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Stantis says he was also duped into appearing in documentary

Monday, Sep 19, 2016

* Bernie wrote about that new Illinois Policy Institute “documentary” about House Speaker Michael Madigan

The [Illinois Policy Institute press release] promises “an impressive lineup of interviews,” and on the list is Rich Miller, publisher of the Capitol Fax newsletter and blog. But Miller says he was never told, when he sat for an interview last week, that Illinois Policy was involved, and he would not have participated had he known.

“I … wouldn’t have consented if the project was backed by the Illinois AFL-CIO, either,” Miller told me. […]

Miller later told me the questions he was asked were fine, but he felt he had been “duped into participating in an Illinois Policy Institute project.”

He added that he has “no idea if the producer and director knew who was funding them. I asked them numerous times on Tuesday who was providing the money, and they kept saying it was Emergent.”

I brought someone with me to the interview, so he can attest to the fact that I repeatedly asked about who was behind the project.

* And a day after I did a post about the flick, Chicago Tribune editorial cartoonist Scott Stantis revealed in an e-mail to me that he was also duped into doing the doc

Hey Rich,

Thanks for posting about the IPI “documentary”. I have the same story. When I asked who was doing the documentary they said they were. That Madigan was an interesting subject unknown to the rest of the country. I didn’t press them. Live and learn, I guess.


* Considering my witness and Stantis’ e-mail, perhaps the Illinois Policy Institute’s Diana Rickert might want to reconsider this quote

“Rich’s comments are strange. The film crew is top notch, and was very forthcoming about the scope of the documentary and our involvement when asked who was funding the project. We’ve been critical of Speaker Madigan and his political machine for many years, so we’re certainly not shy about our work on this issue. It’s not like Rich was stopped on the sidewalk in Springfield and caught off-guard with a random guy filming with his iPhone; the interview was scheduled in advance, he signed a release form and he even went out for drinks with the film crew after they were done. Our research was used as the premise of many questions. Some of the other interviews for our documentary were even filmed in our Chicago office.”

I didn’t just go out to drinks with the director and producer, I took them both out to dinner. They seemed like fine sorts and they did ask reasonable questions, and, yes, a couple/three were based on stuff I’ve read at the Illinois Policy Institute’s website.

My beef is with this dishonest secrecy. And the Illinois Policy Institute is compounding their dishonesty by not telling the truth now. Some interview subjects may very well have been told about the group’s participation. I was not, and Stantis says he wasn’t, either.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 8:52 am:

    The shame in all this is the blatant “dishonesty”

    I “try” to remember…

    INN isn’t a news organization…

    IPI is arguably the most disingenuous partisan group in Illinois…

    Pretending your group is credible isn’t the measuring stick, it’s others calling the group credible…

    If a person or group won’t put their name to something, it can be the group, the project or both that lacks integrity… and…

    Tillman’s embarrassing “rally” before Labor and Social Service groups rallied in Springfield is “who the IPI is”

    Propaganda is never, ever, unbiased.

    That’s why the IPI wholly lacks in credibility.

  2. - Anonymous - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 8:55 am:

    Either Miller and Stantis are lying or Rickert is lying.

    I doubt a poll is necessary to guess where the vast majority of readers would land on that question, given track records and all.

  3. - Dome Gnome - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 8:57 am:

    A wise mom I know says: “Once is a mistake, but twice is a way of life.” I’ll bet you two weren’t the only ones duped.

  4. - Anonymous - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:05 am:

    No offense intended but Kudos to Mike lawrence for snifffing this out.

  5. - Anon - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:08 am:

    ===I didn’t just go out to drinks with the director and producer, I took them both out to dinner.===

    Some of the best advice I’d ever gotten was to not put Republicans on my Christmas card list.

  6. - Anon221 - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:15 am:

    Diana Rickert called it, “…our documentary,” “filmed in our Chicago office.”

    Looks like ownership to me, IPI. So, riddle me this, which came first IPI? Did Emergent Order approach you to do this documentary, or did IPI (or affiliate) approach Emergent Order??? Or did this all just burst out of the ether on it’s own, you know, Because Madigan!

  7. - Magic carpet ride - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:20 am:

    I think it would take more than an hour to rebut all the lies and distortion that the rauner administration have been involved in from the beginning.
    Just imagine the list of people that were knowingly lied to to get them to participate in this “endeavor.”

  8. - Honeybear - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:20 am:

    I know you are always very sensitive to tone, but

    I think it’s important to not sugar coat stuff these days.

    IPI lied to you. They are Liars. Not only that they are intentionally deceptive liars.

    I can scream perfidy all day long.

