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Our view: Politicos high on patronage

Published: Friday, June 20, 2014 8:50 p.m. CST

Investors around the state are making moves to get involved in the marijuana business while they wait for the state’s new medical marijuana law to take effect.

The problem is the names of potential investors have come out, and far too many of them have too many political connections to not raise red flags.

Sam Borek has reserved at least three dozen marijuana-related business names, the Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises reported. Borek was a college roommate of the legislator who just happened to sponsor the medical marijuana law – Democratic state Rep. Lou Lang of Skokie.

David Rosen has registered a medical marijuana business name called Waveseer. He has filed paperwork to open a business with the same name in Nevada. You might know Rosen as Gov. Pat Quinn’s chief fundraiser in 2010 and for raising money for Hillary Clinton and Al Gore.

Former Quinn Chief of Staff Jack Levin has been hired to lobby for a medical marijuana business owned by an Effingham attorney and a Springfield lobbyist.

Stop us if you’ve heard this story before, but it appears that when it comes to an investment opportunity in Illinois, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know and have raised money for in state government.

This is just another chance for corruption; another chance for patronage; another chance for taxpayers to get stuck paying off the politically connected.

In other words, it’s business as usual in Illinois. And it has to stop.

The state of Illinois is spiralling into fiscal insolvency, and that’s in part because of the patronage games that appear to be well on their way here.

Political connections should not play a role in the state’s medical marijuana business, or any other business for that matter.

Voters must take notice in November.

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