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Case Name Shakman v. Democratic Organization of Cook County FA-IL-0008
Docket / Court 1:69-cv-02145 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Speech and Religious Freedom
Case Summary
In October 1969, plaintiffs, an independent candidate and his supporters, filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against the Democratic Organization of Cook County, the City of Chicago, and various government officers at the state and local ... read more >
In October 1969, plaintiffs, an independent candidate and his supporters, filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against the Democratic Organization of Cook County, the City of Chicago, and various government officers at the state and local levels under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, asked the court to enjoin the extensive patronage system of Chicago politics. They argued that this system violated their rights under the First, Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and of certain civil rights statutes.

Specifically, plaintiffs alleged that their constitutional rights as a candidate, and as taxpayers and voters, were violated by the defendants' practice of coercing employees as a condition of keeping their jobs to contribute money to various Democratic organizations and candidates. Defendants had also allegedly coerced employees into doing political and campaign work both during their regular working hours and on their own time for candidates endorsed by the organization and its affiliates. Finally, defendants had allegedly coerced employees into voting for specific party candidates. Plaintiffs asserted that these coercive practices directly resulted in the defeat of independent candidates and perpetuated the dominance of the Democratic Party in Cook County.

On November 6, 1969, District Court Judge Abraham Marovitz granted defendants' motion to dismiss. 310 F.Supp. 1398 (1969). The district court found that plaintiffs did not have standing to assert the alleged violations of the rights of employees and that the complaint did not allege facts sufficient to demonstrate injury. Plaintiffs appealed and filed an amended complaint joining additional Democratic defendants and numerous Republican defendants also engaged in the patronage system. On October 23, 1970, Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Thomas Fairchild reversed the district court's decision and remanded the case for further proceedings. 435 F.2d 267 (1970). Defendants appealed to the Supreme Court, which denied certiorari.

Over the course of the next couple of years, the parties engaged in a series of negotiations resulting in a consent order entered into by the majority of the defendants. The order was approved by District Court Judge Marovitz on May 5, 1972. 356 F.Supp. 1241 (1972). The order prohibited compulsory or coerced political financial contributions and permanently enjoined politically motivated firings, demotions, transfers, or other punishment of government employees. This consent order came to be known "the Shakman decree."

Litigation continued for several years involving those defendants that declined to enter into the aforementioned consent agreement. On September 24, 1979, District Court Judge Nicholas Bua issued a ruling concluding that the patronage system infringed upon the plaintiffs' rights protected by the First and Fourteenth Amendments. 481 F.Supp. 1315 (1979). Defendants appealed. On August 5, 1987, Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Kenneth Ripple reversed the district court, finding that plaintiffs did not have standing. 829 F.2d 1387 (1987). The circuit court found that a number of very speculative inferences would be required to connect plaintiffs' alleged injury with activities attributed to the remaining defendants. However, the circuit court explicitly noted that nothing in the holding could be construed as affecting the continued validity of the Shakman decree. Plaintiffs appealed to the Supreme Court, which denied certiorari.

Over the next two decades, litigation continued with periodic revivals for enforcement of the consent agreements and for seeking damages or lawyers' fees. Also, consent agreements, like that entered into in 1972, were periodically made with various defendants. On August 28, 2006, plaintiffs filed an application to hold Cook County and other government personnel in civil contempt for violation of the consent agreements. A series of negotiations between the parties began that month and a settlement was reached. As part of the settlement, on November 29, 2006, District Court Judge Wayne R. Andersen, appointed a compliance administrator in an effort to ensure future compliance with the decree.

Litigation regarding compliance with the Shakman decrees continues in a wide range of circumstances as of November 18, 2014.

