Video: Chicago Dem caught offering prizes for voting on Facebook

leslie-hairstonLast week, MyFoxChicago reported that a local alderman, Democrat Leslie Hairston, may be in hot water after she offered prizes on her Facebook page for those who vote.

“Vote–you’re eligible no matter the candidate, then put their name and contact information on the back of their voter receipt…. And stop by the Fifth Ward office and drop it off,” the Facebook post read.

So what did she offer those who vote?  According to Fox, they could receive “gift cards to establishments like Walgreens, Starbucks and Potbelly’s, but also including $100 Visa gift cards, in return for their vote.”

Election attorney Burt Odelson said the post “violates Article 29-1 of the election code.”

“That section is very specific that you cannot offer anything, money or anything of value, to entice someone to vote one way or another, or just to vote,” he added.

Here’s a bit of the conversation between Fox and Hairston:

FOX 32’s Dane Placko: “You offered gift cards for people who came in with a voting slip.”

Ald. Leslie Hairston: “Well, that is not exactly it.”

Dane: “How am I wrong?”

Hairston: “The post is now gone.”

Dane: “Well the post was up for some time.”

Hairston: “And now it’s gone.”

Indeed, the raffle post had disappeared from Hairston’s Facebook page by early afternoon.

Dane: “Do you understand why people became alarmed about this?”

Hairston: “When we found out we took it down.”

Here’s the video report, courtesy of Fox 32:
FOX 32 News Chicago
Hairston later issued a statement claiming her intentions were good…  Right…


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Joe Newby

A 10-year veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, Joe ran for a city council position in Riverside, Calif., in 1991 and managed successful campaigns for the Idaho state legislature. Co-author of "Banned: How Facebook enables militant Islamic jihad," Joe wrote for Examiner.com from 2010 until it closed in 2016 and his work has been published at Newsbusters, Spokane Faith and Values and other sites. He now runs the Conservative Firing Line.

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