City Council Candidates Endorsed By Watchdog

Watchdog has endorsed city council candidates four times; 2011, 2015, 2019 and now 2023. Most have won their election, most have been good selections, and some not so good. I’m convinced that endorsing a candidate does not ensure a victory, but not endorsing a candidate can have a negative effect on that candidate getting elected.

In an at-large campaign, it’s like a stampede where the top four vote-getters get elected. It makes no difference if the candidate gets the most votes or the fourth most votes, the end result is the same. What do they call the candidate with the fourth most votes? They call him or her ‘council member’.

The only difference in campaign materials is some candidates send more than others, and some send no materials or very few. Most mailers frame the candidates as the best thing since sliced bread. Most have pictures of their families; it makes it more difficult not to vote for them.

The best campaign slogan I ever saw was Indiana governor Mitch Daniel’s yard sign in 2004, ” My Man Mitch”. How simple is that! He won the election. It was the first time an incumbent governor lost an election in Indiana since 1892. I’m not saying ‘My Man Mitch’ is what did it, however here it is and I still remember the tag line.

Choosing candidates to endorse this time has been more difficult than in past elections; more vitriol and animosity. So rather than making my endorsement sound like just like another campaign flyer, I’m going to keep it simple (Occam’s Razor); here we go:

Patrick Kelly – with a name like that he could easily be elected Mayor of Chicago.

Allison Longenbaugh – she got edged out in the last election. You’ve got to like her perseverance, and she is the candidate with the best hair style.

Nate Wilson – finally somebody with common sense and a sense of humor.

Nag Jaiswal – only person ever elected to the city council with the first name of ‘Nag’.

To the best of our knowledge, none of the above have warrants out for their arrest.

Show 26 Comments


  1. Kurt D

    Check out Benny White’s hone in Naperville. He lives in a million dollar home (which is fine with me) but check out his property tax bill at DuPage County assessors website. Guess what he and his wife Kim pay annually in property taxes? ZILCH, NADA, ZERO! He sat on district 204 school board and now wants to be Mayor of Naperville and he pays nothing! Does he look disabled to you? He doesn’t to me. If you know the VA you know how easy it is to make up some nebulous health issue you can’t prove or disprove and bingo you’re 70% disabled! $20,000 a year in property taxes wiped out! Picked up by the rest of you chumps in 204 and Naperville! Sweet gig, if you can get it. Don’t vote for Benny, he’s not qualified and hell he doesn’t pay a DIME in property taxes in the city he wants to run. Sickening.

  2. Mark Urda

    So in your opinion, a man who honorably served his country for 20 years, elected to school board, twice elected to city council, endorsed by police, firefighters and the Daily Herald is unqualified in your opinion. I strongly disagree and recommend when you consider his qualifications, Benny White for Mayor is the right choice.

    • Kurt D

      Mark Urda, look at the rating Ms. Duckworth got for right arm. Duckworth would be very upset if she saw two able-bodied vets that CLEARLY can earn a living scamming the VA system like White and Holzhauer are doing. It’s damn shameful and they should be embarrassed.

  3. Emily Addison

    Benny white lives in Will County you dope.

  4. Mark Urda

    In your March 4 post you correctly pointed out that Tiffany Stephens did not participate in the League of Women’s Voters forum thereby denying the voters of Naperville the opportunity to judge her qualifications to be mayor. I find ironic on the other hand you endorse two council candidates (Wilson and Jaiswal) who also did not participate. Better choices are Ashfaq Syed and Jodi Trendler both who did participate and have long records of community involvement and service. Completely agree with choices of Kelly and Logenbaugh both of which are outstanding candidates.

  5. Ed C

    Too much vitriol coming from the mcbroom campaign. He had a recent mailer trying to scare voters of naperville that if he’s not elected naperville will radically change. These are the same tactics he used when he led Awake illinois.

  6. Anonymous

    I’m a vet in Naperville and it’s common knowledge that vets can game the system. Benny White used to have all kinds of pictures on his Facebook page of him running and riding his bike around Naperville with Mayor Chirico. He’s apparently scrubbed all of this pictures from his Facebook page.

    It’s harmful to vets that truly deserve this exemption when someone like White and local attorney Barry Greenberg (a former Republican Naperville Township Clerk) shift their tax burden onto the rest of us.

  7. Taylor James

    Veterans qualify for this if they are 70% to 100% disabled and they need to prove it. Good for him to be able to take advantage of this since he served so many years in the military. He will continue with that leadership when he is mayor for all of naperville.

  8. Taylor James

    Veterans qualify for this if they are 70% to 100% disabled and they need to prove it. Good for him to be able to take advantage of this since he served so many years in the military. Benny is a great man, thank you for your service Mr. white

  9. Fred Billings

    Turns out Ian Holzhauer is running the same scam as Benny White. He pays zero in property taxes too. The guy was a JAG I highly doubt he ever saw combat. These guys are all scamming the system meant for truly disabled vets. It should disgust every veteran.

  10. Jim Haselhorst

    Sometimes the disability is not visible in a veteran. And I am not talking just emotional or mental disability but also physical.

    I worked with a guy for almost 10 years that had no problems keeping up with me (10 years his junior) and had no signs of physical injury other then scares, but he was classified 70% disabled by the VA because of all the grenade shrapnel he got in Vietnam that he was still carrying around.

    Just because you can not discern the nature of the disability does not mean it does not exist.

    And it is local governments that decide what kind of property tax exception they will provided property owners, not the VA.

    If they are going to give churches, which are increasingly involved in politics (telling parishioners how to vote, having politicians give political “homilies/sermons”) during what is suppose to be church worship of God, then I have no problems with Veteran property tax breaks.

