Day 3: Obama the Slumlord Senator
During his time in Illinois, some of Barack Obama’s most important donors and fundraisers were slumlords, including convicted felon Tony Rezko, who lined their pockets with taxpayers’ money from public projects Obama pushed through the legislature.
In his new book, The Case Against Barack Obama, journalist David Freddoso exposes Rezko and other Obama cronies who financed Obama’s political career, contributing several hundred thousand dollars to his campaigns, while Obama helped funnel government subsidies to these Chicago slumlords to help them build low-income housing.
So what did the Illinois taxpayers get out of these deals?
* Allison Davis, Obama’s former law firm boss, built several slums which were famous for the chronic plumbing failures that caused sewage to back up into residents’ sinks. Obama actually wrote letters to city and state officials supporting a bid by Rezko and Davis to get $14.6 million from the taxpayers to fund housing for seniors.
* Cecil Butler, another Obama donor, had one of his apartment complexes confiscated by the government when city inspectors found over 1,800 code violations.
* Valerie Jarrett, an Obama fundraiser and advisor, was the chief executive of a company that managed a housing complex that became so run-down it was seized by the federal government.
* Tony Rezko’s housing company, Rezmar, raked in more than $100 million in loans from the city, state and federal government to fix up 30 Chicago buildings for low-income housing. All of the buildings have failed financially: As of 2007, 17 have gone into foreclosure, and 6 have been boarded up. Meanwhile, the city of Chicago has sued Rezmar at least a dozen times for failing to heat its buildings.
Obama’s support for slumlords and corrupt developers proves once again that his claim to be a “reformer” is, as author David Freddoso points out, a great lie.