Sunday, January 06, 2008

The Political Corruption Behind Barack Obama and Chicago

As you've probably noticed by now,the mainstream media is in love with Barack Obama.This shouldn't come as a surprise since the typical reporter,at the big print outlets,is a registered Democrat.But,just who is Barack Obama the man calling for change? This blog post will give some background on Obama and the rather sleazy politics of Northern Illinois.

You'll never understand Barack Obama unless you understand the uniquely corrupt city he's from: Chicago.Other big cities have term limits,tax revolts and reform.Not Chicago.Chicago's has had a Democratic Mayor since 1931.This is something of a modern day record in big city politics.Today,Chicago has a city council with 50 Alderman and 49 of them are Democrats.When you hear any Chicago Democrat talk about change,they are never talking about Chicago changing.Chicago's population peaked decades ago in the 1950 Census with a population of 3.6 million people.Since then,it's pretty much been population erosion.Since the 2000 census,the census bureau estimates that Chicago lost 63,000 people,bringing Chicago down to around 2.8 million people.Few large cities can say they are losing population,but then few cities are like Chicago.

Chicago is home to America's most powerful organized crime family:the Chicago Outfit.The Outfit decades ago teamed up with the Chicago Democratic machine,it's been a marriage which has been lucrative to both organizations.As Attorney Robert Cooley has described in his informative book on Chicago:
Most cities have one overriding claim to fame. Say Los Angeles and you think about the movies; say Paris you think art; and Detroit, cars. But when people, the world over, say Chicago, they think of something less marketable: Organized Crime. It is a stain that no amount of accomplishment or image-boosting will ever wipe clean.

The city’s grim reputation is rooted back in the Roaring Twenties when Al Capone emerged victorious from gang warfare and went on to become a household name. Oddly enough, far less is known about his successors and their grip on the city during the last half of the twentieth century. But that is when Chicago’s Mafia became the single most powerful organized crime family in American history. While Mob bosses knocked each other off on the East Coast, in Chicago they united into a monolithic force called the Outfit. They would literally control the cops, the courts and the politicians – a corrupt trifecta that Capone dreamed about, but never came close to achieving. The Outfit demanded a cut of every criminal enterprise in the region, from a lowly car theft or private poker game to a jewelry heist. To enforce this “street tax,” their Hit Men killed with impunity, knowing that crooked judges would throw out any case against them. Their bookies brazenly took bets in nightclubs, at racetracks and even in government office buildings, confident that contacts in the police department (at one point as high up as the Chief of Detectives) would warn them before the vice squad could make a raid. Mobsters ran Chicago union locals, and national organizations for the Laborers and the Teamsters. This unprecedented combination of brute force and political clout let the bosses feed at the public trough with no-show jobs for their goons and municipal contracts for themselves and their associates. Government became one of their most lucrative rackets.

In his 1969 book, Captive City, investigative journalist Ovid Demaris called the Outfit, “the most politically insulated and police-pampered ‘family’ this side of Sicily” and estimated, even then, that their take was in the billions. With such total domination of their home turf, they could wander far and wide. By the Seventies, the FBI reported that Chicago’s Mob controlled all organized criminal activity west of the Mississippi – including and especially Las Vegas. Millions were skimmed from casinos like the Tropicana and the Stardust, and bundles of cash, stuffed in green army duffel bags, found their way back to the Outfit’s bosses. Meanwhile New York’s mobsters had to content themselves with the slim pickings of Atlantic City.

Although other urban areas had their share of corruption, Chicago remained unique for its mixture of Organized Crime and political organization. The extent of Mafia influence on the city is still not fully appreciated, even by long-time residents. We think of Mobs hijacking trucks or businesses – not ballot boxes. But the ability to deliver votes and manipulate elected officials provided more muscle to the Outfit than their army of enforcers.
Just to put things in perspective,from 1968 to 1990 the Chicago Outfit had a high ranking "made member" as an elected alderman in Chicago's City Council to look out for its' interests.

So this is the town Barack Obama comes from.Can anyone really be clean who's been in Democratic Party politics in Chicago? No.To understand Obama you've got to understand just who his long time friend Tony Rezko is.Rezko is Obama's long time friend and political sponsor who's been indicted and going to trial on February 25,2008 for trying to extort money from a teachers'pension fund.It appears that Rezko wanted his friend Obama to get a great deal on a real estate purchase.As the Chicago Sun-Times reported on November 5, 2006:
U.S. Sen. Barack Obama expressed regret late Friday for his 2005 land purchase from now-indicted political fundraiser Antoin "Tony" Rezko in a deal that enlarged the senator's yard.

