Ethics Concerns Also Rise After Revelations That Candidate Was Fined Almost $18K For Election Law Violations, Sued For Unpaid Credit Card Debt
Brandon Johnson’s long term refusal to pay his city water bill is opening up new questions about other instances of financial mismanagement and ethical lapses. Johnson racked up over $4,000 in debt that he finally satisfied yesterday after intense media scrutiny, despite the fact that he’s a highly paid lobbyist who makes almost $200,000 per year. Now, two other examples of Johnson not meeting his financial obligations, as well as the fact that he has absolutely no management experience, are calling into question his ability to be responsible for Chicago’s $28 billion budget.
Johnson’s County Commissioner campaign was fined $17,637 by the Illinois State Board of Elections in 2020 “due to violations of the Campaign Disclosure Act,” state law that governs how political campaigns can and can’t operate. A few years earlier in 2016, Johnson was successfully sued for nonpayment of a $3,657.51 debt. Johnson lost on default judgment and had his paychecks as a lobbyist garnished until the debt was paid off.
“Chicago is a $28 Billion enterprise and Brandon Johnson’s financial mismanagement coupled with his total lack of executive experience make it hard to believe that he can successfully oversee the city’s budget,” said Alderman Walter Burnett. “Johnson has been called out in the press for inflating his resume and overstating his management role as a county legislator, and the fact that he launched a campaign for Mayor while knowingly being ineligible to take office also points to ethics and transparency concerns. Taken together, Brandon Johnson’s outright refusal to pay his bills, his reckless disregard for state election law, his total lack of management experience and his plan to raise taxes on the middle class and small businesses by $800 Million absolutely disqualifies him to be Mayor.”