CHICAGO - Republican donors should be frustrated that money they thought was going to be used to shrink Democrat House Speaker Mike Madigan's majority is being used to beat up other Republicans, 81st House District GOP candidate Keith Matune told Illinois Review Friday.
"I thought 'HRO' stood for House Republican Organization, not 'hit squad,'" Matune said. "Instead, they're out beating up Republicans that dare to challenge the establishment. The rank and file get what going on. They're not going to be fooled by HRO and Ron Sandack's desperate antics."
Matune was speaking in response to HRO's effort to defend incumbent 81st House District State Rep. Ron Sandack (R-Downers Grove) Thursday, releasing court documents to the media showing Matune has been arrested three times and convicted once.
The court documents released by HRO show that 23 years ago, Matune wrote a bad check for $500 in the state of Virginia. Matune was stopped for driving with bright headlights, and the Dupage County Police ran a warrant search to find the Virginia warrant. Matune settled the complaint by paying restitution.
HRO also reported that while attending Purdue University, Matune was arrested and convicted for public nudity and two years later for climbing through a women's dorm window. Matune fulfilled a year of probation for the conviction and paid $100 fine for trespassing.
Another document HRO obtained via FOIA shows that when applying for a position at the Indian Prairie School District 204, Matune told the school where he now teaches that he had never been convicted of a crime. Matune says what he put on the 2013 application lines up with Illinois State Police records, and doesn't fear losing his job.
"No, I've checked with the administration, and they understand what's going on. They like have a teacher of the year on their staff, and my answers lined up with the Illinois State Police records," Matune said.
Matune expected the document dump, as he reported to the media a meeting with his opponent Ron Sandack in January. Matune says Sandack notified him of HRO's findings and suggested that if Matune's campaign continued, HRO would go public with the court documents.
In a press release following the meeting, Matune apologized for the incident, including an indecency charge during a fraternity prank. "These incidents happened more than 20 years ago and since that time I've become a husband, father, Illinois teacher and IHSA coach of the year," said Matune.
Campaign polls indicate the Sandack-Matune GOP primary race in the 81st House District to be neck-and-neck.
The House Republican Organization had no comment.
The HRO's documents can be read HERE