"I consider this a mistake on my part and I regret it," Obama told the Chicago Sun-Times in an exclusive and revealing question-and-answer exchange about the transaction.

In June 2005, Obama and Rezko purchased adjoining parcels in Kenwood. The state's junior senator paid $1.65 million for a Georgian revival mansion, while Rezko paid $625,000 for the adjacent, undeveloped lot. Both closed on their properties on the same day.

Last January, aiming to increase the size of his sideyard, Obama paid Rezko $104,500 for a strip of his land.

The transaction occurred at a time when it was widely known Tony Rezko was under investigation by U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald and as other Illinois politicians befriended by Rezko distanced themselves from him.

In the Sun-Times interview, Obama acknowledged approaching Rezko about the two properties being up for sale and that Rezko developed an immediate interest. Obama did not explain why he reached out to Rezko given the developer's growing problems.
But,Obama's ties to Rezko aren't just a one time kinky real estate deal.As the Chicago Sun-Times reported on April 23, 2007 how Obama helped Rezko become a big time slumlord:
For more than five weeks during the brutal winter of 1997, tenants shivered without heat in a government-subsidized apartment building on Chicago's South Side.

It was just four years after the landlords -- Antoin "Tony'' Rezko and his partner Daniel Mahru -- had rehabbed the 31-unit building in Englewood with a loan from Chicago taxpayers.

Rezko and Mahru couldn't find money to get the heat back on.

Obama has been friends with Rezko for 17 years. Rezko has been a political patron to Obama and many others, helping to raise millions of dollars for them through his own contributions and by hosting fund-raisers in his home.

Obama, who has worked as a lawyer and a legislator to improve living conditions for the poor, took campaign donations from Rezko even as Rezko's low-income housing empire was collapsing, leaving many African-American families in buildings riddled with problems -- including squalid living conditions, vacant apartments, lack of heat, squatters and drug dealers.

The building in Englewood was one of 30 Rezmar rehabbed in a series of troubled deals largely financed by taxpayers. Every project ran into financial difficulty. More than half went into foreclosure, a Chicago Sun-Times investigation has found.

"Their buildings were falling apart,'' said a former city official. "They just didn't pay attention to the condition of these buildings.''

Eleven of Rezko's buildings were in Obama's state Senate district.

Obama, now a U.S. senator running for president, has come under fire over his friendship with Rezko, who was charged last fall with demanding kickbacks on state business deals under Gov. Blagojevich.

Much of the criticism has centered on two real estate deals involving Obama's South Side mansion. In the first, Obama paid $300,000 less than the asking price for a doctor's home, while Rezko's wife paid the doctor full price for the vacant lot next door. Then -- a few months before Rezko was indicted -- Obama bought part of that lot from Rezko's wife.

But Obama's ties with Rezko go beyond those two real estate sales and the political support, the Sun-Times found. Obama was an attorney with a small Chicago law firm -- Davis Miner Barnhill & Galland -- that helped Rezmar get more than $43 million in government funding to rehab 15 of their 30 apartment buildings for the poor.

Obama seems to be less than honest about his dealings with Rezko.As Media Matters busts Obama on his Rezko denials:
On June 13, the Chicago Sun-Times reported that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL), while serving as an Illinois state senator in 1998, "did a political favor" for Chicago Democratic fundraiser Antoin "Tony" Rezko by writing letters to state and local government officials in support of a Chicago housing project proposed by Rezko's company, New Kenwood LLC. The Sun-Times asserted that the "letters appear to contradict a statement last December from Obama, who told the Chicago Tribune that, in all the years he's known Rezko, 'I've never done any favors for him.' '' In reporting on this story, however, several media outlets omitted statements included in the Sun-Times article that challenge the paper's assertion that Obama performed a "favor" for Rezko -- specifically, Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton's claim that "I don't know that anyone specifically asked him to write this letter," and Rezko's attorney's claim that Rezko "never spoke with, nor sought a letter from, Senator Obama in connection with that project."

In October 2006, Rezko was indicted on charges that he "used his influence as one of Gov. Rod Blagojevich's closest advisers and fundraisers to seek millions of dollars in kickbacks and campaign donations from firms seeking state business," according to the Chicago Tribune.