    ***Disclaimer – Yes I am a Veteran, but not a disabled vet***

  11. Jim Haselhorst

    As I stated in my posts (further down on this feed) physical disabilities are not all ways easily discerned. Unless you actually have some sort of document or data from the VA which indicates in someway these two are involved in some kind of “scam” then I, as a Vet, see nothing shameful in what they are doing.

    What I do see as shameful and a scam is people using a candidate’s VA certified disability to try an dishonor the service these candidates provided this nation. And use this VA certified disablity as a divisive political ploy to attack their credibility and dishonor their past service to this community.

  12. Anonymous

    Well now I found out that not only do Benny and Ian not pay any property taxes, Ian, as pointed out in the Dupage Policy Journal also rakes in $2,200 per month from the VA (while running marathons), Benny rakes in $5,500 per month tax free. All the while posting pictures on his Facebook page of him riding bikes with Mayor Chirico all around town and running too. Wow! What a deal!

  13. Jim Haselhorst

    As a Vet I have no problem with any fellow Veteran getting the Veteran Benefits they earned. I myself “rake” in Vet retirement benefits and I do not feel like receiving this earned benefit is any more in appropriate then someone who is receiving Social Security Benefits that they have earned (including SS disability benefits in place of regular SS Benefits).

    I would remind everyone that they too could have these same Veteran Benefits if they had also choose to put their lives on the line for their country and service in the military or even make it 20+ year career of this service as Benny White did.

    This really sound more and more like a lame attempt to turn receiving Veteran Benefits into a divisive political issue for the solely purpose of pushing a self serving political agenda. How desperate do you have to be when the only thing you can find to attack a candidate on is their serving their country and receiving Veteran Benefits?

    • Jim Haselhorst

      As the WSJ article you linked to makes clear, the VA is aware that benefits abuse is occurring and has a process in place to investigate claims of abuse. If these claims are valid the article also makes it clear abusers are being prosecuted.

      To basically argue the logic that “VA benefits abuse is happening”, Benny and Ian receive VA benefits therefore they are guilt of abuse, implies everyone getting VA benefits is abusing these benefits. This is clearly a majorly flawed and irrational line of thinking.

      The VA has a system in place to accept complaints of VA Benefits abuse and a process to investigate these claims. Clearly anyone who’s true interest is in stopping such abuse would file such a complaint with the VA so it would be investigated and the abuse ended. Have you filed such a complaint?

      The only reason to raise this issue during an election cycle while not filing a complaint with the VA and to use a false narrative that implies everyone getting benefit is abusing the system would be to push a self serving political agenda. Again it is sad to see Naperville city elections devolve to the level that a narrative trying to turn getting VA benefits into a divisive political issue and dishonors both veterans and military service is actually getting any traction in this election.

  14. Kurt D

    Benny White released a press release decrying dirty politics in his Naperville run for mayor but he has been strangely silent on Therese Sullivans dirty tactics. Sullivan was called out for her actions by Mayor Chirico during the last Council meeting, but Benny White was very quiet and didn’t say a word about it during the council meeting. Please note the hypocrisy.

    Also, Diana Hawkin’s gave $5,000 to Benny White’s campaign then turned around started sending intimidating messages to local business owners that have relationships with Josh McBroom. Again, Benny White is strangely silent when it benefits him. Does Naperville really want to elect a Mayor whose supporters threaten local business owners?

    • Jim Haselhorst

      There is context for this confrontation between Sullivan and Chirico you conveniently forgot to provide.

      Sullivan was a very loud and vocal supporter of the ordinance to require council members who received $750 or more in donations from a person or organization to disclose this in the meeting before voting on an issue related to them. She stated it would increase government transparency and implied that only council member that were against increased transparency and had something to hide would vote against this ordinance.

      Chirico voted against this ordinance arguing current statues and ordinances provided adequate transparency on this issue and that enacting this ordinance would actually have the opposite effect. Since it would encourage candidates to behave in a way that made the sources of their campaign donations less transparent, thus simply transferring any claimed transparency problem from city council chambers to election campaign fiance.

      Sullivan’s behavior in this case clearly spotlights the very problem Chirico argued would happen and undermines her own argument the ordinance would increase transparency.

      So clearly White had no “dog in this fight” and therefore no reason to comment on the matter. Besides which Chirico pretty much said everything that needed saying. Implying White’s silence in someway supports this type of behavior is basically the same as Sullivan’s implications about anyone that voted against this ordinance, which proved to be a false narrative.

      • Kurt D

        And White continues to stay silent about Hawkins disgusting tactics. Conveniently, you ignored that. White is a huge hypocrite

        • Jim Haselhorst

          I ignored this claim because you provided nothing proving this was happening. Wehrli supporters making these claims are hardly an unbiased source. This type of thing happened in the last election were the supporters of one candidate kept claiming Chirico was the source for leaked PPI from military records, which was completely bogus.

  15. Phil D

    Scott Wehrli is backed by safe suburbs and local the GOP. Wehrli tries to claim he’s non partisan, but he has a long history of involvement with very partisan groups. Look at the outsiders working so hard to get Wehrli to win.

    • Kurt d

      And of course Benny White has no history with left wing partisan nut job progressives…………….oh wait.

  16. Jim Haselhorst

    White has posted a response on the Internet to claims about his VA property tax exemption. This response is detailed and explains he does pay property taxes, that only part of this these taxes are exempt.

    Also it needs to be made clear the Dupage Policy Journal is not a legitimate news source. It was created by a conservative group a few elections ago to push conservative talking points. The information in many of its “article” have been proven inaccurate in the past.

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