Some folks long for fame, fortune and glory, but not me. My fondest wish is my capacity to get candidates elected will someday translate into actually being happy with those candidates once they are elected.
It ain’t all bad! Kane County Sheriff Ron Hain is doing a great job and Rich Marks is the only Geneva Alderman who has the nerve to do the right thing. But Elgin City Councilman Corey Dixon has been a pointless pandering nightmare and Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin is a disappointment of epic proportion.
And I don’t care whether you call it ego or skill, but I’m the one responsible for putting Irvin in that position. While his “campaign manager” was off vacationing in Vegas during that all-important sprint to the finish, I convinced Richard to seriously shift his message and shut up long enough to let Linda Chapa LaVia talk her way out of the primary race.
Were it not for those professional intercessions, Rick Guzman would be the Mayor of Aurora right now.
It’s not that erudite folks didn’t warn me about him – they did. But Richard tells a great story and he has a remarkable capacity to look you squarely in the eye while making the kind of a “heartfelt” promise he has absolutely no intention of keeping. My preeminent disappointment with him is I thought I got a conservative mayor elected – at least that’s what he claimed to be during his campaign. But he’s not even close as primarily evidenced by his vast predilection for COVID-19 shutdowns.
You see, everything’s always all about Richard, and since he contracted a particularly nasty case of the coronavirus, he’s publicly proclaimed his full support for even future economically disastrous closures despite the lack of any science supporting them.
Yes! I also know the Mayor’s power is far more limited than most people think, but the “leader” always sets the political tone and the office wields an inordinate amount of influence within and well beyond the City of Light. But instead of making the case for in-person learning for Aurora students, the Mayor ignored all the inevitable developmental damage and didn’t do a damn thing.
I’m not saying he could’ve necessarily prevented that possibility, but we’ll never know now, will we? The truth is Mayor Irvin doesn’t do much of anything.
When I explained exactly how Aurora’s Family Counseling Service regularly rips off minorities, considering the issue, I thought the Mayor would at least have someone look into it. But no! He was far too busy hiring former girlfriends to six-figure city hall gigs to deal with it.
Here’s how the scam works. The court orders an anger management or domestic violence class evaluation at Family Counseling Service, but through a phony intake process and regardless of a judge’s specific recommendation, FCS forces every last one of those mostly minority defendants directly into their four-figure 26-week course. (We’ll be covering that story in greater detail soon.)
Two of my former managing editors know this, former Kane County prosecutors know this, and even some 16th Circuit Judges know it, too, but Richard just couldn’t be bothered with it.
Then there’s the City of Aurora’s inexplicably horrific response to the recent downtown looting. Despite stellar State Police, Sheriff’s, and APD intel laying out exactly what was going to happen, instead of ramping up the law enforcement presence and heading off the known agitators as Batavia did, Irvin did nothing but sit back and watch downtown businesses burn.
Correction! Irvin did pay lip service to it the following day.
But the Irvin issue that should truly frost your cookies is his propensity to put former girlfriends in cushy City jobs. That list amounts to four with one making $132,000 a year in an utterly unnecessary position created just for her.
Had I known that sleeping with Richard could land me that kind of gig, I might have given it a shot.
It gets better, too! In what has to be the worst-kept “secret” in Kane County, Irvin had twins with long-term former girlfriend and attorney, Brittany Pedersen. To be fair, Richard is a part of their lives and he pays a reasonable amount of non-court ordered child support. But guess who’s paying at least a portion of that trios’ insurance bill?
That’s right! They’re insured through the City which puts the fine citizens of Aurora squarely on the hook. To be clear, Richard’s love life is none of my or anyone else’s business until and unless he starts using taxpayer money to placate his ever-growing harem.
Now Irvin’s promoting and helping Pedersen run for Kane County judge when her comportment and general track record clearly indicate she shouldn’t judge a third-grade science fair. We need more judges like her opponent, Elizabeth Flood, not fewer of them.
This would typically be the point at which I’d encourage you to vote for Irvin’s 2021 opponent, Alderman Judd Lofchie, but I can’t because Lofchie’s interminable ego and legend-in-his-own-mind status makes Donald Trump look like a rank amateur. That said, one of Richard’s biggest flaws is consistently misjudging his level of voter and political support. So, if I had to make a prediction, given Lofchie’s work ethic and Irvin’s lack of one, Aurora will have a new Mayor next year.
And I certainly won’t be shedding a tear over his loss. I promise I’ll get better at choosing candidates.