Cook County Judge Says “No Way” to Reapportionment Reform

The Chicago Tribune headline on the latest effort to make legislative district line drawing less political.

The Chicago Tribune headline on the latest effort to make legislative district line drawing less political.

The last time that attorney Mike Kasper was involved in McHenry County affairs was when the Mike Madigan reapportionment committee held its first meeting, which was at Marengo High School. Here Democrat State Rep. Jack Franks is advised by Mike Kasper.

When the Mike Madigan reapportionment committee held its first meeting, it was at Marengo High School. Here Democrat State Rep. Jack Franks is advised by Mike Kasper, the attorney who just thwarted a referendum to take the power to draw the maps out of the direct hands of the Democrats who control the Illinois General Assembly.

Gov. Bruce Rauner’s attempt to take away absolute power from Mike Madigan and John Cullerton in the drawing of legislative lines has been stopped by a Cook County judge.

The Chicago Tribune story can be found here.

The Governor’s statement on the decision is below:

Statement on Redistricting Referendum

 CHICAGO – Governor Bruce Rauner issued the following statement on a Cook County judge’s decision regarding the redistricting referendum on the November ballot:

Crystal Lake is in three state rep. and three state senate districts.

Crystal Lake is in three state rep. and three state senate districts as a result of the map drawn by Mike Madigan with the support of Democratic Party State Rep. Jack Franks.  In the new map, Franks arranged to have the Spring Grove precincts he lost to John O’Neill taken out of his new district.  County Board Chairmen propose county board district lines.

“Today’s ruling is a harsh reminder that the political system in Illinois is in need of major reforms. I hope the decision to deny voters the chance to consider the Independent Map redistricting referendum is appealed and reversed.

“Independent redistricting is badly needed in our state. A stunning two-thirds of incumbents will be running unopposed in November. That’s certainly not because the politicians in charge are doing such a good job in Springfield. It means the system is broken.

“Legislators in power could have placed the Independent Maps referendum directly on the ballot and avoided this court decision. Instead, they chose to play politics in an effort to protect their own power.

“That is wrong.

“We have it backwards in Illinois.

Voters should be able to choose their elected officials through an independently-drawn map that ensures competitive elections. Instead, we have politicians choosing their voters, putting politics ahead of people.

“Independent Maps has strong support from both Democrats and Republicans. It has strong support from non-partisan good government groups.  So this ruling is a definitely a setback for the people of Illinois.

“If this decision remains in place, it will prove that we need to put political reform at the top of our legislative agenda. We need to fix our broken political system to ensure taxpayers win instead of the insiders.”


Cook County Judge Says “No Way” to Reapportionment Reform — 21 Comments

  1. Another Democrat Cook County Judge ruling in favor of the Democrat Cook County machine.

    The same machine that is attempting gain power in McHenry County unless Republican Mike Walkup is elected over Democrat Jack Franks for McHenry County Board Chair.

    The same machine this is attempting to retain power in McHenry County unless Republican Steve Reick is elected over Democrat John Bartman.

    The election is November 8, 2016.

    Even a lot of Democrats wanted an independent map redistricting process for various reasons.

    What’s the percentage of Republican Judges in Cook County – has to be less than 10% – much less than the percentage of Republican voters in Cook County.

    Because of the way the Democrat machine is able to slate judges, among other reasons.

  2. “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

    “But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”


  3. Expect more of these kind of awful deals if Franks is elected to County board chair.

    VOTE the ANTI-FRANKS Candidate, VOTE WALKUP!!!

  4. Democrat Michael Madigan is Chair of the Illinois Democrat Party.

    Democrat Michael Kasper is General Counsel of the Illinois Democrat Party (head lawyer).

    Democrat Jack Franks is current State Representative 63rd District representing western McHenry County, but rather than running for re-election, has opted to run as Democrat for McHenry County Board Chair against Republican Michael Walkup.

    Democrat John Bartman (current IUOE Local 150 union affiliated prevailing wage monitor for IIIFC) is running for State Representative 63rd District against Republican Steve Reick.

  5. More about redistricting reform.

    The majority of Illinois voters as indicated by various surveys support an revamped redistricting process.

    The Illinois General Assembly (State Representatives and Senators), which currently has a veto proof supermajority, and is headed by Democrat Senate President John Cullerton and Democrat House Speaker Michael Madigan, have the ability to put pass a measure to place redistricting reform measure on an election ballot.

    But they won’t.


    The above decision by the Cook County Court judge is being appealed to the Illinois Supreme Court.

    Even if the Supreme Court overturns the Cook County judge, the measure passed works as follows.

    The State Auditor General selects a review panel who will in turn name members of the redistricting commission.

    The State Auditor General is an appointed position in the legislative branch of Illinois government.

    When this redistricting initiative started, the Auditor General was William Holland, who was appointed in 1992 (was Chief of Staff of Senate Democrats at the time), and re-appointed in 2002 and 2012.

