The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

October 25, 2013

Hiring of state official is still smelling bad

The Clinton Herald

---- — Illinois state government has a bad reputation for cronyism and “pay-to-play” politics.

Optimists might think the investigations that put two governors in prison would deter other Illinois politicians from similar antics. But the state’s political culture never seems to change.

The latest brouhaha came to light thanks to an exclusive report from the Associated Press, and it involves Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, one of the most powerful Democrats in the state.

It all started last summer when a former executive of Chicago’s Metra transit agency claimed he had been fired because he resisted a recommendation from Madigan to give a pay raise to a Metra employee who had raised campaign cash for the House speaker.

But did the negative publicity deter Madigan? Apparently not.