Fri August 17, 2012
Ill. House expels Chicago Democrat over bribery allegations
For the first time in more than a century, the Illinois House has expelled one of its members.
Lawmakers voted 100-6 on Friday to expel Chicago Democratic state Rep. Derrick Smith. And as Amanda Vinicky reports via Twitter, House Speaker Michael Madigan asked that Smith's name be moved immediately from the chamber's roll.
Federal prosecutors have charged the 48-year-old Smith with accepting a $7,000 bribe in exchange for his official support on what he thought was a day care operation's state grant request. He has pleaded not guilty. A trial date has not been set.
Smith remains on the ballot in Chicago as a Democrat, but as Amanda Vinicky explains, another candidate, Lance Tyson, is running as the candidate in the "Unity" party with the support of the state's Democratic leadership.
Smith plans to make public remarks this afternoon in Chicago.
The House has only considered expulsion of one of its members twice in the past century and hasn't tossed one out since 1905.