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Lisa Madigan not endorsing Blagojevich's re-election bid

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Attorney General Lisa Madigan (KWMU file photo)

By Amanda Vinicky, IL Public Radio

Springfield, Ill. – Heading into the home stretch of the election season, one of Illinois' top Democrats isn't backing the party's candidate for governor.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan says she will not endorse Governor Rod Blagojevich for re-election, and will instead stay neutral, because her office has investigated his.

"We did have ongoing investigations and because of my involvement as a lawyer and our code of professional responsibility, we don't want a conflict of interest," Madigan says.

Madigan's office was probing alleged illegal hiring within Blagojevich's office, but stopped per the request of the U.S. State's Attorney, so as not to interfere with a federal probe. In a June letter to Madigan, the U.S. Attorney says the federal job rigging investigation has "implicated multiple state agencies" and "developed a number of credible witnesses."

For his part, Governor Blagojevich had little to say last week about Madigan's position: "If she thinks that's appropriate that's great.

"I think she's got to do what she thinks is right."

Prosecutors have not charged the governor's administration with any wrongdoing.

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