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Fahner: “I misspoke”

Tuesday, Aug 6, 2013

* From an e-mail I received yesterday from Civic Committee President Ty Fahner…

Regarding my comments at the Union League Club in March, I misspoke.

First, while I may have said so, I didn’t call the ratings agencies, nor did any of our Civic Committee staff. My response to the questions was very confusing and inarticulate. If you notice, at the end of my answer, I close by saying it wouldn’t be the responsible thing for me to have done so with our members being the state’s largest employers. But I did say it.

He misspoke? That’s a pretty long story for a simple misspeak. Here’s the complete Fahner quote

“The Civic Committee, not me, but me and some of the people that make up the Civic Committee, some of the same names I mentioned before, did meet with and call, in one case it was in person, a couple of calls to Moody’s, Fitch and Standard & Poor’s, and say, ‘How in the hell can you guys do this? You’re an enabler to let the state continue. You keep threatening more and more and more.’

“And I think now we’ve backed off, because we don’t want to be the straw that breaks the back, But if you watch what happened over the last few years, it’s been steadily down. Before that, it’s been the blind eye, and that’s a whole different topic, as you know, about how the rating agencies act and don’t act. That’s more in your field and stuff. It has been irresponsible. We have told them that we thought they were being irresponsible, but we stopped that a couple months ago. I do know that we suggested that they talk to the governor, the governor’s staff to see if he could give them comfort on where the state was going, and I think that’s one of the reasons why we’re really close now. I hope we’re close.”

“Inarticulate,” maybe, but not really confusing. He said what he said, and it was pretty darned detailed.

* Anyway, Fahner told me nobody from staff spoke with the ratings agencies, so I followed up with a question about whether any Civic Committee members had meetings and here’s his e-mailed response…

Rich, to be clear, I am not aware of anyone connected with the civic committee that contacted the rating agencies to urge Illinois be downgraded or for any other reason.

So, he made the story up out of whole cloth? And this guy is running the most powerful business group in Illinois?

* Back to Fahner’s original e-mail…

Finally, if there’s any good news in this, it’s that even a cynical political columnist like you now cares about pension reform, something we’ve been screaming about for a while now. We appreciate that. Stay on it. Illinois is in critical condition and we need everybody’s hands on deck.


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Skeeter - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:23 am:

    I was wondering how Fahner could come out of this looking even worse.

    Now we know.

  2. - No Longer A Lurker - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:27 am:

    Ty got caught with his pants down and now he is trying to cover up for himself. Nice try Ty,

  3. - low level - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:27 am:

    No, Ty: the good news is that you are finally reading this blog, because Rich has been on this since 1995 at least when I first went down to Springfield as a staffer and was introduced to CapFax.

    Honestly, Fahner had me until that statement. I was still skeptical, but I could see his version and it seemed rational. With the hit at the end, however, I am back to being certain there is more to the story.

  4. - Aldyth - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:28 am:

    “Now cares about pension reform”?

    Ty hasn’t been paying much attention outside of his bubble of information.

  5. - The Captain - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:28 am:

    Shorter Ty: “I was totally lying then but I’m not lying now.”

    Let’s get this clown under oath.

  6. - Mongo - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:28 am:


  7. - low level - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:29 am:

    sorry- just to close - you don’t hit back as hard as he did with that statement and not have something to hide. If he was sincere, he would have ended with the “Rich, to be clear, no one…etc.”

  8. - IThink - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:32 am:

    Rich, I think he likes you.

    I wonder if he decided to fall on his sword himself, or someone higher up the food chain suggested he do it. Regardless of his recanted statement, I still think someone of authority needs to investigate what really happened here.

  9. - Frenchie Mendoza - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:32 am:

    Fahner’s full of it. He got caught. The fact that he said he “… did meet with …” isn’t something you mispeak. You use a word like “did” — and I’m sure he stressed this particular word in the video — when you actually did something.

    “Actually, yeah, I did remove the bike from the backyard.”

    That’s not something you misspeak. You say “did” because you did it — and you’re clarifying. You’re not mispeaking.

    But — and that’s not my point here — the “Finally …” bit at the end of the email is what I find astonishing. “Stay on it.” Had I received this email — and had that last paragraph been a part of it — I’d be livid. That’s one of the most condescending things someone can say. Incredibly insulting — and clearly an attempt to blunt whatever history he’s attempting to rewrite in the first part of the letter.

    “Actually, yeah, I did remove the VIN the vehicle, but, you know, it’s okay. There were no problems with the vehicle.”

