Batinick says Madigan campaign contributions shows there is too much money in state politics
Rep. Mark Batinick (R-Plainfield) thinks there is a simple answer as to how House Speaker Mike Madigan has managed to reign in Springfield for so long.
“He donates these huge amounts of money to his chosen legislators and candidates and they are all beholden to him,” Batinick told the Will County Gazette. “That’s just the way he operates, and anyone that stands up to him is targeted for removal from Springfield.”
Madigan has contributed approximately $15 million to the campaigns of roughly 60 current legislators, the Illinois Policy Institute states. In each instance, all of the lawmakers have voted in favor of Madigan holding onto his speakership.
Running for re-election against Democrat Mica Freeman in the 97th District, Batinick argues none of the legislators who’ve taken money from Madigan, including Freeman, has proven themselves to have any independence in Springfield.
“She’s gotten at least $250,000 from him and she’s completely team Madigan,” he said. “That doesn’t bode well for all the people across this state who are now suffering because of his policies.”
Besides being the longest-serving House speaker in history, Madigan also serves as chairman of various campaign committees, which gives him access to even more cash and resources, according to IPI.
“Changing Springfield will take electing more Republicans who are willing to stand up to Madigan,” Batinick said. “You need more people who are there for the right reasons, and that comes down to having the interests of the people of their districts ahead of anything else.”
Batinick believes there is too much money now in politics and he would like to see better control over the system, he said.
“I think an educated voter offers a remedy for much of it,” he said. “It always helps when voters are aware of the real issues.”
The 97th District includes all or parts of Oswego, Plainfield, Troy and Wheatland.