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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.

Maddee Muuss / WNIJ

Lawmakers are grappling to reestablish ethics in the age of “alternative facts.” In a recent lecture to Northern Illinois University law students, Illinois State Senator and NIU alumna Toi Hutchinson warned against being so rigid in your positions that you cannot empathize with other perspectives.

“Democracy requires participation. Citizenship requires participation,” Hutchinson said. “If we make it so that nobody wants to touch this with a ten foot pole, then we’re cheating ourselves. We do much better when we’re all in, so we all need to be in.”

Governor Bruce Rauner made Rockford one of the stops on his two-day trip across Illinois. He met with a large group made up mainly of his fellow Republican elected officials.

Rauner criticized Democrats in the state Legislature and blamed them for the budget stalemate. He urged them to make Illinois more business-friendly. He told reporters after the event, “I’ll judge myself by how strong the economy in Rockford grows over the next two and six years, while I am governor. And we need a strong economy for everybody in Illinois.”

Rick Guzman conceded to Richard Irvin Friday in the Aurora mayoral race.    

Irvin declared victory late Tuesday night when unofficial totals from the polls put him 170 votes ahead of Rick Guzman. But Guzman said in an email Wednesday morning the race was too close to call. He said an unknown number of outstanding vote-by-mail, grace-period, overseas military and provisional ballots have yet to be counted. That left the possibility that the apparent result of the April 4 election could be reversed.

tammyduckworth.com

Tammy Duckworth is glad to be back working for the entire population of Illinois.

She has just completed her first three months as a U.S. Senator, following her defeat of Republican incumbent Mark Kirk last November.

Duckworth spent three years as director of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs before moving to Washington D.C. as Assistant Secretary for Veterans Affairs under President Obama. She returned to Illinois in late 2011 and won the Illinois 8th District U.S. House seat the following year.

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