Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar » Trib slams Monken detractors
SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Trib slams Monken detractors

Monday, Mar 30, 2009

* The Chicago Tribune editorial board is all-in for Gov. Pat Quinn’s choice to run the Illinois State Police. They’ve run an editorial that literally oozes hostility towards the young man’s detractors…

Last weekend, Gov. Pat Quinn chose 29-year-old Army combat veteran Jonathon Monken to head the Illinois State Police. The selection of a young man with no conventional policing experience provoked anonymous online complaints (evidently from veteran troopers) and on-the-record harrumphing from state senators who’ll decide whether to confirm the appointment.

It was more than just anonymous online complaining, as I told you last week, but whatever.

* The paper apparently sat down with Monken and came away impressed…

Quinn isn’t backing down. And, after hearing Monken handle probing questions about his qualifications during a Friday meeting with the Tribune editorial board, we understand why. We urge the Senate to thoroughly vet Monken and—barring some unexpected surprise—to confirm him. If the choice of Monken upsets some troopers or legislators, tough. They aren’t answerable for Monken’s performance of his duties. Quinn is.

Tough? Wow. And is there no awareness of the constitutional principle of “advise and consent”? Senators are, indeed, “answerable” for Monken’s performance because they will have to vote to confirm him.

* More…

This page often has argued that chief executives are entitled to have their own appointees in such sensitive posts, provided the appointees aren’t kooks or crooks.

Ha! Wrong. Remember how the Tribune flatly and loudly opposed Marty Cohen’s nomination to chair the Illinois Commerce Commission? Here’s a little taste

State Sen. Rickey Hendon has a message for Gov. Rod Blagojevich: Yank your controversial nomination of consumer watchdog Martin Cohen to chair the Illinois Commerce Commission or risk an embarrassing defeat in the Senate.

Blunt advice like that is a rare commodity in Springfield, especially when it comes from a key member of the governor’s own party. And in this case, it’s good advice.

Cohen was neither a “kook” nor a “crook,” but that didn’t stop the Trib from blasting the guy.

* More…

But the criticism of Monken’s résumé strikes us as exaggerated: The director’s job is to administer and inspire a big agency—less to make urgent decisions about an unfolding emergency than to have on the ground the best ISP rank officers to make those decisions. Monken wears a business suit rather than the state police uniform that he respects as symbolic of what troopers have struggled and sacrificed to earn.

State Police troopers undergo a rigorous vetting and training program and have to prove that they’re still up to the task on a regular basis. They are some of the best trained cops in the bidness, and rightfully proud of that uniform. That also understandably leads them to distrust outsiders brought in to run the show. But it’s also a cop thing. Just look at how the Chicago coppers have reacted so negatively to Mayor Daley’s pick of a former FBI guy to run that shop.

There are exaggerations on both sides. Unfortunately, the Tribune decided to exaggerate on behalf of the governor’s ISP pick instead of taking a reasonable approach to the subject. This is fast becoming the MO at that paper, and it’s a very disturbing development.

* Related…

* Quinn defends state police director pick

* New State Police chief says he’s up to challenge : “God willing, I will never face as dire a security situation as I did in Kosovo or Iraq,” Monken said. “Frankly, I have leadership experience in security and police operations as challenging as anywhere on the planet.”

* Illinois police lab delays hamper cases, report says

* Quinn may remove Box from Illinois Commerce Commission

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - How Ironic - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:16 am:

    This is a tough nut for Quinn to crack.

    While I am not convinced that the head of the ISP needs to be either a former officer, or have law enforcement experience; I do understand the pushback.

    Simply because he hasn’t been in Law Enforcement shouldn’t preclude his consideration for the post. He has been in leadership positions before, and maybe the ISP would benefit from an outside perspective. In all respects, the head of ISP IS NOT a law enforcement position. He will not be splitting his desk time with going out on patrols.

    He will be managing the organization. While he may not appreciate the day-to-day struggles of an officer, having been an officer prior to assuming the top job wouldn’t make that “better”.

