Byline: Eric Krol Daily Herald Political Writer
Sixth Congressional District Republican Peter Roskam will roll the political dice Saturday by campaigning in Addison with the National Rifle Association, a move apparently controversial enough that organizers removed all mentions of his name from the invitation.
Early versions of the electronic invitation to the "Mix n' Mingle" asked attendees to "help Pro-Gun congressional candidate" Roskam, listing his name no fewer than 11 times. The second version, which remained on the group's Web site Thursday afternoon, did not mention the Wheaton GOP state senator's name once.
Roskam campaign manager Ryan McLaughlin said the NRA told him there was only one version of the invitation, which listed Roskam's name. The Daily Herald provided the Roskam-scrubbed version to McLaughlin Thursday. An NRA spokesman said Roskam's name was removed due to federal election regulations.
The broader issue is whether Roskam, who is engaged in a nationally targeted House race and trying to woo moderate suburban voters, will be helped or hurt by bringing in a group as politically controversial as the NRA, whose political arm has given $4,950 to Roskam's campaign fund.
"Local grassroots voters who believe in the Constitution will be supporting Peter Roskam this fall," said McLaughlin, who declined to make Roskam available for an interview.
A spokeswoman for Roskam's Democratic opponent, Tammy Duckworth of Hoffman Estates, sought to capitalize on the situation.
"Peter Roskam is clearly trying to hide the fact that he is so closely associated with the national gun lobby groups because he realizes his stance on gun control is …