White House honors Chicago alderman’s reform — as FBI questions him on improper payments

posted at 10:41 am on July 23, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

We’re used to the White House not vetting candidates, but apparently that lack of research extends throughout their efforts.  Yesterday, the Obama administration announced that it would honor Chicago alderman Joe Moore for being a “pioneer for political reform,” according to the Chicago Tribune.  There’s only one problem for the White House, and that the pioneer reformer had to answer questions from the FBI based on an IG report on potential corruption:

In a case of only-in-Chicago political timing, the White House announced Monday it would honor Ald. Joe Moore as a “pioneer for political reform,” the same day the veteran City Council member revealed he has spoken to FBI agents about allegations he improperly paid two aides he fired.

The accusations involving the ex-employees surfaced in a report from Legislative Inspector General Faisal Khan, one of several cases of alleged aldermanic wrongdoing the council’s watchdog highlighted.

Khan contends that Moore, who has represented Rogers Park since 1991, fired a woman in 2009 after she complained about political work being done in his ward office in violation of city laws. The report says Moore, 49th, paid the woman $8,709 — the equivalent of three-and-a-half months salary, and told her not to speak to anyone about the political activities in the ward office.

The report also says Moore, who has long been considered a progressive voice on the council, fired his chief of staff in 2007 and paid him $13,497 more than he should have based on the number of unused sick days the chief of staff could have accumulated.

Khan indicated that his office forwarded the information to the FBI and the Cook County state’s attorney. Moore confirmed he has spoken to FBI agents about the allegations, but called them “totally baseless.”

Moore blames the probe on “a lack of professionalism” at the IG’s office.  I’m not sure what that means in this context, however.  The alderman only created the IG office in 2011 under pressure from Richard Daley, since the council had done nothing to police itself while “many council members ended up in prison,” the Tribune points out.  In this case, the IG turned over the evidence in its probe to the FBI, which appears to be the professional procedure to apply.

And for that matter, why is the White House heralding a “pioneer for political reform” who publicly demeans an IG? Is that “change,” or is that more of The Chicago Way?  It’s unclear how the White House chose Moore for the award in the first place, since the public website makes no mention of an “Alderman Moore” at all.  The honor of being a pioneer of political reform in Chicago seems at best to be a relative assessment.


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Train wreck!

It’s a massive, awful TRAIN WRECK.

Lourdes on July 23, 2013 at 10:43 AM

I bet no one knows that Obama was “a Constitutional professor.”

And that he’s really smart. Smartest man ever. Really, knows a lot of stuff. And stuff like that.

Lourdes on July 23, 2013 at 10:45 AM

Khan contends that Moore, who has represented Rogers Park since 1991, fired a woman in 2009 after she complained about political work being done in his ward office in violation of city laws. The report says Moore, 49th, paid the woman $8,709 — the equivalent of three-and-a-half months salary, and told her not to speak to anyone about the political activities in the ward office.

Definitely the work of a pioneer!

Chris of Rights on July 23, 2013 at 10:47 AM

Teh SCOAMT’s definition of “reform” isn’t found in a dictionary.

Steve Eggleston on July 23, 2013 at 10:47 AM

And for that matter, why is the White House heralding a “pioneer for political reform” who publicly demeans an IG?

because the White House has no problem with smearing a SCOTUS decision when the Justices are seated right in front of the POTUS.

#gotManners?

ted c on July 23, 2013 at 10:50 AM

Kill two birds with one stone trip to DC

blammm on July 23, 2013 at 10:51 AM

Birds of a feather; apple falling from tree; etc.

We’ve all seen this movie and it ain’t good enough to re-run. But they still make us watch it over and over.

platypus on July 23, 2013 at 10:51 AM

Not surprised at anything anymore.Ridiculous is just another word in the dictionary.

docflash on July 23, 2013 at 10:51 AM

It’s not the Chicago Way. It’s now the Obama Way. Named after its most famous practitioner.

meci on July 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

Be careful, Ed. Once you sincerely dive into the stuttering clusterfark of corruption that is the Chicago city council, you will find yourself laughing, crying, and screaming all at the same time.

