Tim Johnson Watch

Representative Tim Johnson was elected to represent the residents of Illinois' 15th Congressional District in Central Illinois. His constituents should know what he's doing.

Location: 15th Congressional District, Illinois, United States

A concerned citizen of Central Illinois.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Tim Johnson Stars on Scott Fawell's "Favors List"

The ongoing racketeering trial of former Governor George Ryan is casting an unforgiving light on corruption in Illinois politics.

The Government's key witness, Ryan's former Chief of Staff Scott Fawell (who has pled guilty of corruption-related charges and is currently serving a 6-1/2 year sentence), has testified concerning a 555-page "master list" of people who had received "favors" from Ryan's office (when he was Secretary of State). Fawell testified that he kept the list because it would be "politically useful", presumably because the recipients of favors would owe something to Ryan and Fawell. The Sun-Times has made the entire list available on line.

Tim Johnson appears on seven pages (97-102 and 226), for a total of sixty-six favors -- or nearly 1% of all the favors recorded by Ryan's corrupt chief of staff.

Now, let's be clear. This list provides very little detail, so there is no way to know at this point whether any of the favors sought and obtained by Mr. Johnson were illegal, or even unethical. However, the enormous number of favors granted to Mr. Johnson suggests, at a minimum, an unpleasant coziness with Ryan's corrupt patronage machine, and must cause us to ask what Mr. Johnson might have promised or been asked in return, or how Mr. Fawell might have found Mr. Johnson's fealty to be "politically useful"?


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