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Hey, governor! Remember this?

Monday, Jul 27, 2020

* My column from January 18 of this year

Gov. J.B. Pritzker regularly deflects questions about House Speaker Michael Madigan’s future by saying he wants to let the investigative process work.

But during an interview with me to mark his one-year anniversary in office, the governor pointed to his reaction after Sen. Tom Cullerton, D-Villa Park, was indicted, now-former Sen. Martin Sandoval’s, D-Chicago, Statehouse office was raided and now-former Rep. Luis Arroyo, D-Chicago, was arrested. In every instance, he said, he called on the legislators to step aside or resign.

When there’s “clear” evidence of targeting by criminal investigators, the governor said, “that’s the point at which folks should step aside.”

The questions aren’t new. During the sexual harassment scandals of 2018, candidate Pritzker was often asked if Madigan should relinquish at least one or both of his roles as House Speaker and state party chairman. He’d always defer, pretty much just like he’s done during the sweeping federal probe.

Pritzker’s latest answer, however, is more specific and allows him to set the bar for any showdown with Madigan, who surely seems to be on the federal government’s radar screen but for what nobody knows for sure. No crimes have yet been alleged. We know that some of his pals have been raided (including Mike McClain), but it’s still unclear what, exactly, the feds are looking at other than hiring Democratic cronies by the private company ComEd.

I do not see how there is less than “clear” evidence of targeting by criminal investigators right now.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Downstate - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 11:45 am:

    Start with the governance committee of ComEd. If, as it is stated, a Madigan “designee” was put on the board at his behest, the Governance Committee would be a the heart of that event. They will know a lot more than the minutes of the committee meeting will offer.

  2. - AD - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:00 pm:

    Always easier to stand up for ethical behavior when it’s someone that can’t hurt you back.

    This deal between ComEd and Madigan hurt every single ComEd customer and disproportionately communities of color. JB’s words have fallen flat. Wrong is wrong whether it’s Madigan or Sandoval and he knows that.

  3. - NotRich - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:01 pm:

    AD: “the Deal between Com Ed & MJM” can you please elaborate what exactly the deal was??

  4. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:03 pm:

    ===If, as it is stated, a Madigan “designee” was put on the board at his behest, the Governance Committee would be a the heart of that event.===

    *If* is doing a great deal of work there.

    One of the major things I learned from that Friday presser is… the Feds have the map, the timelines, the monies, the connectors… but seemingly very little to personally, and first handedly, to unequivocally link Madigan as the hand, by words said or written.

    “American Hustle”

    “Richard, think about it. You got some big arrests. You got U.S. Congressmen. You look good. You’re gonna be all over the news.”

    Right now?

    “You didn’t even come close to the big leagues. Those big guys. The money men.”

    We’ll see how it plays going forward.

    To the Post;

    ===… “When there’s ‘clear” evidence of targeting by criminal investigators, the governor said, “that’s the point at which folks should step aside.”===

    When the Governor did his best Ralph Cramden (h/t Rich)

    ===“ I, you know, let’s just say it’s been very important to me that Speaker Madigan step forward to answer the questions that are raised in that ComEd - I don’t what it’s referred to, information, indictment, I’m not sure”===

    Amateur Hour.

    The Governor has a sure fire out. Why not take it and move on? It’s a head scratcher, I just don’t know why…

    The correct answer(s) are these.

    If you called for immediate resignation;

    “I dunno any ally you could have that you tell to immediately resign”

    To the thoughtful “Arroyo Rule” folks;

    “The House has a mechanism to remove, I dunno any ally you’d have that’s in limbo of being ‘Arroyoed’… “

    And to the “hedgers”… (sigh)

    “Calling a working relationship, as described by the state constitution, as one with an ally… seems silly. The Illinois House *still* has him as Speaker, and my relationship is that of Governor and Speaker, as its been for two legislative sessions”

    Move on, Governor.

    It’s easy. The outs are obvious.

  5. - facts matter - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:08 pm:

    Mentioning someone in a complaint about someone else isn’t evidence of being a target. If it was, the Governor would have to hold himself to the same standard since he was mentioned in the subpoena related to his property.

  6. - Arock - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:13 pm:

    The outs are easy and just shows that what you stated earlier is B.S. when it comes to the big dog. You either stand up to all corruption or go home.

  7. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:15 pm:

    - Arock -

    I’m not the Governor.

    Keep up.

  8. - Cook county thinker - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:24 pm:

    JB seems to have changed his mind. He may change it again as circumstances dictate.

  9. - SSL - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:41 pm:

    JB will have to learn not to set himself up if he doesn’t want to face situations such as this one. Journalists are keeping score now. I would like to see someone put this question to him at a daily briefing and see how he responds.

  10. - @misterjayem - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 12:48 pm:

    “You either stand up to all corruption or go home.”

    Please identify the elected official who has stood up up all corruption.

    An unattained and unattainable standard is no standard at all.

    – MrJM

  11. - radio flyer - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 1:21 pm:

    The governor is walking around the Madigan tied to his leg like an anchor. He still has time to unlatch, but if he stays attached until the anchor drops…well…you know.

  12. - Curious George - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 3:32 pm:

    He doesn’t want to say anything till he gets the tax increase thru and that’s on a slippery slope

  13. - Orca - Monday, Jul 27, 20 @ 3:48 pm:

    Reminds me of this gem:
    “Well, I can’t, not while everything is up in the air, but I hear ya,” Pritzker said. “Yeah, I hear ya.”

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