Saturday, June 25, 2016

Who deserves the political blows in upcoming Tammy Duckworth trial?

It has become the legal case that only political geeks will care about. Many of whom probably couldn’t tell you where Union County, Ill., is located without checking first on a map.
DUCKWORTH: Legal trial? Or political witch hunt?

I’m talking about the lawsuit currently pending against Democratic Senate nominee Tammy Duckworth because of some of her actions from back in the days when she was head of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs.

DUCKWORTH, HERSELF A veteran of the early 1990s version of a Gulf War who lost her legs as a result, has in the past been criticized for that part of her record. After all, it was then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich who picked her. So she has to be tainted; to listen to her political critics.

Most of whom object to her primarily because as a military-oriented person, they think she ought to be opposed to Democrats, rather than identifying with them.

In this particular case pending in the rural Southern Illinois county where Cape Girardeau, Mo., is the largest major city nearby, two former employees of the Anna Veterans Home claim they were punished on the job as retaliation for their personal politics.

The lower courts had previously rejected this lawsuit, but politically-motivated ideologues have been more than willing to do what they can to revive it. Which means the Illinois attorney general's office is required to continue to fight against it, and tax dollars continue to be spent on it.

AS THOUGH THE thought of the continued existence of a pending lawsuit is more important than actually trying to resolve the situation involving these two workers.

After all, what else can they use to beat Duckworth symbolically over the head with if not the image of a lawsuit claiming she mistreated military veterans?

Now I don’t know personally the specifics of the cases involving these two workers. I’m influenced heavily by the fact that it has lingered through the legal system for so long that it has become old and moldy.

So I found it interesting that the Chicago Tribune reported that the judge involved in the case, Mark Boie, wants the sides to come together for a pretrial conference out of hopes all the sides can come to an agreement and settle the case out-of-court.

IN SHORT, TURNING the Aug. 15 date back into just another one of the dog days of the summer – rather than the beginning of a civil suit trial that Duckworth’s opponents would just as soon see drag out into early-to-mid October.

After all, wouldn’t it be keen from their viewpoint to have the possibility of a negative court judgment coming down in the weeks leading up to the Nov. 8 elections in which Democrat Duckworth is trying to depose Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill.?

Which is really what this case is all about.

It is why Kirk is eager to keep the case alive, and complained this week that any effort to settle out-of-court amounts to an injustice. He wants that day in court his campaign is desperate to believe will allow him to out-military Duckworth in the public eye.

WHICH IS REALLY a shame, since Kirk was the longtime Naval Reserve officer who had a military record of his own, even though there have been the past allegations that he tried to exaggerate his claims.

Certainly, I doubt Kirk or many other people really care if one of the women was fired from her job at the Anna facility as retaliation for allegedly complaining about her boss (she was later reinstated), or if another woman got a poor job review that cost her a pay raise.

This is about wanting to politick through the court system. And I’m sure the only thing that would shut up the Duckworth opponents is if the judge were to ultimately issue some sort of ruling in her favor! 


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