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Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Going Down?

So much for partisan politics:
One was a drunk. Some were laughed at as ''goofballs.'' One was declared the best-qualified candidate for a job on the city payroll -- even though he was dead.

All of them were recommended for city jobs or hired because they were politically connected and helped to get out the vote on Election Day, according to U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald.

''That's the world we want to end,'' Fitzgerald said Monday in announcing charges against two members of Mayor Richard M. Daley's administration accused of illegally doling out patronage jobs.

The allegations sent shock waves through City Hall, already reeling from charges that trucking companies obtained city business in exchange for bribes and campaign donations.

The new charges strike at the heart of political power in Chicago -- the patronage system under which thousands of precinct workers who get out the vote are rewarded with jobs on the city payroll.

Those charged bring the scandal closer than ever to Daley, who has been mayor for the past 16 years and whose own father, Mayor Richard J. Daley, oversaw a political machine that dispensed patronage with ruthless efficiency.
That's Patrick Fitzgerald at his day job, which is still US Attorney in Chicago, busting the corruption-laden machine surrounding Democrat Richard Daley. Thinking back to how Daley cut the legs out from underneath Dick Durbin when he told the truth about torture, I really can't think of anyone in the Democratic Party I would like to see dismantled more at this moment in time. (I know, I know, wait until the SCOTUS confirmation hearings begin, I'm sure Joe Biden will start with his Goober Pyle towel-snapping "good buddy" bullshit and I'll soon change my tune.)

Anyway, when the smear campaign against Fitzgerald starts -- and you know it's going to be the mother of all smear campaigns -- just remember, it ain't about politics, it's about assholes.