Like father, like son


Chicago Ald. Isaac "Ike" Carothers, left, leaves court Monday after pleading guilty to bribery and tax charges in connection with a city zoning case. He had cooperated with prosecutors by wearing a wire and secretly recording other public officials and businessmen. (Tribune photo by Chris Walker / February 1, 2010)

As you go to the polls today (and let's hope that you are), think about Chicago Ald. Isaac "Ike" Carothers (29th), who yesterday pleaded guilty in federal court to bribery and tax charges.

That, counts the Tribune, brings to 29 the number of aldermen to be convicted over the last four decades. Among them, incredibly enough, is  Ike's father, William. The old man was convicted for trying to extort up to $32,500 worth of remodeling work at his ward office in exchange for permits needed for a hospital expansion.

A hospital expansion! Now who does that remind you of? (Hint: Think Children's Memorial Hospital.)

Astonishing, when you think that Ike watched his father get a three-year prison term. How stupid can you get when, as an alderman, you watch others go off to prison at the rate of about one every nine months.

Ike pleaded guilty to squeezing some $40,000 of remodeling work at his home in exchange for zoning approval of a controversial project in his ward. He's expected to testify against them in a future trial.

No aldermen are on the ballot today. But if they were, considering past practice of Chicago voters, they'd still get re-elected.


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  • 29th Ward...not 20th.

  • 29th Ward...not 20th.

  • Since most of the convictions were in the past 20 years, you have to think that Daley had the power to appoint their successors. Of course, some of the wards had this happen several times, so I guess one can't say that Daley has appointed a majority. However, that is one reason why the City Council is so compliant.

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