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Rutherford drama costs the state more money

Monday, Mar 10, 2014

* After spending $27,000 in taxpayer money on his internal investigation, Treasurer Dan Rutherford now has three $200 an hour state-paid attorneys to defend himself against a federal lawsuit

The state will pay three attorneys up to $200 per hour to represent Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford in a lawsuit filed by a former employee.

Edmund Michalowski accused Rutherford last month of sexually harassing him and forcing him to do campaign work on state time.

Rutherford, who is seeking the Republican nomination for Illinois governor, has denied the claims. He’s said the accusations have made his campaign more difficult.

Documents from the attorney general’s office say Robert Shuftan, Daniel Fahner and Bilal Zaheer have been appointed special assistant attorneys general. They’ll be paid using taxpayer funds from the treasurer’s office.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


15 Comments
  1. - just because - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 9:44 am:

    i dont have a problem with this. the law suite is against the Treasurer


  2. - Westward - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 9:52 am:

    I wish Holland’s office would do an audit of how much Illinois pays in outside legal bills. I know probably a drop in the bucket in grand scheme, however, it’s got to be quite a bit change.


  3. - wordslinger - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 9:53 am:

    Another Fahner at the public trough (doing important lawyering for the people, I’m sure).

    Ty knows how to line up the state business. Nice that he could get this bone for his son.

    Rutherford better watch his back, though, considering how the state’s former bond counsel liked to bad mouth the state to the rating agencies.


  4. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 9:54 am:

    @FakeRutherfordDan - yeah, I probably won’t be tweeting about those lawyer fees, or posting on Facebook about the lawyers either. #TransparentlyFoggy #SealedOpenBook


  5. - Anonymous - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 9:54 am:

    If Rutherford found innocent, the accuser should pay


  6. - 47th Ward - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 9:56 am:

    And none of these three is the lawyer he originally hired who told him not to release the report.


  7. - Downstate GOP Faithless - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 10:03 am:

    One treasurers staffer said last week the internal frustration is in part because some employees were told by the general counsel speaking to the investigator was a “condition of their employment.” There wasn’t much dispute up front but when it became clear they were not cooperating with an internal investigation but rather helping to prepare for litigation, they felt mislead by senior staff. This falls in line with earlier reports of staff being denied access to their statements. I feel for everyone in their. It can’t be comfortable showing up.


  8. - Downstate GOP Faithless - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 10:06 am:

    Silly question, but when appointed a special AG who do the attorney’s in question actually work for? The state or the client?


  9. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 10:25 am:

    Biggest mistake ever;

    Should have “lawyered-up”, and if Rutherford’s, ahem, “fact- finders” had a problem, go to the media…what could they have done, fired you? Nope. Not a chance.

    A good counsel would have then held a presser on the firing, because those holding the inquisition refused to allow… recordings, counsel, threatened termination, and followed through with a firing, and are no closer to finding truth, but angling for a whitewash report riddled with statements not based on fact.

    Never, ever should have given statements from that position of weakness, giving up so much.

    Rutherford is Nixonian, even hiding the tapes.


  10. - Walker - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 10:40 am:

    Funding outside counsel is one of the biggest morsels of the taxpayer-funded retirement benefits for ex state pols.

    Include contract agent, and bond counsel in that stew.


  11. - girllawyer - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 11:43 am:

    Why expensive “Special AAGs”? When I was with the AG’s office (in the distant past)the AG (through us lowly assistants)represented state officers who were sued. I could name names but it would date me. Is the AG’s office so understaffed that all the cases that used to be handled in-house by underpaid staff attorneys have to be contracted out? Of course, if Rauner has his way there won’t be any competent lawyers or any professionals willing to work for the State of Illinois so maybe we should get used to it.


  12. - Phineas J. Whoopee - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 12:14 pm:

    Rutherford has an interesting campaign strategy.

    Lowering the bar…one attorney at a time.


  13. - Mr. T - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 1:34 pm:

    Have they had a hearing in front of the judge on the case? Is the evidence even worth the time of a hearing? Will the case even go to trial?
    Will E.M. and his lawyer fold? Next case.


  14. - redleg - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 2:36 pm:

    Until someone in the media promotes a campaign about the many welfare retirees and they’re abuse to our system of monetary exchange and when the media learns that the Federal Reserve System was created with debt in mind and not tax payers per say, then I will worry about Dan Rutherford.


  15. - Mr. T. - Monday, Mar 10, 14 @ 2:56 pm:

    Some things we can change and some we can’t.
    I will take it one state at a time.
    Hope we have a Republican win the Republican primary.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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