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Quinn’s Pay to Play Sounds Quite a Bit like Blagojevich’s Pay to Play

Pat Hickey 11 June 2012 2 Comments

From the Sun Times

“The actions being taken against McDonough grew out of a random audit of McDonough last year in which officials examined a wide range of state engineering contracts the firm won between 2000 and 2009.”

Some one in Governor Pat Quinn’s Illinois Government decided to randomly examine McDonough Construction.


I wouldn’t know James McDonough if he walked on me.

I have heard about the generous gifts showered on hospitals, universities, charities and especially St, Xavier University and St. Ignatius.

Mr. McDonough is one of the successful people that Directors of Development want to address as “Jim” after months of cultivation, golf, lunch and moist kisses to the McDonough rump and pry open the family wallet.

I do that, but I do not golf, tend to eat with gusto sans conversation until perspiring and then tend to pick my aging teeth and pucker-up only to secretaries, as they are the genuine engines of power in all matters of corporate citizenship. The less time a Seven Figure and Change Prospect spends face-to-face with Patrick Francis, the more that person is inclined to write a husky check for benefit of Leo High School. Make the case, present the documentation and make yourself scarce are the three legs of Hickey’s Development Tripod.

Common sense also dictates – never rub another man’s rhubarb – Don’t Poach Prospects Not Your Own.

James McDonough has never heard his executive secretary say, ” A Pat Hickey from Leo High School keeps calling and sending drawings by him of happy students at Leo who would have bigger smiles, if you send lots of money. Do you want to talk with him? Jim O’Connor* said he is harmless. Okay, I’ll tell him to . . . what is it he should do with himself?”

Mark Brown wrote a very balanced assessment of the ritual throat-cutting, in my estimation, of James McDonough in today’s Sun Times. Mark Brown’s commentary follows the fine investigative report by Chris Fusco and Tina Sfondeles that detailed to State of Illinois cast breadcrumbs leading to James McDonough. The Master-key word in this report is “random.”

If allowed to stand, the cascading effect of the contract bans threatens the very existence of the firm, which is expected to go to court to challenge the state’s ruling.
Now, you may have noticed from time to time that newspapers will hype a story just a bit to get your attention.

Well, this is the flip side of that coin: a story so significant we can hardly put it in proper perspective in the space allotted.

McDonough and his company have been a major part of the fabric of this city and its politics for more than four decades since he left a post as Streets and Sanitation commissioner under Mayor Richard J. Daley to enter the engineering world in 1974. . . . In short, McDonough is a major player to be wiped off the board so suddenly, not that there won’t be any number of engineering firms vying to replace his company. ( emphasis my own)

Mark Brown’s nose smells blood in this random throat-cutting of McDonough. I have seen this movie many times before – follow the bones to Dawn Clark Netsch. Mike Quigley, Forrest Claypool, Toni Preckwinkle. Jan Shakowsky, or Pat Quinn and you will be able to construct the dinosaurs tossed in the tar-pits.

Nothing is random – especially any full blown departmental forensic audit of a random cash cow.

Read more at With Both Hands

image how they did such things in 13th Century Sicily


  • Jim Ridings said:

    And now Pat Fitzgerald is leaving when he certainly could land one more Illinois governor in prison.

  • Pat Hickey said:

    The Great Smelt Hunter must move on, Jim!

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