  10. - Cincinnatus - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:34 am:

    “Finally, if there’s any good news in this, it’s that even a cynical political columnist like you now cares about pension reform, something we’ve been screaming about for a while now.”

    Looks like Rich has another new subscription opportunity…

  11. - Will Caskey - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:36 am:

    Honestly till now I was pretty blase about this story. So a conservative blowhard is yelling at ratings agencies. So what? Their process is a crazy black box anyway, one externality is indistinct from another.

    But now he’s acting like he actually did something wrong sooooooo

  12. - AFSCME Steward - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:41 am:

    Misspoke- corporate speak meaning I’m lying now.

  13. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:42 am:

    Well, if you want am example of how to shut down a story… do the EXACT opposite of Ty’s “response”

    At least Ty didn’t go Roger Clemens and also “mus-remembered”

    Sometimes no response is better than a Dopey response.

    Congratulations, Ty. Now I know whee my doubt is…and isn’t. Then again, I may be misspelling, or even mis-remembering how you called to lower the rating, who knows.

  14. - Angry Republican - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:46 am:

    This reminds me of the Freudian slip joke about the man eating breakfast. We can now add Ty Fahner’s speech to the list of examples

  15. - Rusty618 - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:46 am:

    He didn’t misspeak, he was tongue “ty-ed”, and is now in damage control mode.

  16. - Decaf Coffee Party - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:47 am:

    I would think the tongue-Tyed former AG turned pension demagogue has lost the last ounce of credibility he and his cronies ever had on this issue.

  17. - RNUG - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:50 am:

    It’s always the cover-up that gets you in the end.

  18. - MrJM - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:50 am:

    “Trust me, Rich — I was lying.”

    – MrJM

  19. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:51 am:

    LMAO, Ty takes a week to come up with a response and that’s all he’s got?

    Misspoke? On and on and on and very specifically?

    Geez, what’s he bill — north of $400 an hour? For stuff like that?

    If that’s all the game he has, he couldn’t be a latex salesmen at Vanderlay Industries. And he’s a partner in the firm pulling down $2 million in state bond counsel work?

    And check out the ridiculous insult:

    –Finally, if there’s any good news in this, it’s that even a cynical political columnist like you now cares about pension reform,–

    Right. Never saw any coverage here about pensions before. Thanks, Ty, for getting Rich in the game.

    The guy sends you a bald-faced lie and has the nerve to denigrate your work and call you cynical? That’s civic leadership?

    Wahhhh, how dare you report accurately what I said?

  20. - Dan Johnson - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:51 am:

    Wow. That was incredibly condescending. And calling you cynical is also inaccurate. This is from the guy who is responsible for killing progress in the Senate on pension reform who has the tone-deaf audacity to say “stay on it.”

    Not cool.

  21. - JC - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:51 am:

    The great and powerful Wizard of Oz character has had the curtain pulled back on his orchestrations.
    So if this great state is in trouble and all hands are needed on deck, what is he willing to do to contribute to the fix other than call for taking away income and benefits from pensioners earning an average of 30+K/year? His message is really, YOU need to fix this, not me.

  22. - P. Mason - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:53 am:

    Maybe his law partners screamed loud enough that the integrity of their firm and his law license might be at issue.

  23. - MrJM - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:56 am:

    “Regarding my comments recorded by the US District Attorney in 2008, I misspoke.” — Rod Blagojevich

    – MrJM

  24. - Anon - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:57 am:

    Agree with RNUG. It is the cover-up that usually gets ‘em.

  25. - Yossarian Lives - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:57 am:

    There are two possibilities.

    Either his original statement was a fabrication, which makes him a dangerously delusional man on a power trip, anxious to exaggerate his influence.

    Or he was telling the truth (or part of it) then, and he’s lying now, in which case he’s a traitor to the state who now realizes he could be in deep trouble legally as well as politically and so is resorting to an utterly unconvincing cover-up.

    Either way, the role he’s played in the pension reform drama has been despicable, and the sooner he’s hustled off the stage, the better. Fahner’s message to Rich is indicative of a broader hubris; he thinks he, and he alone, really cares about pension reform and is responsible for dragging everyone else along.

    Time to step aside and let the adults handle this. You’ve had more than your 15 minutes of fame. Time’s up.

  26. - Sir Reel - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:58 am:

    Sort of like a “nevermind” defense.

  27. - Frenchie Mendoza - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:01 am:

    I’m confused, though.

