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July 13, 2024

Gov Pritzker’s Press Secretary Attempted To Kill IDOT Gun Violence Story –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On May 11, 2023

Springfield, IL. (ECWd) –

Last year when we were looking to verify the IDOT gun violence story out of Franklin County, WAND was also attempting to verify it.

An email produced as a result of a FOIA lawsuit we filed against IDOT indicates Governor Pritzker’s Press Secretary, Jordan Abudayyeh, was attempting to kill the story before WAND gained any traction on it.

There didn’t appear to be any indication by the Press Secretary of getting to the truth of the matter, but rather making sure it did not become a story for WAND.

We asked Abudayyeh for comment, no reply received as of publication.

This is the type of communication that breeds distrust in government.

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1 Comment
  • RORY STEIDL
    Posted at 22:45h, 11 May Reply

    Kinda makes you wonder if that whole “kill the story” plot – and the players/politicians/political hacks working for the politicians – influenced the “temporary” sealing of the records.

    This is not the first time – nor will it be the last – that political hacks who have lost sight of their sworn duty, their ethics, and the principle of working for the good of all have instead, abandoned the same and killed or tried to kill newsworthy stories or done other reprehensible things at the expense of the good men and women who are serving all of you.

    When I worked for ISP many years ago, the director’s office instructed the district to choose a trooper to recognize for outstanding service so that the then director could recognize him/her with a “Director’s Challenge Coin” presentation. We selected the recipient and the director and his staff flew from Springfield to Savoy, came to the district, and presented the award to the trooper. Great! All was good – until I set up an interview of the trooper about his good work and his award with the Champaign News-Gazette. I wondered why I wasn’t getting any return calls from the ISP Public Information Office regarding my attempt to coordinate the news release with the PIO and director’s office.

    As it turned out, a select few of the political hacks (command staff) below the Director – who thought they knew what was best – decided that it would be best for the story to be “killed.” One of those hack commanders called our then-district captain and directed him to “kill the story.” This, mind you, after directing us to find a worthy recipient of recognition and an award from the director himself, but now – nope – kill it because it might make the director look bad. I don’t even know if the director knew what the sneaky/spineless hacks below him were up to. Based on what I knew of the man, I doubt that he knew.

    Our captain – a good, honest, and ethical man who always did the right thing – protested the directive and told the Springfield hack that he wasn’t going to do it. If they wanted the story killed, one of them would have to kill it. He “stuck to his guns.” The powers that be either got a conscience or decided that they didn’t want to dirty THEIR hands or reputations. The News-Gazette printed a nice story and an interview of the trooper and the award without further interference.

    Ironically, the rationale the hack provided to our captain was that “they” were concerned that the media would question the money spent on the manufacture of the director’s challenge coins. What? These hacks never even considered the fact that they could easily have been questioned as to why they found it necessary to fly a state-owned airplane from Springfield to Savoy instead of hopping onto I72 and driving the one-and-one-half hours to the district. Criticism of that type was common in that time frame. Nothing became of any of it and the media never questioned it.

    It was extremely upsetting – to say the least – to know that the hacks were willing to kill a news story about a good trooper, especially after they initiated the entire recognition process.

    Thanks to the good man that was our captain, the hacks were unsuccessful in hijacking an otherwise noble effort by the director to recognize a hard-working trooper. Ethics prevailed!

    RCS

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