Stroger to Release Tax Returns, Calls on Opponents to Follow

Cook County Board President hasn't released records in three years he's held office

By BJ Lutz
|  Wednesday, Jan 27, 2010  |  Updated 9:15 PM CDT
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Cheating Politicians

AP

Chicago alderman and former state representative Todd Stroger takes questions during a taping of WBBM Radio's "At Issue" program Friday, July 28, 2006, in Chicago. Stroger says he will work to make sure people know he's more than just John Stroger's son to win the Cook County Board president's seat his father has vacated because of a stroke.

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Cook County Board President Todd Stroger on Wednesday said he will release his federal tax returns -- something he hasn't done for the last three years -- and implored his opponents in the race to follow suit.

"The citizens of Cook County need to know who the real, independent and true reformer in the race for the Cook County Board President is," Stroger said at an afternoon press event.

The move to transparency comes just six days before the primary election. 

He faces Circuit Court Clerk Dorothy Brown, Chicago Ald. Toni Preckwinkle (4th) and Metropolitan Water Reclamation District president Terrence O’Brien in the race. 

None of them seemed to want to play along.

"I have no time to do a tax research project for Mr. Stroger," O'Brien said in a statement.  "Instead of worrying about my finances, he should be worrying about the finances of Cook County.”

"We have no intention in participating in Todd Stroger’s publicity stunt," Preckwinkle spokesperson Jesey Neves said, according to the Chicago Tribune.

"If President Stroger is so interested in accountability for the citizens of Cook County, instead of his tax return, perhaps he should show us a list of all of his friends and family on the county payroll," said Brown campaign manager Catherine A. Zaryczny.

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