In another sign that the Better Government Association is committed to serving as a civic watchdog throughout Illinois, the organization recently partnered with The (Alton) Telegraph on a story about a U.S. Senate write-in candidate who is being investigated for possibly forging petition signatures. Whether or not there was a crime committed, the BGA points to the case as a cautionary tale for all political candidates, particularly as Chicago gears up for a heated mayoral election.
The BGA is an 87-year-old, Chicago-based non-profit dedicated to using investigative journalism to root out waste, corruption and fraud in government. While the Chicago region has been the traditional area of focus, the BGA has beefed up its investigative staff with a renewed dedication to monitoring public institutions and officials across Illinois.
“The story published in The (Alton) Telegraph should send a message to Downstate residents: we’re looking out for your interests, too,” Andy Shaw, BGA executive director, said. “This is the first of many projects we’re planning outside of the Chicago region.”
The Alton story involves Shon-tiyon “Santiago” Horton, who ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Senate seat held previously by President Obama. Horton is being investigated by the State Police for allegedly forging signatures on the petitions he circulated in a failed bid to get on the Illinois ballot.
The Illinois State Board of Elections flagged the questionable signatures, referring the case to prosecutors.