* Illinois Review…
“It’s all about clean hands,” a group of Republican lawmakers is complaining Monday, and the Illinois Democrats that filed a lawsuit last week to get their paychecks from State Comptroller Leslie Munger simply “don’t have them.”
The lawsuit six state representatives filed last week sues on behalf of all the state lawmakers affected by Munger’s policy of “No budget, No pay,” but those six are a part of the reason why no state budget has been passed, and why they’re not getting their paychecks.
“In order to be worthy to file the lawsuit, those filing must be worthy of asking, and they have not complied with the statutory requirements” to pass a balanced state budget Illinois Review was told by a source that wanted to remain anonymous. […]
“The House members must comply with their required duties or they have no standing to file a complaint about not getting their paychecks - in other words, they don’t have ‘clean hands’ required,” and that position could soon be filed in court.
* Here’s a bit more from an e-mail that’s being circulated among some lawmakers that I obtained this afternoon…
As of June 30, 2014, the General Assembly members get paid under a continuing appropriation bill covering their salaries.
Unfortunately for the continuing appropriation bill, the cumulative effect of the current expenditures exceeding funds estimated to be available by the General Assembly, such an appropriation bill is unconstitutional under Article VIII, Section 2(b) of the Illinois Constitution which says:
“The General Assembly by law shall make appropriations for all expenditures of public funds by the State. Appropriations for a fiscal year shall not exceed funds estimated by the General Assembly to be available during that year. “
The doctrine of unclean hands is an affirmative defense to a Mandamus of the type requested by the 6 Illinois House members. First, look at the standard definition of Unclean Hands:
“For instance, if a plaintiff asks the court for an injunction to stop the defendant from dumping his trash in the plaintiff’s backyard, the defendant may argue that the plaintiff has also dumped her trash in the defendant’s backyard, and so the plaintiff has “unclean hands” and should not receive the injunction she wants. The doctrine is based on an idea of basic fairness: One person should not be able to stop another person from doing a bad action if the first person is also doing it.”
Second, consider the fact that it is the very acts of the 6 named Plaintiffs individually and collectively as a body that has refused to send to the governor’s desk a Constitutional appropriations bill where all expenditures do not exceed the funds estimated to be available. The doctrine Unclean Hands of Plaintiffs should prevent the Cook County Court from issuing a Mandamus order.
The only step missing in this lawsuit is to have one or more members of the General Assembly file an interpleader to join the lawsuit as a matter of right and to oppose the relief requested because of the unclean hands of the plaintiffs. Do not let the crooks who created this problem and who can collectively solve the problem by the own required duty avoid the effects of their own Constitutional malfeasance.
*** UPDATE 1 *** Press release…
Governor Bruce Rauner today called on Democratic legislators to put taxpayers and critical human services ahead of their own personal gain by withdrawing their lawsuit seeking paychecks and join him in pushing for a balanced budget with reforms.
“This lawsuit is a stunning reminder of why we need change in Springfield,” Governor Rauner said. “Only in Illinois would politicians who have failed to pass a balanced budget and reforms put their own personal gain before taxpayers and critical human services.”
As promised, Governor Rauner does not accept a paycheck or benefits.
“Democrats should end this frivolous lawsuit, put taxpayers and human services ahead of themselves, and pressure their leadership to work with Republicans on passing a balanced budget with reforms that create jobs, lower property taxes and improve our schools,” Rauner added.
Governor Rauner and Republican leaders are pushing for a balanced budget with reforms that will create jobs, lower property taxes and improve our schools.
Speaker Mike Madigan prefers a stopgap spending measure. While the speaker prefers calling it a budget, it is not. What the speaker advocates for is simply a short term, incomplete stopgap spending measure. Last week, the governor made clear that he will only support a stopgap measure if the Democrats pass term limits and a permanent property tax freeze.
He also talked about it at his press conference today…
*** UPDATE 2 *** From a plaintiff in that lawsuit…