* From what I gather, the feds have asked the committee to “defer” to them and to let them take the lead on the investigation into the governor’s anti-violence initiative.
There was a Legislative Audit Commission conference call this afternoon and I’m hearing another one is scheduled. Nothing has yet been decided.
The feds, from what I’m told, haven’t exactly come out and flatly told the Commission to back off. But the signal was certainly clear enough that members are reportedly getting the message…
The Justice Department has asked state lawmakers to back away from calling several former members of Gov. Pat Quinn’s inner circle to testify on the governor’s Neighborhood Recovery Initiative to avoid possibly interfering with an ongoing federal probe of the scandal-tainted anti-violence program, sources said.
“There is a signal coming from the Department of Justice that the Legislature not proceed with calling witnesses being subpoenaed due to the current criminal investigation,” a source familiar with the feds’ request told the Chicago Sun-Times Wednesday.
The verbal request came from the Justice Department’s Office of Legislative Affairs and not directly from the federal prosecutor’s office in Springfield, which would neither confirm nor deny the existence of the request.
What makes the request somewhat unusual is that when ongoing state inquiries have skirted too closely to parallel probes by federal investigators, the requests to stand down historically have come from federal prosecutors themselves – not the Justice Department’s lobbying arm.