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Singing Politician Sends Birthday Video to Late Wife of GOP Big Shot

Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford's birthday video landed in Pat Brady's inbox Monday morning.

Dan Rutherford sings "Happy Birthday."
Dan Rutherford sings "Happy Birthday."
On Monday, failed GOP gubernatorial candidate and Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford sent one of his singing "Happy Birthday" videos to Julie Brady, the wife of onetime state party chairman Pat Brady.

The late Julie Brady, who passed away in April at the age of 51 in her St. Charles home after battling ovarian cancer for three years.

Rutherford's accompanying email read:

Dear Julie,

A birthday should be as wonderful and unique as the person having it. That is why I make these special wishes just for you. May you have a day filled with everything that makes you happy, the warm support of good friends and memories you will cherish. May life's simple pleasures, large and small, make this birthday one of your finest, one of your best and one of your very happiest! I hope your birthday is the perfect start to a whole year of prosperity.

The Chicago Sun-Times describes Pat Brady's response as "terse."

Rutherford sings and chuckles in the video. At times, his videos have been described as corny and not appreciated by others in the GOP. Certainly, Brady didn't appreciate this one.

"It's a lesson for everyone in this business — this is what you want to avoid. This was the last thing (Pat Brady) wanted to start his day with," Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs), who was a pallbearer in Julie Brady's funeral, told the Sun-Times.

Rutherford has had a tough time in the political arena lately, with his failed bid for governor, publicity over missteps with aides in his office and a lawsuit, recently dismissed, that depicted Rutherford running his organization like a "mob boss."

A Rutherford spokeswoman said he apologized.

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Karen M. Bushy July 15, 2014 at 01:57 AM
Ok, so someone didn't purge through a list as thoroughly as they should have. I hardly think that is showing much grace on the part of Mr. Brady to get so wound up about it. It was offered as a goodwill gesture. Hardly newsworthy, that's for sure. I think a bit less of Brady for even telling anyone about it. My husband has been dead for over 10 years and I still get mail addressed to him. Should I be angry and pout-faced over it? Hardly. Move on, folks - there are MUCH bigger problems facing Illinois than getting huffy over this one.
TP Karen July 15, 2014 at 09:22 AM
I agree, not very noteworthy. Sadly, this is the kind of news The Patch has resorted to of late. And I use the word "news" very loosely. Ready to Unsubscribe!
Bambi July 16, 2014 at 12:37 PM
I think it was very tacky. If I had just lost my husband 3 months ago, I wouldn't want someone to remind me of his birthday in a public way like that. I would already be aware of it and prefer to grieve and remember him without publicity.
Karen M. Bushy July 16, 2014 at 12:50 PM
"Bambi", Mr. Rutherford does not do it in a "public way". It is an email that comes to your own personal email box if you register your birthday with Mr. Rutherford's website. It was Mr. Brady who chose to make the birthday greeting public, not Mr. Rutherford. If Mr. Brady didn't want it publicized, he could have and should have just deleted it and moved on. Why does his deceased wife still have an email account that he is monitoring? That would be the bigger question in my mind.
Walter White July 16, 2014 at 05:35 PM
Another proud member of the Stupid Party.

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