From the June 13 Sun-Times article, headlined "Obama's letters for Rezko":

As a state senator, Barack Obama wrote letters to city and state officials supporting his political patron Tony Rezko's successful bid to get more than $14 million from taxpayers to build apartments for senior citizens.

The deal included $855,000 in development fees for Rezko and his partner, Allison S. Davis, Obama's former boss, according to records from the project, which was four blocks outside Obama's state Senate district.

Obama's letters, written nearly nine years ago, for the first time show the Democratic presidential hopeful did a political favor for Rezko -- a longtime friend, campaign fund-raiser and client of the law firm where Obama worked -- who was indicted last fall on federal charges that accuse him of demanding kickbacks from companies seeking state business under Gov. Blagojevich.

The letters appear to contradict a statement last December from Obama, who told the Chicago Tribune that, in all the years he's known Rezko, "I've never done any favors for him.''

The Sun-Times, however, went on to quote Burton claiming that he did not "know that anyone specifically asked him to write this letter," and Rezko attorney Joseph Duffy saying that Rezko had not asked Obama to write the letters -- undermining the article's claim that the letters constituted "a political favor":

On Tuesday, Bill Burton, press secretary for Obama's presidential campaign, said the letters Obama wrote in support of the development weren't intended as a favor to Rezko or Davis.

"This wasn't done as a favor for anyone," Burton said in a written statement. "It was done in the interests of the people in the community who have benefited from the project.

"I don't know that anyone specifically asked him to write this letter nine years ago," the statement said. "There was a consensus in the community about the positive impact the project would make and Obama supported it because it was going to help people in his district. ... They had a wellness clinic and adult day-care services, as well as a series of social services for residents. It's a successful project. It's meant a lot to the community, and he's proud to have supported it.''

The development, called the Cottage View Terrace apartments, opened five years ago at 4801 S. Cottage Grove, providing 97 apartments for low-income senior citizens.

Asked about the Obama letters, Rezko's attorney, Joseph Duffy, said Tuesday, "Mr. Rezko never spoke with, nor sought a letter from, Senator Obama in connection with that project."

While reporting on this story, several media outlets left out either Burton's or Duffy's statement, or both. The June 13 edition of ABC News' political online newsletter The Note cited the Sun-Times' claim that the "letters appear to contradict" Obama's claim that he has never done a favor for Rezko, but did not quote either Burton or Duffy. Rather, The Note reported that "[t]he Obama camp is casting it as an attempt to increase housing for seniors." From the June 13 edition of "The Note":

Obama wrote letters to local officials on behalf of a project controlled by indicted real-estate dealmaker Tony Rezko, the Chicago Sun-Times' Tim Novak reports. "The letters appear to contradict a statement last December from Obama, who told the Chicago Tribune that, in all the years he's known Rezko, 'I've never done any favors for him.'" (The Obama camp is casting it as an attempt to increase housing for seniors.)

A June 14 New York Times article and a June 13 report on CNN's The Situation Room featured statements from Burton regarding the letters, but neither addressed whether Rezko had asked Obama to write the letters, nor mentioned Duffy's statement.

From the Times article:

[Years earlier, as a state legislator, Mr. Obama wrote letters to city and state officials supporting efforts by Mr. Rezko and a partner to build apartments for the elderly with $14 million in government money, The Chicago Sun-Times reported in its June 13 editions. The developers received $855,000 in fees.]

Mr. Obama's spokesman, Bill Burton, said the senator was one of several politicians who intervened because the project was important to local residents.

Mr. Burton also said in a statement that the senator "has held himself to a high standard and has had a career in public service fighting for the toughest possible ethical rules."

"This is not a record changed by anything that has happened to Tony Rezko," Mr. Burton said.

From the June 13 edition of CNN's The Situation Room:

WOLF BLITZER (anchor): There are also some new questions about Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama's ties to a Chicago developer. Tony Rezko is a former Obama supporter and donor now under federal indictment. A published report says Obama once wrote letters in support of Rezko Development, while Obama was serving in the state Senate.

CNN's [national correspondent] Keith Oppenheim is watching this story for us. Keith is joining us now live. Keith, so, update our viewers who are not familiar with what's going on. What's going on? Because in Chicago, at least, this has been an uproar of sorts.

OPPENHEIM: It has. And really, there are a couple of possibilities as to what this could mean for Obama's campaign. One is that all this about Tony Rezko and his connections to him just may be a slight tarnish to Obama's reputation, if at all. But a bad scenario for Senator Obama is that this story could be an ongoing liability, one that could really put the candidate's credibility into question.

