Signs like this one that popped up Sunday in Lockport pairing U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. with Will County State's Attorney James Glasgow have the scent of a political dirty trick, a top Will County Democrat says.
U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. has been MIA from Congress and the campaign trail this fall ostensibly because of mental health issues, and he faces a federal corruption probe into the possible misuse of campaign funds on a home renovation.
Add to all of that he has been at loggerheads for years with Will County over who should control a future Peotone airport, and the congressman is a bit toxic these days in the collar county southwest of Chicago.
So it's with a little surprise that dozens of campaign signs would start popping up late Sunday across Will County, pairing up the congressman's name along with that of Will County State's Attorney James Glasgow, who's facing re-election.
The red-white-and-blue yard signs have Jackson's name on top and Glasgow's on bottom with the heading: "Your Will County TEAM...Working Together for YOU!"
Jackson's campaign has been dormant. And Glasgow's campaign didn't authorize the use of his name on the signs and actually has been scooping up any of them they find.
That all makes party leaders suspicious that someone is trying to muddy up Glasgow, who is running against Republican Dave Carlson, of Plainfield.
"Based on circumstantial facts that seem to have been collected, it would appear that these signs are not from a Democratic candidate or the Democratic Party but instead opponents of Jim Glasgow," Will County Democratic Party Chairman Scott Pyles told the Chicago Sun-Times.
"'Triple J,' they're not doing anything. Glasgow didn't authorize it. So somebody put out the money for a bunch of signs and put them out two days before the election. Who do you think would do that?" Pyles said.
Late Monday, Carlson's campaign denied involvement in the signs, saying they didn't learn of them until early Monday morning.
"We were like, 'OK, that works.' It's an additional plus for us, but we didn't have anything to do with it," said a Carlson campaign aide, who declined to give his full name.