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Furious Jesse White Demands Apology From Disgraced State Rep. Derrick Smith

By Samantha Abernethy in News on Sep 28, 2012 9:30PM

Jesse White and Derrick Smith

Secretary of State Jesse White is furious with former state Rep. Derrick Smith because the indicted and expelled legislator claims to have the Secretary's endorsement. While he had previously endorsed and mentored Smith, White was quick to denounce the lawmaker after he was arrested for accepting a $7,000 bribe in March.

Since then, White has spearheaded the effort to oust Smith. After Smith won the Democratic primary election (just one week after being arrested), White and others started calling for Smith's resignation. He helped create a third party of West Side Democrats called the 10th District Unity Party, which chose Lance Tyson, a municipal bond lawyer and former chief of staff to former Cook County Board President Todd Stroger. In July a House panel recommended expelling Smith, and in August he was voted out.

But Smith continues his election (is it a reelection?) campaign, and he's actually leading in the polls. Only in Illinois. Smith's campaign website mentions nothing of his arrest, indictment or expulsion. Then on the endorsements portion, he writes:

Your endorsement, as well as endorsements from individuals that have mentored me, like Secretary of State Jesse White, let me know that I am doing the work residents of the 10th District expect of me.

"It's a violation of human decency for a gentleman to use my name to indicate that I have endorsed him," White told ABC7.

"I demand that he apologize to me, number one, for using my name in this manner and number two, for embarrassing this organization with this silly nonsense," said White.