Chicago Sun-Times
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Corporations pay for Democratic Party of Illinois Obama reception

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(Photo by Lynn Sweet)

DENVER---Democratic Party of Illinois Chairman Michael J. Madigan is hosting a Coors Field reception Wednesday honoring Barack Obama bankrolled by corporations with interests often before the Illinois General Assembly. Madigan is also the powerful Illinois House Speaker.

While Obama's campaign does not accept contributions from federal lobbyists and political action committees--and Obama bemoans on the campaign trail the influence corporations have over Congress-- the Democratic convention here which will hand Obama the Democratic presidential nomination is being underwritten by a variety of corporate sponsors.

The Illinois political community is immune to any example Obama is trying to set. Obama's political warchests took donations from lobbyists and PACs until he launched his presidential bid and Obama's change of heart had no ripple impact back home.

Madigan invited all the Illinois delegates to the Obama reception; it is not known if Obama will attend. Even so, it would seem embarrassing for Obama to be feted at a party paid for by companies whose fortunes could depend on a government action.

As at past Democratic conventions, Illinois corporate and labor interests pay for a variety of Illinois delegation events. Madigan set aside some hard to get hotel rooms from his allotment for his sponsors.

The sponsors listed on the Madigan invitation specifically for Obama are State Farm Insurance; Pepsi; ComEd; Novartis and Midwest Generation. Gov. Blagojevich's reception for Illinois Veterans Affairs Director Tammy Duckworth is underwritten by MillerCoors.

AT&T is a major sponsor of delegation and overall convention activities--throwing a reception for Illinois delegates Monday--and its logo is on the souvenir bags handed out to the convention press.

Here's a master list of Illinois events, and where applicable, the entities helping to pay for them.


Mayor Daley the chair of the Illinois delegation
Marlowe's Restaurant
501 116th
for invited Illinois delegates and guests

7:45 am
Illinois Caucus Meeting
Sponsor Chicago Federation of Labor/Dennis Gannon

3-6 pm
AT&T Reception
Grand Hyatt
For invited Illinois delegates and guests

Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie (D-Chicago)
Dessert reception
Denver Marriott
For Invited Illinois delegates and guests

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.)
Blues Brothers/Second City reception

Equality for Illinois Martini reception
Denver Marriott
For invited Illinois delegates and guests


7:45 am
Illinois caucus meeting
Sponsor: Association of American Railroads

4-7 pm
Mayor Daley reception. Invitation only.

9 pm
Gov. Blagojevich honors Illinois VA Director Tammy Duckworth
Panzano Restaurant buffet dinner
A Friends of Blagojevich event
Sponsor: MillerCoors

State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias Martini reception
Denver Marriott


Illinois Caucus Meeting
Sponsor: AFL-CIO Affiliates, Mike Corrigan

Democratic Party of Illinois Obama reception
Sponsors are State Farm Insurance; Pepsi; ComEd; Novartis and Midwest Generation.

Senate Democratic Event
Sponsors Emil Jones Jim Clayborne and Mattie Hunter
Denver Marriott

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on August 25, 2008 4:17 AM.

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