SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Not nearly enough

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez

Also, she said, possession of less than an ounce of marijuana should be treated as a petty offense rather than a misdemeanor, but penalties for distribution of more than 2,500 grams, or 5.5 pounds of marijuana, should be raised to deter trafficking.

I guess I should be pleased that a major county prosecutor is saying this stuff, but it’s just so 1990s.

* Does it ever occur to these “decriminalization” proponents (and I used to be one myself) that by approaching the issue this way they are in fact continuing to enrich and empower the outlaws who grow and distribute the stuff?

The outlaws will take their risks like they always have, regardless of the new penalties the state’s attorney wants to impose. She can convict all the distributors, dealers and growers she wants every year and more will eagerly emerge from the woodwork, as history has clearly shown.

Decriminalization is the wrong way to go, unless some people feel they need it as a short term step toward legalization. As a long-term solution, it’s merely continuing the disaster that our “War on Drugs” has become.

* Besides, the police have always found ways around decriminalization laws in the past. NYC cops, for instance, simply order people to empty their pockets. Marijuana is decriminalized as long as it’s not in public view. When the person empties his pockets, the weed is now in public view. Busted.

And Chicago’s marijuana ticket ordinance has not worked as hoped.

So, pardon me if I strongly suspect that yet another decrim law won’t change current realities. The same folks who are getting busted now will continue to be busted. We’re ruining countless numbers of lives with this insanity.

* We need to take the outlaws out of the marijuana business by taking the marijuana business out of the black market economy. Tax it, regulate it and put some people to work.

Not to mention that the state could really use the cash.

/rant

- Posted by Rich Miller   39 Comments      


AG Madigan files blistering motion against Rutherford accuser

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* AP

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan wants portions of a lawsuit filed against Treasurer Dan Rutherford’s office dropped, and a court to sanction the former staff lawyer who filed it.

Madigan’s office asked a federal court on Monday to dismiss claims by Edmund Michalowski against two treasurer’s office employees and the Republican state treasurer’s office. Michalowski said the employees were involved in racketeering and retaliated against him for refusing to do political work. He also said Rutherford sexually harassed him.

Madigan calls the racketeering changes “baseless,” and said the harassment allegations involving the office weren’t “sufficiently severe or pervasive.”

* But the motion she filed goes way beyond that. For example, Michalowski apparently made some overblown allegations about Rutherford chief of staff Kyle Ham

Michalowski alleges that Ham told him that Rutherford required Treasurer Office employees to make ―donations to non-office government functions that would benefit the Rutherford and Romney campaigns. Michalowski says he gave the demanded cash to Ham at the Treasurer‘s Office in Chicago. Although for this motion the Court must accept this allegation as true, Michalowski notably does not identify the so-called ―non-office government functions‖ (staff holiday party) or say how much he paid ($50).

Who sues over a staff holiday party?

* And this

Michalowski next alleges that on July 24, 2011, Conrad sent him a text saying that the Treasurer wanted him to wear a tank top. Michalowski omits the rest of the text exchange, including his own joking comments.

Oops.

* More on the sexual harassment allegations

Michalowski‘s Title VII claim should be dismissed because he does not allege conduct that created an objectively hostile working environment under controlling precedent. For conduct to create a hostile work environment, it must be both subjectively and objectively offensive and “sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of [the victim‘s] employment and create an abusive working environment.” […]

The Seventh Circuit has repeatedly held that conduct that was more severe than what Michalowski alleges here did not rise to the level of objective harassment as a matter of law. […]

Where courts have allowed hostile work environment cases to proceed, the alleged misconduct was substantially more severe and pervasive that what Michalowski alleges here, and usually involved incidents of unwanted touching. […]

Although the April 2011 incident allegedly involved grabbing “at” Michalowski‘s “genital area,” Michalowski does not allege that the Treasurer touched him. And even if the Treasurer‘s later alleged invitations to his home and hotel room and shoulder rub were unwanted, Michalowski does not allege that the Treasurer made any explicit sexual comments or requested any sexual activity.Taken as a whole, these sporadic incidents were not sufficiently pervasive or severe to constitute objective harassment as a matter of law.

* Regarding the RICO claim

Michalowski does not come close to alleging facts needed to establish necessary elements for a RICO claim, including: (a) actual RICO predicate acts; (b) how each defendant engaged in a pattern of racketing activity; (c) how each defendant operated the Treasurer‘s Office through a pattern of racketeering; (d) an agreement by each defendant to facilitate the completion of a RICO violation; and (e) an injury to Michalowski‘s “business or property” that was proximately caused by a RICO violation.

* 1st Amendment claim

Michalowski‘s First Amendment claim fails at the outset because, as a policymaking employee, the First Amendment does not protect his alleged lack of political support for Treasurer Rutherford. The right of public employees to associate (or not associate) politically may be legitimately constrained if the employee is in a policymaking position, has access to confidential information, or otherwise enjoys a position where political loyalty may be expected. […]

Even if Michalowski has alleged some conduct that is protected by the First Amendment, he still does not have a valid political discrimination claim against Ham or Conrad because he does not allege that Ham or Conrad took any action that was motivated to deter him from engaging in protected activity.

* And she states there was no “hit list”

Michalowski‘s hit-list allegation also does not qualify as actionable retaliation. Michalowski alleges that Rutherford and Ham (not Conrad) supposedly created a hit list of employees who would be fired for their lack of political support, but he does not allege that Rutherford and Ham created this supposed list to deter any First Amendment activity, that the list hindered his job performance or deterred him from engaging in protected conduct, or that he or anyone else was actually fired because of their lack of political support.

Even assuming that there was such a list (there was not), nothing in the law prevents the Treasurer and his chief of staff from creating a list of employees who might be terminated.

There’s lots more, so go read the whole thing.

- Posted by Rich Miller   23 Comments      


Rauner again pushes for Uber reg veto

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* From a press release…

Bruce Rauner issued the following statement regarding the news that former campaign manager and top White House aide for President Obama David Plouffe is joining ride-sharing company Uber:

“David Plouffe’s first order of business should be to encourage Governor Pat Quinn to veto the anti-ride sharing bill pending right here in President Obama’s home state. Ride-sharing companies like Uber are exactly the type of innovative companies Illinois should be welcoming and recruiting - I know it and the President’s top people know it. Pat Quinn should know it too.”