  2. - Hank - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:19 am:

    “God willing, I will never face as dire a security situation as I did in Kosovo or Iraq,” Monken said.
    Poor God is being dragged into Illinois politics again. Quinn, Blago and now this guy. I can’t understand why Illinois is still so screwed up with all the input from God lately! LOL

  3. - Mr. Know-it-All - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:22 am:

    Nice smackdown on the Trib, Rich.

    I don’t know enough about Monken to comment intelligently about his qualifications - but at first glance, I’m with his detractors.

  4. - ILPundit - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:25 am:

    Here is the question no one has answered:

    “Why is Jon Monken uniquely qualified to lead the State Police at the young age of 29?”

    Being a veteran of war is a laudable thing, but it does not serve as a blanket qualification for any job.

    It is extremely rare for someone with less than 6 years of experience out of college to hold this level of job responsibility.

    In those rare cases where it does happen, it is even more rare that the individual was simply handed the role, as has been done in this case.

    Jon Monken may be great, but the odds are heavily against him having any sort of meaningful impact.

    And most importantly, the fact that the Governor made no apparent attempt to open up a search for the best qualified individual for a post this complex and important is disturbing.

  5. - Carl Nyberg - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:26 am:

    Is corruption in police forces a problem in Illinois?

    Is one of the Illinois State Police duties to investigate and prosecute corruption in other police departments?

    How well has the Illinois State Police performed this duty?

    Is it legitimate to have an outsider by the supervisor?

    Who is going to complain the loudest about having an independent set of eyes to supervise a police force? The by-the-book cops? Or the ones that have been cheating the system?

    Until the Illinois State Police does a much better job catching and prosecuting crooked cops, count me as favoring outsiders being hired.

  6. - SpfldJimbo - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:38 am:

    IL Pundit….I’m with you on this one.

    As for the Chicago Tribunes’ Editorial Board endorsement….I guess one would have to go back…check their “endorsed” winners over the years…and see how they’ve performed. My sense is, that if someone were brought in to run a major component of their operation without “journalism” experience, that they’d howl long and loud.

  7. - wordslinger - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:38 am:

    Glad there aren’t any other issues facing the state right now so a lot of time and effort can be devoted to this.

    Weiss was brought in to:

    1. Tamp down media criticism over Burge and the cop beatings.

    2. Whack a bunch of district commanders.

    3. Take the heat for an acrimonious contract negotiation.

    4. Take the fall for the next big scandal, hopefully after #3 is completed.

    What’s Moncken supposed to do?

  8. - Rich Miller - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:44 am:

    === My sense is, that if someone were brought in to run a major component of their operation without “journalism” experience, that they’d howl long and loud.===

    Two words: Sam Zell.

  9. - Macbeth - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:49 am:

    Two words: Sam Zell.

    And folks did, indeed, howl long and loud, no?

  10. - VanillaMan - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:50 am:

    Gee Carl,
    To justify Quinn’s choice, you claim that the ISP is corrupted? Talk about poor policing skills, rumor and slander. Confirming Monken couldn’t begin to satisfy the level of illegality you are claiming.

    The Tribune’s “tough” remark is also extreme. It isn’t advisable to shove a political decision down the throats of an organization with the recognized level of professionalism and culture we see in the ISP. There isn’t any public outrage over an issue that justifies the Tribune’s stand against those who question Monken’s lack of qualifications. Even Monken has been up-front in acknowledging these shortcomings, so why is it wrong for those who will be lead by Monken, to also acknowledge them?

    Monken’s appointment is a political decision. It is appropriate to question political decisions. That is why there are confirmations through political bodies like the Illinois Senate for political appointments. Is the Tribune now against this tradition? Why?

    In my opinion, it is fine for the Chicago Tribune to support Monken’s appointment. On the other hand, the paper’s attack on those who question Monken’s appointment isn’t fine. The Paper’s staffers who wrote this comment needed to have questioned their lack of balance, and perhaps could have used a little of Rich Miller’s editing overview before allowing this stinker to be published under their banner.

