No Dem gets enough votes to replace Madigan as speaker

That leaves the future unsettled, with no certainty that one of the two remaining candidates will get the job or whether veteran incumbent Mike Madigan gets a new lease on power. Madigan had “suspended” his campaign to allow other candidates to try to get the necessary votes .

Coming the closest to getting 60 votes was Rep. Emanuel “Chris” Welch of Hillside, a top Madigan ally who had the support of the Black and Latinx Caucuses. He got 50 votes, compared to 15 for downstater Jay Hoffman. Eight voted present.

Two other candidates—North Side feminist leader Ann Williams and Stephanie Kifowit of Aurora—dropped out, Williams just moments before the initial vote.  

"Today I withdrew my candidacy for the Speaker of the Illinois House when it became clear I would be unable to garner the requisite 60 votes," she said in a series of tweets. "The House Democratic Caucus continues to debate the best path forward and I am confident that we will reach a decision together and get to work for the people of Illinois."

Democrats were still meeting in closed session through the evening and it’s not clear whether they would try another roll call vote tonight.  

The path forward from now on remains unclear – not a huge surprise given that, with only a two year gap, Madigan has served as House Speaker since 1983. Unless something is worked out by Wednesday, the House will be unable to conduct legislative business, even committee meetings.

Until something is worked out, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White will act as presiding officer. But the only order of business is electing a speaker.

Madigan set the stage for the developments earlier in the week when he received only 51 votes for a new term. After that, he said he’d no longer campaign for the job, but underlined that he was not giving up for his hopes for a new term, either.

Though Welch has not yet secured the votes he needs, a reliable source reported that Madigan staffers have begun packing up his Capitol office.

via Crain’s Chicago Business

January 12, 2021 at 09:41PM

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