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Illinois: Nervous Roskam Eyes Possible Ticket-Splitter

Republican Rep. Peter Roskam’s campaign has set up a Web site, “Obama Voters for Roskam,” which is trying to ward off the freshman lawmaker’s ouster next week when hordes of new Land of Lincoln voters are expected to come out for home-state presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama (D).

Roskam will face Iraq War veteran Jill Morganthaler (D) on Nov. 4. And despite Morgenthaler’s high-profile struggles to launch a credible campaign, Republicans still worry privately that the freshman star could be collateral damage to an Obama wave.

“First of all, I’m a member of the mutual admiration society for Peter Roskam,” Obama is prominently quoted as saying on the Web site’s home page. “He is terrific.”

The quote from Obama comes from 2004, when he and Roskam were serving together in the Illinois state Senate.

The Web site also contains testimonials from suburban Chicago voters, who say they plan to split their votes for both Roskam and Obama.

“We may be Democrats, but we support Peter Roskam,” Rudy and Judy Mazzolini are quoted as saying on the Web site. “With high fuel costs, it’s often difficult to make ends meet. Peter works hard to keep those costs low!”

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