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Columnist loses bid seeking credentials

Published: Monday, April 28, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A journalist in residence at the conservative Illinois Policy Institute is appealing a federal court’s tossing out of his lawsuit claiming legislative leaders wrongly denied him a media credential.

U.S. District Judge Colin Bruce dismissed Scott Reeder’s lawsuit against House Speaker Michael Madigan, Senate President John Cullerton and their press secretaries.

Reeder says he was unfairly denied access to each chamber’s press box after a legislative lawyer said he worked for a lobbying group, not an independent news organization.

Reeder writes columns for the Illinois News Network, which is affiliated with the policy institute. His weekly column is published on the Sauk Valley Media Opinion page.

He says the prohibition against lobbying hasn’t been uniformly applied. His lawsuit calls the group a “non-partisan public-policy research and education organization.”

Reeder is appealing to the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

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