Democrats in Illinois held a rally in support of accused bribe-taker Rep. Derrick Smith (D-Chicago) who was arrested just last week. Yesterday he won the party’s nomination in Illinois.
Illinois State Rep. Derrick Smith (D-Chicago) leaves the Dirksen Building federal courthouse on March 13, 2012, after he was released on bond, following his arrest for allegedly taking a $7,000 bribe. (CBS)
It doesn’t matter that he’s a crook. He’s got a “D” after his name. That’s all that counts. Yesterday the Illinois Democrat Derrick Smith won his party’s nomination despite the bribery charges hanging over his head.
FOX Chicago reported:
State Representative Derrick Smith, a Chicago Democrat, has won his party’s nomination for the Illinois House even with his arrest on a federal bribery charge.
With 69 percent of precincts counted Tuesday night, Derrick Smith of Chicago had 77 percent of the vote compared to 23 percent for challenger Tom Swiss, a former Republican activist.
Smith, who was appointed to his seat last spring, was charged with bribery last week after federal authorities claimed he accepted $7,000 in exchange for supporting what he thought was a day care center’s state grant application. That breathed new hope into Swiss’ campaign despite significant backing for Smith from House Speaker Michael Madigan’s political arm.
Swiss said Tuesday night he was a victim of low turnout. He said highly motivated Democrats who were wary of Swiss’ GOP past made up the bulk of primary voters.
Smith replaced Annazette Collins, D-Chicago, who filled a vacancy in the Senate. But in that primary race, Collins was losing to Patricia Van Pelt Watkins, 54 percent to 46 percent, with 71 percent of precincts counted in the district on Chicago’s west side.