April 19, 2024

Shia Kapos' must-read rundown of political news in the Land of Lincoln
Shia Kapos' must-read rundown of political news in the Land of Lincoln
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Presented by Protect West Chicago
With help from Olivia Olander
Happy Wednesday, Illinois. The U.S. defeated Iran in a World Cup match overshadowed by politics. Now, we’re off to the final 16. Sweet.

SPRINGFIELD. Ill. — Alexi Giannoulias, the Democratic secretary of state elect, has pulled together a huge transition team in an effort to transform the office that’s been led for more than 20 years by retiring Secretary of State Jesse White.
And get this: A key player on the team is Dan Brady, the Republican who lost to Giannoulias earlier this month.
Brady said he’s “honored” that Giannoulias is “rising above party politics” to take advantage of his experience working on issues related to the office.
A lot of voices: Giannoulias has pulled together nine transition committees, which comprise a total of 125 members from across the state and from various industries. See the full list here.
Giannoulias, who takes office Jan. 9, says the team is charged with producing “action-oriented solutions and deliverables starting on Day One,” according to a statement.
Along with coming up with their own ideas, the transition committees will consider the nearly 1,000 proposals and suggestions that were submitted from the public on the RevUpIllinois website, according to a statement.
Who’s in charge: State Rep. Bob Morgan is leading the Driver Facilities and Road Safety Committee, a key component of the SOS office. And Brady heads up the Organ and Tissue Donations Committee and serves on the Road Safety panel.
Former state Rep. Carol Ronen is leading Voter Rights and Registration. Tech entrepreneur Howard Tullman heads up Technology Enhancements. Illinois Environmental Council’s Jennifer Walling leads Environmental Initiatives. Highland Park Library’s Heidi Smith heads up Library Enhancements. Broadhaven Capital’s John Simpson leads Securities Division Policies. And Velez Global Enterprises’ Letty Velez heads up Business Services.

A historical marker in front of the Old State Capitol commemorates former President Barack Obama’s presidential campaign announcements. | POLITICO's Shia Kapos
AN OBAMA MARKER: Gov. JB Pritzker and Illinois lawmakers will gather this morning to commemorate Barack Obama announcing his candidacy for president at the Old State Capitol.
A plaque has been erected to memorialize Feb. 10, 2007, the day Obama made his announcement, and Aug. 23, 2008, when he introduced then-Sen. Joe Biden as his running mate.
Both outdoor events were full of sunshine, though the 2007 announcement was frigid with temperatures in the teens. The 2008 gathering was described in the State Journal-Register as “one sweaty day.”
Obama, who is not expected to attend today’s event, has a sentimental connection to Springfield. He served in the Illinois General Assembly before going on to become a U.S. senator and then make history as the first Black elected president.
At the time, Obama chose the Old State Capitol for his announcement because of its historic connection to Abraham Lincoln. Some 17,000 people attended his 2007 announcement, weather be damned.
If you’re Barack Obama, Playbook would like to hear your takeaways from that February day in 2007. Email [email protected].

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At the Old State Capitol at 9 a.m. to dedicate a historical marker honoring President Barack Obama’s presidential campaign announcement.

At South Shore Cultural Center at 2 p.m. for the 3rd community development grants announcement.  

No official public events.
Have a news tip, suggestion, birthday, anniversary, new job, or any other nugget for Playbook? I’d like to hear from you: [email protected]