    If he did misspeak — then what the heck is he doing standing up in front of folks and lying about what he did? I mean, he went on for quite a few sentences about what he now says he didn’t do.

    He’s either lying to the audience — or to everyone else. They’re not both true — and they’re not both lies.

    If there wasn’t a story before, there’s certainly a story now.

  28. - Cod - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:01 am:

    His response seems to speak far more of arrogance than a feeble denial for what he said in the video. It communicates an attitude of “we dont care what you think, we have all the power and we can do whatever we want”. Sadly, that last part is probably true.

  29. - Soccermom - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:03 am:

    “And now you’ve told us a new story entirely. The question is, were you lying then, or are you lying now? Or are you not in fact a chronic and habitual LIAR!”

  30. - Michelle Flaherty - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:03 am:

    Sounds like Ty is having an “up day”.

  31. - Michelle Flaherty - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:08 am:

    Just wondering, is Ty going to reach out to all the people in attendance to apologize for “misspeakimg” to them? Even better, he could buy them all CapFax subscriptions and send them the link to this post.

  32. - LincolnLounger - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:08 am:

    Why am I suddenly reminded of Martin Short’s old SNL character, Nathan Thurm:

  33. - Private sector peon - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:10 am:

    It’s not the crime, it’s the cover up.

    And sometimes, it is also the crime.

  34. - Tommydanger - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:11 am:

    How convenient (or is it telling?) that the Tribune hasn’tdone a story on this. I guess it isn’t considered helpful to their editorial screams.

    As to Fahner, too bad he didn’t have a little boy make a birthday wish like Jim Carrey’s boy did. I would love to see Fahner’s facial contortions explaining this one.

  35. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:12 am:

    Soccermom, is that from a flick?

  36. - Roadiepig - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:13 am:

    Ty knows that he can get away with his “misspeaking” because the press is still ignoring this tale of sabotage and power brokering like the plague. In the end, none of it matters because 99% of the people in this state will never hear the story, and he knows it.

    Pathetic excuse too, btw…

  37. - pensioner - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:14 am:

    CC members are true capitalists all. They dont care who they step on or manipulate to wring out a few dollars more for themselves and their kind. Wish ppl would pay attention and stop voting for the party of this class and start voting for their own interests.

  38. - hisgirlfriday - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:14 am:

    Shorter Ty after mask of ethical, responsible civic engagement is removed: And we would have got away with it too if it wasn’t for that meddling cynical political columnist.

  39. - Keyrock - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:15 am:

    Look at the language carefully. He didn’t call. Nobody contacted the committee about this subject. But no denial that he or other members met or spoke with the rating agencies about this subject.

  40. - Skeeter - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:19 am:

    I read his statements and can help but think of “That statement is no longer operative.”

  41. - Obama's Puppy - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:28 am:

    This is no surprise, if you listen to any of his testimony in Springfield he will say whatever sounds good for the press regardless of the facts. The Tribune rag gives him credibility because they are so rabid to hear anyone bash teachers unions and these pension plans that they ignore the glaring LIES that he tells.

  42. - BMAN - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:31 am:

    Why is it that 95% of the population are not up in arms to protest the greed of the five percent who go to great lengths to put more money in their pockets at the expense of all the rest. When will we see the top 5 percent practice the austerity they want for the people who really make contributions to society?

  43. - Cod - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:42 am:

    RE: pensioner - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:14 am

    Not all the CCC members would approve of the Committee leadership’s tactics (Abbott, ITW, Crown). Fahner’s response may have been forced by some members who are furious with his indiscretions, and perhaps he heard concerns from lawmakers.

    In any case, I fully expect the CC leaders will quietly remove Fahner from his position. He has become toxic and will be marginalized, particularly after this crudely executed damage control effort.

  44. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:44 am:

    We are all blowing this way out of proportion. It’s not like there is video to make Ty’s response look ignorant or anything…

  45. - Ready To Get Out - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:51 am:

    Lying…condescending…arrogance…anything else?

    Almost leaves you speechless!

  46. - Jon Zahm - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:55 am:

    Good reporting. When they insult you in their response you know you caught ‘em redhanded.

  47. - A guy... - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:57 am:

    Maybe it’s time to sequester the Conference Committee so they don’t have to hear or see this junk or any of the other sideshows. Since we all agree pension reform is serious, why not treat it that way Ty, et al.

  48. - Soccermom - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:57 am:

    Word — It’s from Witness for the Prosecution. Charles Laughton. Awesome.

