* This is how the Alaina Hampton story could escalate from a seriously damaging bombshell to a nuclear explosion for Speaker Madigan…
Hampton also said one other thing: She’s personally aware of other Madigan staffers with harassment complaints.
The existence of other harassment complaints isn’t the problem if they were dealt with fairly and honestly. The problem will be if any other people like Hampton come forward with credible stories of how their complaints were ignored.
* Mark Brown explains…
Rather than facing down another Republican governor or a Democratic insurgent, [Speaker Madigan] now finds himself in danger of swimming against a political movement more powerful than himself.
If more women in Madigan’s wide domain come forward with claims of mishandled sexual harassment claims — and Hampton asserted she knows of female workers in Springfield with similar stories of complaints swept under the rug— then this has a chance of snowballing. […]
If it stays confined to this one case, then Madigan may be able to ride it out, which obviously will be his instinct — the same instinct that has made him the nation’s longest-serving legislative leader.
But it will be hard to overcome the impression created here that while Madigan’s political organization has created opportunities for women in politics it was ultimately more committed to protecting the old boys’ network at its core.
* Woman Who Accused Ex-Madigan Aide of Sexual Harassment Disputes Speaker’s Account of Investigation: She accused the speaker and his associates of attempting to sweep her complaint under the rug, leading her on until the statute of limitations on her case expired, and refusing to hire her for a political campaign in retaliation for coming forward.
* Was the Speaker listening? Woman questions why Madigan took months to fire aide: “The speaker has had the letter for three months. It doesn’t take three months to read those text messages and know that that behavior was inappropriate. It would take all of 20 minutes to know that that was sexual harassment,” Hampton said.
* Editorial: Too little, too late: This, of course, is not the first time Speaker Madigan has been accused of insincerity in his public postures. It’s happened many times before, and he survived them all without breaking a sweat. He’ll undoubtedly do so again this time because of his power and influence. Nonetheless, Hampton’s assertion that Madigan would have taken no action if the matter was not on the verge of becoming public rings true.
* Editorial: Mike Madigan flunks the #MeToo test: Alaina Hampton isn’t alone. She’s one of countless professional women to experience mistreatment. After being harassed out of her job, Hampton summoned the courage to report it to the boss — who in this case was one of the most powerful political figures in Illinois, a man who fast-tracked legislation supposedly meant to shut down a culture of creepiness in Illinois government. Madigan made a commitment to end harassment and protect women. His resolve was tested almost immediately. He failed.
* Speaker Madigan Rejects Calls For Resignation Over Handling Of Sexual Harassment Claims Of Aide: State Rep. Scott Drury, who’s running for attorney general, is a longtime critic of the speaker. He’s among those calling on Madigan to step down. However, Madigan says this is just another case of Drury doing the bidding of Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner. “For Drury to say that I should step aside, that’s the same thing as Rauner saying I should step aside, which I don’t plan to do.” he said.
* Is Ald. Quinn still in with Madigan?: Around City Hall, Marty Quinn is a mild-mannered Clark Kent of an alderman who seldom speaks unless he’s railing about stinky sound-reducing windows in his ward near Midway Airport, Airbnb or the dangers of registered sex offenders in public libraries. In the Southwest Ward office he shares with Madigan, Quinn is better known as a workaholic political superman. That’s why superman will likely be allowed to keep his cape—as well as his day job.