that was the first half of his commercial, all about how his father started the bank and it had simply fallen on hard times with the economy, it might even have worked (notwithstanding that better educated voters probably understand that BB engaged in risky loans concentrated in bets on real estate--not to mention loans to shady characters--and that the family sucked millions in capital back out of the bank before its collapse). You should feel sorry for me, Alexi pines.
But, Team Alexi went on in the commercial to then blame his opponent, Mark Kirk, for the bank's woes, and even resurrect the Democratic bogeyman-in-chief, George W. Bush, as the monster behind the curtain that was REALLY responsible for the bank's collapse. It was all their fault, all those horrible Republican policies, you see, not poor management and loan decisions.
Or, as some of the Cap Fax commentors lamented, the chutzpah of it all!
Luckily, the Tribune has called Alexi out on this in its editorial this morning.
As the Trib editors tell us, "Giannoulias' claim smacks of desperation. Anyone truly looking for culprits would start with the people who ran Broadway. Most banks have been able to weather the recession. This one failed mostly because of its own mistakes."
What's the Tribune's bottom line?
"The real question is why it wasn't closed a long time ago," says Washington, D.C.-area banking consultant Bert Ely. "It was a badly run bank."
A badly run bank. Someone is to blame for that, and it isn't Mark Kirk.
Add all this to the news that the Cook report has moved this race from "toss up" to "leans Republican" and it's not to hard to see where this is all heading.