  49. - Knome Sane - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:58 am:

    I think Ty Fahner is more like Hagrid from Harry Potter. “I shouldn’t have said that”….

  50. - titan - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:08 am:

    === Finally, if there’s any good news in this, it’s that even a cynical political columnist like you now cares about pension reform, something we’ve been screaming about for a while now. We appreciate that. Stay on it. Illinois is in critical condition and we need everybody’s hands on deck. ===

    Rich, you’ve been at the forefont of this story from the start, and been one of the most reasonable voices on it.

  51. - Arthur Andersen - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:11 am:

    Tyrone Marmalard.
    Nixon White House Aide.

  52. - olddog - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:11 am:

    Stay on it, mon petit. Marie Antoinette couldn’t have expressed the sense of entitlement and privilege any better.

  53. - ZC - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:12 am:

    Skeeter beat me to it. The only other quote that comes to mind is, “My comments were not intended as a factual statement.”

  54. - Keyrock - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:15 am:

    I think Ty might have been better off going with the Sammy Sosa “don’t speak English” routine. It would have been more convincing.

  55. - walkinfool - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:16 am:

    Ty: Rich was way ahead of the curve on pension problems, not preceded by your organization.

    As to the denial Ty: What would you think of such a statement by someone else, in the face of taped evidence, when you were Attorney General?

    Agreed, the CEO’s on the Civic Committee don’t like this kind of publicity, and probably demanded a retraction.

  56. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:16 am:

    Soccermom, now I can picture it. Awesome indeed.

    Secret Agent Ty’s ineptness at his double game is pretty hilarious, but it still requires a response from the Quinn Administration.


    What steps did the administration take when it learned of Fahner’s statements regarding the secret contacts with the rating agencies to undermine the state’s credit rating?

    Ty and the chair of Mayer Brown are both on the Civic Committee. That firm has a $2 million bond counsel contract with the state. Their actions were directly in conflict with their duties as the state’s counsel.

    In addition, a number of Civic Committee members routinely seek and receive state bond business.

    Finally, most of the remainder have been known to have their hands out to receive state tax breaks and development grants — and get them.

    What actions are the administration taking regarding this brazen assault on the taxpayer’s interest by some of these big tax-eaters?

    These people have the rating agencies’ ears. They’re bond underwriters. Many of the multinationals routinely float debt in the markets that require ratings — and pay the rating agencies handsome fees for them.

  57. - anon - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:18 am:

    Would have loved to have been the fly on the wall in the meeting where his fellow law partners discussed the prospect of losing 2 million in billings because Ty opened his big mouth. Maybe he will experience some “shared sacrifice” in his partnership draw.

  58. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:21 am:

    Anon 11:16 was me.

  59. - dr. reason a. goodwin - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:26 am:

    “I did not have sexual relations with that woman,” — Bill Clinton

    Just as Clinton was carefully parsing what he considered sexual relations, it seems to me Fahner may be parsing this issue when he says he didn’t “call” the ratings agencies.

  60. - Chris - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:39 am:

    That Dale Carnegie training has done wonders for Ty. *Wonders.*

    Ty Fahner: Winning Friends and Influencing People (but NOT Moody’s, Fitch and Standard & Poor’s, not them, no never) since early 2013.

  61. - Chicago Cynic - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:44 am:

    1) Thank you Ty Fahner for providing a new case study in how not to handle a crisis.

    2) Liar, liar, pants on fire.

  62. - Jake From Elwood - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:48 am:

    I am surprised that TF didn’t dodge the issue entirely. I guess he gets some small amount of credit for not ignoring your questions.
    But TF gets no credit for the answers given.

  63. - Ruby - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 11:58 am:

    We won’t get an honest statement from TF, only more blame shifting and arrogance.

  64. - Anon. - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:03 pm:

    ==I read his statements and can help but think of “That statement is no longer operative.”==

    I was thinking the same thing. Anybody know where Ron Ziegler is these days?

  65. - Now - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:12 pm:

    Rich: How dare u accurately quote Fahner.
    His comments must have been taken “out of context”.

  66. - b - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:17 pm:

    Unreal. I don’t agree with the unions on everything, but there need to be hearings on this situation.

  67. - Union Guy - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:17 pm:

    What a bunch of crap!! He needs to be sent packing!! He’ll do and say anything to strip pensions from hard working Americans!

  68. - Annoyed - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:21 pm:

    Glad you have not been intelligently discussing pension reform regularly for the last 3+ years (probably more, its when I started following). Do these wealthy committee people really think we are dumb or do they just not care…it’s hard to have a debate in this country when one side treats you like a simple-minded little kid. “Great job reporting the news, keep on it.” What a tool!

