January 24, 2018

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Illinois, Latest News

New Ethics Scandal for Rauner: Suit Over $15 Million Profit Raises Questions About ‘Blind Trust’

Rauner Met with Business Associate on Governor’s Mansion Back Porch, Discussed Investment

Already the nation’s “most vulnerable incumbent,” Governor Bruce Rauner faces a new ethics scandal over a $15 million profit, a not-so-blind trust, and the back porch of the Governor’s Mansion. The Chicago Sun-Times reported that Rauner was taken to court by a former business associate over a deal concluded in 2016. Rauner earned $15 million off a $5 million investment, but the suit alleges Rauner tried to extract even more money from the deal. Greed aside, the Chicago Sun-Times lays out why this is problematic for Rauner:

“Harreld ‘Kip’ Kirkpatrick III’s account of his contacts with Rauner, contained in newly unsealed court records, raised questions about the ‘blind trust’ arrangement in which the governor says he placed his vast wealth when he took office.”

According to Kirkpatrick, he briefed Rauner twice on the case after he took office – once was on the back porch of the Governor’s Mansion. Rauner’s not-so-blind trust was supposed to eliminate his “day-to-day involvement” in his business and that any information “will go to the investment adviser and not to me.” FactCheck Illinois already poked a few holes into the strength of the “trust”, and this case will only raise more questions about Rauner’s continued involvement in his investments. 

The kicker? Rauner was the only investor to contest the deal.

“The last thing Bruce Rauner’s failing reelection needed was another scandal,” said DGA Illinois Communications Director Sam Salustro. “Rauner’s still reeling from the fallout over 13 deaths at a state-run veterans’ home, and now he will have to address more questions about breaking the public’s trust. The fact is that back porch business deals at the Governor’s Mansion will do little to rehabilitate Rauner’s Trumpian-level approval ratings.”