Ex-Illinois Speaker Michael Madigan indicted on federal racketeering charges

Madigan served as Illinois House Speaker for nearly four decades.
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Madigan
Illinois Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan in 2016 with then-President Obama
(MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Former Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan was indicted on Wednesday by a grand jury on federal racketeering charges, alleging that he and his associates profited off of his powerful political operation.

The 22-county indictment, originally reported on by The Chicago Tribune, came after a multi-year federal investigation into the Chicago Democrat who held the powerful position of speaker for nearly four decades.

Madigan's longtime confidant, former state legislator and lobbyist Michael McClain was also charged in the indictment, which alleges he participated in an orchestrated bribery scheme.

Madigan left office in January 2021 while the investigation was underway. He had served in the House of Representatives since 1971 and as speaker for all but two years until 2020.

The investigation has been going on since at least 2014 when Madigan was recorded at his private law firm discussing a hotel venture and possible "private benefits" connected to public office, the Chicago Sun-Times revealed in 2019.