  69. - Old and In The Way - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:28 pm:

    Where is Ron Ziegler?
    If there is any justice in the universe he is spending his last days back in his first job as the jungle boat pilot at Disneyland!
    Maybe Ty can join him? I would hope that the Illinois Bar will consider looking into this travesty.
    The real question is where is Guvernor Dufus, aka Guvernor Populist, in all this? Where is the outrage? Hey, we paid them $2 million and they went out of their way to screw us! Com ‘on man where is the populist rage that forced you to withhold the legislators pay? Seems to me $2 million would invoke at least some comment, let alone criticism!

  70. - whetstone - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:29 pm:

    “I close by saying it wouldn’t be the responsible thing for me to have done so with our members being the state’s largest employers.”

    Except… that’s also not what he said.

    Dude: take your time, formulate something plausible. Like the legislature’s doing with pensions.

  71. - Boone's is Back - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:30 pm:

    ===even a cynical political columnist like you now cares about pension reform===

    LOL- that oughta help his cause. To make another ship reference, “full speed ahead” on this story.

  72. - Nearly Normal - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:48 pm:

    Ty was trying to put the Genie back in the bottle after all this time. Surprise! It doesn’t go back. It is out there just like the tape of his speech. It was not taken out of context, either. No misquote there. He said it and his email to Rich helped not one whit. How tacky can you get?

    The man has made himself toxic and what little bit of credibility left has evaporated. Time for a change of leadership at the CC.

  73. - Stones - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:48 pm:

    Rich, does this mean you are off Fahner’s Xmas card list?

  74. - Cheswick - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 12:50 pm:

    What a slap in the face from Mr. Fahner. Apparently, he thinks everyone here just fell off the turnip truck. Much to his detriment.

  75. - Arthur Andersen - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 1:07 pm:

    Now we know why he couldn’t catch the Tylenol killer even after the dude confessed.

  76. - Belle - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 1:12 pm:

    Rich ≠ cynical political columnist
    Ty = example of why people don;t trust attorneys

  77. - Jake From Elwood - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 1:22 pm:

    I had forgotten about TF’s role in the Tylenol cases. Thanks for jogging my memory banks.

  78. - Joan P. - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 1:32 pm:

    “I didn’t call the ratings agencies, nor did any of our Civic Committee staff.”

    That may well be true. He probably just participated in a conference call set up by another member of the committee.

    (P.S. To all who are wondering. Ron Ziegler is dead.

  79. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 1:41 pm:

    Ron Ziegler died ten years ago.

  80. - Old and In The Way - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 2:05 pm:

    Ron Ziegler
    Given his demise I will revise my statement: If there is any justice in the universe then Ron is now one of the animatrons in the jungle boat cruise ride. He’s one of the intrepid hunters being forced up the tree by the Rhino! Call it Karma!

  81. - PublicServant - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 2:06 pm:

    He could have pulled an Alex Rodrigez and stated that he’d be glad to talk about it at the appropriate time…which, of course, never presents itself.

  82. - Anyone Remember? - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 2:14 pm:

    AA -

    Thanks for the movie reference!

  83. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 2:14 pm:

    –Now we know why he couldn’t catch the Tylenol killer even after the dude confessed.–

    Yeah, Lewis did the “if I did it, here’s how.” In detail. On camera. To “60 Minutes.” While in prison serving a sentence for trying to extort J&J for the Tylenol murders.

    Maybe Ty figured he misspoke.

  84. - Knome Sane - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 2:27 pm:

    As Daniel Day Lewis once said in one of his movies: “In the name of the Fahner, and of the truth” or something like that…..

  85. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 2:50 pm:

    “. . . nor did any of our Civic Committee staff.”
    “Staff” sounds like a weasel word. He could have said “nor did any of our Civic Committee members.”
    But maybe he really didn’t say anything at all. Keep up the good work, Mr. F. Stay on it.

  86. - one of the 35 - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 3:33 pm:

    Oh, I believe Ty misspoke. I just can’t tell when!

  87. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 3:34 pm:

    I’m glad Rich published the last part of Fahner’s email, because it’s deceitful. Fahner pretends he doesn’t know Rich has been interested in the pension problem. He also says “everybody’s hands on deck” (except for wealthy corporations and individuals).

    His response was also so condescending. “There, there, let me pat you on the head for finally caring.”

