* As we discussed months ago, most of Maryann Loncar’s allegations against Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie) were full of holes. Her “bribery” claim had changed (and grown) over the years, but was easily disproved. Her claim that Lang had killed legislation because of her involvement was flatly denied by others working on the bill. Her ex-husband denied an allegation that Lang had reached out to him with an offer to help him “bury” Loncar. After Rep. Jeanne Ives told a reporter that Loncar wouldn’t be making sexual harassment allegations, Loncar went on Dan Proft’s radio show the morning of her press conference…
Proft asked her whether the still-unnamed legislator had said if she wouldn’t “play ball, and play ball means of a sexual nature, then you’re not going to get what you want.”
“In every nature,” Loncar replied. “It all starts in Springfield of a sexual nature if you’re female. All of it.”
However, when her statement to Proft was read back to her later that day by my associate Hannah Meisel, Loncar admitted Lang had made no such demand.
Loncar then claimed at her subsequent Statehouse press conference, “I was harassed. I was intimidated. I was humiliated.”
* But now the Legislative Inspector General has cleared Lang of all claims, including harassment…
But in a report issued Wednesday, Julie Porter, the acting legislative inspector general, wrote that there is not enough evidence to support Loncar’s claims and that the matter is now closed.
She also wrote in an email to Lang that she found Loncar’s allegations “unfounded.”
“Given her unwillingness to speak to me, and taking her descriptions and those of her colleague at face value, I do not have sufficient evidence to support a conclusion that such occurrences, if they even happened, constituted sexual harassment,” Porter wrote.
Lang said in a statement issued Wednesday that “the allegations were absurd and false and remain so today.
“Therefore, I welcome the Inspector General’s conclusion that completely dismisses the allegations as ‘unfounded,’” Lang wrote. “As far as I’m concerned, I have been vindicated and this matter is now closed.”
There’s lots more, so go read the rest.
No word yet on whether Lang’s leadership and committee slots will be restored.
*** UPDATE *** Tribune…
“It is ridiculous to think that any person who feels victimized by a member of the House or Senate would be consoled to reveal their plight to a hand-picked I.G. appointed by the Speaker of House,” Loncar said in the statement.
“What I have seen played out since my press conference confirms everything I assumed about having a Legislative Inspector General appointed by the Speaker of the House: it is a joke,” her statement read. “The joke is on the victims. The joke is on the Illinois taxpayers.”