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Chicago Aldermen Running Political Operations On City Property?
September 12, 2005
The Illinois Leader, an online conservative publication focusing in part on the dank moral cesspool of Chicago Democratic party politics, reports Cook County Republicans have filed a complaint with the state board of elections that Democratic city aldermen are using their city-funded ward offices not only for constituent services, but political operations as well. Without properly dividing up the operations, and paying the public landlord for space used for political purposes, the GOP alleges, based on review of public records. Yes, the allegations are probably true. Yes, this kind of thing has been going on forever. And finally, yes, there are worse, and fairly recent episodes of public corruption in my old hometown of Chicago.
But regarding Chicago politics especially, I'm firm believer in the "slippery slope" corruption standard, which might also be termed the "broken windows" theory of government corruption. Winking at the supposedly "little things," like political operations on city property, by employees punching a city timeclock, paves the way for even worse abuses. And has been for years.
More on the current allegations from The Leader:
The allegation states that Democratic aldermen are illegally combining their political committee offices with their city funded aldermanic offices. Tom Swiss, the executive director of the Cook County Republican Party, submitted an affidavit in which he testified that an investigation of 16 different Democratic alderman offices revealed flagrant violations of the Illinois Election Code.
What can I say. Yes, he's a Democrat. But he knows The Machine for what it is, and - unlike Chicago's current mayor - he knows the fate of Chicago and its suburbs are inextricably linked, knowledge gained in part due to the reach of the U.S. Congressional district he currently represents. Run, Jesse (Jr.), run!
TO COMMENT: The regular "comment" feature is not in operation. E-mail comments to address under "Contact" on main page masthead, and I'll add them, here.
Posted by Matt Rosenberg at September 12, 2005 05:13 PM
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