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Quinn again dodges the question

Thursday, Sep 4, 2014

* Umm

Asked if all the [IDOT] employees whose hiring aroused concern had been fired, Quinn insisted he had addressed the matter.

“I acted on that the moment I learned about that,” he said. “I appointed a new secretary of transportation to carry out the rules exactly as they should be.”

That wasn’t even in the ballpark of a straight answer. There are dozens, maybe hundreds of those folks still on the state payroll. The Rauner campaign pounced…

In fact, Quinn has not acted. Dozens of illegal hires still remain in positions at IDOT. And Quinn refuses to explain how his subversion of veterans hiring preferences is any different than Rod Blagojevich’s. […]

”Pat Quinn clearly has no intention of ending illegal patronage inside his administration; he’s just waiting until November to ratchet up the corruption. At a time of record job losses and sky-high veterans unemployment, Pat Quinn cares more about keeping his cronies happy than letting Illinois workers compete for state jobs.” - Rauner campaign spokesperson Mike Schrimpf

- Posted by Rich Miller        


23 Comments
  1. - DuPage Rep - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:00 am:

    Let’s not talk about this, let’s focus on a non-binding minimum wage referendum. After all, it’s the right thing to do.


  2. - Roadbuilder - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:00 am:

    The fact is that all of the 58 who were going to be fired or laid off have until the end of September now before any of them even potentially will be laid off. Even the ones who have found jobs outside state employment have been told to wait to take other jobs and get laid off so they can be part of the eventual lawsuit and possibly get large back pay settlements.


  3. - Stones - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:03 am:

    PQ is in a pickle. Now that he’s been called out on political hires he risks alienating those employees sponsors but he must still somehow make it appear that he is cleaning house.


  4. - Ducky LaMoore - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:07 am:

    I find it odd that politics and policy can mix almost endlessly with the exception of hiring practices. Quinn is in a pickle. When the auditor general says these people weren’t hired properly, can the gov just fire them on the spot? Isn’t there a rule to protect those people?


  5. - Peoria guy - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:09 am:

    Quinn made this mess himself and Rauner’s comments are melo-dramatic and over the top. Sigh.


  6. - IllinoisO'Malley - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:32 am:

    So glad Rauner now cares about vets getting jobs, didn’t see much about that before Wednesday. Would be interesting to see his veteran hiring policy when he ran GTCR.


  7. - Coffee Cup - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:43 am:

    My guess is that anyone that Pat Quinn gets rid of will (within a short time) simply wind up in another department of Illinois state government. It is “musical chairs” with these political patronage hires. They just get shuffled into another state job where they are less likely to attract attention. I watched George Ryan do it with a buddy of his who was then the Illinois Secretary of the Department of Agriculture. The for Illinois Secretary of Agriculture came under the intense heat of the press back in 2000-2001 for allowing the nation’s largest agricultural failure in the nation’s history to take place under his watch. George quickly but quietly had him resign but he soon was placed (aka. hidden) within the Illinois Department of Natural Resources at a salary of over $80,000 a year. I expect Pat Quinn will quickly (and quietly) do the same thing.


  8. - Anonymous - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:46 am:

    pat can only act after a report,everthing else is?


  9. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:50 am:

    Not a good answer at all Governor.
    You are the incumbent. You need to not bat this question away - you need to show that you are deeply touched by this horrible event, as much as your critics. Once you do that, you can then better tell the questioner the steps you have taken already, what steps you are taking now, and what steps you will take in the future to prevent it from ever happening again.

    You aren’t even trying Pat.
    You do want to get reelected, right? How about showing us.


  10. - wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:57 am:

    If Rauner’s crew knows about dozens, they ought to roll the names out to keep the story going. Otherwsise, I don’t know if it registers outside of state employee circles.


  11. - Gone, but not forgotten - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:59 am:

    Apparently they CAN run, and they CAN hide! Democrats = YES, THEY CAN!


