Politics

Political news

Susan Stephens / WNIJ

The partisan divide in Springfield seems wider than ever as Illinoisans brace for the start of another fiscal year without a budget. Lawmakers adjourned Wednesday without a spending plan. In this week’s Friday Forum, WNIJ’s Susan Stephens asked Rockford University Economics and Political Science Professor Bob Evans how we ended up here again.

Pres. Donald Trump has been in office for 100 days -- and one week. He promised to shake things up in Washington. How do his policies and actions at the top trickle down to local political organizations? We asked a couple of local party leaders for this week’s Friday Forum.

           

Paul Stoddard chairs the DeKalb County Democratic Party and Jim Thompson is Winnebago County’s Republican Party chairman.

 

Obama Foundation

Former President Barack Obama says he envisions his future presidential center as an institution where the next generation of young leaders will be trained.

Obama spoke Wednesday at a community forum in Chicago where renderings of the center and library were unveiled.

Obama estimates the center will be finished in four years, but says programming will start this year. He announced that he and former first Lady Michelle Obama personally will donate $2 million to summer job efforts in Chicago.

chicagocitytreasurer.com

Chicago Treasurer Kurt Summers says he will not run for Illinois governor, despite seeking the endorsement of Cook County Democratic Party leaders earlier this year.

Instead, he’s endorsing one of the Democrats hoping to unseat Republican incumbent Bruce Rauner.

When Summers said Wednesday that he’s not running for governor, he really didn’t explain why. He endorsed billionaire venture capitalist JB Pritzker, saying Pritzker would best serve the African-American community as governor.

Rici Hoffarth/St. Louis Public Radio

It's a sentiment shared by Democratic politicians and liberal pundits: disgust over how Republicans drew up favorable (for them) legislative districts after the 2010 Census.

Redistricting is blamed for the relative lack of legislative production in Congress and the rise of stringent partisanship, and has prompted Democrats to fight back in several states. Even former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is getting in on the issue, leading the National Democratic Redistricting Committee to crusade against gerrymandering.

Pages