New Study Looks at Chicago's History of Corruption

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Posted: Feb 20, 2010 2:27 PM
A new study from the University of Chicago has deemed Illinois' Cook County a "dark pool of political corruption."  What's new, right? 

The study outlines more than 140 years of crooked Chicago-style politics:

Nearly 150 employees, politicians and contractors in the nation's second-largest county have been convicted on corruption charges since 1957, according to a report released Thursday by the university and the Better Government Association (.pdf)

The 33-page study gives a history of corruption, starting from 1869 when county commissioners were jailed for rigging a bid to paint City Hall. It also details hiring scandals, including some under Cook County Board President Todd Stroger. Stroger hasn't been charged with any crime.

In the last 36 years, 31 sitting or former Chicago alderman have been convicted of corruption or other crimes.  The last was Ike Carothers (29th), who earlier this month plead guilty to charges he accepted gifts in exchange for his votes on zoning issues.