Thirty Degrees Below Zero
posted at 9:31 am on August 16, 2009 by directorblue
For more than five weeks during the brutally cold winter of 1997, tenants suffered without any heat in a government-subsidized apartment building. The 31-unit building in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood had been “rehabbed” just four years prior at taxpayer expense, no less.
And the Englewood building wasn’t the only one of Rezmar’s properties that had scores of code violations. At least a dozen times, Rezmar had to be sued in order to simply turn on the heat in its properties.
Rezmar’s properties turned out to be catastrophic failures: 17 buildings ended up in foreclosure, 6 are boarded up, hundreds of apartments are vacant and require repair… and taxpayers were stuck with millions in unpaid loans.
During the winter or the scores of subsequent code violations, did state senator Obama ever lift a finger to protect his constituents from “predatory slumlords” like Rezmar?
The answer appears to be a resounding “No“. In 2007, Obama’s own campaign staff stated, “Senator Obama does not remember having conversations… about properties that [Rezmar] owned..”
The shivering tenants in in and around the district were left defenseless for weeks at a time. Assailed on one side by predatory slumlords like Rezmar, they were — for all intents and purposes — left out in the cold by their state senator, Barack Obama.
There’s a simple reason Obama didn’t lift a finger to protest these horrific violations. His political patron, Tony Rezko, was the driving force behind Rezmar. And Rezko helped raise a quarter of a million dollars for Obama’s various campaigns.
And after stating he’d “never done any favors for” Rezko, the Chicago Sun-Times discovered letters Obama wrote to city and state officials supporting Rezko’s bid for $14 million in taxpayers’ money for an elder-care facility.
While Obama didn’t expend an ounce of energy to protest Rezko’s outrageous violations, he did take time to write letters on behalf of Rezko in his efforts to secure an additional $14 million in taxpayer funds.
And as a so-called “community organizer” and then a state senator, Obama — and close friend and confidante Valerie Jarrett, who was responsible for property management — couldn’t even keep huge, federally subsidized housing complexes like Grove Parc habitable. And ‘habitable’ is kind of a low bar, I would think.
State Senator Barack Obama did a really lousy job representing his constituents in a tiny district in Chicago’s south side, appearing to side more often with corporate interests than his own, downtrodden citizens.
And his cronies — like Valerie Jarrett — were linked to dozens of failed projects that burned through millions in taxpayer funds.
It’ll be a cold day in hell before that sounds like a good idea to the American taxpayer. Say, thirty degrees below zero cold
Cross-posted at: Doug Ross @ Journal.