Ohhhh Noooo Ohhhhhh Bama

Discussion in 'Fred's House of Pancakes' started by daronspicher, Apr 24, 2007.

  1. MegansPrius

    MegansPrius GoogleMeister, AKA bongokitty

    Nov 19, 2006
    Chicago, IL
    2007 Prius
    Rezko was cozying up to half the politicians in the state.

    List of political donations from Rezko, family and associates.

    Politician Totals
    John Stroger, former Cook County Board President $148,300
    Gov. Blagojevich $117,652
    Mayor Daley $55,950
    U.S. Sen. Barack Obama $54,416
    Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan $43,000
    Ill. House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago)+A20 $35,500
    Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn $32,000
    Ald. Toni Preckwinkle (4th) $31,375
    U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) $27,250
    John Schmidt, former candidate for attorney general $25,000
    Secretary of State Jesse White $23,848
    State Comptroller Dan Hynes $22,500
    Ald. Arenda Troutman (20th) $20,750
    State Sen. James Meeks (D-Chicago) $20,000
    Rosemont Mayor Donald Stephens $16,500
    Illinois Senate President Emil Jones (D-Chicago) $15,000
    Democratic National Committee Services Corp $15,000
    Jack Lavin, director of Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity $13,393
    Illinois Democratic Party $11,300
    Ald. Richard Mell (33rd) $10,500
    Cook County Commissioner John Daley $10,000
    Cook County State's Atty. Richard Devine $10,000
    1st Ward Regular Democratic Org $9,000
    John Kerry, former Democratic presidential candidate $8,250
    Jim Edgar, former Illinois governor $7,304
    President George Bush $7,000
    U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) $6,000
    Cook County Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown $6,000
    Cook County Circuit Court Judge William Haddad $5,000
    Ald. Joe Moore (49th) $5,000
    Ald. Edward M. Burke (14th) $4,800
    Ald. Ike Carothers (29th) $4,500
    47th Ward Regular Democratic Org. $4,500
    Ald. Burt Natarus (42nd) $3,800
    Cook County Commissioner Roberto Maldonado $3,500
    14th Ward Ad Book $3,250
    Cook County Board President Todd Stroger $3,250
    Carol Moseley-Braun, former U.S. senator $3,000
    Larry Bloom, former 5th Ward alderman $2,575
    Illinois Victory 96 $2,500
    4th Ward Regular Democratic Org. $2,000
    U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. $2,000
    U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) $2,000
    Bobbie Steele, former Cook County commissioner $2,000
    U.S. Rep. Danny Davis (D-Ill.) $2,000
    Peter Fitzgerald, former U.S. senator $2,000
    Ted Lechowicz, former Cook County commissioner $1,500
    DuPage County State's Atty. Joseph Birkett $1,500
    17th Ward Regular Democratic Org. $1,500
    4th Congressional District State Central Committee $1,500
    Alice Palmer, former state senator $1,500
    Terry Peterson, former 17th Ward alderman $1,000
    Ald. Madeline Haithcock (2nd) $1,000
    Team Moreno $1,000
    DuPage County Board Chairman Robert Schillerstrom $1,000
    Ald. Manny Flores (1st) $1,000
    25th Ward Regular Democratic Org. $1,000
    The Burnham Committee $1,000
    Ald. Margaret Laurino (39th) $1,000
    David Phelps, former state representative $1,000
    Lauren Beth Gash, former state represenative $1,000
    U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) $1,000
    U.S. Rep. Ray LaHood (D-Ill.) $1,000
    Al Gore, former vice president $1,000
    Allan Streeter, former 17th Ward alderman $1,000
    Ald. Gene Schulter (47th) $1,000
    Ald. Billy Ocasio (26th) $800
    36th Ward Regular Democratic Org. $600
    State Sen. Donne Trotter (D-Chicago) $500
    Mary Jane Manella, former legislative candidate $500
    George Ryan, former Illinois governor $500
    16th Ward Regular Democratic Org. $500
    Dan Rostenkowski, former congressman $500
    Mexican American PAC $400
    DuPage County Board member Mike McMahon $400
    State Sen. Dan Rutherford (R-Chenoa) $300
    Ald. William Banks (36th) $250
    National Republican Congressional Committee $250
    Dean Maragos, former aldermanic candidate $250
    State Rep. Karen Yarbrough (D-Maywood) $100
  2. dbermanmd

    dbermanmd New Member

    Sep 7, 2005
    2006 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(MegansPrius @ Apr 26 2007, 08:55 AM) [snapback]430404[/snapback]</div>

