Lang: 'From beginning to end the allegations are absurd'

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) - Maryann Loncar told members of the press on Thursday that Rep. Lou Lang is her abuser. 

 Loncar accused Lang of inappropriate behavior. She also accused him of degrading, blackmailing women and making threats. 

In one instance, she said Lang put his hand on her lower back in an uncomfortable manor and asked her if her husband knew how lucky he was. 

Lang was a sponsor of the ERA and is a member of the Legislative Ethics Commission. 

"This morning I watched Rep. Lou Lang give a speech to stand up for the rights of women. It made me really ill. You can't degrade a blackball woman while at the same time being a champion for equal rights for said women," said Loncar. 

She said the acts happened while she advocated for a bill that he sponsored. Most of the behavior occurred at Lincoln Lounge and Globe Room in the Capitol. 

During another time Lang said to her ex-husband "I can help you bury her if you want."

She added that she received threats ahead of her Thursday announcement and called for an independent investigation.

"The moral compass in Springfield is broken," she said. 

Denise Rotheimer said she is proud of Loncar for coming forward. "She has everything to lose for speaking out," she said. 

Lang decides which cases the special legislative inspector general gets his permission to investigate. Lang allowed 27 complaints against legislators to sit on a shelf and collect dust while the statute of limitations expired. 

Lang was at the Capitol on Thursday, but remained out of sight - not even stepping foot on the House floor to cast his vote on the budget. 

After the press conference ended, Lang released the following statement.

“Let me say this. My original sponsorship of medical marijuana legislation in 2013 was focused on the patients who came to my office, some in wheel chairs. Some were too ill to come. The sick children, the ill men and women were my priority. And the patients remain my priority with each new iteration of the law.

My priority was not helping those seeking to profit off medical marijuana, like, Ms. Loncar, who wanted a cannabis dispensary license for her company, Patient’s Health Center, but, apparently failed at her money-making effort to secure a dispensary license. Because I refused to let the medical marijuana profiteers trump the interests of patients, I made some people mad. So be it.

Therefore, I have submitted a formal request to the Special Legislative Inspector General to begin an immediate investigation. Additionally, after consultation with Speaker Madigan, I have decided, in order to maintain the integrity of the Legislative Ethics Commission and the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules as well as to avoid distraction from the agenda of the House Democratic Caucus, to submit my resignation from the Commission, JCAR, and from my post as House Deputy Majority Leader.”

During a press conference held by Lang after the accusations in turn accused Loncar of seeking to profit off of medical marijuana. 

Lang said he stepped down as advised. so this can get investigated. 

"She, Maryann Loncar did not get what she wanted, and she blames me," said Lang. 

Rep. Feigenholtz said "In all the years I've been here I've had many differences with Lou Lang...and very often behind closed doors we have worked out our differences. He has served me as a great mentor."

Madigan offered his own response to the allegations. 

"Representative Lang has already requested that the legislative inspector general immediately conduct a full investigation of these allegations, and I’m hopeful she will conduct this investigation quickly and thoroughly," he said. 

Watch the full press conference from Loncar and Lang below: 

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