* Gov. Rauner this morning…
I’m funding Erika Harold. I’m giving her a million dollars which is a lot of money for me. I need her to win. Lisa Madigan has defended the corruption of her dad. Erika Harold will prosecute Madigan and the corruption. She’s awesome.
* The governor held a Statehouse press conference today…
Bernie: You said on the radio that you’re going to give a million dollars to Erika Harold and she ‘will prosecute Madigan and the corruption. She’s awesome.’ Corruption? Are you saying that Mr. Madigan has committed a crime? Are you a prosecutor now and what exactly should she prosecute him for? Because I know you like talking about everybody’s corrupt, but what are you talking about when you’re giving a million dollars and telling this person ‘I’m going to get you elected and you’re going to prosecute this man’? Is that the American way? And what is he guilty of?
Gov. Rauner: [Laughs] Well, the Illinois way is corruption. Madigan has been in control of our state for 35 years. Why do we tolerate a system where the leader of the legislature, the leader of the Democrat Party, uh, can control much of our state government, force policies that cause our property taxes and taxes to rise and then own a property tax appeal law firm, and charge property owners millions of dollars to get property taxes reduced? He’s on both sides of that. It’s corrupt, it’s broken it’s a fundamental conflict of interest.
Reporter: Is it legal?
Rauner: It shouldn’t be.
Bernie: Why didn’t you propose that?
Rauner: [Laughs] I have proposed many variations on this issue. I tried to get a law passed, uh, the General Assembly under Speaker Madigan blocked it, a law passed to stop legislators from, uh, owning property tax appeal law firms, so it would be illegal, and stop arguing cases in front of, um, tax appeal boards because they’re in, it’s a conflict. They, they raise taxes on their policy side and then make money reducing them. That’s, that’s a conflict. That’s a rigged system. And, uh, they wouldn’t pass that bill. So I went ahead and did an executive order. And now, legislators can’t argue cases in front of the state board. That I can do unilaterally.
Monique: But you also said that she should prosecute the speaker.
Monique: So, are you alleging that he has committed a crime? And also, how could she prosecute because that office can only refer crimes right now?
Rauner: [Laughs] So, attorneys’ general job is to enforce the law and investigate wrongdoing, especially in state government. The, the, the attorney general’s job is to represent the people of Illinois as their chief prosecutor and, and, uh, and legal, uh, representative. Um, we in Illinois have suffered for years. Our attorney general has defended the current system. Defended the conflicts of interest. Protect the problems in this state. Defend the status quo. We need someone who will challenge the status quo, investigate wrongdoing, investigate possible illegal activity, certainly investigate unethical activity and, and propose laws to make it illegal, rather only unethical. That’s what an attorney general who will primarily do. And in Illinois that has not been happening. Erika Harold will make that happen and that’s my point.
Rauner aide: Last question! Last question!
* By the way, I sent these questions to Erika Harold’s campaign this morning at 10:10…
1) Has Ms. Harold spoken with the governor about her plans to prosecute Speaker Madigan?
2) Does she have any plans to prosecute Speaker Madigan?
3) Does she have any other comment on the governor’s statement?
4) Does she have any comment on the governor’s pledge to contribute $1 million to her campaign?
I haven’t heard back.
*** UPDATE *** The Erika Harold campaign finally got back to me, but they didn’t answer any of my questions…
Erika is grateful for the support from not only Governor Rauner, but also many citizens across Illinois who want to reform state government.
If presented with evidence, Erika will investigate and pursue any allegation of wrongdoing or corruption at any level of government in Illinois as Attorney General. Additionally, Erika has called on lawmakers to give the Attorney General additional tools to crack down on public corruption, including the authority to convene a statewide grand jury and issue subpoenas.