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Rep. Halpin refuses to talk about his Madigan vote, says it’s a caucus decision

Monday, Dec 7, 2020

* Rep. Mike Halpin (D-Rock Island) on WHBF TV

Q: Another big decision that Democrats in the majority of Illinois have to make regards Speaker of the House Mike Madigan. He’s now embroiled in the controversial ComEd bribery scandal and the subject of an investigation in the legislature. He is losing support among some Democrats. Where do you stand?

A: Well, it’s certainly going to be a difficult question for all of us. We’re looking forward to getting together as a caucus, I don’t know if it’s going to be in person or virtually, to talk through these issues and try to make a decision. It’s an important conversation that we need to be having going into next year especially with the difficult time we’re going to be facing both on the budget, some of the reform agenda that’s coming up, ethics reform, property tax relief. We have a very full plate that we need to get started addressing as soon as possible.

Q: Should he still be the Speaker?

A: You know, I think that’s the question that we’re going to be talking to each other over the next couple of weeks. You know, I think we have a very diverse caucus, with a lot of different viewpoints, and I think we need to have that conversation collectively as a Democratic family, and try to come to a solution that way.

Q: Will you vote for him as Speaker and if not him, who?

A: Well, again, it really depends on what candidates are out there. And you know I generally tend to not litigate our internal caucus matters publicly. And so I think it’s a conversation that we need to have amongst ourselves and then come out and and having made that decision internally. I know there’s a proposal from Republican leader Durkin that the Democrats should vote for him as Speaker, and that’s certainly just not an option. But we need to talk about it within our own party with our own caucus to come to what that answer is going to be.

This is not the sort of decision that should be kept behind closed doors.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

25 Comments
  1. - Arock - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 11:55 am:

    Go to Oz and get some courage Rep. Mike Halpin.


  2. - Crash - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 11:55 am:

    At this point, I’m wondering about the value of continuing to stand with the Speaker. He is going to lose. I’m not seeing much of a political upside with continuing to back him.


  3. - This Just In - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:03 pm:

    This is not a decision that actually ever is kept behind closed doors as the vote is public.

    Not sure many that have ever held these positions would want the “discussion” to be public. That has a chilling effect on saying what needs to be said and doing what needs to be done.


  4. - This Just In - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:03 pm:

    This is not a decision that actually ever is kept behind closed doors as the vote is public.

    Not sure many that have ever held these positions would want the “discussion” to be public. That has a chilling effect on saying what needs to be said and doing what needs to be done.


  5. - AD - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:04 pm:

    Vote for your district Representative. You are there to represent the people who elected you.


  6. - Wow - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:08 pm:

    Time for Daniel Biss to put forward his group’s candidate for Speaker.. put up or shut up


  7. - midway gardens - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:08 pm:

    How can they talk about ‘ethics reform’ with the rot from the top?
    Sadly this isn’t going to be about what’s right; it’s going to be about ‘where’s mine’.


  8. - SpiDem - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:09 pm:

    Maybe its just me, but we’re now a few days after the Black Caucus forum — no endorsement. Halpin — no endorsement. With few exceptions, no one wants to say publicly that they support the Speaker. It sure appears that a good portion of the caucus is not willing to stick their neck out for Madigan.

    Perhaps its because they all can count, and are hoping that the current Speaker can figure out that he doesn’t have the votes before this becomes an absolute spectacle in January?

    And anyone who thinks the 19 will feel bound by a “caucus position” to vote for Madigan needs their head examined.


  9. - Donnie Elgin - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:09 pm:

    A natural political response when the MJM protection is in jeopardy but not entirely dead.


  10. - Fav Human - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:17 pm:

    It could be that he wants to be sure he endorses the winner for the speaker whoever that may be. And he may not know who all is going to jump into the ring so….


  11. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:21 pm:

    The parochial nature of this state is showing. What Rep. Halpin is describing is standard procedure not only in Congress, but in the state legislatures across the country. Caucuses have an internal debate and vote and then everyone or most everyone is on the same page for the official floor votes.


  12. - 618er - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:26 pm:

    There is still the proverbial elephant in the room… MJM to an extent still has control of the DPI campaign apparatus. I would think that would weigh heavily in members walking this tight rope. Can they really come out and say they won’t support him for Speaker and expect his help come campaign season.


  13. - TNR - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:27 pm:

    Daniel Biss is the leader of the insurrection? Did not know that.


  14. - Just Me 2 - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:36 pm:

    I always love when public officials say a public issue of interest to many members of the public should absolutely be discussed in secret.


  15. - Loyalty - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:45 pm:

    … some people has it.


  16. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:54 pm:

    The first and only question, after 19 stated they will not be voting for Madigan, denying MJM 60 is are you with the 19 or Madigan.

    Yes, that is a question that can be answered


  17. - west wing - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 12:54 pm:

    Caution from State Rep Halpin may have something to do with his campaigns which have been largely funded by Madigan and DPI.


  18. - Olive Garden - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:12 pm:

    I’m sure the constituents of the 72nd district appreciate the transparency and trailblazing courage from their Representative.


  19. - Frumpy White Guy - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 1:31 pm:

    I’ve been thinking about the request that Madigan made of Kathy Willis. “Please don’t announce your decision” I wonder how many other State Rep’s are in the same camp as Willis but have agreed to Madigan’s request to keep their decision under wraps. Maybe Halpin?


  20. - Chicagonk - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 2:11 pm:

    Halpins afraid to bite the hand that feeds. He was Madigan’s candidate when Verschoore retired so it’s not surprising he would be quiet on this. Unfortunately Hotle didn’t win as she would have been a breath of fresh air compared to the usuals the RICO Dems send to Springfield.


  21. - Anonanonsir - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 5:19 pm:

    As Just Me 2 keeps pointing out, when Democrats discuss this issue, there is always one group that is omitted.
    Their constituents. The voters who elected them. The people they are supposed to represent.
    That says quite a bit about how Illinois Democrats have operated.


  22. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 5:23 pm:

    === when Democrats discuss this issue, there is always one group that is omitted. Their constituents. The voters who elected them. The people they are supposed to represent.===

    Here’s the thing to that;

    Every two years, those same constituents and voters are sending them back to Springfield.

    They don’t need to say things aloud, they know the score.

    It’s going to be up to the 72, plus Madigan to first find a candidate, then make sure 60 of the 72 (73) vote for the nominee.

    The voters in two years, in new districts, will decide, if it matters.


  23. - Anonanonsir - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 5:33 pm:

    ==Every two years, those same constituents and voters are sending them back to Springfield.==

    That tends to happen when pols choose their voters, as the Dems (Madigan and Cullerton) have done.

    I would say that what legislators hear from their constituents has some significance.


  24. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 5:39 pm:

    === That tends to happen when pols choose their voters===

    LOL

    That makes ZERO sense to this as Madigan is 40+ points under water, and yet Dems sit one seat below its zenith in total House seats, as regional divisions are more defining.

    === I would say that what legislators hear from their constituents has some significance.===

    Again, Madigan’s own polling in districts versus House seats won… it’s more impactful, it appears in larger, rural, or statewide areas (Fair Tax Flop, Kilbride), but I’d say the Fair Tax win/loss was more on muddying the waters to what it was (like a tax on retirement, the Frerichs Tax)


  25. - Anonanonsir - Monday, Dec 7, 20 @ 6:09 pm:

    OK, with all due respect, I’m finding the responses to have little relation to my posts.
    You seem to like the last word, so have at it.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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