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March 10, 2016 / jeffnward

Quick Hits – March 10, 2016 – part 1

Steve Caramelli’s gotta have a bad case of whiplash!

What is it with the Chicago Tribune? First they absurdly refuse to endorse any Democratic presidential option which does away with the pretense that they’re anything but a rightwing rag.

Then they endorse 22nd State Senate District candidate Steve Caramelli only to completely trash him one short week later. I’m starting to think the Tribune’s motto is, “Better late than never!”

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Ah! But the truth is, no one in that vast expanse known as Hanover Township wasn’t already aware of Caramelli’s colorful State Trooper past. His capacity to continually top himself and then somehow slide by is the stuff of political legend.

I can’t imagine who it was ;-), but someone tipped off the Trib’s Publisher to the fact they shoulda looked into Steve’s checkered past long BEFORE making that endorsement. And sure enough, five days later they got a FOIA answer containing the following:

  • When a motorcyclist tried to avoid a State Police checkpoint, Caramelli chased him the wrong way down I-57 resulting in the cyclist’s death. That got him a ten-day suspension. Caramelli told the Tribune it was an “unfortunate situation,” though I’m not sure if he was referring to the death or his suspension.
  • A year later they found porn on his work computer which got him a negotiated one-day suspension. Caramelli explained that “an inadvertent email popped up.” I bet that wasn’t the only thing that popped up!
  • In 2007, “mistaking” a hospital valet’s large silver key chain for a weapon, Carmelli pulled his service revolver because hospital valets are always such a threat. He then proceeded to chew out the valet for being stupid. Resorting to the union once again, our intrepid state trooper only received a letter of reprimand for rudeness.
  • Caramelli was again cited for rudeness after approaching and berating a Schaumburg man who was simply standing by his motorcycle in 2010. That one got him a two-day suspension
  •  Then he got another day off for failing to report that he’d just crashed his patrol car.

Of course, the Tribune completely missed the many instances in which our candidate used his uniform to political advantage while campaigning on company time. But everyone in Elgin’s already heard that story.

Then, despite that abysmal track record, Caramelli parlayed his patrol gig into a plum patronage position with the Riverboat Gaming Command.

Friends, this is funny, but it isn’t, so I’ll keep it simple and sweet. Vote for Cristina Castro!

My eight years as a newspaper columnist covering the county board coincided with her tenure, and I’ve seen Cristina grow into one of the most effective public servants in Kane County. But why take my word for it! At least five separate Republican board members have told me they’re sorry to see her go.

And you don’t see that kind of bi-partisan sentiment very often these days. The choice is clear, we don’t need another Caramelli in Springfield.

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