Tuesday, February 22, 2005

quid pro baseball?

Thanks to BlBlBl reader Dr. for pointing this out.
Blagojevich stadium plan benefits big Democratic donor

By Kevin McDermott
Post-Dispatch Springfield Bureau

[copyright]2005, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - Even as Illinois struggles to make ends meet in its state budget, Gov. Rod Blagojevich wants to put $3 million toward a new baseball stadium in Marion, Ill., that would become the property of Metro East lawyer John Simmons, one of the state's biggest Democratic Party contributors.

In his annual state budget message last week, Blagojevich, a Democrat, made a pitch for "projects like bringing a new minor league baseball team to Illinois by building a baseball stadium in Marion."

What Blagojevich didn't mention was that, under the deal as currently envisioned, the stadium built in part with that money would be owned by Simmons, whose firm has contributed close to a million dollars to state Democratic campaigns in the past two years, including Blagojevich's own fund.

You can search state contributions at State Board of Elections search from 2000 to present.

Center for Responsive politics
of the 2004 election cycle.

I assume the discrepancy between the "close to a million" figure and the lower numbers listed at the State Board of Elections and at the Center for Responsive Politics is accounted for by soft money contributions or maybe contributions through his firm.


Anonymous Ralph said...

Excellent catch.

4:48 PM  

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