[begin video clip]

OPPENHEIM: In Chicago politics, Tony Rezko has been someone to know, a player in real estate. He's known Barack Obama for 17 years and contributed thousands to his numerous campaigns.

Last year, Rezko was indicted by a federal grand jury, accused of demanding kickbacks from companies that want to do business with the state. Rezko pleaded not guilty. But while Rezko was under investigation, Obama bought a house in Chicago and a sliver of the property next door owned by Rezko's wife. Jay Stewart is the director of a Chicago watchdog group called the Better Government Association.

STEWART: That raised a lot of eyebrows -- not the transaction itself, but the fact that, at that point, everybody in Illinois knew Tony Rezko was being looked at by the federal government.

OPPENHEIM: Obama tried to put the matter to rest last December, when he told the Chicago Tribune, regarding Tony Rezko, "I've never done any favors for him."

Today, the Chicago Sun-Times produced a 1998 letter, which, the paper said, suggests otherwise. Obama, who was then a state senator, wrote to city officials on behalf of one of Rezko's real estate deals to build a senior citizen complex on Chicago's South Side. Campaign press secretary Bill Burton told the Sun-Times, "This wasn't done as a favor for anyone. It was done in the interest of the people in the community, who have benefited from the project."

Burton told CNN, "The fact of the matter is Obama has led a career fighting for the toughest possible ethics reforms in government. This sort of thing isn't a worry to us."

The question is: Is there more to Obama's relationship with Tony Rezko that could become a distraction?

[end video clip]

OPPENHEIM: Wolf, Senator Obama has been trying pretty hard to distance himself from Tony Rezko. Last week, his campaign donated $23,000 in charity -- that's money that came from three of Rezko's business associates. Now, last year, the campaign donated $11,000 in charity. That's money that came directly from Tony Rezko. Back to you, Wolf.

BLITZER: All right, thanks very much. Keith Oppenheim, watching this story in Chicago for us.

Other media outlets -- including Fox News and -- reported Burton's comments to the Sun-Times but failed to note Duffy's claim that Rezko never asked Obama to write the letters.

From a June 13 entry on's First Read weblog:

The Chicago Sun-Times reports today that, as a state senator, Obama wrote letters supporting indicted developer Tony Rezko's bid to win more than $14 million in contracts, which appears to contradict Obama's earlier claim that he's never done favors for Rezko. Obama's camp responds that the letters he wrote were intended to benefit the community, not Rezko. "As the Sun Times acknowledges in today's article, Senator Obama didn't support this project as a favor to anyone -- he did in an effort to have the most positive impact on his community possible," the campaign says. One thing seems to be sure, however: So far, Obama is getting tougher treatment from his hometown newspapers (especially the Sun-Times) than Clinton is from hers.

From the June 13 edition of Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume:

BRIT HUME (host): Barack Obama's hometown newspaper is reporting that he wrote letters to city and state officials nine years ago supporting political patron Tony Rezko's efforts to build apartments for senior citizens. The Chicago Sun-Times writes the letters appear to contradict a statement last December where Obama said, quote, "I've never done any favors for him."

Rezko was indicted last fall on federal charges that he demanded kickbacks from companies seeking state business. Obama has admitted to what he called a "bone-headed" -- his word -- real estate deal with Rezko, calling it a mistake. Rezko has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for Obama's election efforts.

Obama's campaign press secretary says the Rezko letters were written in order to benefit the people who would live in the apartments that Rezko was trying to build.

But,as the Chicago Sun-Times notes the Obama-Rezko connections run deeper:
In addition to a land deal, Sen. Barack Obama’s ties to indicted dealmaker Antoin “Tony” Rezko include an internship the senator provided the son of a contributor at the request of Rezko, an Obama spokesman confirmed today.

John Aramanda served as an intern for Obama for about a month in 2005, said Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs. His father is Joseph Aramanda, a Rezko business associate who was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in a federal corruption case against Rezko. Aramanda has contributed $11,500 to Obama since 2000, Gibbs said.

“Mr. Rezko did provide a recommendation for John Aramanda,” Gibbs said. “I think that it’s fairly obvious that a few-week internship is not of anything of benefit to Mr. Rezko or any of his businesses.”

