Friday, February 5, 2010

Blue State Graft Watch: Issues Galore in Early Round of Illinois Elections

My my....just like I started up the 'Blue State Graft Watch' segment fully anticipating the loathsome Kwame Kilpatrick to make the headlines at some point, I figured it was only a matter of time before Chicago made an appearance as well.

Now.....where to start?

Illinois State Treasurer and one-time Obama fundraiser Alexi Giannoulias was the winner of this weeks Democrat Primary for the US Senate seat left vacant by President Obama's election.

While running for state treasurer, Giannoulias touted his experience as vice president and chief loan officer of Chicago-based Broadway Bank. However, records show that the financial institution loaned an estimated $12 million to convicted pimp and bookmaker Micheal 'Jaws' Giorango and another $10 Million to father and son Russian mobster duo Boris and Lev Stratievsky. Convicted influence peddler, developer and then-Senator Obama's personal real-estate agent Tony Rezko bounced a series of six-figure checks from his Broadway Bank account while in Las Vegas. Giannoulias' father, the Broadway Bank's CEO also donated $10,000 to disgraced former Governor Rod Blagojevich

However, the DNC candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Illinois has some issues of his own. The Chicago Tribune revealed that the unelected Pat Quinn's running mate Scott Lee Cohen, aka the Pawnbroker, faced domestic battery charges in 2005 for holding a knife to the throat of this then live-in girlfriend prostitute. The Chicago Sun-Times also learned that Coen reportedly owes his ex-wife nearly $54,000 in child support, was taking steroids and had a restraining order filed against him by his ex-wife in 2005.

Correspondence Committee contributor 3wood thinks that this was more or less by design on the part of the Chicago press for the benefit of Pat Quinn's campaign:

Notice how the Chicago media did not break this story until the day after the election. They knew about it, but pretty much sat on it.

Also telling was the Chicago media's nearly mute reaction to Nobel Laureate and former Polish President Lech Walesa's visit to the city that's home to over 1 million Poles this week. While in Chicago, the anti-communist leader endorsed longshot Illinois GOP gubernatorial candidate Adam Andrzejewski, issuing the following statement:

“I still remember when some 30 years ago, my opponents were similarly critical of my lack of political background. History has shown, however, that in order to create real change, new factors are sometimes necessary.”

Maybe it was just a slow news week in Chicago, nothing more.

[Hat tip: 3wood, Friends of Ours]

UPDATE:Founding Bloggers has more on the Lech Walesa 'non-events' in Chicago.

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