Harsh statements and public and private threats by Senate President Emil Jones over the past two years have prompted Senate Republican Leader Frank Watson to reach out to some labor leaders. Jones has been sharply critical of the construction trades unions, accusing them of freezing out African Americans and Latinos from apprenticeship programs and job sites.
Governor Rod Blagojevich's proposal last week to more than double the number of gaming slots at riverboat casinos in Illinois will require an enormous amount of leadership to become a reality. Here's the rundown of the pitfalls: • Almost all gaming bills eventually become giant legislative Christmas trees, and then usually perish because of their gross obesity.
In the race for Rock Island mayor, challenger David Kimbell is hitting some popular municipal positions: better schools, lower crime, and lower taxes. But in terms of reconciling different components of his platform, he can't explain how he'd save the $1 million to $3 million he'd like to while still finding more money for police officers.
There are eight names on the list of candidates for the Moline school board, and only three will earn seats on the board. He might not win, but pay attention to Bryn Lawrence. He's a first-year student at Augustana College running for the board of a district in which he was a student last year.
With Stan Leach choosing not to run for re-election this year after 12 years in office, a pair of city-council members are seeking to replace him. Although the election is nonpartisan, there's a clear choice among the candidates politically.
She'd give him a real run for his money. Illinois Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka has a new poll that shows her trailing Governor Rod Blagojevich by just three points in a head-to-head matchup. Using just about any test, the numbers are real.
Dan Hynes is slowly working his way back to the top. Hynes was once the brightest of Illinois' young political stars. After winning his first statewide race for Illinois comptroller in 1998, the then-30-year-old Democrat's future looked limitless.
Almost half of the entire Illinois House has signed up to sponsor a pro-life bill this year. The proposal is an exact replica of a federal law that ostensibly protects infants who are "born alive" during botched abortion procedures.
Senate President Emil Jones was not treated too well during his 10 years as Senate minority leader. The majority Republicans locked him out of the room and killed most of his members' bills. His fellow Democrat, House Speaker Michael Madigan, treated Jones like a junior associate, occasionally helping him out, but not doing all that much to backstop him in the process.
One of the problems with applying "appearance of impropriety" rules to Illinois and Chicago politics is that most of the players are swimming in a very small political pond. We're constantly treated to stories about how this or that political insider connected with Chicago Mayor Richard Daley is representing a company that just landed a sweet city contract.