Senate candidate faces bank seizure

In 2004, the Republican nominee for the open Illinois Senate seat, Jack Ryan, had to withdraw after having his divorce records exposed over the summer, revealing some rather exotic lifestyle choices.  That left the Illinois GOP with only Alan Keyes in a carpetbagging bid to beat a junior state Senator making his second run at Capitol Hill for the Democrats … and we all know how that turned out for Illinois, and the nation.  Now the shoe may be on the other foot, as the Democratic nominee admits that the feds may have to seize his family bank due to bad business decisions (via Big Gov’t):

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alexi Giannoulias sought to blunt a potentially damaging political issue today about questions regarding his involvement in his family’s struggling bank, which he said he expects will likely fail in the coming months.

But questions were still left unanswered following a more than 70-minute meeting with the Chicago Tribune’s editorial board. Among them were exactly what Giannoulias knew about convicted bookmaker Michael Giorango’s criminal past when he received loans from Broadway Bank, and how many of the bank’s troubled loans were made while Giannoulias was working there.

Giannoulias also sought to explain nearly $70 million the bank paid out in dividends to him and his family in recent years, saying $29 million of that was taken out of the bank to diversify the family’s investments.

That $70 million would have come in handy now:

He said he would be willing to help the bank but also estimated that any money he could provide would be “under $1 million.” The bank must raise $85 million by April, according to a consent order with state and federal regulators.

Er, let’s look at that again.  This is his family’s bank, which paid the family $70 million over the last few years.  Now that the bank is in trouble, the best the family can do is to cough up something less than a million dollars to rescue it?  Where did the money go?

The feds might like an answer to that question, too — and not just the FDIC.  I’ve written about Giannoulias on a few occasions, both here at Hot Air and at Captain’s Quarters.  The family bank made a series of loans to Michael “Jaws” Giordano after the latter got convicted on federal charges relating to bookmaking and prostitution in 2004.  The loans paid for a casino fleet in Florida in 2005, an odd risk to take for someone who had a record as a pimp and a bookie.

Despite this odd history, Illinois Democrats continued to push Giannoulias for higher office.  Democrats gave him a high-profile speaking slot at the 2008 convention.  Even while some Democrats in Illinois expressed serious reservations about climbing into bed with a pimp’s banker, Barack Obama kept backing his one-time fundraiser.

Now the big-time fundraiser has run out of money to fix the problems he created at the family business.  Illinois voters should take a lesson from this and keep an incompetent from handling taxpayer money, but more importantly, something smells very fishy about Giannoulias and the irregularities at his bank.