Tuesday, Darin LaHood, not only won reelection– impressively: 72.2-27.8%– he won every single one of the 19 counties in the downstate Illinois district– with massive margins in the population centers like McLean, Peoria, Sangamon, Tazwell and Adams. But no one would even notice the inconsequential backbencher except for one factor: he replaced former “Future Superstar” Aaron Schock when Schock was forced to resign in March of 2015 over a series of criminal activities connected to his penchant for the… flamboyant.
Recently young Aaron paid a fine and I was pissed off that he was getting away with all his crap for some cash provided by wealth Republican donors. But early yesterday People, of all sources, reported that Schock's now incredibly wealthy attorney, thanks to this never-ending case, announced that Schock was about to be indicted. I guess they figured it would be useful to get ahead of the story and try to spin it as something about Downton Abbey and Katy Perry instead of theft of government funds, fraud, making false statements and filing false tax returns.
By yesterday afternoon the Chicago Tribune was already reporting that the axe had fallen and that Schock has been indicted on 24 criminal counts by a federal grand jury, that he;ll be appearing court in a few days and that “several of the counts against him have maximum penalties of 20 years in prison.”
Schock quit Congress on March 31, 2015. The same day, he was served with a subpoena outside his Peoria home by three federal agents. The subpoena told him to appear before the grand jury and turn over large number of records from the previous five years. He never testified before the panel.
The scandal that led to Schock’s downfall began with what might have been a tempest in a teapot: He had his congressional office redecorated with a “Downton Abbey” motif.
An Illinois designer was paid for the work, but one of Schock’s aides tried to cover up the payment. Soon the press began detailing the lawmaker’s far-flung trips, heavy reliance on private aircraft and habit of overbilling the government for auto mileage.
Schock has been hoping to start paying down some of his legal bills by getting a job as Trump's new White House interior decorator, but that seems ruined now, as the President-Elect feels he has enough criminals facing long prison terms in his inner circle already. Schock may be having severe money problems but a major gay porn house, TitanMen, has offered him a million dollars to star in a series of adult films. His legal bills– to keep him out of prison– already exceed that.
Schock's p.r. agent at McGuire Woods Consulting said he will read this script they've prepared for him to the media: “Neither I nor anyone else intentionally did anything wrong. As I have said before, we might have made errors among a few of the thousands and thousands of financial transactions we conducted, but they were honest mistakes– no one intended to break any law. We worked tirelessly in my office to serve the constituents of this district and I will always be proud of that fact… I am eager to finally defend my name and reputation in a court of law and move on with my life.”
When young Aaron was a high-stylin' Republican congressman he was having an affair with British Olympic driver Tom Daley, who has now reportedly dumped him. He still insists he just hasn't found the right gal yet and denies he's gay, a question usually asked when he's leaving gay bars or lurking around gat neighborhoods. Here's Daley from when he and Schock were an item.
“When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.” — Sinclair Lewis