September 17, 2017 — She was the first female to be elected Illinois Attorney-General, and some thought Lisa Madigan would become the first female to be elected Governor of Illinois. Now, that seems unlikely to ever happen, as the Attorney-General who was first elected in 2002, announced last Friday that she will not seek another term.
Statement issued my Attorney-General Lisa Madigan, September 15, 2017
“After serving as Illinois Attorney General for over 14 years, today I am announcing that I will not seek reelection.
“I still have much work to do on many important issues, and I will continue to give my best to the people of Illinois and the Office of Attorney General every day through the end of my term in January 2019.
“As I look ahead, I believe that the end of my fourth term as Attorney General will be the right time for me to seek a new challenge. I have dedicated my career to helping people. That will continue to be my focus, and I am looking forward to finding new ways to do that with the passion that I have brought to my work as Attorney General.
“I have no doubt that having the opportunity to serve the people of Illinois as their Attorney General will forever be a highlight of my life. I thank the people of Illinois for placing their trust in me, and I want to thank all of those who have supported my work in elected office.
“As Attorney General, I’ve fought every day for the people of Illinois. I am particularly proud of:
- Generating over $13 billion in revenue for the State;
- Successfully arguing on behalf of Illinois in the U.S. Supreme Court;
- Recovering over $3.2 billion in relief for homeowners, communities, and state pension funds from the mortgage crisis;
- Saving Illinois utility ratepayers over $2.1 billion;
- Helping over 43,000 identity theft victims remove over $29 million in fraudulent charges affecting credit reports and financial accounts;
- Enforcing the environmental laws, fighting for strong regulations to combat global climate change, and advocating for environmental justice for communities impacted by pollution;
- Strengthening the Freedom of Information Act and the Open Meetings Act and creating the first-ever Public Access Counselor in Illinois;
- Legislating better protections for people living in nursing homes;
- Shutting down predatory for-profit colleges and securing debt relief for their former students;
- Exposing the fraudulent practices of student lenders and fighting for borrowers’ rights;
- Leading the nation in reforming the way law enforcement responds to sexual assault crimes, including training over 1,500 nurses to become Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners;
- Championing a law to require Illinois colleges and universities to respond to sexual violence on campus, protect survivors’ rights and provide a fair and balanced process to address complaints;
- Successfully advocating to amend the Illinois Constitution to strengthen the rights of crime victims;
- Overseeing the Illinois Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC), which has been involved in the arrest of over 1,500 sexual predators, and investigating and arresting the most prolific child pornography traders in Illinois;
- Educating over 573,500 parents and students on internet safety and 23,500 law enforcement members on investigating cybercrimes;
- Prosecuting over 500 cases to ensure the most dangerous sex offenders are not released into communities;
- Revoking the State’s 10th casino license,
- Successfully prosecuting local, county and state public officials across Illinois for misconduct; and
- Initiating the State investigation of former Governor Blagojevich.
“Above all, I am proud of the countless ways that my office works every day to help people and protect their rights.
“I attribute our success to the hard work of the dedicated and talented lawyers and staff who I have the pleasure of working with in the Office of the Attorney General. I look forward to continuing my work as Attorney General and then taking on new, challenging opportunities at the end of my term.”
About the Office of Attorney General
The Illinois Attorney General is the State’s chief legal officer, protecting the interests of the State and the people of Illinois. The Attorney General runs one of the largest law firms in Illinois, employing approximately 750 people, including approximately 385 attorneys, and managing an annual budget of over $80 million.
As the State’s lawyer, the Attorney General represents the State in all litigation in both the trial and appellate courts, handling a government defense caseload of nearly 31,000 cases, and provides legal opinions to government officials. The Attorney General’s Office protects consumers from unfair and deceptive practices, responding to over 200,000 consumer inquiries per year; provides assistance, including mediation, to healthcare consumers struggling to obtain coverage from their insurance companies; fights on behalf of consumers to ensure fair utility rates; and assists veterans and active duty service members to protect their rights. The Attorney General’s Office also regulates over 35,000 charities in Illinois. Through the work of the Public Interest Division, the Attorney General’s Office enforces the antitrust laws and the tobacco master settlement; protects the civil rights of the people of Illinois, as well as the rights of workers and individuals with disabilities; and represents the interests of the people of Illinois in all whistleblower cases seeking to recover public funds lost through fraud against the state. To protect the environment and public health, the Office enforces the environmental laws through civil and criminal cases and by advocating to strengthen laws and regulations at the State and federal level. The Office helps crime victims and their families to recover from the trauma of violent crimes by reviewing and handling over 3,000 crime victim compensation cases per year and distributes over $5 million in grant funding through the Violent Crime Victims Assistance Program to support the work of victim services providers in non-profit organizations and prosecutor’s offices. In its prosecutorial work, the Attorney General’s Office provides trial assistance to State’s Attorney’s Office’s; enforces the Sexually Violent Persons Act; investigates and prosecutes high tech crimes; prosecutes Medicaid Fraud, financial crimes and multi-county drug offenses; and runs the Illinois Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. The Office also represents the people of Illinois in all appeals of criminal cases in the Illinois and U.S. Supreme Courts.