Caulkins vows to end culture of abuse in Springfield
Republican state House candidate Dan Caulkins argues that House Speaker Mike Madigan’s time in Springfield should come to an end due to the ongoing sexual harassment scandal that continues to dog his administration.
“The culture of abuse and harassment in Springfield is unacceptable,” Caulkins said in a press release. “Accountability should start at the top, and that means Madigan must answer for the culture he has allowed to flourish.”
Madigan’s longtime chief of staff Tim Mapes recently became the latest senior associate to be caught up in the growing controversy after sexual harassment and bullying allegations lodged against him became a matter of public record. Other individuals with close ties to Madigan who are facing similar allegations include Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie), Madigan’s second in command, and staffers Kevin Quinn and Shaw Decremer, both of whom recently resigned.
“As a small business owner and retired U.S. Army officer, I’ve lived my life respecting others and holding individuals accountable for results and the culture they create," Caulkins, who is running for state representative in the 101st House District, added in the release. "This disturbing pattern of abuse needs to stop, and those in power have shown they won’t willingly put an end to it.”
In 2017, more than 300 women and men, politicians, public officials and political insiders signed off on a letter detailing a pattern of abuse and harassment in Springfield. Around that same time, it was publicly revealed that the office of legislative inspector general, which is empowered to investigate such accusations, had been unfilled for more than two years. At least 27 harassment complaints went uninvestigated during that time.
“Elected officials must be held to a higher standard,” Caulkins said in the release. “We entrust them with making laws and running our government. Failing to protect those under their authority is a major breach of trust and dishonors us all. We deserve leaders who pursue justice, not ones who silence victims. We deserve leaders who will stand up for the truth, not ones who attempt to distract and deflect. I’m going to Springfield to put an end to the culture of abuse and corruption.”