* Except Rauner seemed quite confused about the bill earlier this summer

For example, it requires chauffeur licenses for drivers who work more than 18 hours a week, Rauner said.

“That’s just a restraint of competition,” Rauner said. “That shouldn’t be necessary.”

How is that a restraint of competition if taxi drivers already have to get one of those licenses?

And

He said some level of background checks for ride-sharing drivers “probably does make sense.” So does a certain level of insurance, though he didn’t have any coverage minimums in mind.

You want the bill vetoed, but don’t know how you’d make it better?

If a lobbyist walked into a legislator’s office with that attitude they’d be laughed out of the Statehouse.

* Basically, this is simply an attempt by Rauner to woo the younger, wealthier tech crowd in Chicago and put Quinn on the spot with that very same group. It’s not a bad move at all. I just wish he’d flesh out his position even a little bit beyond empty platitudes and sort out his contradictions.

- Posted by Rich Miller   12 Comments      


Poll: 84 percent of Chicagoans want minimum wage hiked to $13 an hour

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* Results from the latest Tribune poll

* Trib coverage

There are no plans for aldermen to consider Emanuel’s proposal until after the Nov. 4 election, when voters across Illinois will be asked if they back a minimum wage of $10 an hour.

Democrats hope that advisory referendum will boost turnout in a year when U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin and Gov. Pat Quinn are running for re-election and campaigning against income inequality. If Chicago raised its minimum wage to $13 an hour before the statewide election, some of the air could be taken out of the issue in the heavily Democratic city.

Conversely, if the General Assembly ends up raising Illinois’ minimum wage to $10 an hour, that could relieve some of the pressure on the City Council to take Chicago’s rate even higher. Emanuel won’t say whether he’ll keep pushing for a $13-an-hour city minimum wage in that situation.

It’s just politics, of course, and something I’ve discussed with subscribers, but man is that ever an incredibly cynical ploy to postpone the city council vote.

- Posted by Rich Miller   33 Comments      


Adventures in economic development

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* AP

A planned 200,000 square foot jet-repair and maintenance center will run 24 hours a day when it opens in Rockford, a move that’ll create up to 500 jobs in the northern Illinois region that’s become a hub for aerospace-related business, officials said Monday.

Construction on the $40 million facility — a private and public partnership — will start in the next year. The hangar is expected to open in 2016 and will be located at Chicago Rockford International Airport. It’s leased to Wood Dale-based AAR Corp., the largest operator of maintenance and repair sites nationwide.

Officials said they chose Rockford because of its specially trained workforce, location and distribution network. The jobs will be created over the next five years, according to Gov. Pat Quinn’s office.

* Are we sure that’s why the company chose Rockford? Greg Hinz

But the entire capital cost of the project will be funded by taxpayers, with Wood Dale-based AAR leasing the facility. […]

The state will provide $15 million for the facility, with $600,000 for job creation. The rest of the $40 million will come from airport and federal funds.

* In related news

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, other state officials and local leaders on Aug. 14 broke ground on a $7 million infrastructure project for the future Port of East St. Louis, Ill.

The project calls for building an on-site road, rail lines and utilities to create access to the inland port via train, truck and barge. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity provided $5 million for the project, while the port’s developers contributed $1.25 million. Slay Industries/Kinder Morgan will provide $2 million for the private property portion of the road.

“It’s all about location in the shipping industry, and East St. Louis is ideally situated to ship and receive goods by truck, rail or river,” said Quinn in a press release. “The Port of East St. Louis will be a major economic driver for the Metro East region.”

The 200-acre port will link the Midwest to world markets through waterway, highway and rail connections, according to state officials. The port will be located less than a mile from the Poplar Street River Bridge, and will have access to several Class Is and unit-train capabilities.

* This isn’t the first preelection Port of East St. Louis announcement. From October 14, 2010

Governor Pat Quinn today announced $8 million to redevelop a 200-acre former industrial site on the Mississippi River to clear the way to build the Port of East St. Louis and help another local company expand. This investment will create approximately 65 jobs and is funded through the River Edge Redevelopment Zone program. When completed, the multi-modal Port of East St. Louis will create approximately 1,200 direct and indirect jobs.

“Today’s announcement will help East St. Louis create a world-class transportation facility in the heart of the Metro East area,” said Governor Quinn. “The River Edge program allows us to clean up areas that have suffered from years of neglect and turn them into economic engines, creating jobs and boosting Illinois’ continued economic recovery.”

The city of East St. Louis will receive a $5 million River Edge Development Zone grant to build a north entrance into the port, including turn lanes, ramps and a branch of the main loop. Slay Industries and Kinder Morgan together will receive $2 million to redevelop approximately 200 acres for the Port of East St. Louis. The first phase of construction is expected to cost $35 million. When completed, the port will support increased commercial traffic on the Mississippi River, boost the regional economy, and relieve traffic and rail congestion across the Midwest.

At this rate, the port will be completed in the 22nd Century.

- Posted by Rich Miller   9 Comments      


Adventures in lousy governance

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* AP

Illinois used faulty methods for withdrawing federal Medicaid money, resulting in “a perpetual ‘treadmill effect’” of regular overdraws of dollars that the state later had trouble repaying, federal auditors said in a report released today.

The state’s withdrawals exceeded its actual Medicaid spending by an average of $60 million per quarter during the three years reviewed, according to the report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General.

The federal government may have lost as much as $792,000 in interest during fiscal 2010 through 2012 because the state repaid the money two to six months later, the report said.

* The Tribune explains why

Because Illinois still relies on a 30-plus-year-old Medicaid software system, it is unable to provide real-time claims information. The state, therefore, must use historical claims data to estimate the federal government’s share of the payments by quarter, Casey said.

Each day the state pays hospitals, doctors and other health care providers, it submits the federal government a bill for its projected share of the costs. At the end of each quarter, it reconciles the difference.

Between fiscal 2010 and 2012, the state’s estimates missed the mark by at least $4 million per quarter, ranging from undrawing $28.6 million from the federal government in one quarter and overdrawing $193.7 million in another, according to the audit.

Even so, Casey said, “When you look at a $60 million variance per quarter, that’s not much of a variance on average when you consider we have $3 billion in claims each quarter.”
Casey said as Illinois moves more of its Medicaid patients into managed care programs, where it will be paid a fixed fee per-patient, per-month, it will be able to better estimate and manage the amount it draws from the federal government.

Illinois won’t have new software to correct this problem until 2017.

