CHICAGO - At the moment, GOP gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner isn't focused on contrasting himself with his Republican competitors. Instead he's spending $1.5 million on advertising that could make him as familiar as the AFLAC Duck, the GEICO Gecko and Progressive Insurance's Flo.
Rauner is being criticized for little or no messaging in his million dollar ad buy. As one left-wing, progressive blog wrote: "During the campaign so far, Rauner has offered no governing plan. He has provided no detailed policies on issues such as child welfare, mental health, Medicaid reform, gaming expansion, property taxes, education funding, or on any dimension of state government. Rauner has relied on the 'shake up Springfield' slogan as his policy prescription for all what ails state government."
Battleground Polling reported three weeks ago the largest share of Republican primary voters (36%) is undecided about who they want as their candidate for Governor next year. Bruce Rauner leads with 24%. Brady comes in second with 17%, following by Rutherford at 14%, and Dillard at 10%.
Dillard, Rutherford and Brady are behind Rauner in fundraising as well. While Rauner is spending $300,000 a week, the others have raised only $1.7 million combined. The lack of earned media, press releases, or communications from the Dillard, Rutherford, and Brady campaigns seems to reflect that financial gap.
However, ballot order might help the candidates. Studies have show the first spot on a ballot is most favored, the last spot second most important. Since all four GOP candidates filed at the same time, names were drawn to determine the March 18th 2013 ballot order. It will be:
- Bill Brady - Maria Rodriguez
- Dan Rutherford - Steve Kim
- Kirk Dillard - Jil Tracy
- Bruce Rauner - Evelyn Sanguinetti
Of course, there is a lot of time between now and the primary election. And this election won't really get started until the second or third week in January.
Stay tuned...there is much more to come.