$1 Million Question Was The Bobby Rush SBC/AT&T Grant A Quid Pro Quo?

$1 Million Question Was The Bobby Rush SBC/AT&T Grant A Quid Pro Quo?

Bobby Rush isn’t exactly sure how a million dollars was used for his Bobby L. Rush Center for Community Technology project. According to the Chicago Sun-Times: “That was many years ago,” Rush said. “I have no answer for that. I have no way of knowing that.” So I guess the only logical thing to do is ask the $1 Million Question Was The Bobby Rush SBC/AT&T Grant A Quid Pro Quo?

According the Chicago Sun-Times at the time this ambitious project was announced in 2001 (and after the first installment of an SBC grant was dispersed), U.S. Representative Bobby Rush just happened to be sitting on the very House Telecom Sub-Committee that was deliberating on legislation that SBC/AT&T was seeking support on.

Coincidence? I doubt it but I do try and be fair and objective when it comes to these “political horse-trading deals” that are so prevalent in Illinois Politics. After all, had this ambitious project been completed it would have been a very, very good thing for an area of Chicago that so desperately needs these sort of programs and give it an economic boost.

But as I continued reading the article the only thing I could deduce was that Bobby Rush, family members and friends benefited most as SBC/AT&T continued doling out money in support of Bobby Rush. Again, according to the Chicago Sun-Times: “From 2008 through 2011, AT&T spent $303,000 to host receptions in Rush’s honor, according to lobbyist disclosure reports that show the company paid for hotels, entertainment and other expenses for the gospel-themed galas. Most of them were timed to coincide with the Congressional Black Caucus Annual Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. Rush said as many as 2,000 guests attended the receptions.”

For the complete article regarding the Bobby L. Rush Center for Community Technology and Rebirth of Englewood Community Development Corporation please click here. I will leave it to you to decide if the $1 Million Question is a legitimate one or not.

Now anyone who has read this blog for awhile would know I have long advocated for the improvement of impoverished areas such as Englewood. But I have also brought up my fears that the people of those areas have not been paying attention to what their elected and community leaders are doing (or not doing) for them as they blindly re-elect them despite the lack of results or improvement.

Decade after decade, it seems, the impoverished areas remain impoverished despite millions upon millions of dollars given to Community Groups, Churches, etc.. So again and again I have to ask the same question – are the so-called leaders of these communities nothing more than slick politicians and charlatans?

I mean look. Anyone who has lived in the City of Chicago for any considerable amount of time can confirm that the more things supposedly change – the more they have stayed the same. The issues of today are eerily identical to the issues of yesteryear and one has to ask what that is all about? Why is it that the poor and impoverished areas continue to lag behind in everything from an equal education to economic development and improvement?

As such, asking where all that money went is pretty fair and reasonable.

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  • Money disappearing into these so called community projects is nothing new.

    Rush getting his nose into stuff, like the Metra flyover, is also nothing new.

    The only question is whether the FBI can put the pieces together to get an actual case of bribery or embezzlement together. In the case of bribery, since SBC reported the contributions, that shouldn't be too hard to figure out. The S-T hit pay dirt at least with Hired Trucks, so if there is a smell, there probably is a stink.

    But if South Shore is any indication, I'm sure another excon is more than willing to run for the seat.

    BTW, I got a Nigerian scam email supposedly from the FBI, which included a threat from "Robert Mueller," at the bottom, so I did report it on the FBI website and replied to the scammer (with a yahoo.hk address) that I had. Maybe they will catch him, too, but I doubt it. I did include the e-mail header showing the source of transmission.

  • All true on your paragraphs 1-4. One thing I can say about S-T, at least they try to find it and root it out unlike the Trib which at times seem to tip-toe thru the tulips.

    As for the Nigerian scam, I too received not long ago and passed it on. I didn't however reply as these slicksters often load their messages with bots and keyloggers. So make sure to run a virus scan okay? Hope they can track these mutts down.

    Have a great weekend Jack.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    Most of the Trib ones seem irrelevant, such as some politician getting into the U of I or we know that the city is in debt. As we both note, the S-T sees all sorts of conspiracies, but a lot of them have substance behind them.

    I'm running Norton from Comcast, and the impression I get from this e-mail account (on AIM, although apparently Yahoo runs everyone's email servers) is that Thunderbird doesn't take the message off the server unless one stores it locally. I also used to believe the adage that replying just confirmed your address for resale, but it now appears that the insulting replies (especially telling them how dumb they are if they think that banks and official sources are going to use Yahoo! foreign addresses seems to have somewhat of a deterrent effect. However, I don't click on strange urls because I assume they are attack sites, although otherwise I occasionally I get a popup from Norton (which is very intrusive) saying that an attack site was blocked.

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