Amanda Vinicky

Read Amanda's "The Players" blog.

Amanda Vinicky has covered Illinois politics and government for WUIS and the Illinois Public Radio network since 2006.  Highlights include reporting on the historic impeachment and removal from office of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich, winning a national award for her coverage of Illinois' electric rate fight as a result of deregulation, and following Illinois' delegations to the Democratic and Republican national political conventions in '08 and '12.  

Though she's full-time with WUIS now, she previously interned with the station in graduate school; she graduated from the University of Illinois Springfield's Public Affairs Reporting program in '05.  She also holds degrees in journalism and political science from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign. 

Amanda is insatiably curious, so please reach out to her and get in touch if you notice something interesting going on at the Capitol! She can be reached at (217) 206-6019 or (773) 217-0316. If she's not in the statehouse bureau, you can usually find Amanda tweeting, dining at a local restaurant, taking a jog around Springfield or Chicago or practicing yoga. 

WUIS

A trio of football players from the 1985 Super Bowl Chicago Bears will help kick off the Illinois State Fair next week.

    

Dan Hampton, Otis Wilson, and Steve McMichael are the grand marshals for the twilight parade Thursday (8/11) evening. 

Fair manager Kevin Gordon says then they’ll play a free concert as part of the band “The Chicago 6.”

“After the concert, they will come down off stage and we also will have a free autograph signing with them. So we obviously encourage everyone to come out,” Gordon said.

Illinois lawmakers' failure to pass a complete state budget means the state is missing out on roughly $31 million it could have earned through investments, according to an analysis from Treasurer Mike Frerichs.

He says that’s despite the enactment of a six-month spending plan.

"We don't know what's going to be needed come January," Frerichs said. "That limits our investment opportunities. We're still making money for the people of the state, but we're bringing in less money than we could if we had a more functional government."

While leading Democrats were in Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention last week, Republican Governor Bruce Rauner was holding press conferences exalting term limits.

“We need fresh ideas, new people, new thinkin’ term limits will get it done,” Rauner said.

But the state’s longest-serving legislator -- Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan -- says his lengthy tenure is beneficial. It put him in position to serve as a check against Rauner’s controversial agenda.

Dick Durbin said today at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia that he’s focusing on the presidential race, and will make an announcement when the election’s over.

“Regardless of whether I run for another office anytime in my life, I am outraged by what I see in our state. I go down to southern Illinois and have Republican mayors tell me the devastating impact of this budget impact on their local economy. Losing jobs, people losing value in their homes, it is unacceptable.”

  U.S. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez says unions are a crucial​ part of establishing a successful middle class. He’s against plans like those promoted by Illinois Republican Governor Bruce Rauner.

“These efforts to do away with collective bargaining, and prevailing wage, and the right-to-work-for-less movement is something that I think is frontal assault on the middle class. And that’s why I applaud the efforts of those in Illinois who understand that when unions succeed, Illinois succeeds," he said.  

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