Gov. JB Pritzker unveiled a bipartisan deal Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2022, to pay off the state’s remaining $1.36 billion unemployment insurance loan balance. The agreement will save taxpayers an estimated $20 million in interest costs. | POLITICO's Shia Kapos
— FUND FIX: Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced that lawmakers have hammered out a deal to pay off a nearly $1.4 billion loan that paid for unemployment benefits during the pandemic. The move comes after negotiations with business and labor leaders and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle that will also allow the state to beef up its rainy day fund.
“Today, we complete the mission of extinguishing this debt,” Pritzker told reporters at the Capitol. “Government is at its best when we work together to solve problems.”
What’s next: With Democrats and Republicans on board, the proposal will now go forward as legislation that will be considered beginning this week.
Watch for hiccups: The proposal will be part of a supplemental budget, which could become a Christmas tree for lawmakers who want to negotiate items or bills for their own purposes.
How a supplemental works: Lawmakers might say, “I’ll vote for it, but only if I get x, y or z.” That means passage won’t necessarily be a smooth ride.
More details and comments from business and labor, via Tribune’s Dan Petrella and Jeremy Gorner
Senate president says the plan will help state’s fiscal health, reports WTTW’s Amanda Vinicky
Deal will save taxpayers $20M in interest, via Sun-Times’ Tina Sfondeles

‘I was never ready for this’: How states limit teen access to abortion: “As abortion access dwindles, America’s ‘parental-involvement’ laws place further restrictions on teenagers — who may need to ask judges for permission to end their pregnancies. … For millions of teens, getting an abortion can mean traveling to Illinois, Washington, D.C., New Mexico or Minnesota,” writes ProPublica’s Lizzie Presser, in an article co-published with The New York Times Magazine
Three candidates file for Decatur mayor, four for city council: “The petition filing period for Decatur’s 2023 municipal elections closed Monday with three candidates, including incumbent Julie Moore Wolfe, in the race for mayor and four candidates vying for three city council seats. Moore Wolfe, Decatur’s mayor since 2015, faces two relatively-unknown challengers in her quest to become the city’s longest-serving leader,” reports Lee Enterprises’ Brenden Moore.
— Race resolved: Democrat Jenn Ladisch Douglass said the Nov. 8 election results were certified Tuesday in DuPage and Cook counties, giving her the victory over Republican state Rep. Deanne Mazzochi in House District 45. “Mazzochi, who took office in 2018, has yet to publicly concede,” reports Patch’s David Giuliani.
Candidates jump in Springfield municipal contests on last filing day, by State Journal-Register’s Steven Spearie

— ARRIVED: Chicago welcomed four new migrants Sunday, according to the Chicago Department of Family and Support Services. The city has now welcomed 3,720 asylum-seekers bused from the Texas border since Aug. 31.

— Congressman Jesus “Chuy” Garcia has been endorsed for Chicago mayor by the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 150. The union’s president and business manager, James Sweeney, called Garcia “the right leader,” adding, “Chicago needs a leader who brings people together rather than dividing them.”
— Former Ald. Michele Smith is endorsing Wendi Taylor Nations for the 43rd Ward Chicago aldermanic seat that Smith held11 years before resigning earlier this year. Nations is a partner at the Hawthorne Strategy Group and also had a stint at World Business Chicago. She had applied for Smith’s seat when it opened up, but she wasn’t selected to fill it. Mayor Lori Lightfoot chose former chair of the city’s Zoning Board of Appeals Timmy Knudsen, who’s also now running to hold the position for four years.
Business leaders to form political action committee to prevent City Council from making sharp left turn: “Mike Ruemmler, who managed Rahm Emanuel’s 2015 mayoral reelection campaign, said he plans to form a committee bankrolled by business leaders to elect moderate alderpersons,” by Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman.

Bally’s officials address concerns about temporary Medinah Temple casino at community meeting:Bally’s casino is set to temporarily occupy the historic Medinah Temple, 600 N. Wabash Ave., before moving to its permanent riverfront location on Chicago Avenue and Halsted Street,” by Sun-Times’ Emmanuel Camarillo.
As new federal judge takes over court-ordered reforms, CPD faces blistering criticism over its efforts so far: “Racist and violent policing, unfortunately despite the consent decree, is still the norm being experienced by people on the ground in the city,” Alexandra Block, an attorney with the ACLU of Illinois, said during a hearing Tuesday. Sun-Times’ Tom Schuba reports.
Chicago’s most dangerous bike lane: “In the bike lane along Milwaukee Avenue, there have been 50 reported crashes and three deaths since 2020 as cyclists navigate the city’s patchwork approach to safety,” by Better Government Association’s Casey Toner and Block Club’s Mina Bloom.
— Interesting fact: About a third of Chicagoans 5 years and older speak a language other than English at home, by WBEZ’s Amy Qin