  11. - Justice - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:51 am:

    Experience in a particular field of endeavor is a valuable asset. I would be much more comfortable with someone from the ranks who is experienced, a good leader, and who is trusted. No complaints about Monken and I think he can make a contribution in a lessor position. We honor his service and his determination, but let him earn his way and prove his metal for holding that position in the future.

  12. - Amy - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 10:55 am:

    the question is, what is policing? is it policing only if it is done in a municipality? or, can soldiers who act in many ways, including a policing capacity, and FBI agents who work cases on the street be considered as doing policing activities.

    these same objections were leveled against Weis when Daley appointed him to be top cop in Chicago. and these objections sound more like union objections. as a person not in law
    enforcement, i’m concerned about experience and leadership.

    and when there is an institution in need of systemic change, you promote from the outside and change the culture. sometimes the culture change includes a leader who comes at the work from a different angle.

  13. - Ghost - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 11:07 am:

    Police experience is a red herring. Cop culture protectionism.

    Experience managing a large operation with x number of employees anda budget of Y is critical. Hoe many years of experience does this guy have running an operation where he is managing people, a budget and the attendant political process attached o the operation of whatever. That is the key issue.

  14. - Speaking at Will - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 11:42 am:

    All this complaining about Monken.

    He isn’t the perfect candidate.

    Anyone care to suggest someone else?

  15. - Niles Township - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 12:38 pm:

    With all the complaining about Monken coming from the particular legislators and “others” that it is, I am beginning to think Monken is the perfect candidate for the job.

  16. - Captain America - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 2:06 pm:

    Nothing against Monken, but law enforcement education and experience seems like a fundamental prerequisite for ISP Director simply based upon common sense. I think Quinn is wrong on this executive decision. But I have no doubt that Monken has leadership ability as a result of hs West Point education and military command experience.

  17. - JerryB - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 5:33 pm:

    The last ISP chief was Cellini’s pick and he stunk up the place. The new governor, who has tangled with Cellini corruption in the past, wants somebody who will answer to him as he cleans up a dirty agency. A good soldier with an honorable record would be preferable to any veteran of ISP politics.

  18. - Patty Kine - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 5:55 pm:

    The ISP has always thought that they were special. Who cares about rank and file with a Director coming from the department. Blago proved in corrections that it wasn’t required when he hired dozens of people from the street to run DOC. Back off people and let Quinn manage his departments. The new guy cannot do any more damage than we witnesses with Blago’s people in corrections.

  19. - North of I-80 - Monday, Mar 30, 09 @ 8:49 pm:

    Sam Zell has demonstrated repeatedly that he can build, manage and run organizations of various sizes & complexities.
    Is anyone here comparing Sam Zell’s management and administrative capabilities & accomplishments with Monken? Sam Zell would be a better ISP Director than a 29 year old who has never written or managed a budget.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* Caption contest!
* Federal rules protecting net neutrality have expired! Support House Bill 4819
* Harmon says he has votes in Senate for gun shop licensing override, but future still unsure
* It's just a bill
* Rauner makes "official" trade show announcement seven months after it was announced
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Biss says he wants more details about Pritzker's progressive tax plan, Rauner campaign agrees
* Question of the day
* *** UPDATED x1 *** Why was Travis Reinking allowed to keep his guns?
* Comptroller: State racked up "two decades worth of late payment interest penalties in just over two years"
* Madigan says he hasn't made up his mind on legalizing marijuana
* Illinois Legislators: Make Health Coverage Fair by Supporting HB 4146
* Rauner's new website slams Pritzker-Madigan "corruption"
* Today's must-listen: Madigan and lone chairmanship "No" vote together on Joravsky's show
* *** LIVE *** Session coverage
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's stories

Visit our advertisers...









* Gun Dealer Licensing Bill Override Faces Deadli.....
* Illinois Democrats hoping to clamp down on gun .....
* Gun dealer licensing veto override vote deadlin.....
* Illinois gun bill override faces deadline, thou.....
* Gun bill override faces deadline, thousands of .....
* Gun bill override faces deadline, thousands of .....
* Gun bill override faces deadline, thousands of .....
* Morning Spin: Democrats' deadline to override R.....
* Morning Spin: Democrats' deadline to override R.....

