Illinois politics are well-known for high levels of corruption, a point proven by Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan (D) being recently caught in a massive corruption scandal.
The growing bribery scandal involving utility company ComEd has caused Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker to call for Madigan’s resignation, though Madigan maintains that he is not involved in any corruption.
The Blaze reported on Sunday:
Federal prosecutors revealed last week that ComEd had agreed to pay $200 million to resolve the criminal case against them, in which they are accused of having arranged for jobs and vendor contracts for a person identified in charging documents as “public official A” in order to help get rate increases more quickly approved by the Illinois legislature.
In the plea documents, ComEd admitted to having effectively bribed this official in exchange for more favorable treatment from the Illinois legislature.
Although Madigan is not mentioned by name in the charging documents, the evidence is overwhelming that Madigan is the target of the investigation, which prosecutors described as “vibrant” and ongoing.
Federal investigators have issued subpoenas for AT&T, Walgreens, Rush University Medical Center, and “a host of political operatives and lobbyists,” which indicates that the corruption investigation may be much broader and implicate additional powerful figures beyond Madigan.
A spokesperson for Madigan admitted that his office had received subpoenas from federal investigators but that “he will cooperate and respond to those requests for documents, which he believes will clearly demonstrate that he has done nothing criminal or improper.”
According to local news outlet WBEZ, prosecutors are also seeking records concerning “members of Madigan’s political organization, the speaker’s law firm, four former state lawmakers, four former or current Chicago alderman and a Chinatown land deal that was a cornerstone of a federal corruption probe that brought down former Ald. Danny Solis.”
Only time will tell how deep the corruption goes in Illinois government. Pritzker admonished that “the speaker has a lot that he needs to answer for to authorities, to investigators, and most importantly, to the people of Illinois.”