Ill. House to convene investigation of Rep. Smith

March 27, 2012

JOHN O'CONNOR, Associated Press

The leader of an Illinois House investigation into alleged misconduct by a lawmaker says she will suggest asking federal prosecutors how much they can reveal about their bribery case against Rep. Derrick Smith.

Democratic Rep. Elaine Nekritz of Northbrook will convene the special investigating committee Tuesday in Springfield.

She wants to know whether U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald's office can provide witnesses or testimony to help the committee determine whether Smith should be disciplined.

A spokesman for Fitzgerald declined comment Monday.

Smith was arrested two weeks ago. Authorities allege the Chicago Democrat accepted a $7,000 bribe in exchange for his endorsement of a state grant request.

Nekritz says if prosecutors can't help the committee will have to determine whether it can recommend discipline against Smith on allegations alone.