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A meatball right over the plate

Monday, Feb 10, 2014

* In listening to Christine Svenson’s interview on WLS from earlier this morning, I heard a very easy push-back talking point for Dan Rutherford.

Svenson’s client said that after Rutherford made inappropriate advances, her client twice took his complaints to Rutherford’s chief of staff. The chief of staff then allegedly said “At least we have job security,” and claimed Rutherford had done similar things to him.

Look, I don’t know Rutherford’s chief of staff well, but I know him well enough to know that there is no way on God’s Green Earth that he will ever say that Rutherford did the same thing to him. Period.

In fact, in my discussions with the chief, he has said that he’s never witnessed anything of the kind.

So, a forceful and absolute denial by Rutherford’s chief could undermine some of the accuser’s claims.

* However, there’s still all those other Rutherford employees who are talking to the internal investigator.

* Also, Svenson said this about how she got the case

SVENSON: About a month ago, two individuals, none of whom is my client, came to my office to tell me that they were on a “list” called the “Gang of Thirteen.” This “Gang of Thirteen” who were employees in the treasurer’s office was rumored to have been terminated by Treasurer Rutherford for not engaging in sufficient political activity and or were just people who he didn’t like in the office. He came up with this list with his chief of staff and perhaps one other person.

PROFT: You mean they were going to be terminated.

SVENSON: Going to be terminated. Correct.

SVENSON: So these two individuals that came into my office about a month ago were on this list and they came to me for advice and I still am giving them advice regarding their situations and they may have claims, who knows, at some point.

PROFT: What about the person who you’re representing…?

SVENSON: Right. So, those two individuals after talking to me went back to the office and talked to the other individuals that had been on the list. This individual, my current client, his name is Ed, was one of those people. They told Ed about me. So, then Ed came to me a couple of days later, so it would’ve been perhaps three and a half weeks ago. And his set of circumstances [were] even more unusual and troubling, frankly.

She wouldn’t reveal Ed’s last name.

* Full audio…

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - wordslinger - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 12:55 pm:

    Is there an honest and legitimate motivation for the attorney continually seeking out the media before a complaint has even been filed?

  2. - No lawyer - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:02 pm:

    I’m not sure how the testimony of somebody’s chief of staff in defense of their boss is somehow going to convince the public. They rightly believe that Hamm is partisan in his boss’s favor.

    Svenson’s motivation probably starts with Rutherford drawing the curtain on this circus. Dan lost the high ground when he had his press conference.

  3. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:02 pm:

    I would hammer the CoS statement, and easily rebuffed by the Rutherford Crew.

    State the investigation is still ongoing, the CoS claim is false, that we can tell you, adn this is an issue best decided in the Courts, not by people with microphones, podiums, press releases, and radio shows.

    Firm, a slap back for the press she is getting for her client, and leave it there.

  4. - Walter Mitty - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:02 pm:

    Yikes… What if he doesn’t forcefully deny the claim? It’s pretty big to say the chief of Staff knew… It’s difficult to bring a lawsuit and all that comes with it… If…If … it happened, he better not deny..The next time is under oath…

  5. - Soccermom - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:03 pm:

    So this “gang of 13″ list was something he came up with himself? Could this get any shadier?

  6. - Formerly Known As... - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:06 pm:

    In this case, pushing back through the media is a logical tactic after the powerful individual being accused was the first to go to the media and go on the offensive.

    Suddenly one morning the accused is in front of every media outlet in the state labeling your client an extortionist, among other things.

    In this case, yes, fair game.

    Despite the fact I find it terribly annoying.

  7. - O RLY - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:07 pm:

    This image is relevant.

  8. - Carl Nyberg - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:09 pm:

    Is the motivation of Christine Svenson the best interests of her client?

    Or is she trying to derail Rutherford’s candidacy?

    If my goal was to win a court case, I think I’d go with someone who acted more like a lawyer and less like a narcissist posing as a PR flack.

