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A case of mistaken identity in Gonzales’ lawsuit against Madigan?

Wednesday, Sep 13, 2017

* From the federal judge’s ruling today reviving part of the Jason Gonzales lawsuit against House Speaker Michael Madigan

Gonzales alleges that Madigan engaged in a campaign to place sham candidates on the ballot… Joe Barbosa and Grasiela Rodriguez. Gonzales alleges that Barbosa and Rodriguez never intended to run but agreed to let Madigan use their names, the purpose being to split the Hispanic vote so that Gonzales would lose the primary in the predominantly Hispanic district.

Gonzales further alleges that Madigan’s official positions give him influence “over doling out jobs, favors and services.” Significantly, he alleges that Madigan used this influence to get Rodriguez a job in the office of the Illinois Attorney General in exchange for her service as a sham candidate—an allegation the Court overlooked in dismissing the amended complaint. [Emphasis added.]

Attorney General Lisa Madigan does employ a woman named Rodriguez, but her first name is Gricelda, not Grasiela.

I’m told by the AG’s office that Gricelda is “not involved in politics.” She was hired as a temp worker for secretarial work and then hired full time because she did so well.

They also flatly deny that anyone at any time ever tried to get the Grasiela of lawsuit infamy a job at the AG’s office. “We had no clue any of this was going on,” until they started getting calls about this part of the lawsuit, I was told today.

And, get this, according to the attorney general’s folks, Gricelda used to work for none other than Tony Peraica, who is Gonzales’ attorney.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - @MisterJayEm - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 4:46 pm:

    “Gricelda used to work for none other than Tony Peraica, who is Gonzales’ attorney.”

    And Chicago retains its title as ‘The Nation’s Largest Small Town’.

    – MrJM

  2. - The Captain - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 4:46 pm:

    I would like to trademark this phrase: LOL-nly in Illinois

  3. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 4:54 pm:

    That Tony Peraica gets around.

    Employees, clients, court rooms, yard signs, mug shots…

  4. - Chicago Cynic - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 5:07 pm:

    Nailed it JayEm - you took the words right out of my mouth.

  5. - Whatever - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 5:22 pm:

    So Peraica is part of the Madigan machine, too? Poor Gonzales is surrounded.

  6. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 6:26 pm:

    I find all this hard to believe.

    How many people are named “Rodriguez?”

  7. - hisgirlfriday - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 7:21 pm:

    Sham candidates are gross.

    But as a matter of law, this lawsuit seems pretty frivolous and I don’t get why the federal judge is letting Gonzales get another bite at the apple and take up more taxpayer resources and court time on a case with such little merit.

    Even if Madigan did run a sham candidate against Gonzales, wouldn’t not letting him do so violate Madigan’s 1st Amendment rights to engage in campaign activity? Gonzales is not the only one with 1st Amendment rights here. I can’t help but notice all the cases the judge is citing are super old and opinions that came down prior to the Supreme Court’s recent kick of shredding of federal and state government regulations on campaign activity and elections.

    And that bit in the lawsuit acting under color of law is his management and influence over campaign fundraising accounts, so if money is speech under SCOTUS, wouldn’t those accounts just be Madigan’s megaphone?

    Also, if this Gricelda is who they were thinking of when they added this stuff to the Complaint, I wonder if Peraica thought he was suing his former employee in all this? That would be a pretty messed up conflict of interest if he really was representing someone else in a lawsuit against his former employee.

  8. - AC - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 7:34 pm:

    If this story somehow included Willie Wilson and Willie Nelson, it would be perfect.

  9. - Mr B. - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 9:20 pm:

    Think Madigan did it. But he didn’t have to. And it is impossible to prove. What was Gonzales thinking? Single handily collapsing the Democratic leadership? May I put “leadership” in quotes. Gonzales lost by a huge margin, which leads me to believe Madigan is very safe in his district. May he continue to dominate Illinois for the next 15 years.

  10. - Ghost - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 9:31 pm:


    That little slip can be used to really embarrass them since they have to prove that fact.

    Madigan lawyers will have some fun with that

  11. - SeanThornton - Wednesday, Sep 13, 17 @ 10:00 pm:

    This case has little to do with that election but more with the upcoming election. Keeps Madigan negatives (using Hispanics) out there as Rauner continues to mistakenly believe that Hispanics and African-American voters in Chicago/Cook County will move away from the Democratic party. Because Madigan theme continues.

  12. - Anonymous - Thursday, Sep 14, 17 @ 5:52 am:

    Grasiela, Gricelda…

    The Federal Judge needs a new pair of glasses.

  13. - The_Equalizer - Thursday, Sep 14, 17 @ 7:10 am:

    You say tomaytoooo, I say tomahtoooo
    you say Gricelda, I say Grasiela….

  14. - Ward Heeler - Thursday, Sep 14, 17 @ 9:04 am:

    “I can’t help but notice all the cases the judge is citing are super old. . .”

    So is Marbury v. Madison.

    In 2015, the Illinois Supreme Court relied upon a case decided in 1912 to uphold the validity of Election Code provisions concerning petition signature requirements for candidates.

    It is tacky for the Speaker to resort to using sham candidates with all of the resources at his disposal.

  15. - Metra1 - Friday, Sep 15, 17 @ 9:34 am:

    It is all a misunderstanding. Just like Metra, U of I admissions, ghost payroll and property tax appeals. All i’s are dotted and t’s crossed so it must be legal. Ethical has no place in any of this. Everything covered by one sided legislation to make sure it is legal. All is good. Keep moving forward with what is best for cronyism.

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