Former lawmakers take a stand during ‘ComEd 4’ trial – NBC Chicago
In Springfield, every road and every bill led to powerful House Speaker Mike Madigan, according to testimony Thursday from two former Illinois House members who described the Madigan’s power and how he wielded it. used.
The testimony took place during the trial of the so-called “ComEd 4”, who is accused of using jobs and contracts at utility companies to bribe and illegally influence Madigan, essentially offering a “stream of benefits to the former Speaker of the House to avoid his interference. with the company’s Springfield diary.
Scott Drury, a former assistant United States attorney who came to Springfield hoping to pass legislation to address what he saw as a high number of wrongful convictions in his home Lake County, testified that the Illinois House was run by what many called the “President’s Rules”. ”
“House rules gave the president the ultimate power,” Drury said.
Drury said Madigan would determine the House committees, who would sit on them and who would be the chairs. He had the power, Drury said, to control the flow and timing of legislation.
Former Rep. Carol Sente told a similar story, recalling an exchange with the then-president about her predatory loan bill.
“He said, ‘Don’t talk about this again, it’s not moving forward,'” she testified.
The two former House members described how Madigan would use the rules committee to bless or kill litigation.
“The rules committee… I would describe it as a black hole,” Drury said.
The alleged House vetting is important to the case as prosecutors allege ComEd rewarded Madigan with political jobs, legal work and other favors to prevent him from interfering with pro-corporate legislation .
Also speaking was Lou Lang, who was forced from his seat due to allegations of inappropriate conduct.
He listened to prosecutors play a call recording in which McClain delivers a message of “someone who cares deeply about you (and) thinks you should move on.” Lang realized the message was from Madigan and replied, “I would never embarrass him that way.”
On cross-examination, Lang said, “In my 32-year career, Mike Madigan never ordered me to do anything.”
The next phase of this lawsuit will likely involve hundreds of government recordings of wiretaps and wire-worn insiders…all in hopes of showing how former CEO Anne Pramaggiore, lobbyists John Hooker, Michael McClain and Jay Dougherty worked illegally to keep Madigan happy by ensuring he stayed in power.
The defendants deny all the allegations.