Corruption, harassment, and criminal investigations are swirling around Speaker Madigan and those associated with him. Three of his closest political confidants’ homes were recently raided by the FBI and he has spent the last year firing his top staff over harassment allegations.
Yet, Speaker Madigan’s grip on power remains strong because local state representatives continue to overlook the constant controversies that surround him and continue to back him. These state representatives claim to be independent, yet, all it takes is a little fact checking to see the truth.
A warrant was executed at the home of Kevin Quinn, one of Madigan’s 13th Ward political operatives and brother of Chicago alderman, Marty Quinn. Madigan had to fire Kevin Quinn after Alaina Hampton, a Democratic campaign staffer, claimed Quinn sexually harassed her and is now suing Speaker Madigan for not doing anything about it and for retaliating against her.
In a recent investigation by the Chicago Tribune, they found that Quinn has been receiving checks from current and former Comed lobbyists. One of those checks came from the joint account of Mike McClain and his wife. McClain’s home was also one of the three that was raided by the FBI.
McClain served as assistant minority leader under Madigan from 1981 to 1983 and was most recently a lobbyist for ComEd, one of the most powerful special interest groups in Springfield. This is what McClain had to say about Madigan back in 2016, “I feel like I’m very close to [Madigan] and I love him like a brother, and I’m loyal to him.”
The well-connected McClain, now under FBI investigation, made campaign contributions to some suburban and downstate Democrats in the past election, including, State Rep. Joyce Mason, Karina Villa, Terra Costa-Howard, Monica Bristow, and Katie Stuart.
As candidates, these legislators benefited greatly from campaign contributions from Mike Madigan. Rep. Mason received $740,249, Rep. Villa $1,441,820, Rep. Costa-Howard $1,546,160, Rep. Bristow $1,368,859, and Rep. Stuart $347,015. In turn, they all voted for Speaker Madigan and have stayed relatively silent in light of the ongoing scandals.
Instead of allowing them to remain silent and parrot their claims of independence, it is up to you to ask them the hard questions:
At what point did Rep. Bristow know about the FBI investigation?
At what point did Rep. Villa know that Kevin Quinn was being paid off the books?
Did Rep. Stuart know before she took the money from McClain?
Did Rep. Mason know before she took all that money from Madigan?
Will Rep. Costa-Howard take money from Madigan again in 2020?
Will they return they money? Do they care?
Despite the #metoo backlash last election cycle and now with Madigan’s closest allies being investigated by the FBI, all these legislators have remained silent on the investigations, collected campaign cash, and voted for Madigan as speaker.
Instead of being independent legislators like they claim while on the campaign trail, they continue to stand with Madigan and the Chicago machine’s corrupt ways.
Next November, voters must ask their representatives: Do you stand with Madigan and his corrupt cronies or will you stand up to the Springfield corruption and represent the families in your district? And regardless of how they answer, look at their actions and follow the money.