politics

Carl Nelson / WNIJ

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner says 15th District Congressman John Shimkus can play a role in promoting his “Turnaround Agenda” in Washington.

The governor is campaigning with Shimkus today in a six-city tour of the 15th Congressional District that began in Mahomet Monday morning.

Rauner calls Shimkus a model for a party that seeks to help small business owners and farm families. The governor says Shimkus has helped Republicans in their fight against longtime Democratic House Speaker.

Durbin.senate.gov

The senior U.S. Senator from Illinois says the nation is locking up too many people for far too long. He hopes to change that soon.

Democrat Dick Durbin has worked with Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa on the sentencing reform and corrections act.

Durbin says the act would ease mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses that don't involve guns, gangs, or violence. He says he believes the U.S. overreacted with the war on drugs and other "get tough on crime" measures.

Paul Simon Public Policy Institute

A majority of Illinois voters do not believe the state is headed in the right direction. 

That's according to a new poll from the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute.

When 1,000 voters were asked if they believe Illinois is on the "right track," 84 percent of them answered "no."

That comes as Illinois is in the midst of a historic budget impasse, which may have affected voters' opinion of Gov. Bruce Rauner.

Illinois House Democrats / juliana-stratton.com

An attack ad showing the old mug shot of Illinois state representative Ken Dunkin is the subject of a contentious debate.

Incumbent Ken Dunkin is on the outs with his fellow Democrats. That’s because he’s the only Democrat to side with the Republican Governor on some big issues.

At a South Loop debate last night, Dunkin asked his opponent how she could be for criminal justice reform but still hammer him on a mug shot from his past.

Susan Walsh / AP

In this election year… each side of the political aisle had different takes on President Obama’s final State of the Union Address, and what it could mean for his legacy. 

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin calls President Obama’s address the kind given by a man tested by conflict, and served as a rebuttal to much of the rhetoric in the GOP race to succeed him. Like the president, the Illinois Democratic Senator is downplaying the threat ISIS poses to this country’s future.  

Lawmakers Suggest Bill To Recall Chicago Mayor

Dec 10, 2015

Two Chicago Democrats are proposing legislation that would allow city voters to recall their mayor.

Democratic Rep. La Shawn Ford filed legislation Wednesday outlining a lengthy process for a city special election. Ford tells Chicago's WBBM-TV that people have lost confidence in Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

State Representative Mary Flowers says the recall bill probably couldn’t apply to Emanuel, since it hasn’t been passed and he’s already elected.

Flowers represents the Gresham neighborhood on the city’s South Side, where she says Emanuel hasn’t brought enough jobs.

Illinois House Republicans

The newest Illinois state legislator has been sworn in.

Sara Wojcicki-Jiminez is a Republican from Springfield. She was previously an aide to first lady Diana Rauner and a spokeswoman for the House Republican caucus.

"One of the things that I learned on staff is that I should definitely keep this brief,” she said. “So I am very humbled by the opportunity. I am honored. I look forward to working with everybody in our caucus, and for our friends across the aisle."

WUIS

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner is rebuffing a bid by the White House to assuage concerns over Syrian refugees.

Rauner is one of about 30 governors nationwide who said no to taking in people fleeing war-ravaged Syria. Rauner, a Republican, cited security concerns following the terror attacks in Paris.

"What matters is a coordinated, cooperative, highly communicative effort at a national scale to protect the people of America against terrorists," he said in November.

Flickr: West Midlands Police / Photo cropped from original

A Chicago Democrat says he hopes a new state law will prevent the very situation that’s playing out over the death of a 17-year-old killed by a Chicago police officer.

The new law sets standards for officers who wear body cameras.

State representative Elgie Sims says it’s significant, given the release of a police dashboard video of the shooting death of Laquan McDonald.

“It only reinforces what we did,” Sims said.

Senate.gov

Illinois U.S. Senator Dick Durbin is calling on Governor Bruce Rauner to meet with Syrian refugee families.

“These are poor people who are trying to escape ISIS,” Durbin said. “If the governor would just take a few moments, his idea about these refugees might change.” 

Rauner last week said the state should temporarily stop accepting refugees following the terrorist attacks in Paris. A spokesman for the governor says Rauner is frustrated over the federal government’s refusal to address specific security concerns and requests for information.

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