In the News

Fact-checking attack ad against Betsy Londrigan’s ties to Madigan, corporate PACs

Oct 16, 2020


ST. LOUIS ( — With less than three weeks until Election Day, the airwaves continue to be filled with ads.

One of the fiercest fights is for the 13th House District seat in Illinois between Congressman Rodney Davis and challenger Betsy Dirksen Londrigan.

News 4 fact-checked an ad attacking Londrigan.

The ad begins by saying, “Betsy Londgrigan is lying to you,” then using a quote of her saying, “I have not taken any money from Speaker Madigan.”

The narrator continues, “The truth is Madigan spent nearly $300,000 to elect Londrigan.”

That $300,000 did not come from the controversial Illinois Speaker of the House, but from the Democratic Party of Illinois.

While Madigan is the chairman of the party, the group party is dedicated to electing Democrats to offices in all of Illinois and makes donations to numerous Democratic candidates.

So that claim is false.

The next claim in the ad states, “Londrigan also takes money from corporate lobbyists, even big pharma, breaking her promise not to accept corporate dollars.”

This is misleading, but complicated.

Londrigan has never denied taking money from corporate lobbyists as individuals, just as her opponent Rodney Davis has done.

But Londrigan made a pledge to not take any corporate PAC money, which she has not done according to the outside organization tracking the small number of candidates who made that same pledge.

For the record, Davis does accept corporate PAC money.

So that claim, that Londrigan broke her promise not to accept corporate dollars, is false.

The final claim in the ad says, “Those negative ads against Rodney Davis are paid for by corporate cash. A Madigan Machine politician, Betsy Londrigan is lying to get elected.”

Again, Londrigan’s top contributors are not corporate PACs, and while Londrigan did run against Davis in 2018, she has never held a political office.

Do you have an ad you want us to fact check? Email us at [email protected]