Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar

Latest Post | Last 10 Posts | Archives

Previous Post: Terranova rebuts AFSCME “at will” claims
Next Post: Hillary Clinton calls out Gov. Rauner in AFSCME speech

*** UPDATED x2 - No expenses submitted - “They never cashed the check” *** What happened to the checks?

Posted in:

* It’s not explained very well in this AP story, but last year six unions contributed a grand total of $12,000 to a group called The People’s Map, which is fighting a battle against the proposed remap reform constitutional amendment.

Trouble is, the group never reported any contributions, and one union voided its own check this past April - about six months after sending it.

* OK, now on to the AP story

A group waging an aggressive legal battle to keep a redistricting question off November’s Illinois ballot hasn’t reported a single donation or expense since it became a political committee last summer, adding to the mystery of who is funding the effort and paying its legal bills.

The People’s Map, comprised of business and community leaders who say they represent the interests of minority voters, filed a lawsuit in May against a proposed voter referendum that seeks an independent commission to take over drawing Illinois’ political lines instead of the party in power. Arguing on their behalf was a top Chicago elections lawyer who has long represented the leader of the Democratic Party of Illinois, House Speaker Michael Madigan.

But every line of quarterly disclosures The People’s Map filed with the Illinois State Board of Elections shows a zero. The People’s Map also doesn’t disclose any pro bono work or $12,000 in union donations that appear in state filings by the unions from July to October of last year. The groups says they never cashed the checks.

The lack of disclosures, or any monetary details, raises questions about how the group is functioning and who is covering legal fees. The scrutiny comes as a judge is expected to decide this week whether the remap question is constitutional for the ballot. […]

People’s Map chairman John Hooker declined an interview through a spokesman and said questions about legal fees should posed to Michael Kasper, the lead attorney of five listed in the lawsuit. Kasper, who’s also represented Senate President John Cullerton and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, has repeatedly declined comment. He didn’t respond to questions Tuesday.

Kasper, of course, also represents Speaker Madigan, who has unconvincingly denied involvement in the effort.

* Meanwhile…

Judge expected to rule tomorrow on whether Independent Map group can go forward with ballot initiative #ChicagoTonight

— Paris Schutz (@paschutz) July 19, 2016

*** UPDATE 1 ***  A top official with the Illinois AFL-CIO, which gave $2,000 to the People’s Map group last year, told me that the group “never cashed the check.”

*** UPDATE 2 *** I’m told that Kasper hasn’t yet submitted his expense report, but will eventually be reimbursed. Kasper tends not to submit those bills until after the case is over.

posted by Rich Miller
Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 3:33 pm


  1. For crying out loud! Do the disclosure laws mean anything?? There are tens of thousands of dollars of legal work obviously provided to fight the Independent Maps effort and not a dime in disclosure?

    For far too long pols have been able to flout the disclosure law through huge loopholes and blatant contempt for the rules.

    Team Madigan, once again, is daring the powers that be to challenge their willful disregard for ethics law. Too bad nothing at all will be done.

    Comment by Adam Smith Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 3:48 pm

  2. You are supposed to report a donation on the day you receive it, not the day you deposit it.

    Comment by Robert the Bruce Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 4:04 pm

  3. ===not the day you deposit it. ===

    Nope. The law was changed. Clock starts the day you deposit it.

    Comment by Rich Miller Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 4:06 pm

  4. For a group called The People’s Map, there sure are a lack of, you know, people.

    Comment by Ron Burgundy Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 4:12 pm

  5. They’re in a shoe box. One will need to be reissued. You know, later on. /s

    Comment by A guy Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 4:23 pm

  6. Kasper the phriendly goast. lol

    Comment by A guy Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 4:40 pm

  7. If Paris is right, then we find out tomorrow if its permissible to petition constitutional changes for the auditor general, board of elections, and supreme court to the ballot.

    Comment by Anonymous Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 4:48 pm

  8. This is a curious story, maybe a bit disturbing on some level, yet the group has filed their D-2’s.

    These are a great source of information on campaign finances and can always be amended and corrected after the fact and the filing, should information have not been correctly noted or attributed in the initial filing.

    I know because I have had to go back and correct some honest mistakes I have made when I have filed these previously. Never about the amounts, but rather about identifying the source of the donation or the proper way of identifying/classifying the expenditure and the recipient.

    Comment by illini Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 4:56 pm

  9. Madigan, and the election lawyers he controls…

    Comment by Arthur Andersen Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 6:35 pm

  10. Adam,”loopholes” that are part of the law are the law, so by following the law one is hardly flaunting it

    Comment by Steve Schnorf Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 9:24 pm

  11. If you don’t cash it, it ain’t cash, Adam. Not complicated.

    Comment by PENSIONS ARE OFF LIMITS Tuesday, Jul 19, 16 @ 10:00 pm

  12. @Schnorf Loopholes that Madigan has conveniently kept open. Let’s not act like Madigan’s hands are tied here.

    Comment by Chicagonk Wednesday, Jul 20, 16 @ 9:46 am

Add a comment

Sorry, comments are closed at this time.

Previous Post: Terranova rebuts AFSCME “at will” claims
Next Post: Hillary Clinton calls out Gov. Rauner in AFSCME speech

Last 10 posts:

more Posts (Archives)

WordPress Mobile Edition available at

powered by WordPress.