First Governor Pat Quinn parted ways with this media consultant. The media consultant said that Quinn couldn’t stay on message.
Guess the consultant wanted Quinn to be a focused as convicted felon Rod Blagojevich is on his “I’m a victim” tour.
Now, the Chicago Sun-Times has discovered that Quinn’s Chief of Staff was using his government email account for political purposes.
Easy enough to do, if one is politicking while at work, I figure.
The headline is on the front page of Monday’s paper.
It is a devastating blow to the ethical image that Quinn is trying to project.
Driving around yesterday morning, I happened on a WGN interview of Quinn talking about warm and fuzzy animals. He was going to sign a bill and had a host who met him while he worked in Aurora thirty years ago. That was the year that Quinn’s got the Cut-Back Amendment added to the state constitution.
It was billed as a major reform in state government. One-third of the Illinois House members would be gone two years after passage. No more cumulative voting, which allowed minorities (like Democrats in the suburbs to pick up one in three seats in a district. The amendment doomed the re-election chances of Johnsburg Democrat Tom Hanahan in 1982.)
Mr. Ethics has this really strange ability to mobilize people for a cause which, once enacted, doesn’t work out as he predicted it would. The main result of his Cut-Back Amendment was to give Mike Madigan a stranglehold on the Illinois House.
But, back to today’s disastrous headline.
Chief of Staff Jerry Stermer resigned rather than undergo an ethics probe.
Ironically, Stermer told the Executive Inspector General James A. Wright about the emails.
Quinn fired Wright, a Blagojevich appointee, “the same day the governor was briefed by his staff about findings against Stermer by the executive inspector general,” reports the Sun-Times’ Dave McKenney.
So, Quinn has suffered two body blows in one week.
He has lost his outside politician brains and the guy running state government while he is running for election.
Before going to work for Quinn, Stermer was head of a group called Voices for Illinois Children, a strong supporter a massive income tax hike.