Countdown Clocks

Countdown Clocks

Tweets by @JGibsonDem
Posts tagged "2014 Gubernatorial Elections"


1. While speaking to college students, he assumed (wrongly) that an immigration activist was undocumented.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

No really. It went like this:

Gov. Deal: I presume you are…. [undocumented]
Woman: I don’t know why you thought I was undocumented. Is it because I look Hispanic?

Apparently you can tell a person’s citizenship status just by looking at them. #NewSuperpower

2. An investigation showed Gov. Deal rewarded the families who bankrolled his campaign with plum seats on the state’s top boards.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

Yea, we did a spit take too when we saw the headline.

Side note: Gov. Deal appointed only 5 women and 1 African-American out of 51 seats. #Diversity

3. A leaked email from Gov. Deal’s staff promised favors for state legislators in return for campaign contributions.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

You just can’t make this stuff up.

4. On Wednesday, a watchdog group filed a complaint against the governor’s top staff for illegal conduct.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

The governor’s top staff intervened in an ethics investigation of his campaign, allegedly even threatening the top ethics official. The silver fox has seen a lot in his day, but we think he would agree this is just wrong.

5. Now the governor is struggling to explain why he takes $10k a month from a business that owes Georgia $74 million in back taxes.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

Because earning millions for yourself always takes priority over funding education or helping middle-class families…

6. And a judge is questioning why the state hid evidence in a major ethics trial that kept the governor off the witness stand.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

What memos? There were no memos? We promise!

7. When you act like this, it’s probably better to keep the press away. Maybe that’s why he stayed silent as a journalist was dragged out of a GOP rally Gov. Deal was headlining.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

Gov. Deal sat idly by as a videographer was dragged from a public rally.

Did we mention that she was invited to the event? So much for transparency.
Gov. Deal, of course, had no comment.

What. A. Week.

7 Scandals In 7 Days: One Governor's Very Bad Week

7 scandals in 7 days.

We know, it’s hard to keep up.

We think it’s safe to say that #GeorgiasReady for an honest government. #ChangeTheDeal

Source: Team Carter for Buzzfeed Community

I beg to differ, Mr. Rauner. 

h/t: poopdogcomedy at Daily Kos

More reasons to vote to keep Quinn in office. 

H/T: Natasha Korecki at Chicago Sun-Times

H/T: Kerry Lester at

Illinois Public Radio

Bruce Rauner says there’s “nothing sinister” about venture capital firms using the Cayman Islands as a tax shelter, but says he has never used the investment vehicle for his personal benefit. […]

Until he stepped down to run for governor, Rauner was head of a capital investment firm, GTCR, which has several investment pools there.

At an appearance at the Illinois State Fair last night, Rauner — wearing a plaid shirt, jeans and brown boots — insisted it’s a “widespread, common practice.”

“What my firm did is what many, many financial firms do and I think the majority of venture capital firms and private equity firms do, and that is - when they invest in a foreign company, a non-U.S. company, they’ll set up an investment vehicle, often in the Caymans, so that their limited partners are treated, for tax purposes, the same way as, as if it was a U.S. company.”

He ran GTCR, so if his firm made money off Caymans investments, then he personally profited.

* But the focus is shifting today to another island nation, Bermuda

The onetime head of a company tied to Bruce Rauner and an associate — men the GOP candidate for governor Thursday called “rogue employees” — have been indicted in federal court in New Jersey on charges they stole millions of dollars in a sophisticated trading fraud.

Anthony Blumberg, 49, of New Jersey, and Craig Marshall, 47, of Bermuda worked for ConvergEx Global Markets Limited, a Bermuda-based broker and subsidiary to a firm Rauner’s former private equity company helped found.

Blumberg and Marshall were indicted late Wednesday on criminal charges of securities fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud.

The indictment is here.


“These were rogue employees at a subsidiary of a company GTCR had invested in,” Rauner campaign spokesman Mike Schrimpf said. “The employees were fired, and ConvergEx cooperated with the investigation. What they are alleged to have done is unacceptable, and they are rightfully being prosecuted.” […]

Rauner joined GTCR in 1981 and was its chairman until stepping down in October 2012 but “had no say in hiring either of the two people,” Schrimpf said.

* Background info from the Quinn campaign…

GTCRauner formed ConvergEx in October 2006 and installed Blumberg as CEO that very month until 2011:

GTCR was the largest shareholder and controlled the board (they had more seats than any other partner)

GTCR features ConvergEx on its website as an example of a successful company:

Rauner told Chicago Magazine in 2011 that GTCR’s - his- whole business strategy was handpicking executives. Here’s the profile. Here’s Rauner’s q&a in the article:

      Q: Most private equity firms buy mature companies and unwanted divisions of large corporations, managements intact. But you seem to go out and find management and then, together with them, go buy the companies.

      Rauner: We’re in two businesses: industry research and executive recruiting. We study industries, and we network like crazy to find the superstars. Today, we’re partners with two dozen CEOs. Some we’re backing for the second, third time. It can take from six months to nine years from the time we meet someone until we actually become partners with each other.

Q: But sizing up the executive is nearly everything?
Rauner: A lot of reference checking. Are they winners? How did they handle failure in their careers? We go to all the trade shows. We call it the leader strategy. Deal flow comes to them. Talented executives come to them.

Key Point: Now GTCR Chairman Rauner wants to pretend he has nothing to do with the guy who was put in place by GTCRauner to be the CEO of ConvergEx from Day One when GTCR was in charge every step of the way? How stupid does he think we are?

* Background info from the Rauner campaign…

BNY and GTCR were equal investors in Convergex. Convergex though was staffed with BNY executives. As shown below, Blumberg was already with BNY and had been since 2002. He came with the deal.

      Anthony Blumberg Came Into Convergex From Bank Of New York-Mellon. “BNY ConvergEx management includes Velli, Kerry Pack, John Meserve, Anthony Blumberg, George Costafos and Charlie Raphold from BNY. The trading grossed $297 million last year. Tom Gavin, David Quinlan and Jeff Shoreman make up the Eze contingent. The vendor grossed $43 million last year. Much of that is recurring or commission-like coming from routing orders to brokers. Goldman Sachs, previously a large owner of Eze Castle, does not have a stake in BNY ConvergEx. Operations will be split between New York and Boston, Eze’s current headquarters. The deal is expected to close this year.” (Peter Chapman, “BNY ConvergEx Eyes Hedge Funds with Eze Merger,” Traders Magazine, 8/1/06)

Anthony Blumberg Originally Worked For Credit Lyonnais, And Then Bank Of New York-Mellon, Before Joining Convergex. “Prior to the formation of ConvergEx Group, Mr. Blumberg served as a Managing Director at Credit Lyonnais Securities where he established G-Trade Services, one of the world’s largest global portfolio trading groups, which was later acquired by The Bank of New York and became a part of BNY Securities Group in 2002.” (“Our Leadership Team,” Archived Convergex Webpage, 2/10/11)

…Adding… More from the Rauner campaign…

(T)he Quinn fact sheet you just put up on ConvergEx is false and intentionally misleading. It’s not a typo, the Quinn campaign has repeatedly tried to mislead the public over the last 16 hours by claiming Mr. Blumberg was the CEO of the entire CovergeEx company to give the false impression that he was hired by or otherwise directly connected to Bruce Rauner.

That’s simply false. He was the CEO of a subsidiary to ConvergEx who was hired by Bank of New York Mellon in 2002, four years before GTCR invested. Additionally, GTCR was not the “largest shareholder” of Convergex. It was an equal investor with BNY Mellon, which is why the firm’s and its subsidiary’s leadership, including Blumberg, came over from BNY Mellon.

h/t: Rich Miller at

h/t: Sarah Jones at PoliticusUSA

h/t: Daniel Strauss at TPM

h/t: David Nir at Daily Kos

h/t: David Nir at Daily Kos Elections


Just say no to Bruce “Romney/Walker” Rauner this fall. 

