Chicago Tribune: Pritzker/Blagojevich Ties Go Back To The 90’s

Pritzker’s ties to Blagojevich go much farther back than the 2008 FBI wiretaps.

Illinois Democrat billionaire J.B. Pritzker’s gubernatorial campaign has already been tarred by the candidate’s relationship with imprisoned ex-Governor Rod Blagojevich, with FBI wiretaps between the two politicians exposing corrupt politicsand Pritzker’s racially insensitive comments towards black politicians.

Now, the Chicago Tribune is revealing how Pritzker’s ties to Blagojevich go much farther back than the 2008 FBI wiretaps – all the way back to the 90’s. In 1996, Pritzker reportedly helped Blagojevich win his congressional seat. Blagojevich returned in the favor in 1998, when Blagojevich allies supported Pritzker in his failed bid for Congress. Blagojevich even had the gall to compare Pritzker to Abraham Lincoln.

Illinois voters know that J.B. Pritzker is a political insider with longtime ties to the most corrupt politicians in the state.

He finished third with 20 percent of the vote in a 1998 primary won by Jan Schakowsky, who still holds the seat. Pritzker got campaign help from workers allied with former 33rd Ward Ald. Richard Mell, the father-in-law of future Gov. Rod Blagojevich. Two years earlier, Pritzker had helped Blagojevich win his congressional seat.

“This was a good first start and I think J.B. has a tremendous future,” Blagojevich said in a May 1998 Tribune profile of Pritzker. “Remember, Abraham Lincoln didn’t win his first election, and Mario Cuomo lost several races before he got elected. For J.B., this is only the beginning.

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