Will the pay-to-play pension scandals taint a new governor and bring down a mayor?

Fred Klonsky


– From Mark Anderson in the Ward Room

Isn’t it ironic that when it comes to pensions, two of the state’s most powerful politicians—Rahm Emanuel and Bruce Rauner—are claiming to be reformers even as they continue to rake in campaign contributions from the very firms currently making millions by managing the public’s money in the first place?

No? Well, I didn’t think so either.

What is surprising, however, is the size and audacity of the apparent conflicts of interest and campaign finance violations in which both political figures currently find themselves embroiled.

Let’s start with Mayor Emanuel. Recently, David Sirota at the International Business Times reported the mayor has collected more than $600,000 in campaign donations since 2011 from executives at investment firms that manage Chicago pension funds. These donations “appear to flout federal rules banning companies that manage pension funds from financing the campaigns of officials with authority over…

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