Court rules in Madigan’s favor in dirty tricks allegation

CHICAGO (AP) — The U.S. Court of Appeals ruled in a case involving former Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan that it doesn’t have the authority to penalize a politician for a “shady strategy that voters tolerate.”

Jason Gonzales contended in a lawsuit that Madigan planted sham candidates on the ballot to ensure he would defeat Gonzales’ challenge in the 2016 Democratic primary.

Madigan received 65% of the vote despite Gonzales’ allegation. In a written opinion, Judge Frank Easterbrook said Gonzales suspected trickery by Madigan from the start and made it known, and the electorate voted for Madigan anyhow. Madigan has denied he had anything to do with putting the additional candidates on the 2016 ballot.