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You might want to sit down for this.
Are you ready? Someone has accused Todd Stroger of shady hiring practices.
We'll give you some time to recover from the shock.
Attorney Michael Shakman, in an ongoing lawsuit, has filed a petition accusing outgoing Cook County President Todd Stroger of violating a ban on political hiring more than 150 times since early 2008, the Sun-Times reports.
Here's the situation. When the county board is hiring personnel, it must keep in mind a very specific court-approved list of jobs that do not allow political considerations.
But Stroger is accused of altering that list, placing 157 well-connected people into positions that were banned from political hiring.
You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours, eh?
One of Stroger's attorneys, Laura Lechowicz Felicione, came to his defense, saying Stroger submitted a proposed new list of exempt positions last year and is now trying to finalize that list. "I don't think we have violated" the ban, she said, reports the Chicago Tribune.
Of course, this isn't the first time Stroger's hiring habits have been questioned. Like when he put his campaign spokesperson on county payroll as his deputy chief of staff. Or when he hired two contractors to promote energy efficiency in Cook County (with no evidence of either their work for the city or even their very existence as businesses). Or when he wanted to appoint his campaign manager, Vincent Williams, to the county's Zoning Board of Appeals. Or when he fired a county employee who complained about the no-bid contracts. Or when he fired the Deputy Chief of the Bureau of Human Resources, whose mother supported Toni Preckwinkle in the primary.
Shocking news, indeed.