Good Monday morning, Illinois. We’re in the final week of the legislative session, which means I’m about to pour my third cup of coffee.
Who says Democrats don’t like gerrymandering? The new maps are out for General Assembly seats, and it’s a bloodbath for Republicans.
Using population estimates that show declines downstate, Democrats have consolidated districts, forcing some incumbents — mostly Republicans — to face each other in 2022. (Here’s another version of the map.)
The most dramatic is in the new 107th District, which could see a primary between four sitting Republican representatives: Dan Caulkins (R-101), Brad Halbrook (R-102), Blaine Wilhour (R-107) and Adam Niemerg (R-109). Political analyst Andrew Ellison has pulled together a map of what the new district could look like once approved.
Republicans, who have spent weeks calling for an independent process, were quick to condemn the maps and called on Gov. J.B. Pritzker to veto them. “When politicians like the House Democrats are allowed to draw their own maps, they will only work to preserve their power,” House GOP spokeswoman Eleni Demertzis said.
Democrats defended the maps: “This is a fair map that reflects the great diversity of our state and ensures every person receives equal representation in the General Assembly,” Sen. Omar Aquino, who chairs the Senate Redistricting Committee, said in WBEZ’s report.
Ellison says other pairs play out this way: 46th District: Deb Conroy (D-46) and Deanne Mazzochi (R-47); 47th District: Amy Grant (R-42) and Seth Lewis (R-45); 50th District: Keith Wheeler (R-50) and Dan Ugaste (R-65); 51st District: Chris Bos (R-51) and Thomas Morrison (R-54); 87th District: Keith Sommer (R-88) and Mark Luft (R-91); 90th District: Tony McCombie (R-71) and Andrew Chesney (R-89); 99th District: Randy Frese (R-94) and C.D. Davidsmeyer (R-100); 108th District: Avery Bourne (R-95th) and Mike Murphy (R-99); and 115th District: Charles Meier (R-108) and David Friess (R-116).
A few pairings of incumbents are happening in the state Senate, too. In the new 23rd District: Thomas Cullerton (D-23) and Suzanne Glowiak (D-24) would face each other; and in the 55th District: Jason Plummer (R-54) and Darren Bailey (R-55) would compete.
Both of those are interesting for different reasons. Cullerton has been serving under the shadow of embezzlement charges. He goes to trial in February. And Bailey is running for governor. It will be a challenge if he has to worry about a state Senate primary, too.
Public hearings: There will be four of them and they’ll be open for in-person and virtual testimony, according to NBC/5’ report:
- May 25 at 4 p.m. – Joint House and Senate Hearing
- May 25 at 6 p.m. – House Hearing
- May 26 at 4 p.m. – Joint House and Senate Hearing
- May 26 at 6 p.m. – Senate Hearing
No congressional maps yet: A source close to the process said because there’s no immediate deadline for a congressional map, state lawmakers didn’t feel the urgency to finish them before the legislative session ends May 31. The state constitution requires that legislative maps by wrapped up by June 30. Also, state lawmakers wanted to know first how their own districts would shape up be before they tinkered with congressional maps.
Amusing side note: There was chatter in Springfield that House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch and House Minority Leader Jim Durkin’s districts were going to be combined. Not true, but their districts are close to each other.
Hunter gains ground: Democratic Sen. Mattie Hunter (3rd) saw her district grow and not necessarily because of population. Along with being a legislator, she is the 20th Ward Committee person, which may have allowed her to have some sway as lines were being drawn. She pulled in more of the 20th Ward into her district.
Stephens gains ground: Republican Rep. Brad Stephens (20th) was an exception among GOP House lawmakers. His seat gained ground in Chicago (from the 41st and 38th Wards) and Rosemont, where he is mayor.
Relief for McConchie: The redraw of Senate Minority Leader Dan McConchie puts primary competitor Casey Urlacher in a different district.
Harper loses ground: Democratic Rep. Sonya Harper (6th), who chairs the Legislative Black Caucus, isn’t seeing her district paired with anyone else but it did take a hit. While Black residents have migrated out of the district, Latinx communities are growing, which made it difficult for lawmakers to draw.