Take Bruce Rauner, a typical crooked financial manipulator, a tax-cheat, and a shady billionaire who bought himself the Illinois Republican gubernatorial nomination, writing himself a nice $9.6 million check to crush his opponents. His three main priorities are lowering taxes on the super-wealthy, lowering the minimum wage, and wrecking the public schools system and replacing it with for-profit charter schools.

Would it surprise you to know that Rauner also hides much of his wealth offshore to keep from paying his fair share of taxes? Chicago media has been reporting that he has refused to release a full set of his most recent tax returns that would show the full extent of what many know is a great deal of unethical and probably criminal behavior.

Brooke Anderson, the spokesperson for Governor Pat Quinn, pointed out that Rauner “doesn’t just use exotic methods to dodge taxes. He even uses exotic, offshore locations. No wonder why Mr. Rauner won’t release his full tax returns. He’s been stashing money in the Cayman Islands to avoid paying U.S. and Illinois taxes.” He’s a real sleaze bag and was once caught in an elaborate scheme to cheat on his property taxes for just a $1,600. He’s just a greedy, selfish sociopath who can’t help himself.

Margaret Niederer a former long-term care ombudsman in Springfield penned an OpEd for the State Journal-Register last week, Bruce Rauner is not the change Illinois needs

Nursing homes and disability homes owned by Republican governor candidate Bruce Rauner’s firm have been implicated in numerous and repeated incidents of abuse, neglect, rape and even death of residents.

As a former Illinois Long Term Care Regional Ombudsman who protected the rights of residents in long-term care facilities for more than a decade, I am appalled.

Leading up to the primary election, I was horrified by the stories of elderly individuals suffering preventable deaths because of avoidable falls, pressure ulcers and infections in nursing homes owned by a company that Rauner helped found.

Rauner shrugged off responsibility and refused to explain to the voters of Illinois why these patients received such atrocious care.

Now we know that the extreme negligence that occurred in Rauner’s nursing homes were not isolated incidents. Illinois voters recently learned from news reports the gruesome stories of sexual abuse, assault and death at facilities for people with developmental disabilities owned by another company Rauner’s firm created. These crimes were so horrendous that one of the facilities was shut down by the state of Texas.

Rauner simply blamed the management team and called the company a bad investment.

I am all too familiar with long-term care companies skirting their responsibility of providing person-centered care to their patients. Horrendous incidents like this don’t happen repeatedly by accident. They occur in poorly run facilities owned by companies that value profit margins over the lives and well-being of residents.

Rauner and his investor buddies cut staff, which subsequently led to poor patient care. I have seen first-hand the effects of this scheme before. Residents are left frightened for their safety and personal well-being and, inevitably, a resident unnecessarily suffers or even dies from lack of care.

Rauner says he will come to Springfield and run it like a business. If the morally bankrupt and slipshod manner in which he ran his health-care companies is any indication of how he will run government agencies, including the Illinois Department of Public Health, which is responsible for oversight of long-term care facilities, then this is indeed, a very scary situation.

I personally have serious doubts that Rauner would be the kind of governor Illinois needs. If he is elected, will he ignore problems in the state’s long-term care system, public education and our rapidly deteriorating infrastructure?

The voters of Illinois deserve a governor who puts people first, always.

I sense Illinois voters hunger for change, but I know that Bruce Rauner, who has shown no interest in protecting our most vulnerable citizens, is not the change Illinois needs.



Hopefully Illinoisans have enough sense to keep Bruce Rauner out of the Governor’s Mansion in Springfield. 

h/t: Alan Pyke at Think Progress Election

Scott Walker’s cronies have ruined Wisconsin once again. It’s time to get rid of him at the ballot box in November! 

h/t: Scott Bauer at TPM

h/t: Patrick Caldwell at Mother Jones

Serial Liar Bruce Rauner = unfit to lead Illinois, so vote for Quinn or ABBR this fall! 

h/t: Rick Pearson at Chicago Tribune's Clout Street

H/T: Steve Benen at’s Maddow Blog