Illinois Governor JB Pritzker and Republican challenger Darren Bailey made their case to suburban voters on Monday, with Pritzker accusing his opponent of spreading misinformation and Bailey taking aim at the governor’s tough-on-crime policies.
Bailey, who has been a vocal critic of the Pritzker-backed “SAFE-T Act,” campaigned Monday with former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who made a high-profile split with the Democratic Party earlier this year.
“He was what our founders were talking about when they said we needed a government of the people, by and for the people,” she said of Bailey.
Bailey called it Illinois’ number one crime problem and said Gabbard lent his campaign support because of his stances on the issue.
“I see Tulsi Gabbard as someone who realizes America is in trouble,” he said.
Pritzker, who also campaigned in Arlington Heights on Monday, hit back at the comments, criticizing Gabbard as a “pro-Russian conspiracy theorist” who was helping Bailey spread misinformation about his politics.
“She is a pro-Russian conspiracy theorist. She’s someone who, since she was a true Democrat, has clearly bought into some of Facebook’s whims,” he said.
Gabbard fired back, calling Pritzker’s comments “baseless lies and slander”.
“It’s offensive for JB Pritzker to throw these baseless lies and slander not only at me, but at other great Americans who love our country and want peace,” she said.
Gabbard strongly criticized the US intervention in the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger previously criticized Gabbard for spreading “actual Russian propaganda” after he tweeted a pre-invasion video that claimed the United States funded more than 25 biological weapons labs in Ukraine, according to The Hill.
The New York Times has done a fact check, calling the video’s claims “baseless.”
Gabbard will appear at a campaign rally with Bailey Monday night in DuPage County, but Pritzker urged voters not to take the couple’s criticism at face value.
“I want to make sure people understand that this is misinformation that Darren Bailey and his friends are spreading about the SAFE-T Act,” he said.