    I am lost - does this somehow obselve one or all of them - perhaps the people mr abramhof was involved with should be treated this way too?

    If you pass 100 bad checks does that make it better than passing one?
    Telling 100 lies is better than telling one?

    In fact, i would argue that a smart politician would have a "do not touch or accept from" list of people who have track records of not being "clean"? Do you think B. Hussien Obama should have been forward thinking enough to stay away? I mean he wants to be President - he should be a little forward looking, no? Or is he just a ordinary guy that got duped or did he just not care or did he just not do his homework? What are you trying to prove with this list?

    seems dems outnumber repubs by a large margin - what are you saying here?
  3. MegansPrius

    MegansPrius GoogleMeister, AKA bongokitty

    Nov 19, 2006
    Chicago, IL
    2007 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(dbermanmd @ Apr 26 2007, 07:37 AM) [snapback]430420[/snapback]</div>
    I'm saying you could hardly be in government in Illinois without being contacted by this guy. There was no reason for anyone to think forward because people thought this guy was getting stuff done, i.e., building low income housing. An oversight problem on the part of state agencies is now supposed to be a hindsight problem for everyone who had anythign to do with this guy? And there's more dems on the list because dems have been in charge lately. Rezko got his first big contracts under Republican governor Jim Edgar. He served as an advisor to Republican governor George Ryan. Do you know if George Bush has donated or returned the money Rezko gave him?

    State loans helped
    In 1991, Jim Edgar had just been elected governor, and Rezko had been "very helpful'' in raising money for Edgar, according to Robert Kjellander, a top Illinois Republican Party official and one of Edgar's top fund-raisers.
    Rezko and Mahru hired Kjellander, an influential lobbyist, to help get state money for housing projects.

    "It just lasted a couple years," Kjellander said.

    Eight months after Edgar took office, the Illinois Housing Development Authority gave Rezmar a $500,000 loan to help rehab a 65-unit building for senior citizens in South Shore. A year later, Rezmar came back to the state and got a $60,000 loan, citing cost overruns.

    Eight years later, Rezmar abandoned the building, leaving it to its partner in the deal, the Chicago Equity Fund, whose corporate investors had purchased tax credits from Rezmar to help pay for the rehab. The building was left in disrepair, and the Equity Fund investors were facing IRS penalties if the project didn't survive for 15 years. So the fund got a separate loan from the state, for $381,839, to try to rescue the building.

    Today, all three mortgages are delinquent. The state is foreclosing on the building in hopes of finding someone who can run it and the senior citizens can continue living there.

    On a side note, it was Patrick Fitzgerald, the same one of the Libby Trial, who indicted Rezko in October, so for all you neo-cons who were distressed by Fitz's competence in convicting Libby, you can now enjoy him routing out some Democratic corruption in Illinois. But with the extent of Rezko's dealings in the state, I seriously doubt Obama is going to be the target Fitz is looking at.
  4. efusco

    efusco Moderator Emeritus
    Staff Member

    Nov 26, 2003
    Nixa, MO
    2004 Prius

    After the controversy surfaced on Wednesday, the Sun-Times presented Obama's office with a lengthy set of questions about the land deal, Obama's relationship with Rezko and the story's impact on a potential 2008 bid for the White House.

    Here are his responses:

    Q: Senator, when did you first meet Tony Rezko? How did you become friends? How often would you meet with him, and when did you last speak with him?

    A: I had attracted some media attention when I was elected the first black President of the Harvard Law Review. And while I was in law school, David Brint, who was a development partner with Tony Rezko contacted me and asked whether I would be interested in being a developer. Ultimately, after discussions in which I met Mr. Rezko, I said no.

