Illinois House Republican leader Jim Durkin criticized President Donald Trump on Tuesday for commuting the sentence of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, The Hill reported.
"We have a massive federal investigation into corruption in the state of Illinois and this action distracts and also dilutes what I think is the proper role of the Department of Justice – to root out corruption," Durkin said, according to Mark Maxwell TV.
Blagojevich had served about half of a 14-year sentence on federal corruption charges.
"I think it's wrong and it sends a bad message to people in this country that, you know what, you don't exactly have to pay your debt to society," Durkin said.
He emphasized, Blagojevich was "rogue on steroids. He was a person that didn't care about the state of Illinois, he cared about his own ambition. He abused the office and the legislature did the appropriate thing, the federal courts did the right thing. Not only at the district court level but through the appellate court and also the U.S. Supreme Court, which said his sentence was appropriate."
Durkin said, Trump needs to explain his reasoning to the people of Illinois, who "saw a governor destroy the integrity of this office but also did some terrible things to the finances of this state," adding the president's decision shows "he's not concerned about the state of Illinois for next November."
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