Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Stone Investigated for Vote Fraud

Did Bernie Stone steal the last election?

Voters in West Ridge/West Rogers Park have long suspected that there was something funny about Ald. Stone's vote gathering efforts. The amount of support you hear for him out on the streets and what he received at the ballot box always seemed at odds.

Now, we understand Stone is being investigated for his use of absentee ballots:

Stone said that a man and a woman who live in his ward contacted him separately to report they had been subpoenaed to appear at the Cook County Court complex at 26th Street and California Avenue. The man said his wife and two daughters also were ordered to appear. The subpoenas were served by an IG staff member who left his card, Stone said, but when his constituents arrived at the court complex, he said they were interviewed by two assistant state's attorneys.

The questions centered on absentee ballots and whether their votes had been solicited by anyone and whether anybody else cast their votes, the alderman said.

Stone's precinct captains had previously bragged that they would deliver 2,000 absentee votes for Stone before the recent elections. They never reached this total, but they did generate about half that goal.

Voter Fraud techniques used by the Machine in Chicago has previously been documented by Peter Zelchenko's book, It Happened Four Years Ago. Stone's efforts appear to be similarly guided. We will follow this developing story closely.


At September 05, 2007 9:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a rabbinic friend of mine, who like me backed Naisy, said before the April run-off "Bernie Stone is a scandal waiting to happen!" Now it has happened!

At September 05, 2007 11:27 AM, Blogger Jay said...

Don't you think that is why Ira is challenging Stone for Democratic Committeeman? We need better leadership.

At September 05, 2007 3:27 PM, Anonymous p.t. baer said...

I'm not one to defend Ald. Stone, but it is an unfair characterization to say the IG is investigating Bernie. As the article makes clear, the IG cannot investigate aldermen. If we believe Bernie (and there's a big IF), then I guess you could say "Stone's campaign investigated for vote fraud". What I find most interesting and most typical of Bernie is the way he makes these charges without anything to support them. He doesn't name names; he doesn't wave around a subpoena; and no other alderman knows anything about this. Bernie hates to let facts and irrelevant details get in the way of whatever point he's trying to make (which, by the way, is what?).

Bernie can cry harassment, but chances are we won't hear anymore about it. Of course, I will happily admit I'm wrong if we get an indictment out of this.

At September 05, 2007 4:26 PM, Blogger Hugh said...

"Some of you aldermen had better be advised that [Inspector General David Hoffman] is going all over different wards in this city issuing subpoenas to various people in this city," Stone said at a meeting of the council's Budget Committee.


how is this NOT interfering in an ongoing investigation?

At September 05, 2007 4:29 PM, Blogger Hugh said...

"I said, 'Don't let anybody bully you. I'll help you,'" [Stone] recounted. "I will get you an attorney."

"I said I will pay the cost of the attorney because I don't want my constituents bullied by people -- because they were bullied."


is this a general program Stone offers his constituents, free legal services when subpoenaed?

At September 05, 2007 4:30 PM, Blogger Jay said...

I suspect the IG thing is a distraction (probably by Stone). Little birdies have told me that a list of people who no longer live in the ward but voted in the aldermanic election has been given to the proper authorities. I'd bet that this story reflects an ongoing investigation by other law enforcement entities. Stone sounds scared to me.

At September 05, 2007 4:53 PM, Anonymous p.t. baer said...

"... a list of people who no longer live in the ward ..."

No longer living? Or just no longer living in the ward?

At September 05, 2007 5:29 PM, Blogger Jay said...

Who no longer live in the ward (but probably still live in the city).


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