Rauner backs Chicago mayor recall proposal

 
 
Updated 1/4/2016 2:36 PM
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  • Gov. Bruce Rauner and Lt. Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti hold a news conference in Oak Brook on Monday. Rauner said afterward he'd back a proposal that would allow the recall of a Chicago mayor.

      Gov. Bruce Rauner and Lt. Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti hold a news conference in Oak Brook on Monday. Rauner said afterward he'd back a proposal that would allow the recall of a Chicago mayor. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

Gov. Bruce Rauner said Monday that he'd sign legislation allowing for the recall of the Chicago mayor, though he stressed that he doesn't think it would immediately apply to Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

The recall proposal came from Chicago Democratic state Rep. LaShawn Ford in the wake of criticism Emanuel has received over the police shooting of Laquan McDonald. At an unrelated event in Oak Brook Monday, Rauner said he has not studied the bill, but, based on what he knows about it, he would be in favor.

"I'm broadly supportive of the recall concept, in general, for all elected officials in the state," he said. A broader bill "would be the best bill to pass."

Illinois law provides for the recall of governors by voters, but Ford's proposal would add the mayor's post in the case that two aldermen and 88,000 city voters signed a petition.

"I also think it's important for us to understand what our attorneys have told me," Rauner said. "If a recall bill passed, it could not, or would not, apply to sitting elected officials. It could only apply to folks elected in the future. That's what I've been told."

David Melton, executive director of the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, told The Associated Press that legislation directed at a sitting official could cause legal problems for an effort to recall Emanuel.

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