Friday, September 30, 2005

Following Connecticut's Lead

In some ways, Connecticut’s woes mirror our own. Gov. John Rowland was alleged to have taken bribes and other incentives from state contractors in exchange for favorable reviews and additional contracts. When charged with criminal violations of state law, he resigned from office.

Now his successor, Gov. Jodi Rell, is doing something about it. Noting a guilty plea from a state senator to corruption charges and also the trial of our own former Gov. George Ryan, Gov. Rell has called a special session of the Connecticut General Assembly to consider campaign finance reforms. They re-convene in October for the express purpose of considering public financing, limits on contactor giving, and bans on fundraising by lobbyists.

Campaign finance reform gets a special session in Connecticut in response to a handful of convictions. Meanwhile, Illinois has seen over 70 Safe Road convictions, over three dozen Hired Truck and other Chicago convictions, and countless other credible accusations against sitting state and local officials.

When will Illinois finally address problems with our campaign finance system?

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