    I have probably had lunch with Rezko once or twice a year and our spouses may have gotten together on two to four occasions in the time that I have known him. I last spoke with Tony Rezko more than six months ago.

    Q:. Have you or your wife participated in any other transactions of any kind with Rezko or companies he owns? Have you or your wife ever done any legal work ever for Rezko or his companies?

    A: No.

    Q: Has Rezko ever given you or your family members gifts of any kind and, if so, what were they?

    A: No.

    Q: The seller of your house appears to be a doctor at the University of Chicago . Do you or your wife know him? If so, did either of you ever talk to him about subdividing the property? If you ever did discuss the property with him, when were those conversations?

    A: We did not know him personally, though my wife worked in the same University hospital. The property was subdivided and two lots were separately listed when we first learned of it. We did not discuss the property with the owners; the sale was negotiated for us by our agent.

    Q: Did you approach Rezko or his wife about the property, or did they approach you?

    A: To the best of my recollection, I told him about the property, and he developed an interest, knowing both the location and, as I recall, the developer who had previously purchased it.

    Q: Who was your Realtor? Did this Realtor also represent Rita Rezko?

    A: Miriam Zeltzerman, who had also represented me in the purchase of my prior property, a condominium, in Hyde Park. She did not represent Rita Rezko.

    Q: How do you explain the fact your family purchased your home the same day as Rita Rezko bought the property adjacent to yours? Was this a coordinated purchase?

    A: The sellers required the closing of both properties at the same time. As they were moving out of town, they wished to conclude the sale of both properties simultaneously. The lot was purchased first; with the purchase of the house on the adjacent lot, the closings could proceed and did, on the same day, pursuant to the condition set by the sellers.

    Q: Why is it that you were able to buy your parcel for $300,000 less than the asking price, and Rita Rezko paid full price? Who negotiated this end of the deal? Did whoever negotiated it have any contact with Rita and Tony Rezko or their Realtor or lawyer?

    A: Our agent negotiated only with the seller's agent. As we understood it, the house had been listed for some time, for months, and our offer was one of two and, as we understood it, it was the best offer. The original listed price was too high for the market at the time, and we understood that the sellers, who were anxious to move, were prepared to sell the house for what they paid for it, which is what they did.

    We were not involved in the Rezko negotiation of the price for the adjacent lot. It was our understanding that the owners had received, from another buyer, an offer for $625,000 and that therefore the Rezkos could not have offered or purchased that lot for less.

    Q: Why did you put the property in a trust?

    A: I was advised that a trust holding would afford me some privacy, which was important to me as I would be commuting from Washington to Chicago and my family would spend some part of most weeks without me.

    Q: A Nov. 21, 1999, Chicago Tribune story indicates the house you bought "sits on a quarter-acre lot and will share a driveway and entrance gate with a home next door that has not yet been built." Is this shared driveway still in the mix? Will this require further negotiations with the Rezkos?

    A: The driveway is not shared with the adjacent owner. But the resident in the carriage house in the back does have an easement over it.

    Q: Does it display a lack of judgment on your part to be engaging in real estate deals with Tony Rezko at a point his connections to state government had been reported to be under federal investigation?

    A: I've always held myself to the highest ethical standards. During the ten years I have been in public office, I believe I have met those standards and I know that is what people expect of me. I have also understood the importance of appearances.

    With respect to the purchase of my home, I am confident that everything was handled ethically and above board.

    But I regret that while I tried to pay close attention to the specific requirements of ethical conduct, I misgauged the appearance presented by my purchase of the additional land from Mr. Rezko. It was simply not good enough that I paid above the appraised value for the strip of land that he sold me. 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. For that reason, I consider this a mistake on my part and I regret it.

    Throughout my life, I have put faith in confronting experiences honestly and learning from them. And that is what I will do with this experience as well.

    Q: Why did you not publicly disclose the transaction after Rezko got indicted?

