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Indicted, Expelled Illinois State Representative Re-elected

  • Written by The Chicago Defender
  • Published in Chicago
    Derrick-Smith2
    (Reuters) - A former lawmaker from Chicago who was indicted for bribery and expelled by the Illinois House of Representatives won re-election to the state house Tuesday.

    Former State House Representative Derrick Smith, who represented a staunchly Democratic district in Chicago, was arrested in March and charged with accepting a $7,000 bribe in exchange for endorsing a daycare center's state grant application.

    Smith has denied the charges. Days after his arrest and indictment, Smith won the Democratic Party primary to contest the November 6 election, in part because some Democrats hoped he would resign and be replaced on the ballot.

    But Smith refused to bow out, and last August the full Illinois House voted to expel him.

    Chicago and Illinois have a reputation for political corruption. The previous two governors of the state -- Republican George Ryan and Democrat Rod Blagojevich -- are serving time in federal prisons.

    Numerous local, county and state Illinois officials have been charged in recent years with taking bribes, accepting kickbacks or other corruption.

    The last member of the Illinois House to be expelled was Frank Comerford, who was ousted in 1905 for naming other members who had taken money from lobbyists. Comerford subsequently was reelected, the Illinois Secretary of State's office said.

    (Reporting By Mary Wisniewski and James Kelleher; Editing by Greg McCune and Alden Bentley)

    Read more http://www.chicagodefender.com/index.php/news/city/15093-indicted-expelled-illinois-state-representative-re-elected

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