He zones. She sells. And it's legal. -- Sales, Richard M. Daley

It's hard to miss Barbara O'Connor's face on a drive through North Side neighborhoods, where her real estate signs beckon buyers to "find your way home." In the last decade she has built a thriving business ... Full Story
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Amazed again at Chicago

Neshkoro, WI

#1 May 31, 2008
Here we go again. These parasites use their positions to line their pockets and claim their is nothing ethically wrong or illegal about their actions. I'm sure this lady would have made nothing like most real estate agents last year if her husband was not an alderman making decisions to gain favorable zoning variations for the developers. Wake up Chicago. Vote these people out and bring them to justice.
Joe Lake

Chicago, IL

#2 May 31, 2008
Amazed again at Chicago wrote:
Here we go again. These parasites use their positions to line their pockets and claim their is nothing ethically wrong or illegal about their actions. I'm sure this lady would have made nothing like most real estate agents last year if her husband was not an alderman making decisions to gain favorable zoning variations for the developers. Wake up Chicago. Vote these people out and bring them to justice.
Not Amazed at All:

From Aldermanic Preogative to a Woman's Prerogative.

All in the family--again.

Joe Lake, Bucktown

“Ds and Rs are crooks.”

Since: Apr 08

Berwyn, IL

#3 May 31, 2008
Its time you fools in the city put a stop to this. You can stop it but until you do you all are fools.
jen

Chicago, IL

#4 May 31, 2008
I live in the 40th ward, and have for years. I clearly remember neighborhood opposition to the rezoning and sale of what were the parking lots of the former Edgewater Hospital. Community meetings were held where dozens of citizens and several different block groups made their concerns clear. The fear was that the hospital would never be sold and demolished on its own if its extremely valuable parking lots were sold off. And yet it happened - with Ms. O'Connor as realtor.

I actually think O'Connor is in general a good alderman, especially when compared to nearby aldermen such as Schulter or Schiller. He actually does not roll over for developers the way Schulter has done -- no eminent domain attempts coming from O'Connor, for example. He has been aggressive in his support for bike paths. In the past years Northside College Prep came into the ward, along with a new police station and the senior high rise on Peterson. He has worked to get nature preserve funding for portions of Rosehill Cemetery. Unfortunately many of his accomplishments are overshadowed by these real estate dealings.
MinisterR

Oak Forest, IL

#5 May 31, 2008
If I had only realized this was the Chicago way 25 years ago I would have saved my money for bribes instead of my current investments. I have almost divested myself of property in cook county
Average Joe

Willowbrook, IL

#6 May 31, 2008
Alderman O'Connor is a political hack who is enriching himself as a result of developments that hurt the very citizens he represents.

O'Connor and is wife are parasites. They take, take, take with no fear of consequences.

Voters in O'Connor's ward should stop acting like sheep. It is time to vote him out of office.
Fast Eddie

Lisle, IL

#7 May 31, 2008
The machine rolls on.....
Thagg

Deerfield, IL

#8 May 31, 2008
Aw c'mon guys. There you go picking on a nice couple who are manipulating the American Dream to suit their purposes. I mean, isn't the American Dream where you get what you want, whatever it takes? After all, being a woman in business she needs help from a man. It's that fish needing a bicycle thing.
It's all okay, really. You said it yourselves. He doesn't have a "direct personal stake" in his wife's millions. They probably have separate checking accounts, Her side of the bedroom is, no doubt, decorated a lot better than his and I'm sure they take separate vacations. Plus, it would be silly to let all that clout go to waste, wouldn't it? Geez, you Tribune guys. Here's a nice politician and his wife grabbing all the brass rings they possibly can and you're giving them trouble. I, for one, applaud the alderperson for helping the little woman. As Kass tells us, it's the Chicago Way.
No conflict

Chicago, IL

#9 May 31, 2008
Let's be honest, no conflict. Give me a break. How do you think the neighbors feel when they fight a variance or zoning change and the Alderman does not listen to the community and then his wife's name is on the sign selling that same project. I say Tribune, do your job, follow the money.

Since: Oct 07

United States

#10 May 31, 2008
Classic Pay to Play! OConnor says he sees nothing wrong with his wife profiting from his zoning decisions! Does he think the citizens are stupid and gullible. He is not fooling anyone.
StupidlyQuiet

Munster, IN

#11 May 31, 2008
it's all about the

Stupidly Quiet majority...

...because it's all about

$

shh, the Stupidly Quiet majority of folks
Clarence

United States

#12 May 31, 2008
Of course Patrick O'Connor doesn't see any wrong in what he is doing. That's because he's doing it the Chicago Way. The City of Corruption would never see the O'Connor's as being corrupt. Keep investigating the money trail Trib.
Al Brock

Gatineau, Canada

#13 May 31, 2008
Pay to play is Chicago. It's no wonder the city is so violent when a very few insiders manipulate the system for gross profiteering and others struggle for survival.

The alderman sheltering himself from a conflict-of-interest charge is hilariously transparent ducking and weaving. To believe that there is no "teaming" here would be naive at best.
Typical White Person

Phoenix, AZ

#14 May 31, 2008
I wouldn't expect less from Chicago.
Typical White Person

Phoenix, AZ

#15 May 31, 2008
Long-time Trib Reader wrote:
Classic Pay to Play! OConnor says he sees nothing wrong with his wife profiting from his zoning decisions! Does he think the citizens are stupid and gullible. He is not fooling anyone.
YES, he does and he's right.
Dave

United States

#17 May 31, 2008
I see nothing wrong with confiscating everything that couple owns and forcing a recall of that smuck who has the title of alderman.

Good article tribune. It's time to really embarrass these crooked political hacks. The voters also need to get them out of office.
Don

Charleston, WV

#18 May 31, 2008
Lets see, he has to approve it, so she can sell it. They both get the money from the sale. In my opinion a unique form of bribery.
Dukakis

Chicago, IL

#19 May 31, 2008
Come on. This is Chicago. You have aldermen who are attorneys whose "firms" are hired by people doing business with the city; aldermen insurance agents whose clients include people doing business with the city. Why not real estate spouses of aldermen who oversee zoning? Then you have campaign "contributions" that can be used for just about any expenditure or "loaned" to the office holder or simply taken with them when they retire...if they ever do. The only question is: Is there anything in government that is NOT for sale in Chicago and Illinois?
Reality

Glen Ellyn, IL

#20 May 31, 2008
a Chicago alderman "skirting the law" to make money? How could that be? Chicago politicians are always fine upstanding people who never try to profit from their position.

Can I sell you a bridge?
Big Money

United States

#21 May 31, 2008
I work at an investment bank. Our policies dictate that my wife cannot invest or make financial decision that I may not be able to make. For us, the spouses are one and the same thing. It avoid conflict of interest.

Why can't our government follow this model? Nothing will happen here since Daley will start ranting and the press will get scared.

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