  12. - Chris - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:59 am:

    Wondering if/when PQ will own up to making a “mistake”. I’d say the money line is about -1,000,000 for “never”.

    How is this not worse (not ‘electoral optics’; real governance) than Rauner saying something dumb about minimum wage and then changing his mind?


  13. - walker - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 10:45 am:

    This will hurt, and we’ll be reminded big time of NRI in about a month.

    It is hard to imagine what is holding Pat Quinn back now from further steps to “clean house” in IDOT, unless he simply cannot legally do it.


  14. - Demoralized - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 10:47 am:

    ==unless he simply cannot legally do it==

    I believe that’s probably the answer but that’s not an answer he can give, so he dances instead.


  15. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 11:00 am:

    === ==unless he simply cannot legally do it==

    I believe that’s probably the answer but that’s not an answer he can give, so he dances instead.===

    - Demoralized - & - walker - are On It for me, which is why I try to skirt this very carefully.

    The Veterans’ Preference issue makes me sick, and this idea that fingers snap and all is fine is utterly ridiculous for Quinn to even TRY to peddle out there as “done”

    A major problem that Rauner and his bought and paid for ILGOP is having is that making statements that - wordslinger - can say, “Ok, name them” makes the allegations less impactful to reality.

    It’s like things that should be rudimentary politics… they are done 180 degrees wrong, sparing the wounded Quinn.

    ILGOP, say it wrong, it’s still ongoing, and Quinn refused to see it then or fix it when he certainly could have.

    Period.


  16. - the Patriot - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 11:53 am:

    Quinn made his decision when he did not get rid of off of Rod’s people. That is the decision that will bring him down. I do not believe Quinn is a criminal, but just in over his head.

    The list has a total of about 200 names so they are out. The reality is those folks are riding it out. In IL, the republican has a 50% shot no matter what the polls say.

    Quinn is pot committed now. He can’t go and fire another 200 people 60 days before the election or it looks like a response to allegations and he knew it was wrong. He has to slow play and hope nothing breaks before the election then figure it out. Again, not a great plan, is he going to fire everyone and admit corruption is rampant in is administration 60 days before the election.


  17. - A guy... - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 11:54 am:

    == wordslinger - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 9:57 am:

    If Rauner’s crew knows about dozens, they ought to roll the names out to keep the story going. Otherwsise, I don’t know if it registers outside of state employee circles.===

    Inside 60 days now. It’s turning into a game of Spades. If you have enough trump cards, now’s the time you can begin tossing them into the middle of the table, from the smallest to the largest. It’s either started or it’s about to.


  18. - Formerly Known As... - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 12:09 pm:

    Clean house or do not. Fix this abuse or do not. “Fumigate” or do not.

    Your choice either burnishes your image as a government reformer looking out for the “little guy”, or subtly admits that the “old” Pat Quinn no longer exists.


  19. - mcb - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 12:32 pm:

    Rauner needs to hit more on the veteran angle. Skirting around veteran hiring preference resonates. He needs to come up with some plan for veterans (especially since Quinn has framed himself as so pro-veteran) and then attack Quinn on this.


  20. - You - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 1:17 pm:

    The veterans angle hits Quinn both politically and personally.


  21. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 2:33 pm:

    “We have asked CMS and the Attorney General for an opinion on whether and how we can undo what was previously done.”


  22. - Hocus Pocus - Thursday, Sep 4, 14 @ 4:41 pm:

    There are a few down in Southern Illinois including the mayor of a small town who are still there even after this guys mother was discharged. Both were political hires


  23. - Mister M - Friday, Sep 5, 14 @ 8:50 am:

    The Guv is in a mess of his own making. He chose to allow the Blago patronage hires, disguised or not, to stay, and he allowed room to be made for his own. As for candidate Rauner & Co., they could surely find more than what’s identified so far. “Local Area Liasions”?, “Technical Assistants”?, even “Chiefs of Staff” …can we find such positions before Quinn & Blago?


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