When the director of the Illinois Board of Elections, Steve Sandvoss, was targeted in an online extortion attempt last week, he reportedly took the matter directly to the Illinois State Police.

That was a logical response, except for one fact: Extortion is legal under Illinois law.

That’s right. In a state that has suffered a generations-long struggle against public corruption, extortion is not prohibited by the Illinois criminal code.

Well-meaning public servants have tried to criminalize extortion but failed so far. When state Attorney General Kwame Raoul was still in the state Senate, he won approval for an extortion bill three times, beginning in 2015. The last two times, the vote was unanimous.

Read more at the chicagotribune.com

David Greising

David Greising is the president and chief executive of the Better Government Association, joining the BGA in 2018. For nearly a century, the BGA has fought for honest and effective government through investigative...