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White powdery substance, a buffoon’s money and felonious pols *** Updated x1 ***

Tuesday, Jan 30, 2007

Ald. Arenda Troutman says the white powdery substance the feds found in a ziplock bag in her office was dietary fiber, not drugs.

Ald. Arenda Troutman (20th) said today she doesn’t use drugs and is “betting my life” that the white powdery substance found in her home was not narcotics, but a dietary fiber she uses to cleanse her colon.

Troutman charged that federal agents who found the powdery substance during a raid on her South Side home and ward office already know the results were negative and that they’re keeping the information quiet to continue to smear her.

“I can’t understand that you don’t know by now if that was a drug or not,” she said after chairing a City Council Committee hearing. “That’s been over three weeks ago and you mean to tell me with all the technology we have today that they have not let the press know? They’ve let you guys know everything [else] to this point.”

The feds say that the tests haven’t come back yet, but, regardless of whatever else you may think of her, she has a good point here. It shouldn’t take three weeks to see if it was cocaine or heroin.

Meanwhile, a group of 30 Chicago organizations that are critical of Mayor Daley released a “Report Card for Change” yesterday, and found that one particular alderman, who recently described himself as a “buffoon” (a year or so after he denied he was a buffoon), was raking in cash from developers.

Real estate interests contributed $1.7 million — more than any other industry — to the campaign coffers of 20 Chicago aldermen over an 18-month period, and 13 percent of that money went to one politician: Ald. Burton F. Natarus (42nd), a study shows.

Natarus, whose booming, development-rich ward includes the Gold Coast and downtown areas, was the No. 1 earner in three categories of the dozen industries surveyed by a coalition of community organizations:

Real estate interests gave $1.75 million to the 20 top-earning aldermen and Natarus got 13 percent of that money. Business services gave $313,052 and 19 percent to Natarus. Retail and wholesalers gave $661,889 and 13 percent to Natarus. Ald. Danny Solis (25th) also got 13 percent. Entertainment sports and gambling interests gave $114,657 and 27 percent of it to Ald. Shirley Coleman (16th).

And finally, convicted felons are allowed to run for alderman, according to a judge.

Former Ald. Virgil Jones (15th), who was convicted on corruption charges in 1999, can run to regain a seat on the City Council in the Feb. 27 election, a Cook County judge decided Monday.

Circuit Judge Alfred Paul ruled that a state law that would ban Jones from the race is unconstitutional because it applies only to ex-felons running in local races and not statewide elections.

So, there may be hope for Troutman down the line if this federal thing doesn’t work out too well.

*** UPDATE *** It would be a big help if you would use the comment section to post Website addresses to local campaigns and blogs and forums set up to discuss them.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Ron Burgundy - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 9:59 am:

    So what’s the defense here for Troutman?

    If the stuff makes her, ahem… (another word for go to the bathroom), you must acquit?

  2. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 10:23 am:

    I’m on my soapbox again, so I’ll say this quickly:

    If a political party wants voters to support it, then the party needs to make sure it’s endorsements and support go to a good candidate. We cannot depend on state law to do the job - we have to depend on the party to do it.

    When a political party nominates a candidate, then it should be held responsible for that nomination. When the candidate or incumbant is discovered to be breaking our laws, the party should be held accountable too. What good is a political party if it doesn’t back up it’s nominations?

    The time has come for both political parties to demand that soiled office holders and candidates lose their support. Clean up your act!

    The first political party to drive out folks like the ones we see running this state, the more support that party will have with future election. The days of sticking with the incumbant devils because they can be reelected is killing the political parties.

    If I were Green, I’d encourage a “guarantee” on every candidate nominated. Voters would like to see a party stand for integrity and honesty instead of just pretending.

  3. - Archpundit - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 10:38 am:

    The thing about Troutman, and a point I’ll make later, is it’s an awful lot like what Floyd Landis had done to him with his first test coming back positive (though even that’s questionable now). She does have a good point. However, it is one of those things I really didn’t want to know.

  4. - Get it straight - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 10:39 am:

    “The feds say that the tests haven’t come back yet, but, regardless of whatever else you may think of her, she has a good point here. It shouldn’t take three weeks to see if it was cocaine or heroin. ”

    Rich, come on. Anyone who has ever covered courts or crime knows that it takes at least three weeks to get drug tests results back. That is why her second court date was set back so far, to make sure there was enough time for the results. Unless the ‘ho’ alderman thinks she deservees special treatment here, and a bump up in the line of tests, then this is just bluster, signifying nothing and only allowing her to continue for a few more months sucking off the teat of the taxpayers.

  5. - Dan B-R - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 12:53 pm: has ward by ward information on who is running, links to their web sites and a posting of events, fundraisers, forums etc.

  6. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 1:10 pm:

    “Get it straight,” since they arrested her during a campaign season, I think it would only be fair if they bumped her test to the front of the line. Three weeks is more than enough. Get on with it already.

  7. - Freezeup - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 5:37 pm:

    Rich, I love ya’ man, but why would a Chicago alderman get special treatment in this regard? I can’t say how I know, but there is no way to get to the front of the line at the crime lab. None. I guarantee that there was a “field test” done on the white powder on scene, but nobody will identify it publicly until conclusive “laboratory testing” is performed. I would say the agents are being discrete in order to insure what they have is illegal and not innocuous. How do we know that it was seized? By the return of the search warrant? If so it would be common not to state what the agents believe the powder to be. I smell spin doctoring by the Alderman on this issue.

  8. - Freezeup - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 5:39 pm:

    I don’t think I came out and said that it would not be uncommon for lab results to take a month. I’m also going to say that the Aldermans lawyers wouldn’t know the results until she is charged and wouldn’t see lab reports until the “discovery” process.

  9. - John Ruberry - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 5:49 pm:

    Colon cleanser….Eeww!!!!

  10. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 30, 07 @ 10:56 pm:

    The 46th ward has some really interesting online happenings:
    Also, if you do a search on YouTube for Helen Shiller, there are some funny videos. My favorite is “Uptown Girl”.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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