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Controversial Rod Blagojevich ad cleared to ride CTA buses

This FM News 101.1 ad will appear CTA buses.

This FM News 101.1 ad will appear on CTA buses.

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Updated: June 11, 2012 10:22AM

An ad starring Rod Blagojevich behind bars will soon be on CTA buses even after the transit agency rejected it for apparently making criminal acts seem like entertainment.

The FM News 101.1 billboard features the imprisoned governor with bars across his face and the words “He’s not listening.”

But when the station applied to have the ads placed on CTA buses, the agency’s legal department rejected it, saying it violated advertising guidelines that say you can’t run ads that present criminal acts as being amusing or entertaining, John Gehron, Chairman of the Merlin Media Advisory Board said.

After the Sun-Times inquired about the ads on Wednesday, CTA President Forrest Claypool overruled the rejection and even ordered his staff to be “reinstructed on the proper interpretation of the ad guidelines.”

“In this instance, it was obvious that the policy was misconstrued by staff when the ads were reviewed,” CTA spokesman Brian Steele said.

The radio station says the ads are meant to grab attention by implying Blagojevich might not have gone to prison if he had listened to the news and paid attention to other corruption convictions. Tina Sfondeles

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