Richard Jolly - 09/21/2014


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Freedom of speech/association
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
General
Disparate Treatment
Pattern or Practice
Voting
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) City of Chicago
Democratic Organization of Cook County
Republican County and Central Committee of Cook County
Plaintiff Description An independent political candidate in the election for delegates to the 1970 Illinois Constitutional Convention and his supporters.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Damages
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration 1972 - n/a
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
1:69-cv-02145 (N.D. Ill.) 09/12/2014
FA-IL-0008-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Exempt Titles List
FA-IL-0008-0018.pdf | Detail
Memorandum Opinion Dismissing Case [1969] 11/06/1969 (310 F.Supp. 1398) (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0019.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion [7th Circuit Remanding Case] 10/23/1970 (435 F.2d 267)
FA-IL-0008-0001.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judgment District Court [1972] 05/05/1972 (356 F.Supp. 1241) (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
District Court Opinion [1979] 09/24/1979 (481 F.Supp. 1315) (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0020.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Judgment as to the City of Chicago and Its Mayor 06/21/1983 (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0003.pdf | Detail
Opinion [7th Circuit Reversing and Remanding] 08/05/1987 (829 F.2d 1387)
FA-IL-0008-0004.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Opinion [7th Circuit Reversing and Remanding] 01/31/2005 (396 F.3d 843)
FA-IL-0008-0005.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Application to Hold the City of Chicago and Its Mayor in Civil Contempt for Violations of the Court Orders 07/26/2005
FA-IL-0008-0006.pdf | Detail
Order Appointing Court Monitor and Counsel 08/02/2005 (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0007.pdf | Detail
First Report of Monitor 09/06/2005
FA-IL-0008-0008.pdf | Detail
Second Amended Complaint 01/11/2006
FA-IL-0008-0022.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [Granting Defendant City's Motion] 02/07/2006 (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0009.pdf | Detail
Plaintiffs' Application to Hold Cook County and Certain Named Individuals in Civil Contempt for Violation of Court Orders 08/28/2006
FA-IL-0008-0021.pdf | Detail
Agreed Settlement Order and Accord Summary of Proceedings 03/21/2007 (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0010.pdf | Detail
Exhibit A [Preliminary Approval Order] 03/21/2007
FA-IL-0008-0011.pdf | Detail
Accord Claim Procedures 03/21/2007
FA-IL-0008-0012.pdf | Detail
Memorandum, Opinion and Order [Denying Motion to Intervene] 05/18/2007 (2007 WL 1468721) (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0023.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Policy and Guidelines for Use of Acting Up 08/07/2007
FA-IL-0008-0013.pdf | Detail
Monitor's Report and Recommendations Regarding City of Chicago's Proposed "New Plan" 09/27/2007
FA-IL-0008-0014.pdf | Detail
December 18, 2007 Report of the Monitor 12/18/2007
FA-IL-0008-0015.pdf | Detail
Order [Affirming Monitor's Authority] 04/29/2011 (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0016.pdf | Detail
City of Chicago Hiring Plan 06/23/2011
FA-IL-0008-0017.pdf | Detail
Judges Andersen, Wayne R. (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0007 | FA-IL-0008-0009 | FA-IL-0008-0023
Bua, Nicholas John (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0003 | FA-IL-0008-0020
Coffey, John Louis (Seventh Circuit)
FA-IL-0008-0005
Cummings, Walter Joseph (Seventh Circuit)
FA-IL-0008-0001
Eschbach, Jesse Ernest (Seventh Circuit, N.D. Ind.)
FA-IL-0008-0004
Fairchild, Thomas Edward (Seventh Circuit)
FA-IL-0008-0001
Flaum, Joel Martin (Seventh Circuit, N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0004
Kanne, Michael Stephen (Seventh Circuit, N.D. Ind.)
FA-IL-0008-0005
Marovitz, Abraham Lincoln (N.D. Ill.)
FA-IL-0008-0002 | FA-IL-0008-0019
Ripple, Kenneth Francis (Seventh Circuit)
FA-IL-0008-0004 | FA-IL-0008-0005
Schenkier, Sidney I. (N.D. Ind.) [Magistrate]
FA-IL-0008-0016 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Swygert, Luther Merritt (Seventh Circuit, N.D. Ind.)
FA-IL-0008-0001
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Dawson, Kay L. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Feldman, Edward W (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0021 | FA-IL-0008-0022 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Fross, Roger R. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0006 | FA-IL-0008-0010 | FA-IL-0008-0021
Harris, Katherine Heid (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Hays, Brian Ignatius (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0021 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Huyck, William (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0006 | FA-IL-0008-0021
Maggio, Timothy (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Perlstadt, Roger J (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0021 | FA-IL-0008-0022 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Petrovic, Ana D. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Plotkin, Gabriel Bankier (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Shakman, Michael L. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0006 | FA-IL-0008-0021 | FA-IL-0008-0022 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Vars, Frederick E. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0021 | FA-IL-0008-0022 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Waskowski, Adam T (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Allen, Deborah Joyce (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Avendano, Naomi Ann (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Bensinger, Virginia Brette (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Blanchard, Patrick Malone (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Brennan, Daniel H. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Brennwald, James Quinn (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Connolly, Sean P. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Convery, James J (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Driscoll, Patrick T. Jr. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Fahner, Tyrone C. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0010 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Fallon, Patricia Maria (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Fencik, Joan Mary (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Ferguson, Tiffany Mary (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Finnegan, Sheila Marie (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Friebus, David Michael (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Kalin, Lilianna Maria (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Kaplan, Rachel (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Kertez, Jay Michael (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Leary, Shandra Lynn (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Mackoff, Myron F. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
McCarthy, Brian Dennis (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Meador, Lisa Marie (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Nohos, Therese King (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Nowinski, Thomas Edward (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Patton, Stephen Ray (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Pechous, Donald J. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Pokorny, William R. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Prayor, Sharon Elizabeth (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Pugh, Stephen H. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Pullos, James Charles (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Ray, Kent Stephen (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Rocks, Patrick J. Jr. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Scott, Sally J. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Seery, David (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Shannon, Robert (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Stewart, Stephanie L. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Stratton, Brent Douglas (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Swabb, Timothy L. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Other Lawyers Amlot, Tiffany L. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Brennan, Noelle Christine (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0008 | FA-IL-0008-0014 | FA-IL-0008-0015 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Brown, Sarah Megan (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Burke, Helen (Michigan)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Cherian, Limo T. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Choi, Soo (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Cleveland, Matthew James (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Cox, Susan (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0008 | FA-IL-0008-0015
Darling, Leslie Michelle (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Davis, Beth A (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Davis, Jonneida Alexis (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Deady, Patrick Edward (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Fitzpatrick, Peter (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Gagliardo, Joseph (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Georges, Mara Stacy (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0010 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Grapsas, Nicholas George (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Hogan, Edward M. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Holley, Charles J. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Johnson, C. Richard (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Kaszak, Nancy L. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Kemmer, Randolph T. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Kralovec, Michael Joseph (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Kurtz, Dana L. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Ladner, Tracey Renee (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Li, Ted Shuya Petrovic (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Luchtenburg, Russell J. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
McClain, Sara (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Monte, Ines M (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0008 | FA-IL-0008-0014 | FA-IL-0008-0015
Murray, James (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Naber, Jennifer (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Plotkin, Robert (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Pryor, Matthew David (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Robinson, Keino Richard (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Schwallie, Lucy D. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Sholder, Iris Ellen (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Siner, Jonathan P. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Slayden, Daniel Patrick (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Theobald, Edward R. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Thompson, Hubert O. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0022 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Torshen, James H. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Vogel, Mark J. (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000
Ward, Torrick (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-0013 | FA-IL-0008-9000
Welsh, Kelly Raymond (Illinois)
FA-IL-0008-9000

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