Republicans demanding more stern regulations on ethics

Some Republican senators are calling again for stricter rules on ethics for lawmakers. The continued absence of a legislative inspector general is just one of the complaints from State Sen. Jil Tracy (R-Quincy). (Dave Dahl/WJBC)

By Dave Dahl

SPRINGFIELD-Some Republican senators are calling again for stricter rules on ethics for lawmakers.

The continued absence of a legislative inspector general is just one of the complaints from State Sen. Jil (cq) Tracy (R-Quincy).

“Illinois has a long history of shady behavior from lawmakers,” Tracy said. “While their offenses are somewhat different in nature, the only ones who were caught were done so by the federal government” as opposed to state authorities.

“That alone is very troubling.”

In Illinois, the attorney general just does not have that sort of power. 

A frequent suggestion has to do with the “revolving door” provision – the time between being a lawmaker and being a lobbyist. It recently was established at six months, but State Sen. Terri Bryant (R-Murphysboro) says a year is more appropriate.

“Under current law,” she said, “it’s too easy for legislators to spend their time in Springfield advocating on behalf of special interests instead of their constituents, and then be rewarded with cushy lobbying jobs by the special interests after they leave office.”

And one sitting lawmaker, State Sen. Tom Cullerton (D-Villa Park), remains under federal indictment, accused of ghost payrolling.

Dave Dahl can be reached at news@wjbc.com.

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