Decison was mutual and amicable
Congressional candidate Dick Versace and his campaign manager parted ways Monday.
The decision was mutual and amicable, Versace said. His former campaign manager, Alex Pearson, said he’s worked on numerous campaigns on the local, state and federal level, but declined to officially elaborate on his reasons for the abrupt departure.
Pearson said he will continue his work with Versace, but will bring his expertise to campaigns outside Illinois’ 18th Congressional District.
"I feel that my time spent here incubating and launching one of the most highly contested races in the nation has proven successful. I plan to carry that same focus and drive to other races nationally," Pearson said.
Versace said Pearson was brought on because, as a first-time candidate, he was a neophyte in the political arena and "needed someone with experience" to jumpstart his campaign.
"We are good friends and we shall remain friends. I think (Pearson) was looking for other challenges," Versace said.
Versace, 67, of Peoria said since he has no opponent in the primary, he likely will not make a decision until January on how to progress with his campaign staff. He said his campaign is "highly organized" and that his volunteer base continues to grow.
"There are some extremely qualified people who can handle it until I bring somebody else on board," Versace said.
Three Republicans also are seeking the seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Ray LaHood: state Rep. Aaron Schock, R-Peoria; John Morris, vice president for development at WTVP-TV, Channel 47; and Heartland Partnership President Jim McConoughey.
Karen McDonald can be reached at (309) 686-3285 or firstname.lastname@example.org.