Some tales of Kane County political intrigue are so silly that, even after reasonable sources come forward, I say to myself, “Nah! This one doesn’t pass the laugh test. But then there are sources who never get it wrong!
So when I saw the new Aurora odd couple, Chairman Lauzen and former Mayor Tom Weisner, standing directly behind candidate Rick Guzman at the Hampton Inn yesterday, I realized I’ve got to stop overestimating some people and start believing others.
To wit, here’s what I’ve known for more than a month.
Despite his Daily Herald protestations, Kane County Chairman Chris Lauzen has, indeed, been searching for a second gig for months. And that quest started with the CFO position in the East Aurora School District. But it didn’t work out because those savvy folks understand that the Chairman doesn’t take orders from anyone.
Rebuffed, Chris aimed for that vacant City of Aurora CFO position, reaching out to former Mayor Tom Weisner in that very regard.
How do I know this? When the polls made it clear that Guzman was sliding into that coveted second primary place, Lauzen confidant Jon Zahm suddenly started declaring his unyielding support for Guzman.
While I don’t have a problem with anyone backing the candidate of their choice, I do have a problem with an avowed Christian Conservative suddenly supporting a candidate that makes this liberal look like a flaming Tea Partier.
Don’t get me wrong, some of my best friends are liberals and I like Rick! In fact, I’m one of two people who predicted he’d make it through that primary herd. But I never thought I’d hear the names Zahm and Guzman in the same book, much less the same sentence. I’d love to hear Jon’s explanation for this fascinating partnership.
Though It probably has something to do with getting paid.
Of course, Chairman Lauzen, who also claims to be somewhat conservative, had no problem publicly endorsing Guzman – after the deal on the CFO position was closed.
As you might expect, Lauzen is in the process of setting Zahm loose on Richard Irvin. Those inevitable “Kane County Conservative Coalition” mailers will not only attack Richard for being a defense attorney, but “someone” started a rumor that Irvin pursues the wives and girlfriends of clients who go to jail.
But wait, there’s more! Should this scheme come to fruition, Lauzen has no intention of relinquishing the Chairmanship. Here’s why!
C’mon! There’s no lost love between Chris Lauzen and Tom Weisner. And Lauzen has never liked Guzman’s politics. But in yet another excellent example of the Chairman’s infinite animosity, those considerations have been utterly overridden by his real targets – the State’s Attorney and the County Board.
You see, Chris hasn’t forgotten Joe McMahon’s slap on the wrist over those three errant contracts, and he hasn’t forgiven the County Board for failing to give him executive powers in the wake of that kerfuffle either. Then there’s the question of the countywide elected raises that never were.
Thus, Lauzen’s real motivation is, once Chris becomes CFO, he will delight in informing the SAO and county board that, since their despicable slights made the chairmanship a default part-time position, he will be more than happy to take both full-time salaries.
You didn’t think this had anything do with Rick Guzman did you? It’s all about revenge.
A backroom deal? That doesn’t bother me in the least. It happens every day. But what does bother me is that:
- Chris Lauzen is so petty and vindictive that he thought this was a good idea.
- Jon Zahm consistently refers to himself a Christian conservative when he’s not.
- Rick Guzman failed to understand how problematic hiring Lauzen would be – especially if he hangs on to both jobs (You didn’t know that, did you Rick!)
- That Lauzen, Weisner, and Guzman didn’t think this story would come out.
Not only did I have high hopes for Chris Lauzen as chairman, but I advised him throughout his first campaign. He didn’t blow up did he? But to see him become so consumed with anger that he’d throw a great thing away in an indefensible fit of pique, really disappoints me.
Almost as much as Rick Guzman just did.