The latest "huh, what?" headshaker regarding a long list of individuals tapped by Governor Quinn for important state positions or jobs without -- seemingly -- much in the way of qualifications except for political connections --is really taking this issue to a new level. Earlier this week, Quinn appointed former U.S. Senate Candidate Alexi Giannoulias -- who of course lost the race to our own Mark Kirk -- to head the state's community college board. This position, albeit an unpaid one, is simply the latest in a series of questionable appointments given to political cronies and influencers in the Democratic party, which appointments have attracted much attention and criticism from the Tribune and others.
Giannoulias's appointment to this position lacks even any semblance of credulity given his lack of credentials. Even the appointment of three-time loser Dan Seals to a high-level position in the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity was more defensible, given that Seals had actually worked in the private sector (even if sporadically, and not recently) and had a few business degrees.
Alexi's qualifications for this new position? Well, to our knowledge, he's never attended a community college (his degrees are from Boston University and Tulane Law School). He's never taught at one (yes, we know he's going to be teaching a class this fall at NU, but so far, he's never taught a single student). He's never had any experience with higher education from a faculty or administrative level of any kind.
What he does have, though, is the need to build up his thin resume and keep his name in the paper to keep momentum going for whatever his political endgame is. U.S. Senate 2014 (stepping into Dick Durbin's shoes as he retires), anyone?
Uncle Pat, "Mr. Reform Our Government," to the rescue!
Quinn's track record of questionable appointments is really taking heat in the press and the blogosphere, topped off by this latest embarrassment. Even our own Lake County News Sun is shaking its head.
Used to be, people were chosen to lead our state government based on what they could do for it, not what the postion could do for them.
Sad, sad, sad.