CHICAGO — A Cook County judge again dismissed a lawsuit on Friday that says consumers should be able to recoup costs associated with the ComEd corruption scandal that involved former House Speaker Michael Madigan.
Circuit Judge Cecilia Horan ruled the court could not consider class action suits for relief, citing the “separation of powers doctrine” which draws lines between the responsibilities of different branches of government.
Horan had previously dismissed the case, but the lawyers were given the opportunity to refine their arguments and reappear before the judge.
In a hearing on Friday, attorney Stephan Blandin focused on Madigan, the longtime Chicago Democrat, and referenced ComEd’s corruption admissions in a July 2020 federal case.
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“Because Michael Madigan was bribed, he raised his brick…on the legislation and allowed it to go to a vote,” Blandin argued. “Because of the acknowledged corruption that took place, Commonwealth Edison became unjustly enriched.”
The public service admitted in the federal case that it sought to curry favor with Madigan by giving his political friends contracts for jobs with little or no work, offering internships to college students in his 13th precinct, in distributing legal contracts to the law firm of a Madigan ally. and place a Madigan-backed nominee on the company’s board.
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ComEd agreed to pay a $200 million fine for this scheme. Madigan has denied wrongdoing and has not been charged in the ongoing criminal case.
But the ComEd affair weighed heavily on Madigan’s fellow Democrats, and a newly elected House last year dethroned Madigan from the presidency, a post he had held for 36 years, a national record. Shortly thereafter, Madigan resigned the House seat he had held for 50 years and relinquished the Illinois Democratic Party presidency, a position he had held since 1998.
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