    He resigned effective December 31, 2015.

    On October 6, 2015, the Legislative Audit Commission nominated Democrat State Representative Frank Mautino (who represented the 76th District from 1991 – 2015) among 14 candidates whom applied for the position, to be appointed to replace William Holland.

    Frank Mautino was Deputy Leader in the House Democrats, a member of Michael Madigan’s leadership team.

    The Legislative Audit Commission consists of 6 Democrats and 6 Republicans and is a joint standing committee in the Illinois General Assembly.

    Frank Mautino is currently under Federal investigation for expenditure reimbursements over $250,000 at a single Happy’s service station in Spring Grove while a State Representative, among other expenditures.

  6. No surprise when a Cook County judge ruled on this.

    Keep Franks out so Madigan can’t get in.

  7. Mike Kasper is also a member of a lobbyist group that bears his name.


    Fletcher, O’Brien, Kasper & Nottage.

    Members are James Fletcher, Timothy O’Brien, Michael Kasper, Courtney Nottage, and David Dring.

    The organization also does work in the name of government relations, government consulting, public affairs consulting, and public relations.

    Offices in Chicago and Springfield.

    Part of the Democrat machine.

    The same machine that sprung Barack Obama’s career all the way to the highest office in the United State of America as President of the United States.

  8. It is Cook County Court case number 16 CH-6539, Hooker v Illinois State Board of Elections.

    The plaintiffs are:

    – John Hooker, Chairman of the People’s Map.

    – Frank Clark, Chairman and CEO, retired, ComEd

    – Elzie Higgenbottom, President and CEO, East Lake Management and Development Corp.

    – Raymond Chin, Chairman, Chinatown Chamber of Commerce.

    – Fernando Grillo, SVP, Estrada Hinojosa (investment banking firm); former head of the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR)

    – Craig Chico, President, Back of the Yards Neighborhood Council.


    The plaintiff’s claim is the redistricting amendment proposal violates certain portions of Article XIV (Constitutional Revision), Section 3, of the Illinois State Constitution.

    Here is the verbiage of Section 3:

    “Section 3: Constitutional Initiative for Legislative Article

    Amendments to Article IV of this Constitution may be proposed by a petition signed by a number of electors equal in number to at least eight percent of the total votes cast for candidates for Governor in the preceding gubernatorial election.

    Amendments shall be limited to structural and procedural subjects contained in Article IV.

    A petition shall contain the text of the proposed amendment and the date of the general election at which the proposed amendment is to be submitted, shall have been signed by the petitioning electors not more than twenty-four months preceding that general election and shall be filed with the Secretary of State at least six months before that general election.

    The procedure for determining the validity and sufficiency of a petition shall be provided by law.

    If the petition is valid and sufficient, the proposed amendment shall be submitted to the electors at that general election and shall become effective if approved by either three-fifths of those voting on the amendment or a majority of those voting in the election.”


    Peoples Map on the Illinois State Board of Elections website has committee ID 31693.

    It is a ballot initiative committee.

    Chairperson & Co-Treasurer is John Hooker.

    Co-Treasurer is James Sifuentes.

    There have been no receipts or expenditures to date.

    There was one letter of clarification from Mike Kasper to the ISBE.

  9. **The same machine that sprung Barack Obama’s career all the way to the highest office in the United State of America as President of the United States.**

    LOL – you think that Obama was part of the Madigan machine. That’s cute.

  10. Obama had assistance from the machine.

    The machine is not limited to Madigan.

  11. Well, of course, you don’t get to where Obama is without help from a LOT of machines.

    But Madigan and Obama have never gotten along.

    This is well known. Obama was an Emil Jones guy, which, almost by definition, meant he wasn’t a Madigan guy.

    Kasper is 100% a Madigan guy.

    To tie Obama into this is just silly.

  12. Ok. You really don’t know what you’re talking about, but ok.

    Your generic talking points are fun though.

  13. Has the Democrat machine not been in control of Chicago,
    Cook County and Illinois for the past 40 + years, alabamashake ?

    All parts of the machine don’t always get along,
    yet they ALL are part of the Democrat machine – and that’s a FACT.

  14. Mike Kasper has represented President Barack Obama in election litigation.

  15. Mike Kasper has worked for almost every single Democratic candidate in IL. That is true.

    But trying to tie Obama to blocking redistricting reform is just silly.

    Anyway – moving on.

  16. The comment was,

    “The same machine that sprung Barack Obama’s career all the way to the highest office in the United States of America is President of the United States.”

    Why you chose to claim that was trying to tie Obama to blocking redistricting reform is anyone’s guess.

    Why you chose to claim that was thinking Obama is part of the Madigan machine is anyone’s guess.

    First you say Kasper is a 100% Madigan guy.

    They you say Mike Kasper has worked for almost every single Democratic candidate in IL.

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