The revelation of the internship comes after Obama acknowledged a mistake in buying property from Rezko in January 2006 — a deal that enlarged the senator’s yard in the Kenwood neighborhood on the South Side. The transaction occurred at a time when it was widely known Rezko was under investigation by the U.S. attorney’s office.

“It was a mistake to have been engaged with him at all in this or any other personal business dealing that would allow him, or anyone else, to believe that he had done me a favor,” Obama — a likely presidential candidate — told the Sun-Times in November.

Rezko was indicted in October for allegedly trying to collect nearly $6 million in kickbacks from government deals and trying to shake down a Hollywood producer for $1.5 million in campaign contributions to Gov. Blagojevich.

Obama and Rezko have been friends since 1990, and the Wilmette businessman has raised as much as $60,000 in campaign contributions for him.

After Rezko’s indictment, Obama donated $11,500 to charity — the amount Rezko contributed to the senator’s federal campaign fund.

Gibbs said he did not know whether Obama was considering returning any contributions from Aramanda given his alleged role in the federal corruption cases against Rezko and former Teachers Retirement System board member Stuart Levine.

Aramanda is identified as “Individual D” in Rezko’s indictment. And when Levine pleaded guilty in October, Aramanda again was listed as “Individual D.”

Aramanda was identified by the Sun-Times as “Individual D,” who allegedly received a $250,000 kickback tied to a scheme to steer lucrative state pension deals to firms and consultants that donated to Blagojevich. Aramanda is not specifically named or charged with criminal wrongdoing in the court papers. He could not be reached for comment Saturday.

Aramanda has contributed $11,500 to Obama's campaigns since 2000, Gibbs said. He gave $1,000 toward Obama’s run for Congress against Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Chicago) in 2000; $500 to Obama’s Senate campaign in 2003 and $10,000 to his Senate campaign in 2004, Gibbs said.

Gibbs said John Aramanda served in Obama’s Capitol Hill office from July 20 to Aug. 26, 2005, during which he received an $804 cost-of-living stipend. Aramanda was one of nearly 100 interns who worked for Obama in 2005, Gibbs said.
Rezko's campaign contributions really are significant and Obama wasn't the only one on the take.

While Obama's relationship with Rezko is something of mentor-apprentice,with Rezko the mentor and Obama the apprentice.Obama's relationship between mob-linked banker Alexi Giannoulias has Obama being the mentor.As the New York Post reported on September 5, 2007:
A man who has long been dogged by charges that the bank his family owns helped finance a Chicago crime figure will host a Windy City fund-raiser tonight for Sen. Barack Obama.

Alexi Giannoulias, who became Illinois state treasurer last year after Obama vouched for him, has pledged to raise $100,000 for the senator's Oval Office bid.

Before he promised to raise funds for Obama, Giannoulias bankrolled Michael "Jaws" Giorango, a Chicagoan twice convicted of bookmaking and promoting prostitution.

Giannoulias is so tainted by reputed mob links that several top Illinois Dems, including the state's speaker of the House and party chairman, refused to endorse him even after he won the Democratic nomination with Obama's help.

Giannoulias was the bank's vice president and chief loan officer for most of the more than $15 million in loans.

He was not charged with breaking any laws. The Obama campaign disputed any suggestion that Obama is tarnished by the association.

"Barack Obama has a long record of fighting for ethics reform from his days as a state senator," a campaign rep said.
The voters in Illinois don't seem to mind Mob tainted politicians but is the rest of the country ready for that?

Recently,Barack Obama brought in convicted felon Robert Creamer to teach young,idealistic Obama supporters.Here's Tom Roeser on the Obama-Creamer operation:
Robert Creamer, the husband of U. S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill) who was sentenced to jail for running a community group and paying himself big bucks while banks held the bag, has been teaching a group of young (mostly) volunteers for the presidential campaign of Barack Obama, I am exclusively revealing today.

Nothing wrong with Creamer earning a living. Indeed not long ago he surfaced as a registered lobbyist working against the Senate confirmation of UN ambassador John Bolton, paid by the George Soros-funded “Open Society Policy Center.” But the idea of a convicted felon who kited checks lecturing the supposedly idealistic Obama campaign on how to raise money and get elected is a bit much.