  9. - BYE DR....... - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:09 pm:

    Its time for DR to say goodbye to the campaign and time to worry about the lawsuits that will be filed.

    Put a fork in him…….

  10. - Walter Mitty - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:19 pm:

    Carl… I actually view it the opposite… When Rutherford hit the media with the Seinfield news conference… A news conferece about nothing…. She has done what probablly most attorneys would do… If there is nothing to it.. She and the accuser are done. I would be shocked someone or anyone would take that leap of faith.. for a campaign trick.Their lives would be altered forever.

  11. - VictorNorth - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:31 pm:

    Carl….if you recall, Svenson said nothing until after Rutherford’s bizarre press conference. And at that press conference, Rutherford basically accused Svenson of being a Rauner tool. Her interviews are a direct result of Rutherford’s public accusations.

  12. - just asking - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:31 pm:

    Does she have permission from these multiple “clients” to be talking about her interactions with them? It would be a good idea for her to have same.

  13. - hisgirlfriday - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:35 pm:

    So who are the gang of 13?

    Do they have any ties to Rauner or other Rutherford political rivals present or past?

    How was the supposed Gang of 13 referred to Svenson?

    Also, just curious, did Dan Proft at any point identify his guest as his former attorney?

  14. - Rich Miller - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:37 pm:

    ===Do they have any ties to Rauner===

    Oh, c’mon. They’re Rutherford employees.

  15. - Rich Miller - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:41 pm:

    Any further attempts to out the alleged victim here will be met with lifetime banishment. No exceptions. I don’t care who you are. Final warning. I’m tired of deleting these “hints.”

  16. - JoeInPeoria - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:45 pm:

    Which is more serious legally: requiring employees to do political work(on taxpayers’ time) OR the sexual harassment?

    Sure, we all know that the harassment charges are the more publicly salacious….
    Just wondering….

  17. - hisgirlfriday - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:48 pm:

    Because the Gang of 13 business is so murky, I wasn’t sure if they were close with Rutherford personally or could have even been agency holdovers.

    And I wouldn’t have thought Dan would employ a person so closely tied to dem politics either but apparently that is the case with the alleged victim so thought I’d ask.

  18. - Rich Miller - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:52 pm:

    ===And I wouldn’t have thought Dan would employ a person so closely tied to dem politics===

    He has more than a handful of Dems over there. Some holdovers, some new hires.

    Take a breath already.

  19. - thechampaignlife - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 1:52 pm:

    I can’t believe she gave out his first name. She practically outed him herself unless it’s a pseudonym given how easy it is to look up state employees.

  20. - Anonymous - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 2:01 pm:

    Lawsuit filed and Sun-Times has named him, Rich.

  21. - Robert the Bruce - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 4:12 pm:

    It’ll be interesting to see what the other employees have to say.

  22. - walker - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 5:19 pm:

    The new Gloria Allred?

  23. - Statesman - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 5:48 pm:

    Rutherford’s campaign has been compromised from the start. Inside talk connects some of his campaign volunteers with Rauner. Follow the breadcrumbs when DR loses the primary. Expect to see many of his ‘outreach’ volunteers finding positions with BR’s group.

  24. - Just The Way It Is One - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 6:24 pm:

    “Gang of 13″ looks like something someone would ber looking to get A Banner Headline out of form one of the Major Newspapers in Chicago, Illinois somewhere else significant like Springfield, or St. Louis–plus, interesting how “13″ is the UNluckiest of numbers…! Gee, if there IS something more that some of these “alleged” others have to say re. Rutherford, then SAY it already…!

  25. - Just The Way It Is One - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 6:25 pm:

    That was meant to read above, “…out of/from one of…!”

  26. - Just The Way It Is One - Monday, Feb 10, 14 @ 6:26 pm:

    And, “…would be…!” Yikes–two typos now: on a BAD roll!!

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