RELATED: After Covid cut into last year’s session, there’s a backlog of big issues as May 31 adjournment approaches, by Tribune’s Rick Pearson and Dan Petrella
Congressman Rodney Davis has taken some heat from Republicans about his vote in favor of creating a bipartisan commission to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.
Like his colleague Rep. Adam Kinzinger, Davis wants to get to the bottom of why and how the attack on the Capitol happened. Though he hasn’t been vocal about it on the airwaves like Kinzinger, the Republican lawmaker was an early supporter of a bipartisan committee. And there’s a reason.
He’s the ranking Republican member of the Committee on House Administration — the folks who oversee the Capitol Police and the operations of the Capitol Complex. In that role, six days after the attack, Davis proposed legislation to examine the events of Jan. 6 (co-sponsored with Republican Rep. John Katko). His proposal is similar to what passed the House last week.
“It’s imperative we fully investigate how it happened and the steps needed to ensure it never happens again,” Davis said when he proposed his bill.
After last week’s vote, Republican state Sen. Darren Bailey framed the issue on Facebook as another litmus test of Donald Trump’s GOP, “We expect these political witch hunts from our colleagues on the left, not the so-called Republicans in our ranks. Remember this during the next primary season!”
Bailey is a GOP candidate for governor in the 2022 primary, and Davis hasn’t ruled out the possibility that he’ll run for governor, too. If he does, his vote on the Jan. 6 commission will play a role in their debates.
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At Resurrection Project at 11:15 a.m. to announce an Emergency Rental Assistance program.
No official public events.
No official public events.
The Illinois Department of Public Health on Sunday reported 24 additional deaths and 943 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus disease. That’s a total of 22,623 fatalities and 1,375,508 cases in Illinois. The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total tests from May 16 through 22 is 2.2 percent. Chicago’s positivity rate is at 3.1 percent.
— A new reason to swipe right? Dating apps adding vax badges: “Apps like Hinge, Tinder, Match and Bumble are offering special incentives to people who roll up their sleeves, including badges showing vaccination status and free access to premium content. BLK and Chispa will boost profiles of those who are vaccinated, to make them more visible to potential matches. And OKCupid will even let users filter out potential partners based on whether they’ve gotten a vaccine,” by The Associated Press.
— How the Covid vaccine push squeezed out drugs for sick patients: “Researchers say the lack of enough drugs for mildly ill patients means that the world may never completely stamp out the virus,” by POLITICO’s Sarah Owermohle and Katherine Ellen Foley.
— Examining the resolution that will see students return to school: “Vaccinations for adolescents and plans for a return to full-time in-person learning have been controversial, with parents divided on the issues. Nearly 300 people commented on ISBE’s Facebook page post about the back-to-school resolution, with views ranging from ‘Remote learning should be an option for all children who are not yet eligible to be vaccinated!’ to ‘No vaccines for my children,’” by Cristi Kempf for Center for Illinois Politics.
— About the state budget: “Using the increased revenue to repay the federal loan, therefore, has the effect of short-circuiting that flood of new spending demands. It’s a fiscally smart move, which is not something that one can usually say about Illinois. But it’s not a done deal yet because quite a few Democratic legislators will be upset that they can’t tap into the new revenues to fund what they consider to be crucial programs,” by Rich Miller in the Pantagraph.
— DATELINE VEGAS: Illinois not on board when it comes to betting on local college sports teams: “Illinois among states where fans can’t bet on local college teams — for no good reason,” writes Rob Miech in the Sun-Times.
— Bill aims to ensure Asian American experiences aren’t ignored in history class: “With the spike in anti-Asian hate, advocates hope a requirement to teach Asian American history will help combat violence and misinformation,” by WBEZ’s Susie An.
— Fact-check: Yes, large majorities support elected Chicago School Board: “Allowing Chicago voters to choose the members of the city’s board of education has received overwhelming support in polls, referendums and legislative votes for years,” by Better Government Association’s Kiannah Sepeda-Miller.
