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*** UPDATED x1 - Frerichs does the same *** Quinn donates tainted contribution to charity

Thursday, Feb 27, 2014

* After reports surfaced that a high-level employee with the Department of Natural Resources had accepted a large campaign contribution from a coal mining company and then transferred half of that to Gov. Pat Quinn’s campaign fund, the governor’s campaign press office released this statement…

Statement from Quinn Campaign Regarding Campaign Contributions

To be clear, as a matter of campaign policy, we do not accept political contributions from state employees.

Immediately upon learning today of previous donations from this entity and their connection to a state employee, the Governor directed that these funds be donated to worthy charities across Illinois.

The Trooper Douglas Balder Benefit Fund, the Illinois Military Family Relief Fund, the Chicago Urban League and the Illinois Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund will each receive $2,000 in donations. This exceeds the total contributed by the Douglas County Democrats.

Again, it is our policy to not accept donations from state employees.


*** UPDATE *** Sen. Frerichs has also donated the cash to charity

The News-Gazette reported earlier this week that Quinn had received $5,000 and Frerichs $250 from the Douglas County Democratic Party last August. That money apparently originated with Foresight Energy Services Co. of St. Louis, which operates coal mines in Illinois. […]

Frerichs, D-Champaign, said Thursday that he had donated $250 to the Eastern Illinois Foodbank in Urbana.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - RNUG - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 9:54 am:

    Finally Quinn gets something right. Add in the resignation yesterday at DCFS and you’ve got Quinn actually starting to play politics at the A level.

  2. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 9:56 am:

    @FakeMikeFrerichs - I will donate my $250 to the ‘Shrinking Violets Society’ benefitting those amateurs trying to regain personal credibility. #ToughToHideStandingTall #OstrichesAreTallWhenBuryingHeadToo

  3. - Rahm's Middle Finger - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 9:57 am:

    Quinn isn’t required to bar state employees from contributing, he does that voluntarily. Good move here.

  4. - OneMan - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 9:57 am:

    Again, it is our policy to not accept donations from state employees.

    So they gonna donate money from every political entity headed up by a state employee… I think that means they have to return a lot of county party donations.

  5. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 9:58 am:

    If that’s the policy, a review of the contribution list is probably in order.

  6. - Smoggie - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:00 am:

    This isn’t $10 he found on the street.

    He knew the source, and allegedly the policy was not to accept similar contributions.

    So why donate it to some charity (and of course then get some credit for doing so) rather than return it to the source?

    I know this happens, but I don’t see it as fixing the problem.

  7. - Dan Q. Public - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:01 am:

    Maybe Frerichs is too busy reviewing his voting record to comment?

  8. - William j Kelly - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:07 am:

    Now if only Bruce rauner would donate every tainted penny he has to charity we would be all set. But then he would be broke!

  9. - Shawneewatch - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:09 am:

    10 bucks says Tony Mayville wont give back his $1300 dollar, gosh knows he needs its. maybe he can use it to pay on his Tax fraud!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. - A guy... - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:09 am:

    Mr. Rutherford, please refer to this exercise in dealing with a potential crisis. Fast, decisive, appropriate. No fan of Quinn, but this is text book management of reducing a mountain to a molehill fast.

  11. - flea - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:10 am:

    What? Quinn like every other past governor has accepted “donations” from state employees. This policy is incredible…

  12. - Plutocrat03 - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:12 am:

    So if there is a policy which does not accept money from certain types of donors, what is the mechanism the campaign uses to check whether a donation received is from acceptable sources before depositing the $$$?

    Can a spouse of a State worker donate? Keep in mind that not all spouses have the same last name.

    Or is the policy only to refund the money when an outside organization points it out?

  13. - kathryn - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:30 am:

    Unless not accepting donations from state employees is a new Quinn policy, that statement is not true. he accepts and even solicits contributions from state employees. check the fundraising mailing list. I get an invite to a fundraiser in Chicago every year, which indicates the cost of attending STARTS at $100.

  14. - Leave a Light on George - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:32 am:

    “Or is the policy only to refund the money when an outside organization points it out?”

    “10 bucks says Tony Mayville wont give back his $1300 dollar, gosh knows he needs its. maybe he can use it to pay on his Tax fraud!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

    This accusation keeps coming up in comments. Please elaborate.

  15. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:48 am:

    What we know so far points to this not being an accident, nor a coincidence.

    Hoping that Pat is surrounded by folks who don’t play a similar game as was played by Pat’s old running mate from 2002 and 2006 is not smart.

    The Governor needed to have cleaned out the barn when he arrived in the Mansion years ago. The fact that he hadn’t demonstrates either an acceptance of a tainted status quo, or an ignorance too dangerous for the kind of political power he is to wield.

    What we know about this does not point to an accident or to a coincidence, regardless of party and regardless of the supposed purity or honesty of the Governor.

  16. - Louis G. Atsaves - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 10:56 am:

    Donating tainted donations to charity may be an attempt to do the honorable thing once the wrongdoing is discovered. The better solution would be to simply return the tainted donation.

    I’m not saying this to be critical of Quinn here, who acted pretty quickly once the spotlight on this donation occurred, but there is a better solution here. Give it back.

  17. - Demoralized - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 11:06 am:

    Why give it back? I actually think donating to charity is the better solution.

