Illinois voters don’t have power to recall controversial officeholders | Granite City News
Illinois voters don’t have the ability to recall a state’s attorneys, regardless of how controversial they may be.
The issue has become a flashpoint in the race for Illinois governor. Vying for the GOP nomination with five other candidates, Jesse Sullivan said that’s a priority among his proposals to address crime.
“We also need to recall [Cook County State’s Attorney] Kim Foxx, and I will lead those efforts because we need a state’s attorney that will prosecute crime,” Sullivan said.
Foxx has been controversial for how she’s handled several cases, from the Jesse Smollett hate crime hoax, to gang shootings being characterized as “mutual combatants.”
Friday, it was reported by Chicago media that police were called to Foxx’s Flossmoor home the week before. Foxx’s husband reported the state’s attorney battered him during a domestic incident.
Sunday, CWB Chicago reported the chief investigator for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office resigned. While the report said a reason wasn’t given, it quotes an email from James Roache that he resigns “with my integrity, morals, and ethics intact.”
Illinois voters don’t have the ability to do what voters in San Francisco did last week when they recalled a controversial district attorney.
San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin was recalled by voters last week. Boudin’s lax criminal justice policies made the city less safe, recall supporters said.
Before Illinois state lawmakers adjourned in April, State Rep. Tim Butler, R-Springfield, filed a measure to allow the Cook County state’s attorney to be recalled. The Springfield Republican, who faces a primary, said the entire state should be concerned.
“All 13 million Illinoisans from Chicago to Cairo should be concerned about that because what happens in Chicago and what happens in Cook County does have an impact across this entire state,” Butler said earlier this year.
The only recall Illinois has is a measure to recall a governor, implemented after former Gov. Rod Blagojevich was arrested in 2008, but critics say it’s a high threshold.
Last year, state Sen. Jason Barickman, R-Bloomington, and other Republicans proposed a sweeping recall provision to allow for any elected official in the state to be recalled. He said with the number of lawmakers being charged with crimes, voters shouldn’t have to wait for the justice system.
“This gives the public a tool to hold those people accountable so they don’t have to wait for another election to throw the bums out as they say,” Barickman said.
The Republicans’ measure never advanced.