Some of the arrows flying out of the massive federal corruption investigation centered in Chicago are pointed in a new direction.
Part of the probe now centers on efforts to get work for retired Chicago Alderman Michael Zalewski, Sr., at ComEd and interactions between House Speaker Michael Madigan, Zalewski, Sr., and longtime ComEd lobbyist and Madigan confidant Michael McClain, according to three sources familiar with the federal investigation.
That’s according to a new report from WBEZ. Read the whole thing.
The Feds executed a search warrant on Zalewski, Sr.’s home. According to WBEZ, sources familiar with the investigation say they were seeking records regarding the alderman’s longtime political ally, Madigan. Exelon and ComEd also received a grand jury subpoena from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Illinois requiring production of information concerning its lobbying activities in Illinois.
Zalewski, Sr., was a Chicago Alderman for over twenty years. He lobbied the State of Illinois while in that post and thereafter. His son, Micheal Zalewski, Jr., has been a state representative since 2008 and “by all appearances lobbies Chicago through his law firm,” according to earlier reporting linked here.
Another fact, scandalous in itself, is that Governor JB Pritzker in April appointed Zalewski, Jr.’s wife as Chairman of the Illinois Commerce Commission! That commission plays the key role setting utility rates charged by Exelon and others that are critical for Illinois consumers. Come on, JB. You claim to be the champion for the poor and working class and you did that? Might as well pour fertilizer into the swamp.
It’s not clear what wrongdoing the Feds suspect. It will be interesting to learn whether it includes favors for passage of the Future Energy Jobs Act in 2016, which was heavily criticized as an Exelon bailout.
UPDATE 7/7/19: The FBI has now searched McLain’s home as well.
–Mark Glennon is founder of Wirepoints.
Read more from Wirepoints: