Public Watchdog.org

The Maine Township Stupid Party Presents: “Assgate” (Epilogue)

10.15.18

For those of you who may still have some difficulty comprehending or appreciating the full extent of the hyper-political and operationally dysfunctional Maine Township government that we have depicted in our last three posts, this post is intended to serve as kind of a connect-the-dots summary of why “Assgate” has nothing to do with sexual harassment and everything to do with political gamesmanship, if not outright warfare, by the RINOs who controlled Township government until May 2017 against The Reformers who were elected in April 2017. Consider:

  1. As a matter of basic math 3 always beats 2, whether it’s the number of runs in a baseball game or the number of votes needed for action by the Maine Township Board of Trustees. In this case the “3” is the 3-vote majority wielded by what Trustee Kim Jones described (in her staged and political “It’s not okay” soliloquy in front of Town Hall on September 26) as the “Bloc of 3” – consisting of Republican Trustees Dave Carrabotta and Susan Sweeney, and Democrat Trustee Claire McKenzie – that has prevailed over Jones’ and Supervisor Laura Morask’s “2” vote minority on significant Board votes. That 3-2 differential forms the political (not sexual harassment) heart of, and the political (not sexual harassment) driving force behind “Assgate.”
  2. In Jones’ Formal Complaint filed on May 25, she referred to the alleged January 23 swiping/touching of her “bottom” by Carrabotta as “inadvertent” and not intentional, while describing the alleged May 16 incident as a light “swipe” on her “ass” (her word). In her June 7 interview testimony she described “a brush…maybe that was inadvertent,” “a real faint brush,” a “light brushing” or a “touch.” Neither incident, however, was accompanied or followed by anything from Carrabotta of a sexual nature: No invitation to Jones for a dirty hula at a no-tell motel, no leers, not even a knowing glance to acknowledge any of that alleged contact. That makes this one of the strangest cases of sexual harassment on record – if it actually were sexual harassment.
  3. Jones admits not saying anything about either incident to Carrabotta (like, perhaps, “Stop that!” or “What are you doing?!?!”) or to the two female members of the “Bloc of 3.” Instead, she chose to gossip about it to her male and female Township RINO pals before getting the free (to her, but costing the taxpayers) personal advice from Township attorney Keri-Lyn Krafthefer that Jones seemingly needed to finally confront Carrabotta with her accusations before the May 22 board meeting.
  4. Despite her vague and uncertain descriptions of both incidents in the May 25 Formal Complaint and on June 7 to the investigating attorneys, she – along with Supervisor Laura Morask, Non-Assessor Susan Moylan-Krey and 7 other Maine Township RINO women – signed a July 7 letter that described as full-blown “groping” what Jones had previously characterized as merely the light brush/swipe/touch. And then those 10 women called, politically, for Carrabotta’s immediate resignation from the Board – which would have turned the “Bloc of 3” into a bloc of 2…until Morask could appoint someone like failed RINO Trustee candidate/short-term payroller Kelly Schaefer as Carrabotta’s replacement, thereby giving Morask, Jones and Schaefer the 3-vote RINO majority they’ve been wanting since The Reformers became the Bloc of 3 following their election in April 2017.
  5. For purely political purposes, Jones’ RINO buddies Clerk Pete Gialamas and Highway Commissioner Wally Kazmierczak apparently trumped-up stories about Carrabotta’s harassment of Township employees Dayna Berman and Vicki Rizzo, only to have Berman and Rizzo categorically deny Petey’s and Wally’s fairy tales when questioned by the investigators.
  6. The political motivation behind this charade was further confirmed by Gialamas’ testimony to the investigators about how “[w]e [the RINOs] were always happy with the way the township ran” before the Bloc of 3’s arrival, and by Kazmierczak’s testimony that “politically, [the RINOs] don’t see eye-to-eye” with the Bloc of 3 – opinions echoed in testimony to the investigators by employees Dawn Hayman (“The new trustees are very different than our old board”) and Doriene Prorak (“We were a family before those three came along”).
  7. Dem Rep. Marty Moylan’s August letter to The Journal simply ignored the investigators’ findings and demanded, for purely political purposes, not only Carrabotta’s resignation but also the resignations of Dem Trustee Claire McKenzie, Republican Trustee Susan Sweeney and Republican Township Committeeman Char Foss-Eggemann. He followed up that letter with his loutish performance at the August 28 Township Board meeting (running from 41:10 to 42:00 of the meeting video), ending his brief tirade by reiterating his highly-political demand that Carrabotta resign.
  8. Moylan and Dem. Sen. Laura Murphy appeared at Jones’ purely political September 26 press conference where Jones indicted the “Bloc of 3” for (1) holding the August 6 meeting to release the Investigation Report to the public; (2) voting to post that Report on the Township website before Morask and Jones could spin and/or sanitize it; and (3) claiming that the Report cleared Carrabotta, even though that’s effectively what it did. And in an apparent political quid pro quo, RINO Jones has recorded a robo-call endorsing Moylan over his Republican opponent: “Hi, this is Maine Township Trustee Kim Jones…[and] I’m voting for Marty Moylan for state representative and asking you to join me because Marty Moylan cares about women’s rights.”

