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Rep. McCombie questions Democratic leaders' reluctance to fast-track ethics reform amid corruption scandals


By Rock Island Today Reports | Nov 15, 2019

Illinois state Rep. Tony McCombie (R-Savanna)

State Rep. Tony McCombie (R-Savanna) marvels at the fact that some Illinois legislators are not more aggressively pushing a package of reform bills designed to root out political corruption in Springfield.

“Why does it appear that Gov. J.B. Pritzker, Speaker [Michael] Madigan (D-Chicago) and [Illinois Senate] President [John] Cullerton (D-Chicago) are attempting to slow-walk ethics reform during the fall veto session despite recent corruption allegations that brought to light actions by their House and Senate members,” McCombie said in a recent press conference on ethics reform.

Among the incidents of recent corruption McCombie speaks of include the arrest for bribery and subsequent resignation of former state Rep. Luis Arroyo (D-Chicago), and state Sen. Martin Sandoval's (D-Chicago) resignation as chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee after being implicated in an alleged kickback scheme.

Among the reform bills supported by McCombie are House Bill 3947, which would ban members of the General Assembly, their spouses and immediate live-in family members from performing paid lobbying work with local government units, and House Bill 3955, which would create mandatory and publicly available documentation of General Assembly communications with any state agency regarding contracts.

McCombie is also part of a large group of lawmakers that have filed House Joint Resolution 87 to create the State Ethics Task Force.

“I implore our leaders to assign HJR 87 to executive committee,” she said. “This is a way we can take long-term action on the ethical issues we are facing here in Illinois. Both short-term and long-term solutions are needed and they are needed now.”

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Illinois Representative Tony McCombie (R-71st)

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