Will the Silent Seven move past the era of Madigan?
In nine days, House Democrats will elect the next House Speaker who will set the agenda of state government over the next two years. Multiple state representatives have yet to announce who will get their vote for House Speaker, despite one of the candidates, Michael Madigan, facing an ongoing federal corruption probe.
So far, 19 incumbent and incoming House Democrats publicly stated they would oppose another term of Michael Madigan as Speaker citing the federal investigation and the need for new leadership amid the challenging times the state faces. Will the ongoing federal corruption probe and Madigan’s platform for an income tax increase be enough to convince the silent seven in opposing Madigan’s ninetieth term for House Speaker publicly. The silent seven include:
· Rep-Elect Janet Yang Rohr, District 41
· Rep-Elect Maura Hirschauer, District 49
· Rep-Elect Suzanne Ness, District 66
· Rep-Elect David Vella, District 68
· Rep. Mike Halpin, District 72
· Rep. Sue Scherer, District 96
· Rep. Katie Stuart, District 112
“Time is running out for House Democrats to tell voters who they plan to vote for House Speaker,” stated Jayme Odom, Executive Director of the House Republican Organization. If House Democrats give “Public Official A” another term as House Speaker, then they are complicit in allowing state corruption to continue.”
Madigan remains one of the least popular public officials in the state, consistently earning a favorability rating under 20% in key districts held by Democrats. While voters rejected higher taxes and endless corruption in the November election, the question remains if House Democrats will side with voters or the status quo when it comes time to vote for the next Speaker of the House.