But none of that explains why the state was depositing federal Medicaid dollars into GRF, which is why the state couldn’t pay back the money right away at the end of the quarters.

* Meanwhile

The bumpy marriage between the state and the private company that operates the Illinois Lottery is ending in a divorce.

Gov. Pat Quinn’s office confirmed to me [Friday] that it is ending its contract with Northstar Lottery Group LLC to operate the $2 billion-a-year lottery system, seven years earlier than scheduled.

It is not yet certain whether the separation will be voluntary by both parties, but a decision to end the contract has been made.

“The governor’s office has directed the lottery to end its relationship with Northstar,” gubernatorial spokesman Grant Klinzman said in an email that he later verified in a brief phone conversation. “The administration has had serious concerns with Northstar’s performance. The governor demands every state contractor be held accountable for their performance.”

* More

What’s most likely to happen is that Northstar will cease almost immediately to have any say in how the Lottery operates. Though there will likely be a short period of de-entangling transition, the 140 staffers or so staffers believed to work for Northstar will no longer be actively — or majorly — involved in charting the Lottery’s course.

In the short term, Jone’s own Lottery staff likely will take over management. And yes, there most likely will be a new private manager, as the Illinois state law that created a Lottery private manager function is still on the books and isn’t likely to be done away with anytime soon.

* Sun-Times

Northstar’s defense is that state meddling and inaction are to blame for much of the shortfall. The company contends, for example, that state officials endlessly delayed approval of a promising new Lottery game based on the board game Monopoly. Northstar also argues that later final audits will erase much of the supposed shortfall.

We’re loath to take sides too strongly on this one, seeing plenty of blame all around. We suspect Northstar overpromised from the start what it could deliver, but we also know how maddening it can be to get a government bureaucrat to make a decision or get out of the way.

The undeniable fact remains that Northstar grew Lottery sales far faster than the state did. Northstar’s own estimate is that sales grew by 3 percent a year for five years when the Lottery was administered by the state, then grew by an average of 12 percent a year after Northstar took over.

Sigh.

- Posted by Rich Miller   15 Comments      


Question of the day

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* Mark Brown

Cue your best Rod Serling imitation.

“Imagine, if you will, a world in which Republican plutocrat Bruce Rauner is governor of Illinois and lefty teachers union President Karen Lewis is mayor of Chicago.

“Have have just entered the Twilight Zone or what?

“Doo-dee, doo-doo. Doo-dee, doo-doo.”

What might have seemed completely far-fetched a year ago is now a more than possible outcome, if you believe the latest public opinion polling from both major newspapers installing Rauner and Lewis as frontrunners in their respective races.

* The Question: Imagine, if you will, a world in which Republican plutocrat Bruce Rauner is governor of Illinois and lefty teachers union President Karen Lewis is mayor of Chicago?

- Posted by Rich Miller   39 Comments      


*** UPDATED x1 *** Rate the new Bill Enyart TV ad

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* I’m told this begins airing tomorrow

*** UPDATE *** Bost campaign response…

Enyart says “he has helped Scott Air Force Base grow.”

The Facts Beltway Bill Doesn’t Want You To Know:

-Nearly 3,500 workers will be laid off in the next five years at Scott Air Force Base. Enyart was also absent for a crucial vote for military construction and appropriations.

-Enyart has also turned his back on Illinois Veterans after voting “NO” on a resolution that would have kept military chaplains working during the government shutdown.

-Illinois Veterans have asked Enyart to apologize. One month later, they’re still waiting. Click here to read Veteran’s letter.

Enyart says he is a “supporter of clean coal.”

The Facts Beltway Bill Doesn’t Want You To Know:

-Enyart voted against “The Preventing Government Waste and Protecting Coal Mining Jobs in America Act,” (H.R. 2824) and also voted against hard-working Illinois coal miners.

-Enyart also continues his anti-energy record by voting against prohibiting the Obama Administration from conducting its anti-fossil fuel agenda.

- Posted by Rich Miller   23 Comments      


Another way of looking at employment, and another look at labor participation rates

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* From the Pew Charitable Trusts…

Employment rates for 25- to 54-year-olds were lower in 29 states in fiscal year 2014 than in 2007, before the Great Recession. In 2007, 79.9 percent of people ages 25 to 54 in the United States had a job. In the 12 months ending June 2014, five years after the recession ended, only 76.2 percent of people in that age group were working.

* Methodology

Pew weighted data from the Current Population Survey using values provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. These data were used to calculate the total number of civilian, noninstitutionalized 25- to 54-year-olds in each state and in the nation. Pew then calculated the average percentage of people who were employed in each of those populations. These calculations were done for 2007 (January through December) and fiscal 2014 (July 2013 through June 2014). Pew used these values to calculate the percentage-point change from 2007 to fiscal 2014. Significance tests were performed to determine which changes were statistically significant at a 0.05 level.

The top five states, in order were Vermont, Nebraska, Minnesota, Massachusetts and Alaska.

* US average

* Illinois actually did a little bit better than the national average

* Meanwhile, we already discussed this hyperbolic statement by Bruce Rauner’s campaign today

“Tens of thousands of people are giving up looking for work because of Pat Quinn’s failed policies,” Rauner said. “More than 63,000 people have given up hope on finding a job since April and Pat Quinn is out celebrating – it’s downright offensive to struggling families around Illinois.”

* So, I went looking through various Federal Reserve Board publications to see what their explanation was. Let’s start with this chart from the San Francisco Fed

* James Bullard, President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, explained the history back in February

If you know only one aspect of the data on labor force participation, it should be this: Labor force participation used to be relatively low, it rose during the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, peaking in 2000, and it has generally been declining since 2000. […]

After about three decades of trending up, the labor force participation rate peaked in the first half of 2000 at 67.3 percent. The rate of increase was slower in the 1990s than it was in the 1970s or 1980s. The peak was more than 8 percentage points higher than the average level during 1948 - 1966. Many of the studies of labor force participation during this period focused on the increasing participation rates of women. However, whatever effects came from that source, or any other source, the labor force participation rate could not continue to increase forever. Households are making choice s about how much labor to supply given current wages and work environments, and women newly joining the labor force would find the right level of participation and stop there.

