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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Illinois Bond Funding Agreement Pulls Last Leg From Madigan Lawsuit Against Blagojevich

Thanks to Illinois Review and Backyard Conservative for cross-posting this piece.
Reuters is reporting that "Illinois will go ahead with a much-needed $1.4 billion borrowing on Tuesday after a deal was reached with state constitutional officers on legal language issues related to fraud and bribery charges against the governor." This agreement to go ahead with funding pulls the last leg out from under Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan's lawsuit filed Friday, December 12, 2008, seeking an emergency order stripping Gov. Rod Blagojevich of his powers.

The AG's lawsuit was premised on the alleged emergency that accusations of criminal conduct by Gov. Blagojevich had paralyzed state government, specifically the ability of the state to borrow funds needed for day-to-day operations. At the time, we questioned the wisdom of AG Madigan premising the lawsuit on this funding issue, predicting that she may end up having to go back on her word to the Court because she needlessly had boxed the State into a fiscal corner.

Now that funding had been approved, just one business day after AG Madigan represented to the Court that such funding was unavailable, AG Madigan needs to withdraw the suit. The suit was premised on weak legal grounds, and the actions of Speaker of the House Michael Madigan in taking a slow approach to impeachment further weakened the case. The bonding agreement pulls the last legs out from under the suit. AG Madigan has an obligation to inform the Court of these changes by amending her filings, but would be better advised to withdraw the request for emergency court relief immediately.

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