By: Mark Glennon*

“I am exercising my moral authority to prevent state resources being used to assist a process that frankly victimizes taxpayers.”

Yes, Comptroller Susana Mendoza actually said that.

Comptroller Mendoza invoking moral authority.

It’s how she began both her Monday press release and press conference announcing that her office would no longer assist in collecting red-light camera fines. The comptroller’s office helps municipalities collect many types of overdue fees and fines by subtracting them from tax refunds owed by the state, but no longer for despised red-light camera fines. A video of her press conference from ABC Chicago is here and her press release is here.

A Chicago Sun-Times editorial rightly suggested that legislation, not comptroller discretion, is the proper way to fix the red-light camera problem. Legally, Mendoza apparently is free to exercise that discretion.

But it’s her invocation of “moral authority” that taxpayers might, um, question.

As comptroller, she has essentially converted that office into a political propaganda operation funded with state resources. The most common messages of that operation are that Illinois’ financial problems are former Governor Rauner’s fault, due mostly to a budget impasse she says Rauner caused, and taking credit for things she has little to do with. A few examples:

•  State resources, which she is so concerned about, were used when her office included political propaganda like the following with 2017 tax refund checks she mailed:

•  The Pritzker Administration openly thanked the comptroller’s office for providing research on its political piece called “The Rauner Wreckage Report” where it, too, blames Rauner for everything. It said this:

A special thank you to the Office of the Illinois Comptroller for groundbreaking and significant research on the true costs of the budget impasse and the state’s backlog of bills; this report is built on and extends that research with additional findings.

•  On election day, she used her office to blast out a press release, a snippet from which is below. The Beachwood Reporter on Twitter likened that to releasing funds to buy you a free donut and cup of coffee on your way to the polls. In truth, all she did was print the check, which the comptroller does for state spending.

Mendoza has never held a job in her adult life that wasn’t thanks to the Chicago Machine, and the Machine’s central line of business is using public resources to victimize taxpayers. Her “mentor,” she said, was now indicted Chicago Alderman Ed Burke. She was married at Burke’s home, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. Burke’s wife, Illinois Supreme Court Justice Anne Burke, presided over the ceremony.

Mendoza’s particular new target is SafeSpeed, the red-light camera company. The FBI has been looking at their conduct but no charges have been filed and the company has denied any wrongdoing. If those circumstances are enough to invoke Mendoza’s moral authority, perhaps she should start withholding paychecks from her countless colleagues that the feds are also looking at.

And will Mendoza’s actions have any impact? Of course not. It just means municipalities will hire bill collectors or use some other process. But since everybody hates red-light cameras, hot air passes as moral authority.

*Mark Glennon is founder of Wirepoints.

19 Comments
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Dennis C
4 months ago

The Red Light camera works, just not to make us safe, just to gather monies and spend it as thin as possible to places that we have no knowledge of.

NB-Chicago
4 months ago

Morally she there to enforce the pesion tax intercepts from all the broke municipalities for all her gov union campaign donors,

michael marek
4 months ago

Points well made Mark…question for me does end justify the means?

Susan
4 months ago
Reply to  Mark Glennon

Simple: follow the law. ILCS are stacked against taxpayers and present a low bar,.
Yet taxing bodies “use discretion” not described by ILCS but by the practical fact that taxpayers have no practical means of self defense against government.

Are you onterested in alternative civil law enforcement mechanisms?

Susan
4 months ago
Reply to  Mark Glennon

Check your email

joe blow
4 months ago

I do not care for her tactics or her politics, she is a disgusting human being.

Dennis C
4 months ago
Reply to  joe blow

I really hate understatement! Can’t you do better?

nixit
4 months ago

Role of Comptoller:

1) Delegate all actual accounting work to your team because you have no accounting background.
2) Sign checks put in front of you by your team doing all the accounting work.
3) Keep a low profile, until it’s time to…
4) Scold EVERYONE in government for overspending.

It’s a cush gig. Just sit back as you spike your GARS pension.

NB-Chicago
4 months ago
Reply to  nixit

Isnt she lined up to $cash in$ on several pensions?

nixit
4 months ago
Reply to  NB-Chicago

While Mendoza’s service as City Clerk of Chicago is covered under MEABF, she should be able to rollover that service into GARS under the Retirement Systems’ Reciprocal Act

Here’s the scary part: If she can indeed rollover that service, she’s only a few years away from full pension vesting in GARS.

debtsor
4 months ago

keep voting democrat! Only they (democrats) can fix the very problems they (democrats) created! Democrats gave us the corrupt red light camera system through a series of bribes to corrupt democrats, and now, only a democrat can decide on her own to selectively enforce those laws!!!

BLUE WAVE 2020! ORANGE MAN BAD

Astonished
4 months ago
Reply to  debtsor

All joking aside, is it not relatively obvious that not all the people living in the USA can coexist under the same set of rules? Bad Ideas are like a 13th century Bubonic Plague. They’re contagious and the damage they’re doing is incalculable. It is self-evident to me that we should agree to separate, and those who want to live like the CNN/MSNBC (and IL democrat) people want to live should be in their own geography, and those others of us who don’t want their bat-guano crazy ideas rammed down our throats, living on the other side of a very… Read more »

Fallon
4 months ago

Saint Susana, lol…

Susan
4 months ago

This is an example of selective enforcement of the law; when taxing body officials act in violation of Illinois Code there are no effective police or enforcement mechanisms in place . Taxpayers suffer.

Astonished
4 months ago
Reply to  Susan

It could be worse. Wait until our IL Attorney General takes a page out of the utter clown San Fran just elected their states attorney. Coming to an IL near you, the notion that criminal thugs merit more warmth than do past and future victims of crime. The son of two murderer-bank robbers goes to law school and gets elected to basically empty the jails. CA’s legislature was already 3/4 insane, but this should be fascinating to watch CA’s leftist kook-klux-klan try Hugging the thugs who are beating, raping, robbing and murdering them.

Bob
4 months ago

Hard to believe she would actually say that. Especially since everyone knows she has no morals and is just a political hack . Maybe I give Illinois citizens too much credit that they would know she is just a clouted empty suit.

Illinois Entrepreneur
4 months ago

Listening to Mendoza and her awful Chicago accent is pure torture for my brain and ears. I not only feel the onset of dementia every time I read or hear something she has said, but I wonder greatly about a populace that has managed to decide that she should lead us in any capacity whatsoever. Worse, we know she is not done yet. She will ‘keep on tryin’ ‘ until she gets into an office in Illinois where she can virtue signal us every single day, pandering to any special interest or minority group that will have her. Maybe more… Read more »