Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon is racking up endorsements in her campaign for Illinois comptroller, since having announced her candidacy two weeks ago.
Today, Simon accepted the endorsement of the Cook County Democratic Party and the Southern 20 Chairmen, who said current Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka (R) is "missing in action" when it comes to watching over local government spending.
In the press release announcing the endorsements, Simon's campaign noted that "Illinois has more units of local government than any other state, numbering the thousands", which illustrates the need for an aggressive fiscal watchdog. The Simon campaign highlighted the recent case of former long-time Dixon Comptroller Rita Crundwell, who plead guilty to embezzling more than $53 million from the Northwestern Illinois town, as an example of the need for more fiscal oversight over the state's many governmental units.
"In recent years, corruption and misappropriation of tax dollars have slipped through the cracks, costing taxpayers millions," reads the announcement. "Most notable among these was in Dixon, where City Comptroller Rita Crundwell embezzled $53 million. When asked about Dixon, Judy Baar Topinka’s office stated that she’s not responsible for analyzing the data – her office is only a repository."
Earlier this week, Will County Auditor Duffy Blackburn suspended his campaign for state comptroller and endorsed Simon.