  88. - Langhorne - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 3:45 pm:

    What bunk. Glad i am not paying him hundreds per hr for this crap. The original stmt was quite specific, with plenty of details.

    His “misspoke” dodge seems obviously issued wout review. It is weak and just adds fuel. This from a trial atty? Who you gonna believe, me, or your lying eyes?

  89. - DanL60 - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 3:46 pm:

    Hey Ty, just for the record Rich’s expert cynicism is something that endears him to the rest of us cynics.

  90. - 1776 - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 3:50 pm:

    “The most powerful business group in Illinois…” Not even close. The Civic Committee can’t hold a candle to groups like IRMA, IMA, Chicagoland Chamber, and NFIB that actually do the work and are effective in Springfield. Civic Committee is a paper tiger.

  91. - Arthur Andersen - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 3:55 pm:

    Well, Captain Squeezy had time to show up at the courthouse for a glorified status hearing on the pay raise suit today. Meanwhile, on pensions,…crickets. Ty? Nada. Metra? Zip..well, he’s got a reason now to hide on that one.
    It’s all so Rod-like.

  92. - Jeeper - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 5:25 pm:

    If you read Mike Royko’s excellent “Boss: Richard J. Daley of Chicago” you will understand the role of the Civic Club of Chicago and its members a bit better.

    At least, it made many things in Chicago and Illinois politics make more sense for me.

  93. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 6:14 pm:

    Mr Fahner’s statement really is the epitome of arrogance. It may even be possible that someone that prideful might very well have been huffing and puffing to his old boys about how important he is and not really done anything at all.

    Either way it is bad and what really happened needs to be determined

  94. - Sangamon Sage - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 7:23 pm:

    To paraphrase Pogo - I have met the enemy and he is me!

  95. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 7:52 pm:

    Based on my many years as a loyal Cap Fax reader, I think that today Ty has taken the single-worst beating ever on the blog.

    Blago had a number of “Blame Madigan” defenders for some time. And he had Bill to the very end.

    Even Burris had hard-core supporters after he took the Senate appointment.

    But I don’t think there’s a supportive or positive comment here for Ty, not even from the rabidly anti-public-employee Usual Suspects.

    When you take a whipping worse than Blago in the Final Days, it might be time to reflect on your chosen path.

  96. - Earl Shumaker - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:09 pm:

    There really needs to an independent investigation on whether or not any laws or rules have been broken. Are there any Illinois state officials who will show any leadership and courage to step forward to look into this–or are they being intimidated by Chicago’s business community

    In regards to Ty Farhner, I think it interesting to note that it was apparently on Gov Jim Thompson’s watch the State started taking “pension holidays.” Ty Fahner was Attorney General at the time. Since Ty Fahner is so concerned about “pension reform” I am curious if he held these same views while serving as Attorney General under Governor Thompson or were these

  97. - RNUG - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:18 pm:

    Earl Shumaker @ 9:09 pm:

    It was Walker who first shorted the pension funds after the 1970 Con-Con added the proteciton clause. The unions sued over it; see IFT v Lindberg 1975.

  98. - RNUG - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:20 pm:

    The ruling in IFT is what gave cover to the GA & Gov for all the subsequent pension payment holidays and short falls.

  99. - Truth teller - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:29 pm:

    I really hate writing this, but it’s quite plausible that Ty Fahner was blowing smoke at the Civic Committee meeting. Consider the audience, these are the richest of the rich, and Fahner would like to be part of the group.

    By embellishing his “credentials” with the ratings agencies, he can serve as a conduit to the richy riches in the audience.

    Ah, nevermind, I think I just threw up in my mouth a little…

  100. - Anon - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 9:37 pm:

    Can you spell “B S”

  101. - Arthur Andersen - Tuesday, Aug 6, 13 @ 10:05 pm:

    word, as always you nailed it here. Ty earns a special place in Rich’s “Century Club.”

    Be interesting to watch the comings and goings at Vandelay Industries, er Mayer Brown/Civic Committee, in the weeks ahead.

  102. - Harry - Wednesday, Aug 7, 13 @ 12:25 am:

    “Misspoke” = “told the truth when I shouldn’t have”

  103. - Harry - Wednesday, Aug 7, 13 @ 12:32 am:

    Staff are paid employees, he does not deny a Civic Committeee member or members made calls.

  104. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Aug 7, 13 @ 7:28 am:

    If only the language Ty used were as clear as the pension language in the Illinois Constitution.

  105. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Aug 7, 13 @ 9:12 am:

    I meant to say was, not were,… I misspoke.

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