Since 2000, the labor force participation rate has generally been declining. The pace of decline was particularly sharp during the recession of 2007 - 2009, but the participation rate also declined steadily in the early 2000s and since the end of the recession in mid - 2009. […]

According to BLS projections, more than 70 percent of this decline is due to pure demographic factors; that is, changes in population shares by age groups, assuming unchanged participation rates for each group.

* By Willem Van Zandweghe at the KC Fed

The primary factor behind this decline is the rising share of older workers in the population as the baby-boom generation ages and life expectancies increase. The rising share of older workers pulls down the LFPR because older workers have lower participation rates than prime-age workers. A second factor behind the gradual decline of the LFPR has been a steady reduction in labor force participation among young people over the last decade, resulting in large part from rising school enrollment

* Shigeru Fujita, of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, February 6, 2014

Nonparticipation due to retirement did not rise until the end of the Great Recession but started to increase significantly in 2010. Since the start of 2012, it has been the most important contributor to the increase in the overall nonparticipation rate.

* Washington Post

Americans over the age of 65 are much less likely to work than prime-age Americans. And since that subset of Americans is swelling, that drives the labor-force participation rate down. Note that this is happening even though older Americans are staying on the job for longer than they did during the 1990s.

* And the Chicago Fed predicted more declines in the labor force through 2020

Roughly two-thirds of the decline is due to the aging of the labor force (in particular, baby boomer retirements)

…Adding… Last year, when Illinois’ unemployment rate was really high, Bruce Rauner focused heavily on the rate. Now, of course, he’s saying the rate doesn’t matter. A few quotes sent over by Gov. Quinn’s campaign…

“Unemployment is awful. But in Danville, Decatur, and Rockford and other places, unemployment is well over 10%. These places share one common need: Jobs - and we need leaders who have experience in creating them.” -Rauner FB Post, 3/10/2013

“Under Pat Quinn we have become hostile to business and have moved up to one of the highest unemployment rates in America. We use to be leading the nation in economic growth and now we are at the bottom.” -WLDS, 8/15/14

“Rauner told the crowd he wants to bring his success in business to Springfield. In the process, his focus is to achieve results that will point to Illinois having the best schools and “the lowest unemployment in the country as opposed to the third highest” -SIOR-AIRE Meeting, 5/27/14

…Adding More… Greg Hinz

For instance, the share of Illinois adults in the workforce dropped a whopping 4.1 percentage points in the past six years, slipping to 64.7 percent from 66.8 percent. Not good. But in Michigan and Ohio, the slippage was a statistically indistinguishable 3.9 percent each. And their current participation rates remain well under ours, at 60.4 percent and 62.8 percent, specifically.

- Posted by Rich Miller   26 Comments      


Today’s long read

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* The AP doesn’t do this opinion justice

A federal appeals court has taken on the issue of pay-to-play corruption in Illinois under disgraced ex-Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

The U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated a lawsuit by riverboat casinos in a late Friday ruling. The suit alleges that racetrack owners bribed Blagojevich to push through legislation that transferred 3 percent of casino revenue to the racetracks.

The Chicago-based court says the case required it to “once again to decide whether some shenanigans” in the Legislature “and governor’s office crossed the line from the merely unseemly to the unlawful.”

* This is an almost literary, well thought-out and quite reasonable opinion

Deals are the stuff of legislating. Although logrolling may appear unseemly some of the time, it is not, by itself, illegal. Bribes are. This case requires us once again to decide whether some shenanigans in the Illinois General Assembly and governor’s office crossed the line from the merely unseemly to the unlawful. It involves a subject we have visited in the past: two industries that compete for gambling dollars. […]

In 2006 and 2008, former Governor Rod Blagojevich signed into law two bills (to which we refer as the ’06 and ’08 Acts) that imposed a tax on certain in‐state casinos of 3% of their revenue and placed the funds into a trust for the benefit of the horseracing industry. Smelling a rat, the plaintiff casinos brought suit under the federal Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), 18 U.S.C. § 1964, alleging that the defendants, all members of the horseracing industry, had bribed the governor to ensure that the bills were enacted. Viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the plaintiffs (and of course not vouching for anything), we conclude that there was enough to survive summary judgment on the claim that the governor agreed to sign the ’08 Act in exchange for a bribe. […]

Illinois legalized riverboat casino gambling in 1990. Ever since, the state’s once‐thriving horseracing industry has been in decline. In late 2005 and early 2006, the state General Assembly considered legislation to help the horseracers. One bill would have imposed a 3% tax on casinos earning more than $50 million annually and deposited the proceeds into a fund for the benefit of the horseracing industry. It was modeled on similar initiatives in three other states. Lobbying on all sides was intense. On the first few votes in the General Assembly, the bill failed to garner a majority.

The bill’s fortunes changed later in the spring of 2006. For one thing, it was modified so that the tax applied only to casinos earning more than $200 million annually, thereby limiting its effect to the large casinos in northern Illinois near Chicago. For another, Governor Blagojevich began to take an interest in the matter after his senior aide and alleged pay‐toplay facilitator, Christopher Kelly, met with a horseracing executive, John Johnston. On the floor of the General Assembly, the bill’s opponents cried foul. “Why are some of you called down to the Governor’s office, then you come back up and change your vote?” asked Representative William Black. Added Representative Brent Hassert, “The Governor has weighed in on [the ’06 bill] … heavily in the last night or so, calling people and asking people to vote on this. It is my understanding … that there’s promises have been made to support this bill.” Soon after, the ’06 Act cleared the House by a vote of 70‐32; a week later, the Senate passed it 40‐16. Governor Blagojevich signed the bill into law the next day. Johnston and other racing executives thanked the governor for his support of the bill in a personal letter. Using various subsidiaries, they then contributed $125,000 to his campaign fund.

“Smelling a rat.”

Heh.

Chief Judge Diane Wood is one heck of a story teller. She had me locked in from the opening paragraph and I just couldn’t stop reading.

