FBI agents raided at least seven Cook County offices Thursday morning looking for evidence that officials were illegally doctoring tests or otherwise cheating to give government jobs and promotions to politically connected applicants.
"Step away from the computers," one of the 25 FBI agents who massed at the county's Human Resources Department told employees. The agents arrived at 9 a.m. and stayed long past dark poring through records, taking some with them.
The raids came a month after a Sun-Times story quoted county department heads as saying former Cook County Board President John Stroger's patronage chief Gerald Nichols pressured them to hire clouted people for jobs in which political hiring was prohibited. And the raids followed several years of news reports detailing alleged corruption, mismanagement and patronage hiring in county agencies.
FBI agents also appeared at Stroger Hospital, Oak Forest Hospital, the downtown Cook County Forest Preserve offices, Provident Hospital, Cermak Hospital and the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center to serve subpoenas for records.
Does anyone at the Indianapolis office of the FBI actually notice what's happening under their own noses? They might want to start by doing what their Chicago counterparts are doing at the Center Township Trustee's office, the Indianapolis Airport Authority and Rep. Julia Carson's office to name just a few. And by the way, how many people in Carson's congressional office actually perform legitimate congressional work? It seems some Carson staffers have nothing to do but log on from their www.house.gov web server to play politics by monitoring what's happening on the blogosphere and hiding behind anonymous comments to spin their pathetic message.