State News
3:02 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Legislators to decide whether to discuss or hold investigation of anti-violence program

Governor Pat Quinn's troubled anti-violence program will be in the spotlight Wednesday when a bipartisan legislative commission meets in Chicago.  

It's not yet clear how lawmakers will proceed, given that the federal government wants them to put a hold on their investigation.  

Legislators have to decide if they'll abide by prosecutors' request to hold off until mid-October, just before the November election, when Quinn will face Republican Bruce Rauner.

Sun-Times columnist Mark Brown says that's what Quinn's campaign wants.

"The governor's people are really pushing the media to let go of this story, it's like, 'Hey, enough of this already, look over here at Mr. Rauner.' So, they are happy to have this, this excuse."

Brown says legislators should proceed anyway; he says voters need to learn the facts before they go to the ballot box, not after.

But Democratic strategist Thomas Bowen says there's a danger if Republicans push too hard to carry on with their probe.

"And not abuse the public's patience, in trying to make political hay out of something."

Bowen says Republicans overreached in 1996 in their investigative zeal against President Bill Clinton, and it backfired. Clinton won re-election.