* The court found no addressable legal issues with the original 2006 bill

The Casinos have not pointed to evidence that would allow a factfinder to conclude that the Racetracks’ alleged bribery scheme caused the legislature to pass the ’06 Act. To begin with, the Casinos make no allegation and have no evidence that the Racetracks ever bribed or attempted to bribe state legislators. Nor do the Casinos point to evidence that the governor agreed to exert improper influence over state legislators in order to win their support of the ’06 Act in exchange for a bribe. […]

The worst comment the Casinos identify is Rep. Hassert’s obviously inadmissible statement that it was his “understanding … [that] promises [were] made to support this bill.” Not only is that comment an out‐of‐court statement offered to prove the truth of the matter asserted; the underlying sentiment is not based on personal knowledge… Worse, we have no idea what promises he was talking about. If the promise referred to support for re‐election, or a commitment to cosponsor a bill, without any taint of bribery, nothing would be wrong. […]

The record contains no admissible evidence that Governor Blagojevich unduly pressured members of the legislature to support the ’06 Act. Nor is there competent evidence that would permit an inference that any identifiable group of legislators “voted as a bloc” at the governor’s behest. No legislator was bribed. It takes more than the Casinos have shown here to support their proposed conclusion that the workings of an entire state legislature were coopted by the bribery of one official. […]

Evidence is similarly lacking to support a finding that the Racetracks bribed Governor Blagojevich to sign the ’06 Act into law. The Casinos point to a meeting between Johnston and Blagojevich’s aide Chris Kelly in 2006 while the Act was stalled in the legislature. But they provide no evidence that Johnston offered Kelly a bribe in exchange for Governor Blagojevich’s signature during that meeting. The letter from the Racetracks to Blagojevich after the ’06 Act passed merely thanked him for his support; it did not suggest that Blagojevich had agreed to sign the bill in exchange for a bribe. The fact that the Racetracks later made campaign contributions cannot, without more, support liability for acts of political corruption. To hold illegal an official’s support of legislation furthering the interests of some constituents shortly before or after campaign contributions are solicited and received “would open to prosecution not only conduct that has long been thought to be well within the law but also conduct that in a very real sense is unavoidable so long as election campaigns are financed by private contributions or expenditures, as they have been from the beginning of the Nation.”

That makes sense.

* The 2008 bill is another matter, however

As with the ’06 Act, the record contains little evidence to show that the Governor’s influence caused the legislature to pass the ’08 Act. But that is not all that the Casinos alleged. They also asserted that the Racetracks and the governor agreed to a quid pro quo: in exchange for the governor’s signature on the ’08 Act, the Racetracks promised to give $100,000 to his campaign fund.

The summary judgment record contains considerable evidence that, if credited, would support the allegation of a quid pro quo between the Racetracks and Governor Blagojevich. When Blagojevich did not immediately sign the ’08 Act into law, Racetracks executive Johnston stated to a colleague in an email: “We are going to have to put a stronger bit in his mouth!?!” Johnston complained to Blagojevich’s chief of staff Monk that the delays in signing the bill were costing Johnston $9,000 per day. A factfinder could conclude that Blagojevich was talking about Johnston’s commitment to pay $100,000 when he informed Monk that he would “like some separation between that and signing the bill.” After the FBI recorded Monk and Blagojevich scheming about getting Johnston to pay, Monk met with Johnston and, according to Monk, delivered the message that the bill would not be signed until he paid. According to Monk, Johnston countered with an offer to pay half the money at once and half later. Monk called Blagojevich immediately after the meeting with Johnston to report his belief that Johnston would soon pay. After learning of the criminal allegation that Blagojevich threatened not to sign the ’08 Act bill unless he was paid $100,000 by someone in the horseracing industry, Johnston admitted, “I didn’t know if anybody else had given 100,000, but I knew I did.” Finally, Johnston signed an immunity agreement in which he acknowledged that he had information that “may tend to incriminate” him. From this and other evidence in the record, a reasonable juror could conclude that the Racetracks agreed to pay $100,000 to Blagojevich’s campaign fund in return for his signature on the ’08 Act.

Yep. Agreed.

* Now, on to the conclusion

That brings us to the heart of the matter: Was the Racetracks’ alleged agreement to bribe the governor to sign the ’08 Act sufficiently immediate to serve as a legal cause of the Casinos’ injuries for purposes of RICO? […]

We see nothing in RICO, as the Supreme Court has interpreted it, that would bar the Casinos from pursuing their claim with respect to the ’08 Act. There was no more directly injured party standing between the Casinos and the alleged wrongdoer, and thus no one else to whom they could look for relief; their injuries were not derivative. The money they paid pursuant to the ’08 Act did not compensate the State of Illinois for any losses to the state. Rather, the Casinos themselves suffered the only injury resulting from the Racetracks’ alleged conspiracy to enact the ’08 statute. […]

The ’08 Act taxed only five entities in the entire state. Other taxpayers and citizens were unaffected. Moreover, the Casinos are not challenging the tax itself in this litigation, having lost earlier efforts pursuing that theory. Rather, they seek damages from a private party for an alleged conspiracy to use the power of state government to take money from them. Their injury is easily measured, and it is directly traceable to the Racetracks’ alleged conduct (bribing the governor to sign the ’08 Act) and remediable by this court. […]

In closing, we stress that the only RICO element we are deciding is the issue of proximate cause. To sustain their section 1962(d) conspiracy claim, the Casinos must ultimately show “that (1) the defendant[s] agreed to maintain an interest in or control of an enterprise or to participate in the affairs of an enterprise through a pattern of racketeering activity, and (2) the defendant[s] further agreed that someone would commit at least two predicate acts to accomplish these goals.” … We recognize that our rejection of the Casinos’ claims based on the ’06 Act may have an impact on their ability to show that the defendants agreed to the commission of two predicate acts… or that the defendants “knowingly agreed to perform services of a kind [to] facilitate the activities of those … operating the enterprise in an illegal manner,”

The Balmoral and Maywood tracks could be in deep trouble here.

Also, this is the same court which is deciding what to do about Blagojevich’s appeal of his prison sentence.

- Posted by Rich Miller   13 Comments      


More Cayman Islands stuff

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* From an August 1st Sun-Times story on Bruce Rauner’s investments in the Cayman Islands

Three of Rauner’s five Cayman Island holdings trace back to GTCR, the Chicago-based investment company that Rauner founded and headed until 2012 when he stepped down to ramp up his bid for governor. […]

Three of Rauner’s Cayman Islands investments are tied to his old firm: GTCR Golder Rauner II AIV Ironshore LP, GTCR Partners IX AIV Ironshore LP, and GTCR Partners X/A&C AIV LP.

* From today’s Sun-Times

Republican Bruce Rauner not only has personal investments in the Cayman Islands, but he presided over his former private equity firm as it set up other investment vehicles in the Caribbean tax haven known for its secrecy.

