Illinois Gov. Fires Staffer After Racist, Homophobic Tweets Surface

Former aide to Gov. Bruce Rauner, Ben Tracy, frequently used homophobic slurs and racist insults on Twitter, which led to his abrupt termination.

Illinois Gov Bruce Rauner speaks to media during press conference

Republican Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner’s team clearly didn’t do a very thorough background check before hiring a new staffer with a racist and homophobic history.

According to Raw Story, Ben Tracy was fired by the Rauner administration during his very first day on duty after reports surfaced that he had previously shared tweets expressing some very offensive and intolerant views.

He reportedly used the slurs “f*g” and “f***ot” in tweets on more than one occasion, as well as racially-charged insults. “To the Indian people in the library: SHUT THE F*CK UP!” he once posted.

“There is a black dude and white girl on a date in this movie…white girls (sic) mom came along…haha not racist just funny,” he wrote in another.

Tracy's actual tweets are unavailable, but Polticio obtained screenshots that they made public. 

Immediately after learning of Tracy’s reckless behavior on social media, the governor’s office distanced itself from him, declaring that his tweets were “unacceptable.”

“The individual in question is no longer an employee of our Administration,” stated Rauner’s communications director, Laurel Patrick, according to the Chicagoist.

Politico was reportedly the first to break the news of the staffer’s conduct, which prompts the question of how the news outlet was able to gather the information so quickly, yet political staffers somehow missed it.

As Politico notes, Tracy was hired as a personal aide to the governor, which should have been one of the administration’s “most sensitive hirings,” and yet, this disgraceful man slipped through the cracks.

Was Tracy’s past truly overlooked, or did the administration knowingly choose to ignore this disturbing content with hopes that it would never come to light?

Apparently, Rauner’s office has been shaken up recently with back-to-back staff departures — some by resignation and others by termination. Perhaps while in a haste to fill these vacant positions, the office eased up on their vetting process and failed to rigorously review Tracy’s background. 

Let's hope this mistake will serve as a wakeup call for the governor's office employees to remember to do their jobs correctly.  

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