Hearing Palatine’s State Senator Matt Murphy question why legislative leaders had state paid vehicles brought back the memory of how the practice started.
Mike Madigan was House Speaker, of course.
He and fellow Democrats were abolishing the quasi-independent Legislative Investigating Commission.
Legislators who controlled realized they could get publicity by uncovering corruption.
That’s the group who revealed the bookie operation out of the Pinemoor Hotel across the street from the First Congregational Church in Crystal Lake.
So, Madigan, et al, decided to get rid of the agency.
But the agency had investigators.
Those investigators had cars.
Who ended up with the cars?
You get one guess.
The legislative leaders.
At first they were used to get leaders to and from the airport.
Heaven forbid that they drive between their homes and Springfield like ordinary legislators.
From reading of Cullerton’s son’s arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol, I see the sedans have been upgraded to a SUV.
Lord Acton’s famous quote, the shorthand of which comes to mind:
“Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.”