The Chicago Sun-Times verified through the Cayman Islands’ government-run online business registry that a total of a dozen investment funds were established there by Chicago-based GTCR between June 2009 and July 2011, when Rauner chaired the firm. […]

But a top Rauner aide Monday defended the funds’ creation and said they all relate to GTCR’s 2009 investment in Bermuda-based Ironshore, Inc., a specialty insurance company, and a 2011 GTCR acquisition of Gridlock Holdings, a provider of custom news and traffic reports for non-U.S. media outlets.

I’m not sure if there’s much new news there, but “a dozen” is certainly more than “three,” and it provides another opportunity for the Democrats to tee off on him.

* From the DGA…

Republican billionaire Bruce Rauner only recently returned from vacationing at one of his luxury residences in Montana where he dodged questions about why he stashed his cash in the Caymans, a notorious haven for tax dodgers.

Hmmm….any guesses on which estate Rauner goes to now in order dodge questions on the new revelation that he helped to steer company money to the Caymans?

A new Chicago Sun Times story includes an assessment of why Rauner would not only avoid US and Illinois taxes by stashing personal funds, but why he could maximize that profit by steering company money to the Caymans:

“‘By putting the funds in the Cayman Islands, he’s making it easy for his investors to cheat, which means he’ll have more investors than he’d otherwise have, and he’ll earn more fees from it,’ said Rebecca Wilkins, senior legal counsel for the Center for Tax Justice that estimates the federal government loses $100 billion a year in owed tax obligations because of foreign tax havens.’”

This isn’t the only way that Rauner avoids paying his fair share and profiting at the expense of others. Rauner also other exotic loopholes to dodge paying Medicare and Social Security taxes, while banking profits at the expense of middle class workers. Workers in Rauner’s companies have been subjected to massive layoffs, outsourcing and conditions that led to deadly negligence, abuse and outright fraud.

“If he was governor of the Cayman Islands it would allow him to spend more time managing his millions and spare Illinois from being led by a profiteer that puts his money before workers, seniors, families and communities,” said Rikeesha Phelon, Illinois Spokesperson for the Democratic Governors Association.

“He hasn’t been honest with the public about his tax information. And now we see he hasn’t been honest with the people about the extent of his foreign dealings.”

- Posted by Rich Miller   21 Comments      


Right county, wrong state

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* From congressional candidate Mike Bost’s Twitter feed


I didn’t realize Anna’s county fair was that large.

* Turns out, it isn’t. A sharp-eyed guy at the Bill Enyart campaign did a quick check and found that Bost had tweeted this pic

…which was used in this story about the Union County Fair in Ohio

The Union County Fair celebrated its 165th year with many new attractions at the 50-acre fairgrounds in Marysville.

Organizers kicked off the first “Redneck Mud Run” on Wednesday, July 25, with 31 participants.

Oops.

Google Image Search can be your friend, but only if you use it properly.

- Posted by Rich Miller   24 Comments      


Manufacturing news

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* When I listened to the audio of Gov. Pat Quinn’s Chicago press conference yesterday, I was a bit surprised at the number of questions he received from reporters about the situation in Ferguson, MO. He was asked what his thoughts were about the unfolding drama, he was asked whether Missouri’s governor had asked for assistance from Illinois’ National Guard and then was asked whether he would “entertain” a request from our neighboring state for National Guard deployment.

Listen…

* That last question was by far the weirdest. Are reporters (or editors) really that eager to find an Illinois angle to this story? Apparently so

Speaking at a bill-signing event on Monday, Gov. Pat Quinn weighed in on the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, that has gripped the nation, saying all of America is vested in unearthing the facts behind the police-involved shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

The Aug. 9 shooting of the unarmed black man by a white police officer has torn apart that St. Louis suburb, with Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon on Monday calling in that state’s National Guard to help calm increasingly violent nightly protests.

“I know Gov. Nixon. I have not talked to him,” Quinn said at the Wesley Place, a rehab facility at 1415 W. Foster, where he signed into law two bills addressing standards and accountability at Illinois nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

“I think it’s very, very important that the people be allowed to voice their feelings. It’s part of the First Amendment of our country. I think that law enforcement has to respect that,” Quinn said. “But we also believe in order, and in making sure that everyone has a chance to be safe. I do think it’s important that the governor there did deploy his highway patrol — what we call state police in Illinois — to help local law enforcement get a handle on the situation. It was clearly well-needed.”

And

When there’s an extreme emergency, Illinois National Guard units have gone to other states to help. Thousands of troops were sent to New Orleans, following Hurricane Katrina, for example.

But Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn says Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has not requested help from Illinois’ troops to aide with the Ferguson situation, and he doesn’t expect him to.

Except we’re not talking about a major American city being destroyed, we’re talking about riots in a small St. Louis suburb.

- Posted by Rich Miller   17 Comments      


Unclear on the concept

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* The Rauner campaign sent out a few news stories covering the candidate’s swing through southern Illinois. Here’s video of coverage by WPSD TV

Transcript provided by the Rauner campaign…

ANCHOR: Republican candidate for governor Bruce Rauner is on the campaign trail – today in Marion hoping to connect with the outdoorsmen in the region. He introduced his Conservationists for Rauner Coalition for those who, like himself, enjoy the great outdoors. He says as governor he would work to revamp the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

RAUNER: Our parks are not being taken care of, our national forests are deteriorating, our waterways, we need to enhance our natural resources so families can enjoy them. With hiking and camping and hunting and fishing and riding.

ANCHOR: Rauner says that working to better the department would lead to job creation and improve local national forests and tourist attractions.

Um, national forests? The state doesn’t have enough money to take care of what it has, and he wants to restore national forests? Does he even listen to himself?

* From WSIL TV

Rauner was very vocal about protecting and maintaining the natural resources in Southern Illinois. He says tourist destinations like state parks and wildlife areas can be utilized to create more jobs and improve the economy.

“The outdoors can generate a lot of economic activity,” said Rauner.

He claims recent state budget cuts have hurt promotion of the state’s natural resources. If elected, he promises to team up with state conservationists to preserve parks and wildlife areas in hopes of boosting the state’s economy.

“Our gas stations can get more gas sold to tourists and travelers,” explained Rauner. “It can help our hotels and restaurants.”

I couldn’t agree more. But how are you gonna do that when you slash the income tax rate while also promising to increase school funding, etc.?

