With the scandal storm over his financial ties to controversial donor, Richard Uihlein, Judge Roy Moore’s biggest donor, Governor Bruce Rauner is in full spin mode.
Media are reporting Uihlein contributed $50,000 to a pro-Moore PAC on September 8th and another $50,000 after Moore was accused of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl and three other young women. Moore has denied the accusations but damage to his campaign for Alabama’s U.S. Senate seat has been done.
Time for Uihlein to chuck his political advisors. What a dumb move.
Richard Uihlein is the CEO of Uline, Inc., a cardboard box supplier and an heir to the Joseph Schlitz Brewing Company fortune.
Uihlein’s history of shady donations
This isn’t the first time Uihlein has donated to scandal-plagued figures and shady candidates. Uihlein is the biggest donor to Dan Proft’s Liberty Principles PAC. The PAC has received in excess of $8.75 million from Uihlein despite Proft’s ties to Cicero scandals. Rauner has also donated $5 million or more to Proft’s group.
After helping Cicero’s Larry Dominick win re-election, Proft received a $578,000 no-bid contract as the town spokesman. When Dominick was accused of sexual harassment and groping by three female town employees, Proft accused the victims of profiteering.
What was Proft’s response to the lawsuit filed against Dominick by a female police officer, who accused him of sexual harassment, intimidation and retaliation?
“Larry Dominick doesn’t speak to women like this,” Proft told the Chicago Sun-Times. “Miss Lujano wanted to be made a full-time police officer. This just goes to show the length of what people will go to when they don’t get what they want.”
Dominick made troubling statements about women during a video-taped deposition. Click here to watch the video.
Serial groper Rep. John Anthony and former teacher Keith Matune
Uihlein donated $8,000 to Rep. John Anthony, who was forced to resign from his appointed position with Governor Rauner in the Department of Corrections, after groping women at a holiday Christmas party.
Uihlein donated $5,000 to Keith Matune, a Republican candidate who was caught lying about his criminal record. Uihlein’s donation was made months after Matune’s criminal record,Uihlein’s donation was made months after Matune’s criminal record, including larceny, resisting arrest, criminal trespass at a women’s dormitory through a window and a conviction for indecency, was made public.
Matune was also heavily backed in the 81st house district race by Proft’s Liberty Principles PAC, which received $2.5 million in donations from Uihlein in the 2014 election cycle. According to Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, Liberty Principles PAC spent $241,682.64 of Uihlein’s donation on the Matune race. The candidate also received $20,000 in donations from Illinois Liberty PAC, another Uihlein-funded group.
Will Rauner return the Uihlein donations?
Uihlein donated $2.6 million to Rauner’s campaign and a key donor of the Illinois Policy Institute, a tax-exempt group which backs Rauner. The group is run by former Uline employee, John Tillman. In July, Rauner also tapped Illinois Policy Institute employees for critical positions on his staff. When asked by Rich Miller on Capitol Fax whether he will return Uihlein’s contributions, Rauner dodged the question:
As I’ve said, I have urged Roy Moore to step aside as the candidate for US Senate.
Uihlein is also a regular donor to Rep. Jeanne Ives, who has announced she is challenging Rauner. Ives has received more than $15,000 from Uihlein.
Real GOP Illinois will continue to follow this story.