Wirtz family proposes housing, commercial development for massive site near Mundelein: “If the Wirtz family’s vision becomes reality, the land would be annexed into Mundelein and become the largest development by acreage in Lake County.” The Wirtzes own the Chicago Blackhawks. Daily Herald’s Russell Lissau reports.
Former Cook County Land Bank manager charged with using straw purchasers to enrich himself, defraud system meant to help blighted communities, by Tribune’s Jason Meisner and A.D. Quig
Evanston council boosts pension funding in budget, by Evanston Now’s Bill Smith

Suburban man gets 18 months’ probation for entering U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, by Sun-Times’ Jon Seidel

POLITICO AT CES 2023: We are bringing a special edition of our Digital Future Daily newsletter to Las Vegas to cover CES 2023. The newsletter will take you inside the largest and most influential technology event on the planet, featuring every major and emerging industry in the technology ecosystem gathered in one place. The newsletter runs from Jan. 5-7 and will focus on the public policy related aspects of the event. Sign up today to receive exclusive coverage of CES 2023.
We asked what clothing style would become fashionable again:
James Castro: “Top hat and tails.”
John Howell of WLS-AM: “Collared shirts, no jeans, no ball caps at work. I don’t care that ‘they can’t see us because it’s radio.’ I can see you.”
Marilynn Miller: “A return to nice and neat instead of baggy and messy.”
Chris Ruys: “Fashion of the ‘80s when women used power dressing to try to break the glass ceiling: shoulder pads (the bigger, the better), big jewelry, wide belts and big hair.”
Andy Shaw: “All of the 50-year-old clothes in my closet, which still fit, fortunately, but look like clown costumes, regrettably.”
Phil Zeni: “Suits, ties and sport coats as regular office attire.”
What are your must-dos when visiting Springfield? Email [email protected]

Labor forces see ‘huge opportunity’ in Democratic-controlled Michigan: “If Democrats succeed in repealing certain laws in Michigan — and in pushing through other union-backed measures — union officials and campaign operatives hope to rekindle the labor movement’s influence in other states,” by POLITICO’s Liz Crampton and Eleanor Mueller.

Aggressive asking: Former President Barack Obama, former first lady Michelle Obama and the Obama Foundation’s Valarie Jarrett and Michael Strautmanis all sent out appeals Tuesday during the national “Giving Tuesday” effort for the Obama Foundation.

Sen. Tammy Duckworth on same-sex marriage protections, potential rail strike: Duckworth also said she’d support lifting the filibuster on a case-by-case basis for major pieces of legislation such as the Voting Rights Act and an assault weapons ban, by WTTW’s Paris Schutz and Eunice Alpasan.
— Sen. Dick Durbin led 23 of his Democratic colleagues in calling for the USDA to update standards in dog breeding facilities to be in line with his Puppy Protection Act .

The GOP’s same-sex marriage evolution: A slow, choppy tidal shift, by POLITICO’s Burgess Everett
DeSantis-backed school boards begin ousting Florida educators, by POLITICO’s Andrew Atterbury
Conservatives sharpen their knives as McCarthy works to peel off skeptics, by POLITICO’s Olivia Beavers and Jordain Carney

Lauren Weber is joining The Washington Post as an accountability reporter covering disinformation on the health and science team. She previously was Midwest correspondent for Kaiser Health News, via The Post.

TUESDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Kevin Conlon  for correctly answering that the Bismarck and Sherman House were the hotels where the Cook County Democratic Party had offices and held endorsement sessions.
TODAY’s QUESTION: What is the name of the church that served as a temporary City Hall after the 1871 Fire? Email [email protected] 

Cook County Board press secretary Nick Mathiowdis, PR pro Nick Harkin and government affairs pro Michael Reever.


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