McHenry Times

McHenry Times

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Sen. Wilcox not sold on Madigan's claim of ignorance about associate's 2012 email


By Glenn Minnis | Jan 20, 2020

Illinois state Sen. Craig Wilcox (R-McHenry)

State Sen. Craig Wilcox (R-McHenry) struggles to understand how Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago) can use the same defense every time he is implicated in a new scandal.

“I know people always seem to do things Madigan wants, but are never able to say they talked to him,” Wilcox told the McHenry Times. “But it’s just really hard to believe he would not know what [Mike] McClain was up to and what was going on.”

Several media outlets have reported that longtime Madigan associate and former lobbyist Mike McClain sent an email in 2012 in which he made reference to a rape cover-up and an ongoing ghost payrolling scheme involving government workers. According to WBEZ, McClain describes one worker as being politically “loyal” for having remained silent about the two matters.

Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago)

“It’s obviously a horrible situation that anyone in government or in general would consider it a character trait of someone based on them having covered up a rape allegation,” Wilcox said. “The simple acceptance of ghost payrolling is despicable but covering up a rape crime is a whole different level.”

All of it has led back Madigan, how much he knew and when he knew it. Either way, Wilcox argues that the state is paying a heavy price.

“All the investigation and uncertainty is having an impact on the way things are being done in Springfield,” Wilcox said. “I saw during veto session a hesitancy to do things that we had planned to do because of all the current federal investigations. I think even members of his own caucus are feeling it and, for the sake of Illinois leadership, many positions in Springfield need to undergo significant change.”

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