Sean Morrison: Response to Patlak's Claims at

From the campaign for Morrison for Cook County Board of Review…

(Ed Note: This is in reply to an article published at on Friday, Jan. 20)

This is in response to an Illinois Review commentary, “Vaznelis Appointment Could Spark GOP War,” posted on Friday, January 20, 2012. With regard to the Illinois Review’s article – which did not list an author – not once was I contacted about the allegations made in the article. However, my opponent in the Cook County Board of Review race, Dan Patlak, was. I have believed that the Illinois Review was a fair forum but this particular action was not fair to me or my campaign.

Unfortunately, there are always some people who want to create a conspiracy – especially where no conspiracy exists. I also do not agree with this notion that there is a civil war between north and south side Republicans in Cook County – unless someone is trying to create one. I am my own person and always have been in business and in life. I don’t agree with this idea of “sides.” The only “side” we should be on is the Republican and the conservative one. This is as true in my race for Cook County Board of Review as it is for my recent appointment as Palos Township Republican Committeeman.

One of the things that Dan Patlak’s campaign has been trying to fabricate is that I am not a “real” Republican. He’s tried this routine before. But I am more than a Republican. I am a conservative Republican who has given thousands of dollars to local and national Republican causes over the last twelve years, including the NRCC and the Reagan Library.

Patlak and his supporters will say anything to help him keep his seat at the Board of Review and this is just another tired example. In this instance, Patlak and the author of the Illinois Review article have made misleading statements that are contradicted by the facts.

Let me take each deceptive claim point for point:

DECEPTION: Illinois Review article states as fact: …”Illinois State Board of Elections records reveal thousands of dollars in contributions by Morrison to a Democrat Ward alderman, the 19th Ward Democrat Organization…”

TRUTH: According to the Illinois State Board of Elections, I supported the candidate who was running AGAINST the longtime 19th ward Ald. Ginger Rugai, the candidate that was aggressively supported by the Democrat machine. This was a non-partisan election and the man I was supporting was a good conservative family man and a criminal prosecutor with the State’s Attorney’s office. The “thousands of dollars” was only $1500 and another $500 to help the guy retire his campaign debt. Some conspiracy.

DECEPTION: The Illinois Review states as fact that I also contributed to the: “…the 19th ward Democratic Organization.” In this, Patlak points to two donations one for $250 in 2008 and one for $200 in 2009.

TRUTH: Why such small amounts? The donations were for theater tickets to see a performance at the Beverly Arts Center, which is a wonderful venue in Chicago. Since I am originally from Chicago, I both love and support the Beverly Arts Center. It is a fact of life in Chicago that politics and everyday life are intertwined. The simple fact is: if you want to see the show, you have to buy a ticket. Again, some conspiracy. Dan Patlak’s D2’s at the State Board of Elections reveal hundreds of thousands of dollars from property tax attorneys – most of them the same contributors to the Democrat commissioners. What does that say? Is he a Democrat?

DECEPTION: Illinois Review states as fact “…and most recently to Democrat Terrence O’Brien…”

TRUTH: I do not personally know Terrence O’Brien. However, a friend asked me to buy and donate a few tickets to Bucks for Burn Camp – a camp for children who have been burned by fire – which auctioned them off.

DECEPTION: Illinois Review states: “Patlak and other party leaders disagree with Vaznelis’ reasoning, and note that, until his 2010 campaign, Morrison had no record of participation or investment in any state or local Republican volunteer organization, which they say makes him both unqualified and suspect.”

TRUTH: In addition to the thousands of dollars I have contributed over the last twelve years to national Republican races, I have been an active member in the Worth Township Republican organization since the mid-1990s under Maureen Murphy’s leadership. I have also continued to support of Shaun Murphy. I have walked precincts, worked elections, poll-watched and have donated to local Republican campaigns and township committees. Dan Patlak has admitted all this publicly during our debates for Cook County Board of Review. In terms of my appointment, I can tell you that I have received numerous calls and emails of congratulations.

I look forward to the opportunity to moving forward with unity and pride in the upcoming months to build a strong and vibrant Republican organization in Palos Township. I want to thank our Cook County Republican Chairman Sig Vaznelis and the Illinois Republican leadership for giving me their full vote of confidence.

Now, let’s get back to work.

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