* Tina Sfondeles…
Gov. Bruce Rauner on Monday said he doesn’t know the man suing Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan in federal court for allegedly helping to put “sham” candidates on ballots.
But the plaintiff, Jason Gonzales, is now coming to the Republican governor’s defense, arguing against requiring depositions of Rauner and many of the governor’s GOP allies and former staffers.
Gonzales’ attorneys contend the depositions Madigan’s team are seeking concern a documentary that was highly critical of the speaker titled “Madigan: Power, Privilege, Politics,” which was released in October 2016.
A motion filed Monday by one of Gonzales’ attorneys accuses the powerful speaker of engaging in “political intelligence” in order to tarnish Rauner in the November election.
“It appears that Speaker Madigan is not interested in what the witnesses know about this case but seeks instead to engage in political intelligence about the film’s origin, perhaps even to obtain evidence for the ongoing Illinois general election campaign of November 2018 or even a future suit,” attorney Stephen Boulton wrote in the motion filed in U.S. District Court. “Defendants’ subpoenas are an improper use of this Court’s subpoena power of this Court to engage in political intelligence.” […]
Madigan’s attorneys in June told U.S. District Judge Matthew Kennelly one of the defense strategies is to try to prove that Gonzales was a “closet Republican.” Gonzales has denied being a “plant of Gov. Rauner.”
According to the story, Madigan’s lawyers are also seeking to depose Illinois Policy Institute CEO John Tillman, Rauner’s former chief legal counsel Dennis Murashko, House GOP Leader Jim Durkin, former Rauner campaign adviser Nick Ayers (who is now VP Pence’s chief of staff), Blair Hull and Kristina Rasmussen,who served as Rauner’s chief of staff after a stint running the Illinois Policy Institute.