IL House Investigative Panel Given Permission to Call Madigan, Other Witnesses

By Benjamin Cox on September 15, 2020 at 10:19am

A special legislative panel seeking to determine if Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan did anything unbecoming of his office may call the speaker for testimony for their hearings.

The U.S. Attorney’s office investigating Madigan and ComEd’s nearly decade long bribery and patronage hiring scheme gave the green light for the state House special investigative committee to call Madigan and others from his inner circle to testify on the record. The office gave the permission yesterday via a conference call with the House panel.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the 3 Republican members of the panel submitted a voluntary witness list that included Madigan, Quincy lobbyist Michael McClain, and former ComED executives and lobbyists on Friday last week to the U.S. Attorney’s office prior to beginning hearings. Chair of the House panel, Democrat Chris Welch says that the U.S. Attorney’s office is not allowing the committee to seek materials or testimony related to ComEd’s deferred prosecution agreement or any evidence that is currently in the possession of federal investigators. Welch said on Friday the panel would not proceed until they had consulted with the U.S. Attorney’s office.

The bi-partisan 6-member committee is seeking to determine whether there is grounds for discipline for Madigan’s conduct. Welch told the Chicago Tribune that the committee is awaiting a letter from the U.S. Attorney’s office responding to yesterday’s conference call with the committee before scheduling the panel’s second meeting.

The committee needs support of 4 members to authorize a charge against Madigan, which would then trigger another bipartisan committee to decide the recommended disciplining of Madigan to the full Illinois House of Representatives.