The Illinois Republican gubernatorial candidate who has been accused of sexual harassment charges ordered a taxpayer-funded investigation which he said would clear his name. But now the candidate, Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford, is refusing to release the findings of the investigation.
A spokesman for Rutherford, who is one of four candidates in the GOP primary field, said the decision was based on both “advice of counsel” and “pending litigation” according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
Per Rutherford’s order, Illinois paid Ron Braver & Associates $250 an hour to conduct the independent investigation into the sexual harassment charges. Ron Braver & Associates’ investigation included questioning employees of Rutherford, according to the Chicago newspaper.
A former top aide, Edmund Michalowski, sued Rutherford for sexual harassment. The Illinois state treasurer was formally served the lawsuit on Thursday, according to Rutherford’s lawyer Peter Andjelkovich.
“Nothing’s being hidden and no negative inference should be taken. It’s the process. … There is a federal lawsuit that has been filed — under federal rules, we are not supposed to be talking to the whole world about the case — we are supposed to be talking about it in the courtroom,” Andjelkovich said.
Michalowski is questioning why Rutherford is refusing to release the report.
“If the report wasn’t damaging, why wouldn’t he release it?” he told the Sun-Times in a separate interview.
Earlier in the week news broke that Rutherford had stayed multiple times in overnight hotels and a Chicago apartment with another employee, his executive assistant. Rutherford said he and the employee did that to save money.
“We double-bunk in the campaign,” Rutherford said. “We always double-bunk when we can. Totally as a cost-saving measure.”