Our Next Senator: ‘I Swear I Didn't Offer a Bribe'

There may soon be a new qualification required of Illinois senators: promising they didn't offer bribes to win their seats.

State Rep. Jim Durkin, a Republican, submitted a pledge he wants included in legislation that would set up a special election for the vacant Senate post.

Durkin's pledge states, in part, "I have not made, nor caused to be made upon my behalf, nor have I been directly or indirectly solicited to perform, any payment, promise of payment, inducement or favor in any form ... in exchange for consideration of the appointment to the vacant United States Senate seat for the State of Illinois."  [Read the full pledge]

Durkin sent his proposal to House Speaker Michael Madigan on Wednesday.

There has been no word on whether Durkin's pledge will actually be included in the bill. And even if it is, there are rumblings around Springfield that some lawmakers don't want a special election for the Senate post - they still want a senior state official to appoint the next senator, despite the Blagojevich scandal.

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