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CHICAGO (CBS) — Just days after announcing his resignation, former House Speaker Mike Madigan has selected the person to fill his seat.
Edward Guerra Kodatt, 26, won 63 percent of the weighted vote to fill the 22nd District seat in the Illinois House of Representatives.
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Madigan had the largest share of the weighted vote.
“I want to be sure that workers have good-paying jobs. I want to be sure that families have safe neighborhoods and I want to make sure that children have the strongest and best education opportunities here on the Southwest Side,” Kodatt said.
For the past four years, Kodatt has worked as infrastructure manager for Ald. Marty Quinn (13th).
While some might question how much political influence Madigan will have over Kodatt, Madigan insists Kodatt will stand on his own merits.
Initially on Thursday, Madigan released a statement saying his resignation would be effective at the end of February. But later the same day, has since issued a letter saying his resignation was effective immediately.
CBS 2 Political Investigator Dana Kozlov reported it is not clear why Madigan abruptly changed his resignation date. He declined an interview request.
“It has been my great honor to serve the people of Illinois as speaker of the House and state representative of the 22nd District. This journey would not have been possible without my wonderful wife, Shirley, and children, Lisa, Tiffany, Nicole and Andrew, who have stood by my side year after year, providing their love and support despite the pressure of growing up in the public spotlight. I am fortunate to have them in my life,” Madigan said in a statement.
Madigan lost his seat as Illinois House Speaker only after he was implicated last year in the sweeping ComEd bribery scandal.
“It’s no secret that I have been the target of vicious attacks by people who sought to diminish my many achievements lifting up the working people of Illinois. The fact is, my motivation for holding elected office has never wavered. I have been resolute in my dedication to public service and integrity, always acting in the interest of the people of Illinois,” Madigan said in a statement.
Despite Madigan’s nearly 40-year reign as Speaker, during which he became seen as the most powerful politician in the state, it had appeared certain for weeks he would not get another term, after 19 House Democrats announced last year that they would not vote to re-elect him due to the ComEd scandal, leaving him short of the 60 votes he needed.
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