- Posted by Rich Miller   56 Comments      


Rauner attacks Quinn on job numbers while Quinn hits back on tax filing

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

* The subject in this Rauner campaign e-mail was “Rauner Statement on Quinn Celebrating Thousands Giving Up on Work”…

Bruce Rauner: “Tens of thousands of people are giving up looking for work because of Pat Quinn’s failed policies. More than 63,000 people have given up hope on finding a job since April and Pat Quinn is out celebrating — it’s downright offensive to struggling families around Illinois.”

Bruce Rauner today issued the following statement in response to Pat Quinn’s continued celebration of thousands of Illinoisans giving up on finding work over the last few months.

“Tens of thousands of people are giving up looking for work because of Pat Quinn’s failed policies,” Rauner said. “More than 63,000 people have given up hope on finding a job since April and Pat Quinn is out celebrating – it’s downright offensive to struggling families around Illinois.”

In case you missed it, Peoria WMBD TV reported that “despite a report last week from the state showing more jobs created in Illinois and a lower unemployment rate, new data released Monday by the U S Bureau of Labor Statistics, paints a different picture.”

* Meanwhile, the Quinn campaign is sticking to the tax form issue…

Professor Kevin Stevens, director of the School of Accountancy and Management Information Systems at DePaul University, will be available to the media to discuss what we do and don’t know about Bruce Rauner’s finances and what disclosure of his full tax records could reveal.

- Posted by Rich Miller   39 Comments      


Protected: SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today’s edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)

Tuesday, Aug 19, 2014

This post is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

- Posted by Rich Miller   Comments Off      


PREVIOUS POSTS »
* Not nearly enough
* AG Madigan files blistering motion against Rutherford accuser
* Rauner again pushes for Uber reg veto
* Poll: 84 percent of Chicagoans want minimum wage hiked to $13 an hour
* Adventures in economic development
* Adventures in lousy governance
* Question of the day
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Rate the new Bill Enyart TV ad
* Another way of looking at employment, and another look at labor participation rates
* Today's long read
* More Cayman Islands stuff
* Right county, wrong state
* Manufacturing news
* Unclear on the concept
* Rauner attacks Quinn on job numbers while Quinn hits back on tax filing
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

          
        * Michael Halbherr Steps Down As CEO Of Here, Nokia’s Location And Mapping Division
        * Android 4.4.3 rolling out to European HTC One M7 devices
        * Sharp Aquos Crystal hands-on: bleeding-edge style on a budget (Video)
        * iPhone 6 LTE-A, HTC One M8 for Windows, Pebble WebOS team & more – Pocketnow Daily
        * Mysterious Motorola “Quark XT1254″ more powerful than the Moto X+1?
        * HTC One M8 for Windows coming to AT&T
        * BrandPost: For the ultimate home cinema, start with NAS

        * New Apple iPhone 6 Screen Resolution Discovered In iOS 8 Beta 6 Files
        * Pop-up ads inventor is very sorry
        * HTC One M8 For Windows Announced
        * Nokia Here chief Halbherr steps down a few months after taking CEO role
        * Strange Looking New Sony Selfie Smartphone Leaked
        * Weird Looking Selfie Phone From Sony (Rumor)
        * X-47B Drone Handled Unmanned Operations Test Successfully

        * Chicago turns to Noesi in finale with Baltimore
        * Trouble finds Quintana late vs. Orioles
        * Abreu's homerless streak at an end
        * Orioles 5, White Sox 1: Bats, Hawk put on ice
        * Trouble finds Quintana late vs. Orioles
        * Hawk does ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
        * Abreu's homerless streak at an end


        Main Menu
        Home
        Illinois
        YouTube
        Pundit rankings
        Obama
        Subscriber Content
        Durbin
        Burris
        Blagojevich Trial
        Advertising
        Updated Posts
        Polls

        Archives
        August 2014
        July 2014
        June 2014
        May 2014
        April 2014
        March 2014
        February 2014
        January 2014
        December 2013
        November 2013
        October 2013
        September 2013
        August 2013
        July 2013
        June 2013
        May 2013
        April 2013
        March 2013
        February 2013
        January 2013
        December 2012
        November 2012
        October 2012
        September 2012
        August 2012
        July 2012
        June 2012
        May 2012
        April 2012
        March 2012
        February 2012
        January 2012
        December 2011
        November 2011
        October 2011
        September 2011
        August 2011
        July 2011
        June 2011
        May 2011
        April 2011
        March 2011
        February 2011
        January 2011
        December 2010
        November 2010
        October 2010
        September 2010
        August 2010
        July 2010
        June 2010
        May 2010
        April 2010
        March 2010
        February 2010
        January 2010
        December 2009
        November 2009
        October 2009
        September 2009
        August 2009
        July 2009
        June 2009
        May 2009
        April 2009
        March 2009
        February 2009
        January 2009
        December 2008
        November 2008
        October 2008
        September 2008
        August 2008
        July 2008
        June 2008
        May 2008
        April 2008
        March 2008
        February 2008
        January 2008
        December 2007
        November 2007
        October 2007
        September 2007
        August 2007
        July 2007
        June 2007
        May 2007
        April 2007
        March 2007
        February 2007
        January 2007
        December 2006
        November 2006
        October 2006
        September 2006
        August 2006
        July 2006
        June 2006
        May 2006
        April 2006
        March 2006
        February 2006
        January 2006
        December 2005
        April 2005
        March 2005
        February 2005
        January 2005
        December 2004
        November 2004
        October 2004

        Blog*Spot Archives
        November 2005
        October 2005
        September 2005
        August 2005
        July 2005
        June 2005
        May 2005

        Syndication

        RSS Feed 2.0
        Comments RSS 2.0
        WordPress

        Loading


        * Pigs, cows and votes..
        * Quinn proposes changes to condo fees bill..
        * Quinn signs bill to require concussion training.....
        * Want to raise the minimum wage? Take it to the .....
        * Newspaper: Rauner firm had Cayman investment funds..
        * Vallas attacks, Rauner defends businesses and i.....