    Perfidy means deceptive lying.

    I hate that they did this to you and others.

  9. - Driveby - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:24 am:

    Rich, what did you say or would have added that you would not have said if you had known? Is anything you said to them untrue?

  10. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:31 am:

    ===you would not have said if you had known?===

    I’ll be getting to that point later. But it’s not about what I said or would’ve said. I simply wouldn’t have done the interview.

  11. - pundent - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:35 am:

    The goal here is to tip the scales in the favor of their donors through any means possible. The fact that they would resort to deception doesn’t surprise me, it’s expected. After all we’ve got someone writing checks in the tens of millions and then claiming that he has no interest in how that money is being spent.

    Lesson learned, unless you personally know where the financial support is coming from, you’re probably being duped.

  12. - Dee Lay - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:45 am:

    I’ll wait for the outraged editorial from the Tribune about IPI using cloak and dagger means to deceive journalists and then playing stupid about it later.

  13. - illini - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:49 am:

    Rich, with all respect, you were indeed lied to and as you said last week “duped”.

    I am fairly confident that almost all readers and commenters on this site still have the greatest respect for your integrity as an honest journalist.

  14. - Anonymous - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 9:50 am:

    IPI - such a bottom of the ethics barrell organization. But so is Emergent Order, which on its website discusses its true purpose - branding. They aren’t documentarians of truth, or even truthiness. They are a bought and paid for public relations/marketing firm.

  15. - Threepwood - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 10:00 am:

    This kind of thing is depressingly common; I’ve seen it happen several times in other circles. Some people believe they can use foreknowledge of the interview’s intent to refrain from making statements that can be distorted or manipulated…they generally can’t. I agree with Rich: The reason to know in advance whether it’s a shady interview is not so you can think of what to say or not say. It’s so you can decline the interview.

  16. - Chicago_Downstater - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 10:15 am:

    “It’s not like Rich was stopped on the sidewalk in Springfield and caught off-guard with a random guy filming with his iPhone…”

    No, but it is exactly like the interview was arranged under false pretenses. Now who can tell me which is the worst form of “gotcha” journalism?

  17. - Bluegrass Boy - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 10:22 am:

    Rauner and the think-tanks he controls cannot beat Madigan based on issues, votes and winning hearts and minds.

    Which is why they resort to huge money from a very few donors, hidden and disguised wherever possible.

    Just like this video they are funding.

    I’m sure he’s lyin’ to us for our own good, though /s

  18. - Anon - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 10:34 am:

    Let’s see how this thing comes out. It could end up being a total propaganda piece. Or, it could be an accurate and true portrayal of how the Speaker has operated/does operate within the Illinois “system.” I watched the trailer and didn’t see anything offensive or untrue based on my experiences (and I’m not a Rauner fan). I’m intrigued because something like this has never been done and Illinois citizens need to understand more about what goes on without seeing/hearing it in a piece of campaign literature or a 30-second TV spot. I’m not going to a theater to watch it, but I’ll definitely view it.

  19. - pool boy - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 10:44 am:

    Everyone gets lied to once in a while. The IPI and/or the AFL-CIO could also be commenters on your blog. Hard to vet out everything.

  20. - annonin' - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 10:45 am:

    Rickets is a hoot by claiming interviews in their office —like that was proof how open, honest, fair & balanced they have been. Even when they admitted their involvement they did not signal this was a total Madigan F* job. Russell Wayne Graves (stil thinkin serial somethin’ when we her that name) is talkin’ documentary on statewide issues, blah blah.
    Let’s also be honest — Kass (post radio gig)Dick Simpson and Santis crave gettint their mugs on camera. We have seen the “duped” and we doubt any of these are capable of being “duped.”

  21. - Anonymous - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 11:02 am:

    –It could end up being a total propaganda piece.–

    Think so? Rauner bankrolls IPI, IPI paid for the film by the Texas ad firm.

    So was John Kass “duped?” Or was he in on it from the beginning?

    Do Tronclodytes have a policy about their “journalists” appearing in partisan propaganda pieces?

  22. - Honeybear - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 11:39 am:

    By the way Rich, I have to say, Emergent Order, sounds scary and evil. Just saying, I think I’m going to call the Star Wars people and say I’ve got their next villain organizational name. It’s better than First Order in my opinion. For the love of God were you approached by someone you suspect could be a Sith or Knight of Ren? Just sayin

  23. - RIJ - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 12:57 pm:

    I posted at 9:50, didn’t realize I left off my nickname.

  24. - Michelle Flaherty - Monday, Sep 19, 16 @ 3:02 pm:

    Cartoonist duped.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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