How to fake it: Madigan indictment
Former Illinois House Speaker Michael J. Madigan will be arraigned today. He's facing 22 counts of racketeering.
Why it matters: Madigan is the long-standing face of Chicago-style politics. It's likely this case will be brought up at your upcoming St. Patrick's Day parties.
- So here are a few tidbits to help you hold your own.
Flashback: In 1970, Mayor Richard J. Daley sent Madigan to Springfield to be a delegate to the Illinois Constitutional Convention.
- Throw that nugget out, followed by, "He made the laws that he is being accused of breaking," and you will score some early points.
Driving the news: ComEd leaders and lobbyists were indicted in 2020 on bribery charges. The utility agreed to a "deferred prosecution" deal and is now working with the feds.
- What did we get in return? Maybe $21 million in rebates. That's less than $5 per customer. "Hey, that plus a cup of coffee could get me another cup of coffee." Gold!
The intrigue: Prosecutors presented plenty of evidence against Madigan. But the feds also indicted lobbyist Michael McClain.
- While Madigan was very disciplined with communications, McClain was writing emails on a computer that was seized from his home during an FBI raid in 2019.
- Now turn to a partygoer and say, "Are you writing this down? Don't." The party will erupt in big belly laughs. Then ask if anyone can grab you a drink from the kitchen. They will.
Be smart: The 13th Ward is the home of Madigan's "Enterprise." It's the area near Midway Airport, including West Lawn, where Madigan lives.
- West Lawn has the highest vaccination rate in the city.
- Why? Because it has a high percentage of city workers, and city jobs were a big part of the Madigan enterprise.
- Your line: "With that vax rate, maybe Madigan should be the next health commissioner!"
🎤 At this point, drop the mic. Tell your fellow partygoers there's plenty more material that you're saving for another day.
- Feel free to drink all the green beer you can. You've earned it.
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