Women’s rights and sexual harassment are serious business. The unwanted touching by one person of another – if and when it actually occurs – is totally unacceptable, especially when it carries sexual overtones. It should be addressed directly and immediately if and when it actually occurs, rather than merely gossiped about to political cronies the way Jones handled it. Unscrupulous use of such accusations as a purely political weapon – the way Jones, et al. appear to have used them in this case – diminishes the seriousness of actual harassment and demeans its legitimate victims.

“Assgate” has shown Jones to be either (a) a wily co-conspirator with her fellow Township RINOs and Dem. political hacks Moylan and Murphy in their purely-political effort to knock Carrabotta off the Board and break up the “Bloc of 3”, or (b) an unwitting dupe of those Township RINOs, Moylan and Murphy in such a shameless and vicious endeavor.

Unfortunately, “Assgate” also has shown Carrabotta to be a thin-skinned hot-head who trashed much of the pro-taxpayer goodwill he earned during his first year in office as one of The Reformers by throwing a tantrum in response to Jones’ accusations, then foolishly steering his fellow Reformers into an unlawful closed session meeting before hiding in plain sight for the last four months as his wife and other public-spirited citizens defended his character and reputation while he hid in plain sight and sat Sphinx-like.

Nevertheless, Jones could have prevented this political farce by refusing Krafthefer’s invitation to file the Formal Complaint with the Township that started the investigation that reportedly has burned up over $30,000 of taxpayer money. In response to Carrabotta’s hissy-fit she could, and should, have immediately taken her accusations directly to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (the “EEOC”) and/or the Illinois Dept. of Human Rights (the “IDHR”), which are two indisputably “independent” entities whose investigations would have cost Township taxpayers NOTHING.

But because this was a purely political gambit from the start, she didn’t do so until after the investigation was completed and the money wasted; and only after she didn’t get the favorable investigator findings she had expected.

And let’s not forget how Township attorney Krafthefer displayed her tone-deafness concerning conflict-of-interest and appearance-of-impropriety when she: (a) privately/secretly (and stupidly) counseled one Trustee (Jones) on how to deal with another Trustee (Carrabotta) about alleged sexual harassment; (b) privately/secretly encouraged one Trustee (Jones) to file a Formal Complaint against another Trustee (Carrabotta) without first disclosing that advice to the full Board; and (c) had her firm’s attorneys conduct the investigation of those allegations of misconduct by one Trustee against another.

