Lawyer to subpoena House Speaker Madigan over Yednock donation
Peru attorney Julie Ajster plans to subpoena House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago) to appear before the state Board of Elections over allegations he laundered campaign money to Lance Yednock of Ottawa, who is challenging State Rep. Jerry Long (R-Streator) in the 76th.
A hearing before the full board is scheduled for Nov. 19.
Ajster told the Illinois Valley Times that Madigan’s long-time personal attorney Michael Kasper appeared at the board’s preliminary hearing on Oct. 31 with Marty Durkan, a commissioner with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, and one of three parties named in the complaint. But Madigan and Yednock failed to appear at the hearing.
Ajster said she wants to question all three; she plans to subpoena Yednock to appear before the full board as well.
“Durkan is the ‘B’ in the ‘ABC’ link,” Ajster said. “By questioning all three in the same room I can establish the intent to launder the money.”
In her complaint, Ajster charges that the “Friends of Michael J. Madigan laundered a $55,400 campaign contribution to Friends of Lance Yednock through Friends of Marty Durkan.”
Durkan deposited the Madigan money in March, and donated it to Yednock’s campaign in August.
Ajster says that the alleged money transfer violates the state’s Election Code on two fronts: No one is permitted to make a contribution in the name of another person; the $55,400, plus some additional, smaller donations to Yednock from the Friends of Michael J. Madigan, puts the Madigan committee over the limit for the amount state law allows in contributions to a candidate.
“This is a common ploy he (Madigan) uses both to exceed the legal limit and to keep himself distant from the campaigns,” Ajster said.
At the preliminary hearing, Ajster said that Durkan told the board’s hearing officer that he asked Madigan for a donation but never specified an amount. Durkan said it was later that Yednock asked him for $55,400, the highest amount allowed by law, and the same amount Madigan donated to his campaign.
Ajster said the hearing officer will file a report to the full board with recommendations within a week of the Oct. 31 hearing. She said she will press on with the complaint and the subpoenas of Madigan and Yednock irrespective of the recommendations in the report.