JimLennon on July 23, 2013 at 10:53 AM

Political deform, political reform, at this point what difference does it make?

Flange on July 23, 2013 at 10:53 AM

There’s only one problem for the White House, and that the pioneer reformer had to answer questions from the FBI based on an IG report on potential corruption:

What’s next honoring the mayor of San Diego for his work on behalf of eliminating sexual harassment in the workplace?

Happy Nomad on July 23, 2013 at 10:53 AM

You aren’t sure what “a lack of professionalism” means in this context?

Perhaps it means the IG isn’t sufficiently concerned with his own professional future in government. Not much call for IG’s elsewhere, and (as we all remember) Democrats have a pronounced habit of destroying IG careers in instances where they become annoying.

MTF on July 23, 2013 at 10:54 AM

Alinsky >chaos >destruction >utopia!

faraway on July 23, 2013 at 10:55 AM

HaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHa!

SailorMark on July 23, 2013 at 10:55 AM

Like this matters to the media? Need I even say if this were Bush….

sandee on July 23, 2013 at 10:55 AM

Chicago is one gigantic crap pool packed to the gunwales with human criminal trash.

Leave it to the geniuses in the WH to completely miss the fact that the dude they’re honoring is a douchebag, though in fairness I doubt there is a single alderman in the entire city who isn’t a corrupt sleazebag so why bother doing a backgrounder.

Bishop on July 23, 2013 at 10:56 AM

Ronald Reagan did more uttering 6 words than the current occupant of the White House has done in 6 years.

‘Mr. Gorbachov, tear down this wall…’ (R. Reagan)

‘You didn’t build that…’ (obumer)

See the difference?

Kuffar on July 23, 2013 at 11:00 AM

Moore blames the probe on “a lack of professionalism” at the IG’s office.

But Moore is being honored for instituting that lack of professionalism?

This can’t be Chicago. It has to be Hollywood.

unclesmrgol on July 23, 2013 at 11:01 AM

And for that matter, why is the White House heralding a “pioneer for political reform” who publicly demeans an IG? Is that “change,” or is that more of The Chicago Way?

Over to you Gerald Walpin……

ted c on July 23, 2013 at 11:02 AM

Gerald Walpin was the canary in the coal mine and nobody but a few cared. That message was received, loud and clear; I can get away with anything and the media will cheer (quietly, so as not to awaken the public).

WitchDoctor on July 23, 2013 at 11:05 AM

I dunno. For sheer entertainment, it is hard to beat those clips of Detroit City Council meetings. Surely, Chi-town can’t top that?

a capella on July 23, 2013 at 11:06 AM

*major face palm*

God help those poor fools!

(And, us for having been defrauded into being under these half-wits’ governance.)

avagreen on July 23, 2013 at 11:07 AM

Moore confirmed he has spoken to FBI agents about the allegations, but called them “totally baseless.”

Has a politician ever said that he was guilty when first charged? Ever?

Every time I see that “who me?” statement I just shake my head, why even put it in…of course he didn’t do it.

Most every prisoner incarcerated didn’t do it…deny, deny, deny…

right2bright on July 23, 2013 at 11:09 AM

What’s next honoring the mayor of San Diego for his work on behalf of eliminating sexual harassment in the workplace?

Happy Nomad on July 23, 2013 at 10:53 AM

You asked…I don’t know if you were being sarcastic or not, but here it is…

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner’s speechwriter will need to start from scratch on his presentation before a women veterans’ group in August. Originally, Filner was going to accept an award for his work on sexual assault in the military. In light of recent revelations about his harassment of female staff, the award has been rescinded—and the topic of his still-scheduled speech has been revamped.

right2bright on July 23, 2013 at 11:12 AM

Sodom and Gamorrah are alive and well in the ol’ USA.