What this political clown-car performance should not be permitted to obscure or tarnish, however, is the basic tenet of American justice that an accused – whether in criminal or civil proceedings – is presumed innocent until proven guilty, with the burden of proof always being on the accuser. In a criminal matter that burden is “beyond a reasonable doubt” (think something like 95% certainty) while in civil matters it is “by a preponderance of the evidence” (think 51% certainty). That’s part of what’s called “due process.”

Lynch mobs, on the other hand, operate from a 100% presumption that the accused is guilty, due process be damned.

Although accusations of sexual harassment deserve to be treated seriously, the idea that a woman who claims to have been harassed by a man must be believed without question, and irrespective of corroborating evidence, is a dangerous precedent. So is accusing anyone who dares to suggest otherwise of “victim-shaming” or “bullying.”

“Assgate” has taught us that the shameless and unscrupulous Township RINOs and their equally shameless and unscrupulous Democrat accomplices don’t care about presumptions of innocence or due process when they’re advancing what appear to have been false, if not outright baseless, accusations in furtherance of their rank political agenda to neutralize the “Bloc of 3.”

The only question is whether their constituents are as shameless and unscrupulous, or willing to tolerate such behavior from their elected officials.

To read or post comments, click on title.

11 comments so far

You convinced me with your posts from months ago that The Reformers were the heroes and the Maine Township RINOs the villains. What I respect about this blog and its editor, however, is that you have the HITA to call out your heroes (Carrabotta for his hotheadedness and demanding an investigation, McKenzie and Sweeney for going along with the unlawful closed-session meeting) as well as your villains.

Jones doing robocalls for Moylan is the icing on the cake.

EDITOR’S NOTE: As we said in our first “Assgate” post (Act One – Sept. 24), Carrabotta should have come out of his private meeting with Jones and, in open session with the camera and audio running, denied Jones’ accusations; and challenged her to file whatever claims she thought she had with the EEOC or the IDHR. Instead he stupidly demanded a closed session meeting and then an investigation by the Township attorneys; and McKenzie and Sweeney stupidly went along with him. All three of them should have known better.

You probably lost a place on Jones’ Christmas list by calling her whole harassment complaint “political.” 🙂 And didn’t you also refer to her as “savvy”?

EDITOR’S NOTE: We’ll just have to soldier through that holiday season deprivation.

Yes, we did refer to Jones as “politically savvy” – and also as a “middle-aged career woman” – in our 07.17.18 post. Having been Wally the K’s political apprentice for over 20 years, she would have had to have been a dolt not to have acquired some of his political savviness. As for her being “middle-aged,” she sure ain’t no ingénue.

I agree that this is a political game by Jones and the RINOs, but how can Carrabotta be so stupid to react the way he did? And how can McKenzie and Sweeney go along with him on an investigation that cost us over $30,000?

EDITOR’S NOTE: They mean well but they are not yet consistently capable of effectively dealing with the RINOs’ lies and mismanagement. And they are so new to the political game – none of the three Reformers ever held public office before – that they don’t have an inherent, organic feel for how to deal with the RINOs.

If the RINOs had blown that $30,000 you’d be whining to high heaven about it, but because it was the Reformers who blew it it’s okay for you. Hypocrite.

EDITOR’S NOTE: We ripped Carrabotta’s hot/bone-headedness in “Assgate” (Act 1), as we did Sweeney’s and McKenzie’s foolish indulgences of Carrabotta’s demand for an anti-transparent (and unlawful) closed-session meeting and his demand for an in-house investigation. We did the same in this “Assgate” (Epilogue).

If Jones hadn’t signed the Formal Complaint, however, there would have been nothing to investigate and no fees incurred.

And if Keri-Lyn Krafthefer understood conflicts of interest and appearances of impropriety, this whole thing might not have happened.

During the course of this drama there have been a lot of posters on Park Ridge Concerned Homeowners Group who have been very vocal in their support of Jones and the RINOs, like Jean Dietsch, Ginger Lee, Alice Dobrinsky, Amy Bartucci, Mary Ryan, Cindy Grau, and many more, but nobody supporting Carrabotta. Thoughts?

