Mark Kirk on Principles & Values

Republican Jr Senator; previously Representative (IL-10)


Raised $6,000 from 12 U.S. citizen businessmen in China

Giannoulias accused Kirk of "economic treason" for raising money from US businessmen in China the day before a vote on overseas business, prompting Kirk to label his opponent "desperate and dishonorable."

Kirk's fundraiser was held not in China but via Internet video conferencing, and the event was scheduled long before Kirk's May 28 vote, his campaign said. The fundraiser with 12 citizens working in Beijing raised about $6,000.

Giannoulias refused to back away from his accusation tying Kirk's vote t the money. He said Kirk has put China's interest ahead of that of the US. "It can be called nothing other than an act of economic treason," said Giannoulias.

Kirk blasted the Democrat. "Alexi Giannoulias is running a desperate and dishonorable campaign," Kirk said in a statement. "I have worn our country's uniform for 21 years, and to accuse me of treason in any context is beyond the pale. Giannoulias is a desperate candidate who is now dishonoring the office he aspires to."

Source: Chicago Tribune coverage of 2010 IL Senate debate , Oct 21, 2010

I've owned up to my mistakes; my opponent has not

Q: Let me confront the elephant in the room, the character issue. Congressman Kirk, what do you tell voters who wonder about a man who embellishes a resume?

KIRK: I misstated a part of my military record. It's a painful process. I learned a big lesson from that. I apologized to the people of Illinois. I then released all 21 years of my officer fitness report. Service in Afghanistan. Service in Allied Force. It's made me a better Congressman and advocate for veterans and men and women who wear the uniform. And for me, the national security of the United States has been a life work of mine.

Q: On your opponent's character issue, should voters wonder about someone whose bank makes loans to unsavory characters?

KIRK: Well, there is a big difference here. I made a mistake and I corrected it. I took ownership. But the difference between me and my opponent is he made a number of mistakes. I made mistakes. But I corrected them. And meanwhile, my opponent, says nothing is really his fault.

Source: ABC News transcript: 2010 IL Senate debate , Oct 19, 2010

Takes responsibility for carelessness about military record

Q: You hold the rank of commander. You served during the conflicts of Afghanistan, Iraq, Haiti, Bosnia. But the Associated Press summarized it:
"Kirk's problems began with his frequent references to being named the Navy's intelligence officer of the year. Instead a slightly different award had gone to the intelligence unit that Kirk led, not to Kirk personally. That was followed by a long string of other errors and exaggerations. A letter from his office said he served in the first Gulf War, when he didn't. He has also referred to serving in the invasion of Iraq, although his duties kept him stateside."

KIRK: Well, I made mistakes with regard to my military misstatements. I was careless. And so I corrected the record.

Q: But, bottom line, did you say that you were once shot at when, in fact, you were not?

KIRK: Well, when you're flying over Iraq, usually the Iraqis opened up on us. But whether the squadron came under fire or not, it's very confusing.

Source: NBC's Meet the Press: 2010 IL Senate debate , Oct 10, 2010

Forced to apologize for exaggerating his biography

Mark Kirk, the Republican nominee, and Giannoulias have spent much of their campaign debating who is least trustworthy. Giannoulias has dealt with fallout from the April failure of his family's Broadway Bank, while Kirk was forced to apologize for exaggerating his biography.
Source: Bloomberg News/Businessweek on 2010 IL Senate debate , Oct 7, 2010

Member of the Republican Main Street Partnership .

Kirk is a member the Republican Main Street Partnership:

The Republican Main Street Partnership was founded in 1998 to promote thoughtful leadership in the Republican Party, to serve as a voice for centrist Republicans and to partner with individuals, organizations and institutions that share centrist values.

The Partnership pursues public policies that reflect a limited, but responsible role for government and that are designed to achieve fiscal responsibility, economic growth, improvements in the human condition and a nation that is globally competitive and secure. Partnership members include individuals who are interested in moderate Republican policies, focusing on governance and on finding common sense solutions to national problems.

The Republican Main Street Partnership is an organization of party members and public officials committed to building America's principled but pragmatic center within the Republican Party and throughout the nation. The Partnership contributes to the nation's governance through developing and promoting creative public policies for implementation at appropriate levels of government.
Source: RMSP web site 01-RMSP0 on Jan 1, 2001

Member of the House Republican Young Guns.

Kirk is a member House Republican Young Guns

The new generation of pro-market, small government leaders filled such a need that in October 2007, Fred Barnes of The Weekly Standard profiled Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan, and Kevin McCarthy and christened them the "young guns."

Kevin approached Eric & Paul about the idea of traveling together, as "Young Guns", to visit Republican candidates interested in a new approach for the party.

What began as an informal way to support like-minded candidates became a more formal structure. Once the three Representatives had studied the candidate and given their support to become a Young Gun, they committed to providing financial support through their campaign committees.

Existing House Republicans were approached with a simple pitch: Are we willing to help ourselves by being proactive and going on the offense to change this House? Dozens of our House Republican colleagues joined the Young Gun effort as one of the many signs that the Republican Party had shifted.

Source: Young Guns 10-HRYG on Sep 14, 2010

Chair of moderate GOP caucus, the Tuesday Group.

Kirk is the chair of the Tuesday Group:

The Tuesday Group is an informal caucus of approximately 50 moderate Republican members of the House of Representatives in the 114th Congress (2015-2017). It was originally founded in 1994 in the wake of the Republican takeover of the House. The Republican House caucus was dominated by conservative Republicans and the Tuesday Group was founded to counterbalance that conservative trend. There were approximately 40 members when it was founded. In 2007 the Tuesday Group founded its own political action committee (PAC).

One co-chair describes the Tuesday Group as "thoughtful and pragmatic-minded Republicans in the House of Representatives who are focused on problem solving. The group wields significant influence to advance bipartisan solutions to some of our nation's most pressing issues. The members of Tuesday Group understand that compromise is not a dirty word and are committed to putting people ahead of politics."

Source: Tuesday Group press release from Rep. Charlie Dent 2015_Tues on Dec 31, 2015

Other candidates on Principles & Values: Mark Kirk on other issues:
IL Gubernatorial:
Ameya Pawar
Bruce Rauner
Chris Kennedy
Daniel Biss
J.B. Pritzker
Pat Quinn
IL Senatorial:
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Jim Oberweis
Richard Durbin
Sharon Hansen

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Page last updated: Aug 31, 2017