A committee hearing into House Speaker Michael Madigan’s conduct scheduled for this week has been postponed.
Representative Emanuel “Chris” Welch, chair of the House Special Investigating Committee said today’s meeting of the committee is postponed as they await documents from Commonwealth Edison surrounding their investigation. Welch said in a press release that the documents will be coming to the committee in the next couple weeks. Welch also said former ComEd executive Fidel Marquez has declined to participate in the hearings. Marquez, once ComEd’s senior vice president of governmental and external affairs, plead guilty to a federal corruption charge. Federal prosecutors charged him with bribery conspiracy in connection with a $37,500 payment he made to a company in which a substantial part of the payment was allegedly intended for associates of Madigan.
Representative Tom Demmer, the senior Republican on the committee yesterday criticized the further delay in the hearings. Demmer also said that Welch blocked an attempt to subpoena witnesses who would not appear voluntarily. Demmer says members of the lower chamber of the General Assembly should be concerned about the way the investigation is being handled. House Republicans have criticized Welch’s delays and his postponement of the hearings until after the General Election. Welch has said that he postponed the meetings so that the investigation wouldn’t be seen as politicized in nature.