This level of conflict of interest is massively unsurprising.
This is horrifying. The worst of Chicago politics migrated south to St. Louis.
Extremely. While we think of Chicago and New York as the most corrupt, we tend to forget our own local politics. This problem is wide spread in every city/county/state.
There is no way to escape it until we all become aware of this problem. And then when we are aware, we have to organize and attack the problem by its roots.