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Illinois Politics

Judge Dismisses Ex-IL GOP Congressional Candidate Lawsuit Claiming Chicago Board of Trade Locks Fire Exit Doors

(Chicago) – A former Illinois Republican congressional candidate on Monday filed a lawsuit in federal district court claiming the Chicago Board of Trade has locked fire exit doors. (Photo: April 12, 2012)

(Chicago, IL) – April 13, 2012. Special Report: On Friday the 13th a federal judge decapitated a lawsuit filed by a former Illinois GOP congressional candidate against the CME Group seeking the court to order the Chicago Fire Department to be stationed at every Chicago Board of Trade emergency exit due to the alleged existence of “locked doors” where fire exit signs are posted.

Lake Forest resident Paul Hamann, who had unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for the Illinois 10th congressional district in 2010, filed an emergency motion in federal district court in Chicago on Monday, April 9, asking for both fire department officials to be assigned 24-hours per day, 7-days per week at the Board of Trade and for himself to have similar privileged access to the building for same purpose.

In an interview on Wednesday evening, Hamann, 52, who lives with his mother, alleged that the Board of Trade has had “illuminated fire exit” signs posted above locked doors for past 15 years. He said that he once held a seat a on the Mid-America Exchange 15 years ago and that is when he says he noticed the alleged problem.

Hamann regularly continues to access the building to visit his brokerage house, and he insists the “locked fire exit door” problem persists, he says.

A spokesperson for the CME Group, Laurie Bischel, dismissed Hamann’s claim.

“CME Group does not comment on litigation, but I can tell you that we comply with the fire code in all of our offices,” Bischel said.

When asked why brought the suit, Hamann, who is retired, said neither the CME Group administration nor the Chicago Fire Department have been responsive to his petitions.

“More than three-years ago the Chicago Fire Department indicated that they were no longer interested in the pursuing the issue,” said Hamann.

This complaint is not Hamann’s only recent legal scrape with the CME Group. Hamann has also filed three suits relating to the CME Group in New York federal district court over Ex-New Jersey Governor John Corzine’s MF Global collapse.

Hamman, who was gathering petition signatures for a second run for the 10th congressional seat, claims that he lost $500,000 in the financial giant’s meltdown, and he portions out blame to CME for their role in the case.

The New York federal judge has thrown out each of Hamann’s motions, according to the ex-candidate, who has acted as his own attorney in his legal maneuverings, though he acknowledges that he is not an attorney and has relied on his own legal opinion in these cases.

Nevertheless, Hamann, who won 1,078 votes or 1% of the total and raised $9 for the 2010 campaign, remains undaunted. He intends to run for the 10th C.D. seat again in 2014.


“I’m retired. I have all the time in the world,” Hamann said.

Send comments to David Ormsby at [email protected].

About David Ormsby

David, a public relations consultant and blogger at The Huffington Post, is an ex-Press Secretary of the Illinois Democratic Party.


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