State Week

By Randy.Eccles

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An analysis of the week in Illinois politics and government from the NPR Illinois Statehouse bureau.

Episode Date
State Week: Tobacco 21, Gender Pay Gap, Pritzker's Tax Proposals
The Illinois General Assembly was busy this week, passing legislation intended to fight gender pay inequity, teach LGBT history, and raise the age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21. The panel also discusses NPR Illinois' recent series examining Gov. J.B. Pritzker's proposed tax increases and expansions.
Mar 15, 2019
State Week: Pritzker Unveils New Tax Plan, Schock Cuts Deal To Drop Charges
Gov. J.B. Pritzker has finally revealed a few details about his plans to change the Illinois income tax. He's asking the General Assembly and voters to approve a constitutional amendment making the flat tax into one that's graduated, where the wealthy pay higher rates.
Mar 08, 2019
State Week: Lightfoot, Preckwinkle Win Chicago Mayoral Primary
A night of surprises as ( a few ) Chicago voters narrow the field of candidates for mayor: former prosecutor and police reformer Lori Lightfoot gets the most votes, and will face Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle in the April runoff election.
Mar 01, 2019
State Week: Pritzker's Budget Calls For New Taxes, Higher Spending, Pension Holiday
Gov. J.B. Pritzker's first budget proposal is calling for new taxes, more spending, and a series of moves around state pensions. But that's all a placeholder as he begins a push to change Illinois' flat income tax to one where the wealthy pay more. We'll analyze what he said, what he didn't say, and what's next for Illinois' ailing finances.
Feb 22, 2019
State Week: Minimum Wage Going Up, Pension Payments Going Down
Democrats in the Illinois House approved an increase in the state minimum wage. Assuming Gov. J.B. Pritzker signs the legislation — he's said he will — the rate will gradually climb to $15 perhour in the year 2025;
Feb 15, 2019
State Week: Minimum Wage Bill On Fast Track
The Illinois Senate fast-tracked legislation that would gradually raise Illinois' minimum wage, eventually reaching $15 per hour in the year 2025. Gov. J.B. Pritzker is eager to quickly fulfil a campaign promise; will the Illinois House cooperate and send him the bill as-is? Meanwhile, the Pritzker administration is painting a bleak picture of state finances ahead of the governor's budget address later this month.
Feb 08, 2019
State Week: Speaker Madigan On FBI Wiretap
The Chicago Sun-Times reported this week that House Speaker Michael Madigan was recorded pitching his private legal services to someone wearing a wire for the federal government. It took place several years ago and the speaker has not been accused of wrongdoing. It came as part of the investigation into the activities of Chicago Ald. Danny Solis, whose cooperation already led to corruption charges against Chicago Ald. Ed Burke.
Feb 01, 2019
State Week: Pritzker Checking Boxes For Progressives
Gov. J.B. Pritzker spent his second week in office taking actions to signal his support of progressive causes.
Jan 25, 2019
State Week: A New Administration
This week, J.B. Pritzker was sworn in as Illinois' new governor, promising a progressive agenda.
Jan 18, 2019
State Week: Readying For A New Governor
A new General Assembly sworn in on the eve of a new Governor and administration. Tina Sfondeles of the Chicago Sun-Times joins the panel.
Jan 11, 2019
State Week: Ald. Burke Arrested, Legislative Session Preview
Chicago Ald. Ed Burke is accused of using his position to steer business to his law firm. The city's longest-serving alderman has ties across government in Illinois and the city — will there be other shoes to drop?
Jan 04, 2019
State Week: 2018 - A Look Back
A look back at the top stories in Illinois politics and government over the past year.
Dec 28, 2018
State Week: Durbin Passes Justice Bill; Patti Blagojevich Appeals To Trump; IL Loses Population
After years of effort, a bipartisan coalition passed criminal justice reform legislation in Congress this week. Turns out the relationship between Illinois U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin and presidential adviser/son-in-law Jared Kushner played a role in keeping the legislation on track.
Dec 21, 2018
State Week: Rauner Wanted Out; Emanuel Issues To-Do List
Gov. Bruce Rauner says he tried to get out of his doomed re-election bid. In an interview with Craig Wall of WLS-TV, Chicago's ABC station, he says he tried and failed to recruit other people to take his place on the ballot.
Dec 14, 2018
State Week: Pritzker Transition, $15 Minimum Wage, Illinois Bicentennial
Gov.-elect J.B. Pritzker announced his ninth and tenth transition committees this week, including one on business issues and economic development. He also reiterated his committment to raising Illinois' hourly minimum wage to $15.
Dec 07, 2018
State Week: Rauner Speaks, Nasty Debate, Veto Wrap-Up
Gov. Bruce Rauner held his first news conference since losing re-election. He would not say why he thinks he and his fellow Republicans lost, but he did tell reporters he's “scared” for the people of Illinois.
Nov 30, 2018
State Week: Illinois' Budget Woes, Chicago's Mayoral Race, Amazon's Second HQ
Gov. Bruce Rauner's budget office issued its final five-year forecast and the trends are not good. Gov.-elect J.B. Pritzker is likely going to face an uphill climb toward meeting his campaign promises while coming anywhere close to balancing the state budget.
Nov 23, 2018
State Week: Rauner Rolled In Veto Session
The Illinois General Assembly rolled over Gov. Bruce Rauner in the first week of veto session, voting to override his vetos of more than three-dozen bills. But that's only half the game. When lawmakers return for week two of veto session, the House and Senate will swap bills to complete the override process — will the governor fare any better then?
Nov 16, 2018
State Week: Dems Take Suburbia, And Illinois Follows
J.B. Pritzker and his fellow Democrats ran the table on statewide offices at this week's general election. The party also picked up two seats in Congress, increased its supermajority in the state Senate, and gained a supermajority in the Illinois House. Many of the Democratic gains were rooted in former Republican strongholds outside Chicago. Do the election results suggest a permanent realignment? Or is it unique to the circumstances of 2018?
Nov 09, 2018
State Week: Candidates Making Closing Arguments of 2018 Elections
In the final days of the 2018 elections, Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democratic nominee J.B. Pritzker are making their closing arguments. National politicians like President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden were also in Illinois in the last week, mostly to stump for Congressional candidates as Democrats and Republicans vie for control of the U.S. House.
Nov 02, 2018