Jesse and Sandy Jackson

 

Yesterday, I had the day off and I was fortunate enough to catch the Jesse and Sandy Jackson sentencing.

I’m going to be very honest here and say that I have met the elder Jesse Jackson a couple of times (he attended my nephew Corey Ankum’s funeral where he comforted me and other family members) and that I hold him in high esteem.  So my opinion is totally biased.  It was difficult watching him go through his family troubles without being able to reach out and comfort him.

I also listened as Jesse Jackson Jr.’s local constituents said time and time again, to a host of different reporters, that they did not think that the two and half years the former Illinois Congressman received and the one year his wife received was too lenient. I beg to disagree. Anytime spent behind bars, or held anywhere, against your will is TOO LONG.

I think his sentence was appropriate, providing, he pays back the money. However, I think Sandy Jackson’s was too harsh. There are thousands of women walking free in this country who have lied to the IRS and are NOT behind bars.

I do think she smiled a bit too much and overdid the putting on a ‘brave face.’ It did not go over well. She should have been coached to remember something I tell the kids all the time, ‘cameras are everywhere these days’, even in Judges’ offices.

I for one can understand how it’s easy to dip into ‘ready money’ that people have given to you for your campaign. The money is there. It’s for your use. Why not use it. It seems to me that he forgot to due his ‘due diligence’, i.e. if you’re going to Costco to spend a couple thousand dollars, make sure you invite some staff members over and have a meeting. And serve them something to eat and drink that you bought at Costco. And he, like the senior George Bush, he should have glanced at that expensive watch during a debate, therefore making it a necessary expense.

All jokes, aside, I definitely remember a time when it was perfectly legal for a candidate to spend campaign money on personal expenses. The law was changed as a Republican maneuver at keeping Bill Clinton out of office. And the states followed suit.

 

The following excerpt is from Wikipedia

Efforts to strengthen campaign finance laws

Main article: Campaign finance reform in the United States

Developments after Buckley

In 1986, several bills were killed in the U.S. Senate by bipartisan maneuvering which did not allow the bills to come up for a vote. The bills would impose strict controls for campaign fund raising. Later in 1988, legislative and legal setbacks on proposals designed to limiting overall campaign spending by candidates were shelved after a Republican filibuster. In addition, a constitutional amendment to override ‘’Buckley’’ failed to get off the ground.

In 1994, Senate Democrats had more bills blocked by Republicans including a bill setting spending limits and authorizing partial public financing of congressional elections. In 1996, bipartisan legislation for voluntary spending limits which rewarded those who comply, and which banned soft money, was killed by a Republican filibuster.   

The Reform Party, founded by Ross Perot,  made campaign finance reform a central issue in its platform,  and when Perot ran for president in 1992 and 1996 he strongly argued for it. Oddly enough, most political scientists believe that campaign finance laws hindered Perot’s efforts to establish the Reform Party on a permanent basis.

A Tiny Kitten With A Big Mouth

More on Corey Ankum

 

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Alderman Deb Mell

 

Well folks former Alderman Mell, made good on his promise, and passed along his job to his daughter, Deb Mell. Enough said.

Click the links below to see what others had to say.

http://www.chicagoreader.com/Bleader/archives/2013/07/25/how-one-alderman-mell-begat-the-next-alderman-mell

http://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20130724/albany-park/deb-mell-named-new-33rd-ward-alderman

 

A Tiny Kitten With A Big Mouth

 

Old School Chicago Politics

Like so many of you, I was left scratching my head and wondering what were they thinking.

I recently watched a News broadcast on Jesse Jackson Jr.’s move from his Washington, D.C. Congressional office back to his home on the South Side of Chicago.

Let me say that I have absolutely no way of knowing whether Jesse Jackson Jr. is or isn’t guilty of trying to buy President Barack Obama’s former Senate seat.

But what does immediately spring to mind is why would he? And for that matter, why would former Governor Rod Blagojevich think that he had the right to sell the seat. Wasn’t it up to the voters of that District to decide who they wanted to replace then Senator Barack Obama?

I keep thinking if Jesse Jackson Jr. wanted that Senate seat why didn’t he just call a press conference and announce, to the voters, his interest in the seat. I’m sure that all of the voters in his District would have rallied around him and given him their full support.

In other words we lost a promising black congressman, and potential Senator, because his campaign workers didn’t know how to call a press conference? Anybody know the phone numbers for Charles Thomas, Mike Flannery, and Mary Ann Ahern in Chicago?

An then there was Richard Mell. Yet another unfortunate moment caught on camera that left me dumbfounded and which has caused me to change the name of this blog from lifeloveorsomethingelse to A Tiny Kitten with a Big Mouth.

Mr. Richard Mell, the most influential and longest lasting of Chicago’s Aldermen, when questioned about his pending retirement said, that he had no immediate plans on retiring but when he did, he was going to give his job to his daughter, Deb Mell, whom he felt was qualified to handle the position of Alderman.

Mr. Mel I don’t doubt for a moment that your daughter is very capable of handling the job but what about the voters in your District and what they want.

Giving your daughter your position as Alderman is nothing but old school Chicago politics at its very worst. There’s a word for that Mr. Mell — nepotism. And I’m sure Chicago in particular as instituted laws against it. Remember Shakman.

http://www.chicagomag.com/Chicago-Magazine/Felsenthal-Files/January-2013/Dick-Mell-Stands-Up-for-Nepotism-A-View-of-Chicagos-Most-Infamous-Father-in-Law/

A Tiny Kitten With A Big Mouth