Creamer taught at “Camp Obama,” a week-long summer camp last month held at the presidential candidate’s office in Chicago for campaign interns and volunteers-just a few blocks away from the federal court where on August 31, 2005 he pleaded guilty to charges of bank fraud and failure to pay federal taxes…on charges brought by U. S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald. He admitted in his 18-page signed plea agreement that he wrote checks on accounts that lacked funds and did so repeatedly as he moved money from one account to another in three banks. He had a multiple group of organizations that received money, the best known being the “Illinois Public Action Council” a left-wing group on which his wife, Jan Schakowsky, was a board member while the manipulating was going on. She was already in Congress when he pleaded guilty; she was not charged.

Creamer’s retention to instruct the Obama for President campaign is probably the most revelatory hint that the hopeful, idealistic, whimsical message floated by the candidate is mere vapor obscuring a cynical operation…unless, of course, the Obama people had no idea of Creamer or what his past represents.

Creamer’s being hired by the Obama campaign to instruct interns and volunteers in political organizing, abuses of which sent him to jail is ironic. Sen. Obama has been notable among the presidential candidates for crusading in an effort to “bring hope to our people.” He has been chairman of the Senate Ethics committee. How Creamer ended up instructing the Obama workers when his notoriety has been so prominent in Illinois is anyone’s guess. And whether he still continues to work on the Obama payroll is still speculative. One would imagine that David Axelrod, the top Obama strategist, should have seen Creamer’s hiring as a red flag.

Creamer, one of the more expansive radical lefties in Illinois, admitted he moved money from one account to another in three banks in 1997, playing what bankers describe as the “float” and thus making them believe that the accounts had more money in them than they actually did. In addition, Creamer admitted that he had opened two other check kiting schemes which took place in 1993 and 1996. His guilty plea also involved failing to collect $1,800 withholding tax from an employee of his political consulting firm. When he pleaded guilty, Creamer still flourished the rhetoric that led many well-intentioned volunteers to his multiple organizations. “The burning desire to create an organization that empowered ordinary people led me to make serious errors in that organization’s finances,” he said.

U. S. Attorney Fitzgerald wanted to send Creamer to jail for four years and three months. “This isn’t a one-time shot,” this is serial violation of the law in multiple respects,” said Fitzgerald’s office. Creamer’s attorney argued for probation because he spent a lifetime fighting “for social justice and broke the law so he could keep fighting for the causes he believed in.” Also being sure that he was adequately paid, with a six figure salary, while he crusaded for social justice. The prosecutor in Fitzgerald’s office, Joe Ferguson, said Creamer acted like he was above the law and continued his illegal activities even after a visit from the FBI, that he never took responsibility for his actions. Creamer’s attorney called him the most admirable client he ever represented-which stirred some comment about the nature of the other clients.

A breathless report of Camp Obama written by Mark Wiznitzer was posted yesterday, July 11 and appeared originally on /community/blog/markwiznitzer. It is the story of a 57-year-old man who by his own statement was surrounded by young people who were thrilled to be instructed by seasoned campaign strategists, one of whom was Creamer. He spoke on the subject of “Campaign Culture”-a topic on which by his imprisonment he could reasonably be called an authority.

“Our first substantive session on Campaign Culture was led by Bob Creamer of the Strategic Consulting Group,” wrote Wiznitzer. “He provided an information-packed presentation starting with a general theory of campaigns, getting a candidate elected, what makes a great campaign, the targeting of `persuadable’ and `mobilizable’ voters, application of quantitative approaches and different forms of messaging and research.”

After Creamer’s presentation, the group was instructed in campaign fundraising and subsequently heard presentations by several people. “John Kupper, partner with campaign consultant David Axelrod and campaign manager David Plouffe in AKP Media led off the morning of June 5 with a discussion of the Obama for America message. Subsequently, a campaign deputy director explained the role of Obama’s policy staff.” The presence of Axelrod would almost certify that the veteran strategist would know-or should have known-that Creamer was discussing his view of “Campaign Culture.”

Questions have been raised about the Creamer conviction as to how much Rep. Schakowsky knew about the check kiting and income tax fraud given that she is his wife, was his partner in political operations and served on his board of directors. The couple, experts in articulating a populism that is infectious to the left, sought to keep Creamer out of jail because of his supposedly idealistic mission. But the judge maintained that “ordinary people get caught for not paying taxes…and end up going to jail.”
John Edwards might be the ethically challenged trial lawyer.Hillary Clinton might be the ethically challenged half of the Clinton marriage.But,in all honesty Barack Obama is in no way better.Is America ready for sleazy,Chicago style politics in the White House?(For a look at Chicago Democrats and the Chicago Mob).