— Debating sex ed: Chicago Dem accuses downstate Republican of making remarks intended to ‘dehumanize’ LGBTQ community: “Republican state Sen. Darren Bailey said that Democrats such as state Sen. Mike Simmons ‘like to call you names and spread lies,’” by Sun-Times’ Andrew Sullender.
— Simmons reflects on his hairstyle legislation: “It’s rooted in this respectability politics that says that for Black people to succeed, we have to conform to these really silly stereotypes,” says the new state legislator. “We need to wear our hair a certain length, walk a certain way and when we speak, don’t speak too loudly. All of this is set up so as not to be perceived as a threat by others.” Tribune’s Jenny Whidden reports.
— Rental assistance program: Landlords say it’s ‘too little, too late,’ according to WTVO. But Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton defends the program, saying, “housing is about so much more than having a roof over your head. Housing is about feeling safe,” reports KHQA.
— A year after George Floyd killing, Chicago corporations taking steps to fight racism: “Tying execs’ pay to diversity goals. Making grants for home down payments. Offering advice to minority-owned businesses. Making Juneteenth a company holiday. That’s some of what Chicago’s largest corporations have done,” by Sun-Times’ Maudlyne Ihejirika.
— Still in the works: Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s team is tweaking a proposal that will go before aldermen to create a public database of allegations of police misconduct. An earlier version of the measure drew criticism from the office of Inspector General Joe Ferguson and police accountability activist Jamie Kalven, who wrote an op-ed in the Tribune over the weekend. But the critiques came as the mayor’s office and Alds. Scott Waguespack and Chris Taliaferro were reworking the measure before it goes before the Finance and Public Safety committees. We hear an amended version of the proposal will, among other things, strengthen its language.
— With lake levels dropping, some beaches are making a comeback — just in time for summer: Water levels of Lake Michigan “have lowered from record highs as part of an overall Great Lakes downswing. The receding water has been welcomed by some beach towns and lakefront parks that weathered destruction in recent years. A group of Great Lakes officials estimated at least $500 million of damage in cities last year,” by Tribune’s Morgan Greene.
— The long-stalled redo of this troubled Loop tower reaches a turning point: “Trying to predict the future of the Pittsfield and another prominent property owned by the same investor — the huge Motorola campus in Harvard — has been next to impossible. But that could be about to change,” by Crian’s Alby Gallun.
— FAA investigating after Southwest plane’s wingtip clips another plane’s tail at Midway Airport, by Tribune’s Sarah Freishtat
— How Covid changed lunch in the Loop: “Which downtown restaurants adapted and which ones succumbed?” Crain’s Ally Marotti reports
— Mauldin urges us to always face the truth: “New show at Pritzker Military Museum & Library of Chicago cartoonist whose work is as relevant as ever,” by Sun-Times’ Neil Steinberg.
— Considering Columbus Day: Cook County commissioners on the Intergovernmental Relations Committee will consider legislation that would change Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day. The full county board could vote on the measure at its June meeting.
— Jones’ big plans for Calumet City: Mayor Thaddeus Jones, who also is a state legislator, plans to “revitalize River Oaks Center, redevelop the site of a demolished shopping center on the southeast side, build the city’s first new housing in two decades and relocate the public works facility away from a residential area on the northwest side,” reports Northwest Indiana Times’ Mike Clark.
— How Lightford benefited as board member of Loretto Hospital: “State Senate Majority Leader accepted campaign contributions from a Loretto Hospital contractor and Caribbean travel as part of her board duties,” reports Better Government Association’s David Jackson and Block Club’s Kelly Bauer.
— How Sharone R. Mitchell Jr. hopes to fix a broken justice system: “The new Cook County public defender on prioritizing reform,” by Anne Ford for Chicago magazine.
Opinion: Rockford mayor criticizes cuts to Government Distributive Fund: “[T]he Illinois General Assembly is considering cutting the LGDF by an additional 10%. Simply put, when they cut this funding because they can’t balance their own budget the burden falls on us,” writes Mayor Thomas P. McNamara
— As wave of students return from pandemic gap year, another round prepares to leave: “Nationwide, roughly three to four times as many students as usual took a gap year during the 2020-2021 school year, according to Ethan Knight, executive director of the Gap Year Association. With international travel — often a staple of traditional gap year programs — on hold during the coronavirus pandemic, more students than ever made an independent itinerary for their year off from traditional school,” by Tribune’s Clare Proctor.
