An investigation into possible election fraud is underway in Kankakee County, but it comes as Democrats are making their own counter allegations about the official conducting the investigation.
Kankakee County State's Attorney Jamie Boyd said Tuesday that his office received reports Fri., Sept. 30 of people from Chicago offering gifts in exchange for votes.
He says the complaints allege voters were encouraged to choose Hillary Clinton, Democratic state Rep. Kate Cloonen and unnamed "others." Boyd is a Republican, but he says party has nothing to do with the investigation.
"Really part of this press release, part of this investigation is to get the information to the public so that they know appropriately how to react," he said.
But in a statement, prominent area Democrats, including Cloonen's predecessor, former Rep. Lisa Dugan, say they’d already complained about what they call "illegal and unethical conduct" by the Kankakee County state's attorney as well as the local county clerk's and sheriff's offices.
The Democrats say they notified the federal Justice Department, Illinois' attorney general, and the State Board of Elections — about local officials allegedly harassing and intimidating voters.
Kankakee has been the site of Illinois’ most competitive House district. Cloonen won each of the last two elections by about 100 votes. Attorney General Lisa Madigan and U.S. Attorney James A. Lewis for the Central District of Illinois issued a press release saying that they'd met with Boyd to "ensure a fair, open and legal election."
(Aired Oct. 5. 2016)