* SIU to recruit alumni for 'volunteer' adjunct positions
* Peoria turns downtown office space into affordable housing
* Waffle House suspect's ex-bosses asked FBI to keep, help him
* Gun bill override faces deadline, thousands of opponents
* On Basketball: And now, Wade decides if this was the end
* That's a heavy lift: Rhino at Illinois zoo undergoes CT scan
* Man who disarmed Waffle House shooter hailed by lawmakers
* Will County officials to use 50 percent renewable power
* Court bars winner of 2017 mayoral election from office
* Autopsies unclear on cause of mother's and daughter's deaths

* Gun dealer licensing veto override vote deadline arrives
* Google aims at Illinois' privacy law after Facebook lobbying failed
* Michael Madigan wins re-election as Democratic Party leader
* Illinois' late fees skyrocket over past 3 years
* Gun dealer licensing veto override vote could happen today
* Appeals court to rule on lawsuit over right-to-work ordinance
* Senate OKs bill to nearly double home care workers' pay
* 4th death reported in Illinois linked to synthetic marijuana
* Illinois Lottery sells tickets for instant games after top prizes are gone
* Champaign-area bus company faces harassment lawsuit

* From 'Mayochup' to potential mayhem: Kraft Heinz and social media
* Sinclair agrees to sell 23 TV stations as part of Tribune deal
* Sinclair agrees to sell WGN-TV—but would still control it
* Robert Malott, CEO who wrestled with Boesky's crimes and Continental's downfall, dies at 91

* ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ at Lyric Opera further fuels the musical’s resurgence
* Gene Simmons digs into the vault for solo tour
* Police: 3 vehicles stolen from Brighton Park
* Toronto van attack suspect may have felt anger against women
* Police: Robbers targeting people walking alone in Brainerd
* Firefighter injured battling blaze in the Loop
* Officer wounded while responding to domestic battery in Woodlawn
* Massage therapist accuses Stan Lee of sexual misconduct at South Loop hotel
* Dear Abby: Sweetheart, come look at Internet porn with me
* With Avisail Garcia on the DL, Daniel Palka prepares to make White Sox debut

* Two firefighters hurt, two people rescued in extra-alarm fire in Jewelers Row building in Loop
* Danish inventor convicted of reporter Kim Wall's murder, gets life in prison
* Gunman wounds 2 Dallas police officers, store employee
* Man in custody after 2 Dallas officers, store employee shot
* Morning Spin: Democrats' deadline to override Rauner gun bill veto comes on same day as Second Amendment rally
* Grandparents explode over pot paraphernalia
* Contemporary East Ukrainian Village home: $1.5M
* One year ago Semaj Crosby's death sparked outcry, prompted change — but remains unsolved
* Chicago cop hit over head with vase while responding to domestic fight

» April 24, 2018 - Full Show
» Proposal To Get Pre-Trial Detainees A Chance To Vote From Jail Passes IL House
» Getting Books To Illinois Prisons; Virtual Medical Interpreters; Chicago’s Gang Database
» Illinois Pushes For State Net Neutrality Rules After Federal Rules Expire
» Prince Heirs Sue Illinois Hospital Over Care During Overdose
» Immigrants Shine In New CPS Varsity Sport
» State Legislature Considers Tougher Penalties on Texting While Driving
» April 20, 2018 - Full Show
» April 23, 2018 - Full Show
» Madigan Elected For 6th Term As Democratic Party Chairman

* Gun dealer licensing veto override vote deadline arrives
* Google aims at Illinois' privacy law after Facebook lobbying failed
* Michael Madigan wins re-election as Democratic Party leader
* Illinois' late fees skyrocket over past 3 years
* Gun dealer licensing veto override vote could happen today
* Our View: Budgets should include estimates of late payment interest penalties
* Guest View: Illinois’ 4 pillars of bad budgeting
* Byron York: Is 'can't prove untrue' the new standard in Trump probe?
* Marc Thiessen: Veterans deserve better
* Catherine Rampell: Tax cuts were supposed to save the GOP from Trump. Oops.