    A: At the time, it didn't strike me as relevant. I did however donate campaign contributions from Rezko to charity.

    Q: Have you been interviewed by federal investigators about this transaction or about your relationship with Rezko? If not, do you intend to approach them?

    A: I have not been interviewed by federal investigators. I have no reason to approach them.

    Q: Did Rezko or his companies ever solicit your support on any matter involving state or federal government? Did Al Johnson, who was trying to get a casino license along with Tony Rezko, or Rezko himself ever discuss casino matters with you?

    A: No, I have never been asked to do anything to advance his business interests. In 1999, when I was a State Senator, I opposed legislation to bring a casino to Rosemont and allow casino gambling at docked riverboats which news reports said Al Johnson and Tony Rezko were interested in being part of. I never discussed a casino license with either of them. I was a vocal opponent of the legislation. (http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/votehistory/srollcalls91/pdf/910SB1017_05251999_001000C.PDF)

    Q: Has this disclosure about your relationship with Rezko changed your thoughts about a White House run?

    A: No. As I have said, how I can best serve is something I will think about after the 2006 election next Tuesday.

    Q: Did Rezko ever discuss with you his dealings with Stuart Levine, Christopher Kelly or William Cellini or the role he was playing in shaping Gov. Blagojevich's administration?

    A: No.

    Q: Are the Obamas the only beneficiaries of the land trust?

    A: Yes.

    Q: Are you aware of any efforts by previous owners to develop what is now the Rezko lot, possibly as townhomes?

    A: I was not aware of any prior effort by the seller to develop the property, but always understood the other lot was to be developed upon sale.

    Q: Did Rezko have an appraisal performed for the 10-foot strip?

    A: I had an appraisal conducted by Howard B. Richter & Associates on November 21, 2005.

    Q: Was there a negotiation? Did he have an asking price, or did he just say, whatever you think is fair?

    A: I proposed to pay on the basis of proportionality. Since the strip composed one-sixth of the entire lot, I would pay one-sixth of the purchase price of the lot. I offered this to Mr. Rezko and he accepted it.

    Q: How many fundraisers has Mr. Rezko hosted for you? Were these all in his home? How much would you estimate he has raised for your campaigns?

    A: He hosted one event at his home in 2003 for my U.S. Senate campaign. He participated as a member of a host committee for several other events. My best estimate was that he raised somewhere between $50,000 and $60,000.
  5. MegansPrius

    MegansPrius GoogleMeister, AKA bongokitty

    Nov 19, 2006
    Chicago, IL
    2007 Prius
    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(efusco @ Apr 26 2007, 08:14 AM) [snapback]430445[/snapback]</div>
    Thanks for posting Evan. Actually though, that's the invterview he gave last fall when the questions first arose about his house purchase. The Sun-Times this week published some new articles on Rezko as slumlord this week, and Obama gave an interview to the Tribune on Tuesday of this week addressing the slumlord issue:

    "Should I have known these buildings were in a state of disrepair? My answer would be that it wasn't brought to my attention," Obama said Monday.

    "One of the perils of public life is that you end up being responsible for, or you're held responsible for, associations that you didn't necessarily know were a problem," Obama said.

    Shortly after law school, Obama worked at a Chicago law firm that did work for Rezmar. Obama said his time at the firm now called Miner Barnhill & Galland involved some Rezmar-related work.

    Obama spent nine years doing work for the firm, beginning in 1993. He said he spent about five hours working on the deals during a six-year period. Obama said the Rezko-related work mostly consisted of "basically filing incorporation papers" and similar tasks for not-for-profit groups that partnered with Rezmar.

    When asked if he had ever worked on behalf of Rezko and Rezmar for any government entity, Obama said, "Never. No."

    ...Obama's relationship with Rezko came under scrutiny last year after the Chicago Tribune reported that Rezko's wife purchased a lot next door to Obama's new house on Chicago's South Side. Obama then paid Rezko $104,500 to expand the Obama house's yard into part of the lot.

    Obama has said the arrangements were ethical and proper, but acknowledged the sale was a "boneheaded" business transaction.

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