  18. - PoolGuy - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 11:50 am:

    agree Demoralized, giving to charities is good solution rather then return to a billionaire.

  19. - Hamilton - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 11:54 am:

    OW - Is it personal with you and Frerichs? You always seem so reasonable, but your comments about him always seem more poignant. Yesterday it was amateur hour. Today it’s shrinking violets society.

    I’m not complaining; just noticing and wondering.

  20. - Anonymous - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 12:07 pm:

    Isn’t the Department of Natural Resources the one where the Director didn’t know he’s number 2 guy took the summer off to compete in pro fishing tournaments?????
    Know two other high level appointees with IDNR take funds from businesses they’re regulating.
    Who is the IDNR Director and why isn’t anybody asking how this Agency leader “knows nothing” about all this.
    Hard pill to swallow…….. Appears the IDNR and DCFS Director’s should both resign.

  21. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 12:11 pm:

    - Hamilton -,

    No worries, I will answer;

    It begins with all the “Tall” puns, and the play by play via twitter with them, and the posturing and the ego of “look at me, look at me!” Which gives off such a hyper intent to seem relevant in everything discussed by just inserting himself with no reason to do it.

    SSM and the Treasurer’s race is a good example.

    Along those lines, the complete lack of knowledge of his own record, and his opponent (s), while making hay of an issue just to glom some press. The lack of understanding of running statewide while seemingly gleeful to be seen as relevant, although it appears Frerichs name on the ballot is the only thing that looks like a good statewide candidacy, and then to tie it all together, amateur errors of campaign operations that seem like, indeed, someone just giddy to be sitting at the big kid’s table just reeks of someone who needs some … sunshine.

    Sen. Frerichs is vying for the most annoying statewide candidate this cycle, and he has no competition in the Primary.

    So, like a sore thumb, he sticks out, height puns notwithstanding. If this amateur hour run and glomming based on refutable factual voting records, for example, continue, then I guess the spotlight continues too.

  22. - Hickory - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 12:13 pm:

    What is the difference between taking money from an employee and a State Union PAC? NONE

  23. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 12:21 pm:

    Hey, I recommend the money be donated to charity, and presto…

  24. - Toure's Latte - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 12:30 pm:

    Donating tainted funds is a good choice. Why give it back? Take it out of circulation and put it to good use.

  25. - Retired IDNR - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 12:35 pm:

    Illinois Department of Natural Resources under the leadership of Director Marc Miler has falling into disrepair. Once a great Agency, IDNR is now out of control with Miller in charge.

  26. - Anonymous - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 12:54 pm:

    This is such a small amount compared to rauner..

  27. - Shawneewatch - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 2:59 pm:

    @yellow dog dem
    way to put the heat on them i guess tony does not have the money to pay it back too.

  28. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 3:06 pm:


    Not really heat…donations make more sense than refunds.

    BTW, I’m guessing based on your moniker that you are a DNR advocate.

    What the heck is going on with DNR staff, why is morale so low, and why are they all taking it out on Director Miller?

    Folks seem to want his head on a plate. What do they think that will solve?

  29. - Shawneewatch - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 3:53 pm:

    @yellow dog
    well i am glad to tell you that i am not a part of DNR. i am upset to think that group of guys could be watching over the the frack sites in southern illinois.

  30. - Seeing is Believing - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 4:58 pm:

    I thought I read somewhere today that the county chairman involved resigned from DNR? Did he do so?

  31. - Just The Way It Is One - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 6:08 pm:

    So Pat Quinn, upon discovering the clear error, donated his contribution to various Charities. Excellent. Problem solved sufficiently. And I’d predicted just yesterday in my Comment on this matter that he’d properly/immediately address and shore up that mishap.

    Regrettably, however, remains the question about how such a red herring donation of this sort wasn’t picked-up on by at least SOMEbody in his Campaign before it publicly came to light. His recent Top-Shelf choice of MANager, Bill Hyers, obviously has his work cut-OUT for himself re. such “bumps in the Road” to ensure such embarrassing aberrations aren’t rePEATed, however, in the next 8 months, ‘cuz small cuts to the flesh like this one can otherwise, if unchecked/overlooked, soon add up to gaping and quite NOticeable WOUNDS, IF there are any MORE out there, not properly, thoroughly, and promptly treated like THIS one has been now…and the Governor’s Campaign certainly won’t want to be looking square at THAT kind of problem with a tough 8 1/2 Month Race to keep his Seat ahead…!

  32. - BeenThere - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 8:38 pm:

    @Retired IDNR: Disrepair is what Miller inherited. The mines duo aren’t the first. What about the Cellini-backed office director that survived Blago, but didn’t last 6 months? The General Counsel that was let go and later picked up for deer poaching? Two more office directors that left and two deputy directors, and the elimination of a layer of middle managers at state parks that included incompetents like Scott Flood? Maybe you want that back at IDNR?

  33. - Dormant - Thursday, Feb 27, 14 @ 11:11 pm:

    Not all of DNR problems were inherited. Miller has developed his share. Question any of the higher level women who left. In comparison, Miller was a big booster for Travis Loyd. Most everyone knew this man had been moonlighting as a pro fisherman and operating outside businesses. We felt Miller believed he could do whatever he wanted. Guess he was right.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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