* Decatur and Macon County Neighbors: Obituaries published today
* Volunteers needed for annual Fishing Expedition for Special Populations
* Area Calendar 4/25/18
* Daily Digest 4/25/18
* Fire Calls
* Police Report
* Rick's Six: Volunteers carry on at Vineyard, mac & cheese eatery coming to Bettendorf, and Salute to Sports finalists
* Common thread: Sewing group produces comfort, friendships
* Coal Valley business offers 128 bourbons
* Junior Theatre concludes season with classic, 'The Emperor's New Clothes'

* More is too much in ambitious 'Avengers: Infinity War'
* 8 players the Chicago Bears might be looking to take in first round of NFL draft
* Why major changes are paying off for Wheaton's Kevin Streelman on PGA Tour
* Another Ex-Schaumburg cop wants drug case conviction vacated
* Mixed signals from Trump on VA nominee as allegations build

* Underwood hopes winning primary formula ca...
* GOP breaks the glass as House outlook dark...
* House Approves American Space Commerce Fre...
* Democrats aim to turn Obamacare into asset...
* GOP commissioner primary
* Environmentalists ask Sen. Nelson: Will yo...
* Rep. Randy Hultgren recognizes Loyola men'...
* US Rep. Randy Hultgren visits McHenry's Pi...
* Letter: Congrats, Rep. Hultgren - Northwes...
* Are Illinois Congressmen safe in wake of D...

* Durbin praises FDA's new measures cracking......
* E-Cigarette Sting Operation Prompts Warnin......
* FDA Cracks Down On Juul E-Cigarettes Popul......
* E-Cigarette Sting Operation Prompts US War......
* A tough re-election climate tests the chum......

* Tammy Duckworth and Working Moms Like Mine...
* The Senate celebrates Sen. Tammy Duckworth......
* Editorial: Up to the task...
* I'm a legislator and a mom. Tammy Duckwort......
* Tammy Duckworth is uniquely privileged, bu......

* The time Chicago skinheads beat up a Nazi
* Facility Theatre transforms The Little Match Girl Passion from a vocal piece into a meticulously pitched spectacle
* Chairwoman Preckwinkle's Machine takeover a far cry from days of Fast Eddie
* Deacon Jones cofounded the legendary Baby Huey & the Babysitters—and that was just for starters
* When your third eye is your only eye on the gig poster of the week
* Life inside a supermax prison
* Work To Begin This Spring To Prepare For Lawrence-to-Bryn Mawr Red Line Upgrades
* Apprenticeships
* ‘Reefer Madness’-type rhetoric bound to swarm over Ill.; will Lege ignore it?
* Martysaurus Rex: A Creative Life More Important Than Football

* IEMA Highlights Role of Volunteers in Disasters
* Governor Rauner activates State Emergency Operations Center in Springfield
* February Flooding Information
* IEMA Urges People to Prepare for Severe Weather
* Governor issues state disaster proclamation for flooding in Iroquois, Kankakee, Vermilion Counties

* Alexa app from Amazon is finally iPhone X compatible
* Spotify for Free, an improved ad-supported experience, is rolling out globally
* Xiaomi has capped how much money it makes from hardware, forever
* Samsung Galaxy A7 (2017) follows A5 (2017) and A3 (2017) on the Oreo bandwagon
* Twitter’s user numbers are growing again
* The people in Amazon’s car delivery promo, ranked by how gladly we’d give them our keys
* Why we should collectively worry about Facebook and Google owning our data

* Mariners shut out White Sox, rubber match Wednesday vs King Felix
* White Sox Minor League Update: April 24, 2018
* Mariners shutout White Sox, rubber match Wednesday vs King Felix
* Renteria tossed arguing called third strike
* Relievers keep M's in check, but White Sox fall
* Renteria tossed arguing called third strike
* Renteria tossed arguing called third strike

Main Menu
Pundit rankings
Subscriber Content
Blagojevich Trial
Updated Posts

April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
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


RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0

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