Bitter Clinger on July 23, 2013 at 11:13 AM

The picture should have the caption, “Dumb and Dummer!”

tomshup on July 23, 2013 at 11:21 AM

You asked…I don’t know if you were being sarcastic or not, but here it is…

right2bright on July 23, 2013 at 11:12 AM

Sarcastic? Moi? Where would ever get such an idea? ;0

Seriously, I don’t think Filner’s speechwriter is going to spend much time on an August event. I don’t give him two more weeks as mayor now that the whole panty-free workplace thing has made it into the news. It puts an entirely different spin on the “I’m just a hugger” defense. Perhaps after leaving office Filner will have the time to find his sense of shame.

Happy Nomad on July 23, 2013 at 11:23 AM

Joe Moore is the clown who got foie gras banned in Chicago.

http://www.ward49.com/site/epage/60303_322.htm

Moore also is buddies with a slum lord that had 6 child tenants die in a fire because he failed to have smoke detectors as required by code. Moore took political donations from said slum lord.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/2006/09/04/candle-suspected-in-chicago-fire-that-killed-6-children/

“Knight said fire investigators have found no evidence of smoke detectors, although Chicago Alderman Joe Moore said Sunday that the landlord told him there were smoke detectors in the unit when the Ramirez family moved in.”

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2006-09-04/news/0609040133_1_smoke-detectors-apartment-myron-hall

“The owner of the building, developer Jay D. Johnson, owns seven buildings in Moore’s ward and has coordinated several projects there, including the redevelopment of the Howard Theater into residences and businesses, Moore said. Johnson, who has according to state records also serves as one of 18 volunteers on Moore’s zoning and land-use advisory council. State campaign finance records show companies affiliated with Johnson have given $2,000 to Moore’s campaign since 2001.”

jimboslice on July 23, 2013 at 11:26 AM

Joe Moore’s claim to fame is a campaign to ban foie gras from Chicago restaurants because it is cruel to geese to force feed them until their livers are tender and tasty. Meanwhile the Chicago Public Schools crank out diplomas to illiterates, the city has a larger pension funding shortfall than Detroit, and the streets are more dangerous than Kabul.

Ted Torgerson on July 23, 2013 at 11:32 AM

Ronald Reagan did more uttering 6 words than the current occupant of the White House has done in 6 years.

Kuffar on July 23, 2013 at 11:00 AM

RR did more than Øbama every time he farted.

Kafir on July 23, 2013 at 11:37 AM

Three pics of facepalms in a row.

John the Libertarian on July 23, 2013 at 12:34 PM

Not only is our @$$-clown In Chief a corrupt SOB who has shown he has no respect for the Constitution or the LAW, but he also loves to FLAUNT it!

easyt65 on July 23, 2013 at 1:12 PM

I swell with pride, knowing only American universities can churn out the quality of Political Science graduates they do.

America! Number 1!

MNHawk on July 23, 2013 at 1:14 PM

So Moore is a “pioneer for political reform”? What, does that mean he uses PayPal for payoffs, graft, etc., instead of cash?

Ward Cleaver on July 23, 2013 at 1:36 PM

why is the White House heralding a “pioneer for political reform” who publicly demeans an IG? Is that “change,” or is that more of The Chicago Way?

What are you talking about? Name me a single IG that Obama has supported. If his henchmen aren’t slandering and/or firing them (Walpin), they’re having Congress do it (George).

The corrosive, relentless undermining of the AG system will be one of the more damaging long-term legacies of Obama.

Zumkopf on July 23, 2013 at 1:37 PM

Dig deep enough and you’ll probably find that alderman Joe Moore was a prolific campaign bundler for Obama.

GarandFan on July 23, 2013 at 1:48 PM

And the dopey slimestream media misses it all.

stukinIL4now on July 23, 2013 at 4:32 PM

Caption:

“Oh my gosh…”

“I didn’t do it…”

“Well I didn’t!”

“He who smelt it, dealt it.”

“Oh my eyes!”

“Man, light a match!”

Akzed on July 23, 2013 at 4:41 PM

The bar is so low that it is laying on the ground. :)

Theophile on July 23, 2013 at 6:28 PM