One of Gov. Pat Quinn’s biggest objections to the General Assembly’s gambling expansion bill had to do with organized crime. Quinn was worried that a “lack of oversight” would allow the Outfit to weasel its way into the slot machine business and the operation of a Chicago casino. He demanded that any new casino here be overseen directly by the Illinois Gaming Board, not by a local casino authority.
“There are bad guys out there,” Quinn told NBC Chicago. “Criminal elements … organized crime, that want to infiltrate. And we’re not going to let them do it.”
Chicago will probably never get a casino -- Quinn killed the gambling bill by promising to veto slots at racetracks -- but if we do, the governor will ensure it’s overseen by a collection of G-men, Girl Scouts and good government types. The governor is replacing every member of the Illinois Gaming Board except the chairman, Aaron Jaffe, a retired judge who urged the governor to veto the gambling bill.
Quinn’s other appointments:
- Zaldwaynaka Scott, Illinois’ first executive inspector general, and a former prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office
- Maribeth Vander Weele, a certified Illinois inspector general who served on the audit committee for Chicago Public Schools
- Lee Gould, an attorney with more than 30 years of experience in forensic accounting investigations, locating unreported or hidden assets and identifying misappropriations
- Former state Rep. Mike Holewinski, who now serves as the president of Ace Industries, a metal plating company
The new members are replacing a developer, a Methodist minister, a petroleum executive and a retired judge, all appointed in 2005 by Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
These are not the appointments of a governor who trusts the gambling industry to regulate itself. Take them as another sign that Quinn is not going to allow any gambling expansion on his watch.