A little-remembered 1975 Illinois law might cause a whole lot of trouble in the coming year or two.

The Illinois Abortion Law of 1975 was passed in reaction to the U.S. Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade opinion, which overruled most state laws banning abortion.

It's now becoming clear to people around Richard M. Daley that the Chicago mayor himself might very well have a fat federal target on his back.

Up until last week, most people figured that the mayor would never be personally touched by the ongoing federal probe into his administration.

Last week, I told you about some Republican candidates for governor. We'll finish handicapping the long list of candidates this week.

• Senator Steve Rauschenberger - Apparently, running a strong third in the U.

Now that the state's political season is about to kick into a slightly higher gear, let's take a moment to look at how some of the Republican candidates for governor are stacking up. We'll look at the rest of the pack next week.

Yet another statewide survey shows big trouble for Governor Rod Blagojevich.

The Glengariff Group's poll of 600 registered Illinois voters found Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka leading Blagojevich 33-31.

Representative John Fritchey's spring legislative session was going extraordinarily well ... until he smacked into the past 10 days.

Fritchey (D-Chicago) was the prime motivator behind the unprecedented compromise between pro-life and pro-choice groups earlier this session.

Governor Rod Blagojevich was declared a "winner" by the Chicago media after the spring legislative session ended last week.

Adjourning the session by May 31 while, for a change, getting along with other Democrats, upholding his promise not to raise taxes, and coming up with lots of new programs and comprehensive medical-malpractice reform made him look pretty good in many eyes.

If you're wondering why Governor Rod Blagojevich would flip-flop on his solemn vow to reform the state's massively underfunded pension systems, you don't have to look much farther than the most recent poll.

A survey of 1,000 registered Illinois voters taken a week ago showed Republican state Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka leading Democrat Blagojevich by almost 10 percentage points.

Last year, House Speaker Michael Madigan sent a clear message to Governor Rod Blagojevich when he brought all of the governor's highly unpopular tax and fee hikes to the floor for up-or-down votes.

The governor's bills all lost by overwhelming margins, and Blagojevich was forced to back down from his demand that Madigan pass his proposals.

Illinois Republican leaders who attended a recent Will County retreat with Karl Rove were a little taken aback when the White House political guru talked excitedly about bringing Vice President Dick Cheney into Illinois to campaign on behalf of the Republican candidate for Illinois attorney general.

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