Letter to the Editor: Madigan Should Resign

The recent allegations about House Speaker Michael Madigan’s improper handling of misconduct on the part of staffers in his political operation has prompted many to call on Madigan to resign his position as Democrat State Party Chairman.

Madigan, of course, has refused. Instead, he has responded to the recent controversy by launching his own investigation into his staff.

Does anyone really believe a Madigan-funded investigation into the handling of sexual harassment accusations on his staff is going to come close to being a truthful presentation of the facts?

Predictably, Speaker Madigan has released several findings showing how his office responded to several allegations and everything was handled perfectly. Imagine that. A Madigan-paid for investigation shows an impeccable record of responsiveness to allegations of misconduct.

Mike Madigan is the only legislative leader in any statehouse in the 50 United States who also serves simultaneously as the state political party chair. As Chairman of the Democrat Party, Madigan has complete control on how Party resources are spent.

This is simply too much power to be put in the hands of one individual. If we are going to reform our state, we need to start by preventing one individual from accumulating so much power, which is why I introduced legislation, HB 4097, last year to ban legislators currently serving in the Legislature from also serving as the State Political Party chair.

My bill is about preventing the abuse of political power in Illinois. Legislators already wield a lot of political power. There is no reason to legally allow sitting legislators to acquire even more clout by heading up their respective state party organizations.  

Margo McDermed,
State Representative 37th District