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HomeIllinois News"Eyes Right Open" founder backs Trump, facilitates "millions" in federal grants

“Eyes Right Open” founder backs Trump, facilitates “millions” in federal grants



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Victor Santana (second from left). Steve Balich (third from left) at a Springfield Tea Party event 

CHICAGO – Victor Santana says he's working to re-elect President Trump in Illinois. He tells Illinois Review the work is redemptive and part of his penance for bad things he's done in the past.

While he avoids specificity about the "bad things" of his past, those familiar with Cook County Democrat politics may remember Mr. Santana as the long-time associate of former Cook County Assessor and Cook County Democrat Party Chairman Joe Berrios, and politically-adept collaborator of former State Rep. Paul Froehlich – both once-powerful Chicago area Democrats.

Neither Berrios or Froehlich now hold office. Berrios was ousted by the current Cook County Assessor Fritz Kaegi in 2018, and Paul Froehlich and his wife Marilyn were last reported to be living out of the state and country, in Panama.

Santana now claims he's conservative and evangelizes for his new organization "Eyes Right Open." At various gatherings around the state he's testified about his reformation and preached the gospel of his new group – a somewhat mysterious 501c4 organization that is registered in Ohio – rather than Illinois.

And while Mr. Santana reports the group participated in, or hosted, over 90 pro-Trump events the night Trump announced his re-election bid, financial records for "Eyes Right Open" are not readily available, and it is difficult to get anyone associated with the organization to go on record about its funding or expenditures.

The group does have a website and a Facebook page, and Will County Board Member Steve Balich and Will County GOP Chairman George Pearson both confirmed they're working with Santana, although they're reticent to discuss the exact nature of their dealings with "Eyes Right Open" or Santana.

Victor Santana also has a business listed with the Illinois Secretary of State's office: GLC HUB CLUB, LLC

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According to a recent missive (see below), Santana's business is reported to be "procuring contracts for America," as there are "millions" of dollars in contracts still available for members of Santana's Hub Club – indeed, it's a "SPENDAPALOOZA" – (Trademark noted).

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When Mr. Santana's associates were asked about the purpose and marketing of the company, they responded: "What's the big deal? … Taxpayers should be happy their money is going to good people that want to re-elect Trump, right?"

Some conservatives are asking a similar question: "What's the deal? … What's the deal with Victor Santana, Eyes Right Open, and The Hub Club?"

And how and why is all this connected to the Trump re-election campaign in the state of Illinois?


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