CHICAGO

Rahm Emanuel Denies Ties To Secretly Funded Political Group (VIDEO)

03/03/2011 06:32 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

It was no secret that Rahm Emanuel had plenty of money to put toward his bid for mayor. Even after spending a reported $11 million on the campaign itself, Emanuel had about $2.1 million leftover.
After the election, many wondered if Emanuel would invest some of that money in the aldermanic races that went to a runoff.

"My hand is extended in openness to anybody and anyone, regardless of where they were in this last election, who wants to work on reform," Emanuel told the Chicago Tribune in a post-election interview. "You have an open hand from the mayor and I'll go the extra distance to make that work."

On Thursday, however, Emanuel said that if he does get involved in any of the 14 aldermanic races that went to a runoff, he'll be open about it.

"I will be transparent," Emanuel said Thursday. The comments were in response to another Chicago Tribune article that linked the mayor-elect to a secretly funded political group that has reportedly donated more than $445,000 to aldermanic candidates.

The group, For A Better Chicago, is working to get "a pro-business, pro-Emanuel council elected," the Tribune reports. The leader of the group, however, denies coordinating with Emanuel's campaign.

When asked about his connection to the group by reporters Thursday, Emanuel said he didn't write the Tribune's headline ("Emanuel Allies' Secret Fund"), and that any efforts to get an alderman elected would be directed by his "political entity...not some third party."

The Illinois Campaign for Political Reform filed a complaint against For A Better Chicago with the Illinois Board of Elections last month, saying they violated disclosure requirements of state election law.

Emanuel told reporters Thursday that he thinks the group should disclose their funders as well.

WATCH his comments on the matter here, courtesy of NBC Chicago:

View more videos at: http://www.nbcchicago.com.

For A Better Chicago

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