Wednesday, April 24, 2013

EXTRA: Trotter gets community service, 'concealed carry' headache

So much for those people who were waiting with glee at the thought of state Sen. Donne Trotter, D-Chicago, being found guilty of a criminal offense and winding up doing jail time – while also adding to the list of people from around the Gresham neighborhood (Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr., county Commissioner William Beavers and Trotter) who were facing some sort of criminal charge.

TROTTER: Sentenced to stay in Springfield?
It had some wondering just what was it about that particular part of the South Side that caused the local voters to pick such rummies as their elected officials – no matter what the political post!

BUT WHILE JACKSON and Beavers face the prospect of some time in a federal correctional facility, Trotter’s offense wound up being negotiated down to the point where he was willing to plead guilty on Wednesday.

The one-time felony charges that could have forced Trotter out of office and into a state corrections facility for a spell became a misdemeanor count of reckless conduct.

Trotter gets one year of court supervision (which, unlike probation, means he does not have to report to anyone on a regular basis) and also must do 60 hours of community service.

Which means the political smart-alecks can get all worked up at the thought of Trotter – the high and mighty state senator – having to pick up trash alongside the road for a few weekends.

TROTTER, OF COURSE, was the guy who back in December got arrested at O’Hare International Airport after a pistol was found in his carry-on bag. Trotter has a permit that claims the weapon is part of his outside job working for a security firm.

What is it about So. Side neighborhoods ...
But it IS an airplane, and people do tend to get paranoid under such circumstances. Which is why Trotter wound up having to spend the past four months with a felony charge hanging over his head.

Of course, this all became a matter of bad timing, since it came at the exact moment that Trotter was to try to replace Jackson in Congress. He also had the backing of the political powerbrokers who could have easily pushed Donne through the process and onto Capitol Hill.

... that picked all three of them?
It is ironic that the eventual winner, Rep. Robin Kelly, D-Ill., campaigned so heavily on gun control issues. Since one could easily argue that it was the pistol in Trotter’s bag that got her elected to Congress.

BECAUSE IT’S UNLIKELY she could have put up much fight had the Democratic committeemen who wanted Trotter in the first place been capable of putting their full muscle behind him!

And now Trotter gets to be among the people who have to cope with the range of issues from pension funding reform to "concealed carry."

What a headache! Particularly since you know the partisan smart alecks are going to find a way to make a joke out of however he winds up voting on a "concealed carry" measure in the state Senate.


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