Candidate in 59th GOP primary drops opponent from suit over mailers

Marko Sukovic, who is running in the Republican primary in the House 59th District, has dismissed his opponent, Karen Feldman, from a lawsuit he filed last week against her and the House Republican Organization.

The lawsuit stemmed from mailers linking him to House Speaker Michael Madigan; Sukovic said he has never met or taken money from Madigan, as the ads stated.

One Valentine's Day mailer, replete with photographs of the two inside linked hearts, stated, "Marko Sukovic (loves, as denoted with a symbol of an arrow through a heart) Mike Madigan's money."

In the initial court hearing on the suit in Lake County on Friday, Sukovic agreed to dismiss, based on a sworn affidavit from Feldman, who had filed a motion to dismiss, saying she had nothing to do with the mailers.

In addition to Feldman's affidavit, Dave Krahn, treasurer for the House Republican Organization, filed an affidavit, in which he stated "I oversaw the creation, production and dissemination of each of those advertisements on behalf of the Committee.

"At no time did I or anyone else involved with the creation, production or dissemination of the Mailers consult with Karen Feldman regarding any aspect of the creation, production or dissemination of the Mailers."

Sukovic of Lincolnshire, a 22-year-old senior at University of Illinois and owner of a public relations firm, is running to occupy the seat soon to be vacated by Rep. Carol Sente, a Vernon Hills Democrat.

He is running against Feldman, a Realtor and Lincolnshire trustee.

"We'll take her at her word on that," Sukovic said Friday, regarding Feldman's affidavit. "She has been personally dropped from the lawsuit."

But, he added, "For her to say she had nothing to do with these mailers says a lot. It says that she has no control over her campaign."

Feldman said Sukovic's lawsuit was a political ploy intended to distract voters.

"For the record, I repudiate the type of messaging contained in the mailers," she added. " While I would never put out something like them, I also recognize the importance of the 1st Amendment. My messaging shall remain positive, as it has throughout the campaign."

As for Sukovic's remarks regarding her control over her campaign, she said, "The only thing that I'm in control of is what comes from Friends of Karen Feldman. My campaign didn't send those out. They were clearly sent from HRO."

She said the first time she saw the mailers was in her own mailbox. After seeing them, she said she called organization and demanded an explanation, condemned the material and said it needed to stop.

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