        * Official: 4 of 6 child hostages freed in Harvey
        * Clock ticks on Illinois term limits ballot measure
        * Quinn proposes changes to condo fees bill
        * Officials: Gunman holds hostages in Chicago suburb
        * Roosevelt University to cut back suburban campus
        * Exelon formally files to acquire Pepco Holdings
        * Law aims to prevent student athlete concussions
        * Newspaper: Rauner firm had Cayman investment funds
        * Starved Rock trails begin to re-open to public
        * Emanuel: 57 public schools get air conditioning

        * Manar, others tout school funding reform bill
        * Vallas attacks, Rauner defends businesses, investments
        * Vallas attacks, Rauner defends businesses and investments
        * State retiree insurance premiums to drop
        * State retiree insurance premiums dropping to pre-July 1 levels
        * Sanguinetti expresses love for Springfield, says ‘cow tipping’ comment was ‘jovial’
        * Vallas attacks Rauner's businesses, investments
        * Quinn emphasizes connection to ‘everyday people,’ Rauner’s wealth during Democratic rally
        * Vallas attacks Rauner’s businesses, investments
        * Rauner urges quick decision on term limits measure

        * Leslie Hindman launches online auction site with other houses
        * Uber hires Obama campaign guru to wage regulatory fight
        * Rauner firm had Cayman investment funds: report
        * Lighten up on pot, toughen up on guns, state's attorney says
        * Top media exec leaves MillerCoors for General Mills


        * Man dead in police-involved shooting on Far South Side
        * Man dead in police-involved shooting in Riverdale
        * Jackie Robinson West fans agree: ‘These young brothers are phenomenal!’
        * 4 children released in Harvey hostage standoff
        * Parents urge CPS to OK new Chatham site for Concept school
        * $1 million pledge changes Lewis’ ‘calculus’ — but not her timeline
        * National school union would put $1 million into Karen Lewis mayoral campaign
        * Woman found dead in Bali got $840,000 in a cruise line settlement
        * Man charged in murder of 8-year-old daughter dies in jail hospital
        * Ferguson, race and remedies


        * Illinois grads made progress on ACT, but numbers troubling
        * 1 dead in police-involved shooting on Far South Side
        * At least 3 hurt in South Side shooting
        * 4th child released after 2 cops shot in Harvey as "very intense" hostage situation continues
        * Karen Lewis inches closer to challenging Mayor Rahm Emanuel
        * Hundreds at Chicago party cheer city's Little Leaguers on to victory
        * Court ruling revives plans for Lincolnwood gun range
        * Chicagoan arrested in Ferguson: Shooting 'worth getting angry about'
        * Girl who died in Arlington Heights pool identified
        * Chicago mental health clinic closings spark opposing views


        * Callis Says Plenty Of People Worried About Jobs, Economy
        * Rauner Blasts Quinn On "Failed" Policies, Governor's Mansion
        * Rauner Pressures Illinois Supreme Court To Rule On Term Limits
        * WUIS/SJ-R Business Report: The Future Of The Esquire Theatre; Slowing Downtown Spfld. Traffic
        * It's like the first day every day in popular 'Feelings' class
        * Classic Musical 'The Pajama Game' At New Salem
        * Push Continues For School Funding Overhaul
        * Mascots, Class Warfare, Rallies: Democrats Fight To Hold Onto Power
        * Rodney Davis Says "Do Nothing Congress" Criticism Unfair
        * Anti-Fracking Activists Crash Democrat Breakfast


        * Manar, others tout school funding reform bill
        * Michael Gerson: Rand Paul’s bogus outreach
        * Our Opinion: Double down on outside lottery management
        * Vallas attacks, Rauner defends businesses and investments
        * State retiree insurance premiums dropping to pre-July 1 levels
        * Rauner urges quick decision on term limits measure
        * Audit: Illinois overdrew federal Medicaid dollars
        * Blagojevich, state corruption feature in ruling
        * State hearing to focus on cutting greenhouse gases
        * GOP newcomers say lack of experience is an asset


        * Landowners ask Shelby County Board for help with tubers
        * Police: Robber took shower, left evidence, caught
        * Decatur man on trial for attempted murder
        * Scholarships continue to grow at Richland
        * Suspect sought in Oakland bank robbery
        * Flock of freshmen
        * $21,000 falls off money truck after casino pickup
        * The real drivers of innovation
        * Open Line
        * In the swim of things


        * After 4½-hour delay, Cubs declared the winner at 1:15 a.m.
        * American photojournalist executed, Islamic State says
        * After 4½-hour delay, Cubs declared the winner after 1:15 a.m.
        * Rain causes headaches in Cubs' opener with Giants
        * Medical pot growers competing for Bartlett site

        * Fun little stuff - The Capitol Fax Blog (b...
        * Telling Nancy Pelosi to do research is sex...
        * Roskam gives business leaders vision for f...
        * Aaron Schock: Rauner and I put differences...
        * Schakowsky blasts Marino for 'sexist' atta...
        * Lipinski: Time to stop 'kicking the can' o...
        * Roskam: Fighting human trafficking in the ...
        * Aaron Schock has the best Instagram accoun...
        * Rep. Lipinski Helps Pass VA Reform Bill - ...
        * Luis Gutierrez throws his support behind H...

        * Public meeting Aug.21 to discuss Chicago’s......
        * Public meeting Aug.21 to discuss Chicago’s......
        * Public meeting Aug.21 to discuss Chicago’s......
        * Public meeting Aug.21 to discuss Chicago’s......
        * Declare Pullman a national park...

        * Public meeting Aug.21 to discuss Chicago’s......
        * Northlake World War II injured vet fights ......

        * Sun-Times Columnist Mary Mitchell Wants Black Jesus To Get Off Her Lawn
        * Chicago 1984
        * Making sure ‘fans’ won’t defect
        * A politician from the Democratic machine of Chicago "gets even"
        * Comment on Despite What Quinn Claims, Illinois Leads In Job Loss by » Despite What Quinn Claims, Illinois Leads In Job Loss
        * ALS awareness ribbon
        * AFT Would Donate $1 Million To Lewis' Campaign If She Runs For Mayor
        * Eyes On 2016? Clinton Goes To Iowa Next Month
        * Quinn Signs Law Improving Latino Data Collection
        * Rauner Urges Quick Decision On Term Limits Measure


        * ICYMI: Rauner urges quick decision on term limits measure
        * Top Obama Adviser Joins Uber – What Will Quinn Do?
        * Rauner Statement on Quinn Celebrating Thousands Giving Up on Work
        * Governor Quinn Signs Law to Help Prevent Concussions Among High School Athletes - Law Requires Illinois High Schools to Train Athletic Directors and Coaches on Concussion Reduction
        * IDHS/DRS helps more than 5,000 individuals with disabilities find jobs - Program provides necessary tools to earn a living wage and become more independent




            Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller