The Sgt. Schulz Defense of George Ryan

When Fran Eaton was editor of Illinois Leader, she commissioned a cartoon that seems to have predicted the defense being used by his attorney Dan Webb.

The Feb. 2003 Russmo cartoon showed former Governor George Ryan dressed up as Hogan’s Heroes’ Sgt. Schulz saying, “I know nuthink!,’” as Scott Fawell’s girl friend and another burned records on a charcoal grill.

With both Scott Fawell and his top campaign assistant Richard Juliano having testified that former Governor George Ryan did not know of all sorts of things, Federal prosecutors are chaffing, according to the Chicago Tribune, at not being able to introduce evidence that has Ryan right smack dab in the middle.

The Feds have wanted to introduce it all the time. It’s about the somewhat known practice of retired legislators upping their pension by getting short-time jobs at much higher salaries that they earned while in the General Assembly. The legislative pension level is based on the person’s last salary and that salary can be with any public pension plan in Illinois.

Previously, trial Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer refused to allow into testimony how Ryan had put former state legislators Roger Stanley and Ted Lechowicz on his Secretary of State’s payroll at upped salaries. Not mentioned by the Feds was former State Rep. Pete Peters’ service in the same office. Peters actually was one of Ryan’s closest advisors, while the other two apparently did little work.

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