Judge Dalton can’t even be ethical on a mailer!
Between his miserable Illinois State Bar Association ratings and a small, but determined, group intent on removing him from the bench, Kane County Judge John Dalton suddenly seems to be getting a bit nervous.
It’s still somewhat of a longshot to get 41 percent of the electorate to vote no on his retention question, but the Judge has managed to bully and torment so many of the folks who’ve come before him that the anti-retention effort has really started gathered steam.
To stem that rising tide, his Elgin cabal are posting pro-retention Facebook memes, and in an unprecedented move, Dalton sent out mailer with a similar message. Most judges consider retention votes to be a mere formality.
The front of his mail piece boasts a glowing endorsement from one Marzenia Vandeburgt, who describes herself as a “Kane County Attorney.” While that certainly is the case, it’s hardly the whole story.
You see, Ms. Vandeburgt is not just any “Kane County Attorney,” what she strategically left out is that she’s a prosecutor in the Kane County State’s Attorney’s office. And as she indicated on the mailer, she’s regularly appeared in Dalton’s courtroom for the last three years.
I’m sure I don’t need to lecture you on the pitfalls of an assistant state’s attorney currying political favor with a sitting judge who regularly rules on her cases. All I can say is, I certainly wouldn’t want to see her to sitting across the aisle from me in courtroom 101.
Put more simply, she just won herself an ADRC complaint.
The endorsement continues with Vandeburgt waxing poetically about how Dalton is “fair to all the litigants who appear before him.”
First, that kind of fiction makes Trump’s mendacious mentality appear tame by comparison. And second, Vandeburgt generally deals with settlements to which both parties have already signed on, so there is no litigation. So, how would she know he’s fair to litigants?
Though it’s only semi-immaterial to my point, Vandeburgt and Dalton have been friends for the better part of two decades. That means that Dalton couldn’t get any private Kane County attorney to say just one good thing about him. He had to resort to a friend who tried to hide the fact that she’s really a prosecutor who plies his courtroom.
For this, and all the other reasons we’ve already discussed, if you haven’t already, please vote “No” to send this miserable excuse for a judge packing.
Why are you running?
That’s the very first question in my impeding book, “So You Want to Win a Local Election?” If you can’t respond to that basic inquiry directly, effectively, and with an appropriate amount of passion, then please put the nominating papers down and walk away.
And that’s the very first question that popped into my head mind when I heard that Elgin City Councilperson Carol Rauschenberger would challenge Dave Kaptain in the 2019 mayoral race.
Why are you running?
There’s virtually no difference between the two candidates, right down to management style, political leanings, and their perception of the city they both serve. Rauschenberger admitted they agree on most things, she expects the race will be “a friendly one,” and she told the Courier-News, “Overall, this is a pretty well-run city.”
I guess the simple answer is Carol wants to be mayor! It’s not the best reason to run, but it’s not the worst, either.
Her problem is, without some sort of wedge issue like the formerly proposed rain tax, there’s really no good reason to vote for her. And with the City in the Suburbs humming along quite nicely, I’m not sure what kind of messaging could possibly differentiate her from Dave.
So, why run?
This may well turn out to be the most boring mayoral race in Elgin’s long history, which, after these fascinating mid-terms, won’t necessarily be a bad thing.