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Bully Pulpit

The term "bully pulpit" stems from President Theodore Roosevelt's reference to the White House as a "bully pulpit," meaning a terrific platform from which to persuasively advocate an agenda. Roosevelt often used the word "bully" as an adjective meaning superb/wonderful. The Bully Pulpit features news, reasoned discourse, opinion and some humor.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Where did the money for Obama Gardens go?

(Hot Air) - The Illinois Attorney General has opened an investigation into the money granted in a Barack Obama earmark in 2001 to the spouse of a campaign aide, thanks to the investigative work of the Chicago Sun-Times. When Obama challenged Bobby Rush for his seat in Congress, he tried to drum up support from the Englewood neighborhood by earmarking state money to establish a botanical garden. Despite promises that Obama would remain engaged in raising more than a million dollars, Obama lost interest after losing the election and never fulfilled his pledge for action. Now it looks like the state funds went no farther than Obama’s aide:

A $100,000 state grant for a botanic garden in Englewood that then-state Sen. Barack Obama awarded in 2001 to a group headed by a onetime campaign volunteer is now under investigation by the Illinois attorney general amid new questions, prompted by Chicago Sun-Times reports, about whether the money might have been misspent.

The garden was never built. And now state records obtained by the Sun-Times show $65,000 of the grant money went to the wife of Kenny B. Smith, the Obama 2000 congressional campaign volunteer who heads the Chicago Better Housing Association, which was in charge of the project for the blighted South Side neighborhood.

Smith wrote another $20,000 in grant-related checks to K.D. Contractors, a construction company that his wife, Karen D. Smith, created five months after work on the garden was supposed to have begun, records show. K.D. is no longer in business.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan — a Democrat who is supporting Obama’s presidential bid — is investigating “whether this charitable organization properly used its charitable assets, including the state funds it received,” Cara Smith, Madigan’s deputy chief of staff, said Wednesday.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Jonathan Adler said...

From National Review Online:

"I'm sure the Washington Post and New York Times will devote as much time to this story as they did to Gov. Palin's per diems and her involvement with the Wasilla public library. (roflol)"

Thursday, September 25, 2008 10:27:00 PM  

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