EDITOR’S NOTE: That particular FB page tends to be a rallying point for Liberals/Progressives (which describes most of the folks you identified) and the occasional RINO like Dietsch (whom we suspect may be on somebody’s – Moylan’s? – payroll) whose identity/tribal politics is on display 24/7. Frankly, we think it’s great that they have a safe space to express their views free from the challenges or criticism they might receive if posted elsewhere – like on this blog. 🙂

In the case of “Assgate” those folks get a two-fer: They get to canonize Jones/hammer Carrabotta not only on a gender basis but also on a Liberal/Progressive v. Conservative basis. And although McKenzie is both a woman and a Democrat, so long as she can be considered a member of the “Bloc of 3” and votes with Carrabotta and Sweeney, the Liberal/Progressive/RINO folks are happy to throw her under the bus and write it off as acceptable collateral damage.

They mean well but it is the RINO’s fault……or maybe it is Obama’s fault……or Hillary…..yeah, that’s it….Hillary!!!

Holy apologist Batman!!!

EDITOR’S NOTE: Sadly, “they mean well” is so much more than can be said about the RINOs, all of whom lack the honesty and integrity to publicly declare themselves to be the Democrats they really are.

Our guess is that they continue to remain nominally “Republicans” so they can continue to scam support from the two eunuchs who currently claim to run the state Republican Party (Tim Schneider and Sean Morrison), just as they did from the eunuchs’ predecessor, Rosemont’s own Jack Dorgan.

You probably don’t care but has it dawned on you that for the R’s to win in Illinois, which by the way should be very achievable over time, they have to get the middle. I am talking about folks like me who may be more socially progressive but who are very frustrated with how our tax dollars are being spent/wasted and are willing to at least give a look.

What kind of impression do you think your party is giving this rather large group of people when you get a little power and all you do is pick and snipe at each other? One has to ask how you would run the state if this is how you run Maine township, a soap opera with power grabs from both sides.

I get the “Madigan argument” but that does not mean that you all can behave like a bunch of 5 year olds.

EDITOR’S NOTE: First of all, the only political party this editor dislikes more than the Republican is the Democratic (unless you’re counting the Nazi and Communist). Republicans played “the middle” card with governors “Big Jim” Thompson, “Slim Jim” Edgar and George “No. 16627-424” Ryan from 1977 through 2003, all of whom enriched themselves by ceding more and more power to Madigan as our state declined.

Asking Maine Township Board members how they “would run the state” is about as brain dead as asking that Greenville IL teenager who raised the grand champion chickens at this year’s State Fair how he would run Tyson Foods.

The “5 year olds” are the RINOs who can’t accept the fact that 3 votes beat 2, and that they can’t get away with their RINO/Moylan/Madigan agenda.

I love the “dirty hula” reference, but you’re right. As a female who has been sexually harassed from time to time over the years, what Carrabotta did is not it. Harassment always comes with something more: a wink, a leer, a flirt, an invitation to coffee or a cocktail, something. Any woman who says this was harassment is either lying or has never been sexually harassed.

When you talk about the RINOs, don’t forget Dick Barton, their well-paid public relations guy who depends on the RINOs to renew his contract every year. I wouldn’t be surprised if he or his son were the ones who filmed Jones’ press conference in front of Town Hall.

ANONYMOUS ON 10.17.18 7:52 AM. Good point about Barton. He’s the guy taking all the pictures. I think he gets paid over $30,000 a year to take those pictures. Another one of the many RINO scams that they have been running all these years since Thompson and Dudycz were the supervisor.

Using 6 degrees of seperation that would make thillens a RINO

EDITOR’S NOTE: Not sure how you do your 6-degree calculation, but might it be like Faux-cahontas’ calculation of her Cherokee-ness?

Mel may be “transparency” and “accountability” challenged, but that doesn’t automatically make him a “RINO.”



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