CHICAGO (WBBM/CBS) — Scott Lee Cohen can’t get the political bug out of his system.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Bob Roberts reports, Cohen wants to become the replacement for retired State Sen. Rickey Hendon.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Bob Roberts reports

Cohen approached Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, who chairs the panel of ward committeemen who will choose Hendon’s replacement.

Cohen, a millionaire pawnbroker, spent millions on his campaign as an independent for governor, but drew only 4 percent of the vote.

Before that, he won the popular vote for lieutenant governor in the Democratic primary last year, but he was hounded off the ticket amid revelations of domestic violence. Sheila Simon was later chosen to replace him as Gov. Pat Quinn’s running mate.

But White says he is waiting until Monday to find out why Cohen is interested in Hendon’s old seat – not that Cohen didn’t try to tell him.

“He wanted to have a private conversation with me, and I said that I want a level playing field; that he would have to present his credentials to me, and that we would listen to him at our hearings on Monday,” White said.

White says at least a dozen other candidates will also present their credentials on Monday; possibly as many as 20.

Hendon, who had been the state Senate Assistant Majority Leader, resigned last month. Ald. Walter Burnett (27th) said at the time that Hendon was disappointed that his ally, Patricia Horton, did not win the race for city Clerk, and that he was done with politics altogether.

Four Democratic ward committeemen will be responsible for picking Hendon’s replacement – White (27th), Ald. Sharon Denise Dixon (24th), Ald. Robert Fioretti (2nd), and Cook County Board Finance Committee Chairman John Daley (11th.) Their votes will be weighted according to how many votes Hendon won in their wards, the Chicago Reader’s Ben Joravsky explained.

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