The Trump Organization convicted of criminal tax fraud. But not Trump?
Why no mention in local media of the Eddie Burke connection
NEW YORK, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Donald Trump's real estate company was convicted on Tuesday of carrying out a 15-year-long criminal scheme to defraud tax authorities.
Remember back in 2010 when the notorious Citizens United Supreme Court decision ruled that “corporations are people”? The Court might have added that corporations are also buffers, protecting the wealthy and powerful from prosecution.
Oh, did I mention that indicted Chicago Alderman and former machine boss, Eddie Burke also worked for the criminal Trump Organization and was their tax attorney from 2006-2008? Those are the very years that the scheme was hatched. Remember, Burke was the one who did the Chicago Trump Tower deal.
Actually, I have mentioned it many times but who’s counting? The reason I bring it up again now is that after the national story broke on Tuesday, there was no mention of it yesterday or today in either the Sun-Times or the Trib even though it’s a big national story with a big local angle. Why not, I wonder?
Burke, who was indicted in May of 2019, believe it or not, is still the powerful alderman of the 14th Ward. He has announced, however, that he won’t run again. I guess he wants to spend more time with his wife, Anne, who is also stepping down from her post as Chief Justice of the IL Supreme Court.
Burke was elected to represent the Southwest Side 14th Ward in 1969, succeeding his father. He’s held on to that office for nearly 54 years, accumulating a vast amount of power over the decades. Along with his pal, “Fast Eddie” Vrdolyak, Burke helped lead the charge in Council Wars, against the city’s first Black Mayor, Harold Washington as part of the notorious Vrdolyak 29. Although the machine today is a shadow of its former self, Burke plays a similar role in forming blocs against the city’s first Black, gay, woman mayor, Lori Lightfoot. One of Lightfoot’s first acts as mayor was to remove Burke from his long-held post as head of the Finance Committee.
Burke’s trial on 14 counts of racketeering, bribery, and extortion, won’t start until Nov. 6, 2023. That’s 4 1/2 years after he was busted. When you then consider likely plea deals and years of appeals if he’s ever convicted, the chances are that Ald. Burke, like his business client Trump, will never spend a day in prison.