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Frequent Flyer

By Kevin Robinson in News on Dec 28, 2007 7:00PM

While Rod Blagojevich was dodging questions about a potential tax bill for flights from Springfield to Chicago, Mayor Daley was busy traveling the world on Chicago's behalf. In 2007, Daley made five overseas trips, including Brazil, Italy and France. But the IRS won't be looking at the Mayor's travel bills anytime soon because the trips weren't paid for with taxpayer money. Instead, they were financed privately, often by corporate interests. Both the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce and the law firm of Baker & McKenzie have picked up the tab for Daley's jaunts.


David Morrison, deputy director of the the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, says these trips raise questions of impropriety. If the mayor "knows someone else is footing the tab, there may be an inclination to say or do things that might not be in the public interest," he told the Tribune. "If the trip is worth doing, then taxpayers ought to pay for it." Morrison isn't the only one who's criticized Daley. Earlier this year, Rod Blagojevich took a shot at Daley, telling the press "before Mayor Daley left for Italy, I think he had it right.... We ought to get the legislature to pass the solution to the CTA before the end of the year." We're not disagreeing with Blagojevich. But it would be nice if he took some of his own advice.