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Morning Shorts

Monday, Jun 30, 2008

* Dugan Retires

* CTA’s rail safety criticized

* Complex run by son of Daley ally

* Businessman says he bribed county official

* County error leaves housing funds unspent

* Smoke ban often defied Downstate

“We have been forced into a legal vacuum,” said State’s Atty. Tom Finks of Christian County, one of many Downstate counties that have not prosecuted a single violator. “Legally, the legislature has not given us the proper tools of enforcement. Our job is not to fill in the blanks.”

* Illinois adjusting to no smoking law

* West Siders Want Handgun Ban to Stay

* Organizers see spike in parade attendance

* Group calling for port district to be abolished

* Armory’s fate in limbo

* Killing pay raises is a good place to start

* Local projects ‘held hostage’ by funding feud

* State pays $2.2 million for hotel litigation fees

* Statehouse Insider: June 29

* Our Opinion: Grandstanding governor at it again

* Bernard Schoenburg: ’08 election up next, but 2010 talk already in the air

* Progressive Blogs Roundup

* Progress in fight against EJ&E buy

* Weekend Update: Obama, Seals, Link

* Unfinished business for library

“Schock could not be reached for comment” is becoming a trend in Journal Star stories.

* Rep. Hare: Probe troop security

* Consultant gets probation for faking signatures

“It was a politically motivated case from the get-go,” said McCulloch, 43, of Westmont, who had worked for at least one candidate opposing Birkett. “There should be some safeguards against going after political opponents.”

* Obama’s unity event hits the suburbs

- Posted by Kevin Fanning        

  1. - Levois - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 9:53 am:

    You might want to fix the link to that last item here.

  2. - Ghost - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 10:02 am:

    Comments link is still busted, have to click the caption to get to here :)

  3. - Kevin Fanning - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 10:04 am:

    Working on it. Thanks.

  4. - Ghost - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 10:07 am:

    They need to tear down the armory and build a nice useable State building. probably cheaper then trying to make an outdated and outmeded building funtional. Then we would have even more free space for IDOT.

  5. - Vote Quimby! - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 10:11 am:

    The EJ&E railroad issue appears, from this distance, to be a classic case of NIMBY. Complaints about increased noise and traffic delays ring hollow….the last two times I’ve moved the absence of train tracks in the town was a factor. Trains are an efficient means to move just about anything…start saving up for those overpasses!

  6. - Wumpus - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 10:11 am:

    The case against Rod did seem a bit far fetched. I understand the “Buck stops here” mentality, but it seemed like a witch hunt.

    I am sure that 9/10 criminals agree that the gun ban is a good thing.

  7. - Plutocrat03 - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 10:50 am:

    So when a political operative is caught red handed manufacturing signatures for a political campaign, all that happens is probation? (and whining about motivation of the prosecution) Remember that this was a felony conviction…..

    Where is the deterrent? Illinois Senator Terry Link also had ‘irregularities’ in his last round of petitions and remains on the ballot. Again where is the deterrent? Its not that hard to collect legal signatures. It may be time consuming and tedious, but not hard.

    If one cheats on what is a simple straightforward part of the process, what will happen when the doors are closed and the inevitable temptations arise?

  8. - Team America - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 11:07 am:

    Agreed, Plutocrat. At least the candidate in the McCulloch case, James Gumm, did the honorable thing when he found out about the fraudulent petitions and withdrew from the race. So far, Link has laughed off the entire debacle and refuses to take any responsibility. We’ll see what happens if some indictments start coming down. It will be THE story for Link’s campaign in the fall, no doubt.

  9. - Ghost - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 11:26 am:

    Interesting bit of info about a new Dem add coming out against Peter Roskam and other repubs.
    “Congressional Democrats hire Bush impersonator”

  10. - Six Degrees of Separation - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 12:09 pm:

    Vote Quimby…

    We need more rail transportation in this country to help solve our addiction to oil, just as long as there are no more of those pesky trains.

  11. - Ghost - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 12:13 pm:

    Six, the high speed rail for illinois to help turn bloomington/spfld into locals only an hr away from chicago is on track. They have been vetting for only 20 years now….

  12. - Vote Quimby! - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 12:26 pm:

    Lol six… we want our cake and to eat it too! But don’t let me have to wait 2 minutes for a train to pass as I drive to the gym to work out.

    As the snooty waiter in Ferris Bueller said: “I weep for our future.”

  13. - Anonymous - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 1:02 pm:

    The case against Mr. McColloch is a tough one to call, only because it was, in great part, a witch hunt. With so many angry sharks swimming around him, tough to tell who wouldn’t want to take a big bite once they all saw a shiny object near him while he was treading water.

  14. - Pot calling kettle - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 1:20 pm:

    I loved the PR on the Dugan retirement. After last year’s interesting (to put it mildly) election, and the recent federal probe, it’s probably for the best that he steps away.

    One of the more interesting aspects of his leadership, which goes unmentioned, is his very strong support of gun owner rights. His lobbyist was the Illinois Rifle Assns. lobbyist, and endorsements appeared to be based more on support for gun rights than labor rights. 150 halls commonly sported Republican signs out front, much to the chagrin of their more Democratic leaning labor compatriots.

    150 has been through a couple of rough years (in terms of management). It will be interesting to see where the local goes from here.

  15. - Plutocrat03 - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 5:23 pm:

    I don’t know anything about the McColloch case outside of what has been published in the press. There has been no information outside of the plaintiff and his counsel that would lead me to consider there was a witch hunt.

    Speculating that the excuse was that everybody does it, its not a big deal etc does not reduce the severity of what happened there.

    Perhaps because I only ran for local office, I took the responsibility to have personal contact with each of the circulators and to independently verify the signatures (addresses, residency etc.) before submitting them to the clerk. Any signature which was at all questionable was crossed out and the changes were logged as required by law.

    I have reread some of the stories which alleged that the vast majority of signatures were men and that numerous people contacted had no recollection of signing the petitions. The press coverage was damning, but that is not necessarily what got in the court record. Seems like a minimal slap on the wrist for what I view as a serious offense.

  16. - PhilCollins - Monday, Jun 30, 08 @ 6:05 pm:

    I know Rod McColloch because I worked with him on John Cox’s U.S. Senate campaign, in 2001, and because I worked with him on John Borling’s U.S. Senate campaign, 2003-’04. Rod is hard-working and honest, and he would never violate a law.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Reader comments closed for the weekend
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