An all too possible Scenario
This is our governor, Gov. Blago. A lot of people do not like Gov. Blago. He is trying to pass a $25 billion Illinois Works capital bill. He doesn’t quite know how to pay for it, but he would like to sell 80% of our lottery to get part of it.
Our DG officials have worked hard to get $8.5 million for the Belmont Underpass slotted into this bill. Right now, the Belmont Underpass will not happen if Illinois Works does not happen.
This is Mike Madigan the Speaker of the Illinois House, and the Chairman of the Illinois Democratic Party. He does not like Gov. Blago, and has handed him several humiliating defeats by controlling the House vote, and by controlling the party. Madigan is an old school Illinois politician. So long as he is in charge of the House and of the party, he is in charge.
The Illinois Works project is, in part, trying to make Mike Madigan happy. “Have some pork Mike”, Blago says, “we want you to be happy so you will pass Illinois Works, so I can say I did something good for the state.”
Mike nods his head and says he will hold his own public meetings and fact finding around the state. But this is not what will make Mike happy.
This is Lisa Madigan, our Attorney General. She is a pretty good Attorney General. She is also Mike Madigans’ step daughter. Mike wants Lisa to be Governor someday, because that is what old school pols do; they get their kids, in-laws, family into the deal, move them up the ladder. Chicago old school pol Richard Mell did that with his son-in-law Blago. Mike wants to do that with step daughter Lisa.
Blago is in the way of Lisa, and Mike is not happy. Blago has a huge war chest to run again if he does not get convicted and thrown in jail (only in Illinois are those two possible at the same time). So if Blago wants something to make him look like a can-do Gov, Mike does not want it, regardless of how much pork might be in it for him. Mike wants Blago gone, so he will not let Blago get any bills passed.
When Lisa is Gov. Madigan, Illinois first woman governor, then we will get bills passed, and only then. Because then Mike will be happy. In the meantime, DG will just have to wait.