— Northwestern community keeps pressure on after athletic director resigns over cheerleading scandal: “Many in the university community are demanding answers as to why [Mike] Polisky, a white man involved in active litigation, was chosen over the other finalists, two of whom were Black and one a white woman. Some say it feels as if an old boys’ club drives hiring decisions,” by Tribune’s Elyssa Cherney and Shannon Ryan.
— Time for me to fly: As more Americans take to the skies, House Democrats want those planes powered with cleaner fuel. Rep. Brad Schneider is among the Democrats who introduced the Sustainable Skies Act, which would authorize a tax credit of $.150 to $2 for each gallon of blended fuel. The bill is backed by the aviation industry and environmentalists alike, but its sponsors haven’t had much luck in bringing on Republicans. Jet fuel is the top contributor to the aviation sector’s carbon footprint, though aviation accounts for only 3 percent of global emissions. That share will likely go up as more of the transportation sector looks to greener options. Catherine Boudreau breaks down the bill.
— Sen. Tammy Duckworth talks about her new book with Punchbowl.
— They tried to overturn the 2020 election. Now they want to run the next one, by POLITICO’s Zach Montellaro
— Can Doug Emhoff have it all? POLITICO’s Eugene Daniels reports
— Summertime scramble: Dems sweating a pileup of big votes on Biden’s agenda, by POLITICO’s Marianne LeVine and Sarah Ferris
— ‘Sad, sobering day’ for Chicago Tribune as Alden wins takeover bid: “Shareholders of Chicago-based Tribune Publishing voted to approve the $633 million purchase of the company by New York-based Alden Global Capital. The deal is expected to close June 30. Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, owner of the Los Angeles Times and the second biggest shareholder in Tribune Publishing, did not cast a vote. While some reports suggested that his abstention could affect the outcome, Alden Global Capital was quick to declare victory,” by media reporter Robert Feder.
… “Confusion arose earlier in the day when a spokeswoman for Soon-Shiong said he ‘abstained’ from the vote… In its statement, Tribune effectively confirmed earlier reporting attributed to unnamed Tribune officials that Soon-Shiong’s ballots were submitted without the ‘abstain’ box checked, and so were counted as ‘yes’ votes toward the Alden takeover in accordance with the instructions on the ballot,” by The Associated Press’ Tali Arbel
— Journalists hold elected officials accountable. We must hold our profession accountable, too: “The media cannot claim to cover communities of color fairly and accurately unless they staff that coverage with diverse voices and lived experiences,” by Sun-Times’ Laura Washington.
— Brandon Pope to lead Chicago’s Black journalists association, via Robert Feder
Sidney Dillard has been appointed to Cresco Labs’ board of directors. Dillard is a partner and head of corporate investment banking at Loop Capital Markets.
— Thomas Patrick Sullivan, the former U.S. attorney who began the Greylord investigation, has died
— In tribute to slain dance coach Verndell Smith, bundles of balloons released to the sky at spot where he was shot, reports Tribune’s Alice Yin
— Today at 11 a.m. A City Club virtual discussion on workforce equity and how “Corporate Chicago can lead the way.” Headliners: Marie Trzupek Lynch, founding President and CEO of Skills for Chicagoland’s Future; Tina Sanders, founder of Phalanx Family Services; and Manika Turnbull of Health Care Service Corp.
— Tuesday at 10 a.m.: Rep. Robin Kelly and Illinois Department of Public Health’s Dr. Ngozi Ezike headline a virtual discussion on “Fixing America’s Maternal Health Crisis,” a case study about Illinois, Covid-19, and maternal and infant mortality. Politico Nightly newsletter author Renu Rayasam moderates. Also speaking: University of Chicago OBGYN Section Chief Sarosh Rana and Alliance Chicago’s Lisa Masinter.
— Tuesday at 1 p.m.: Rep. Robin Kelly will address issues facing the House Energy and Commerce Committee—she’s vice chair. The free webinar is sponsored by the Illinois State Society.
FRIDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Gail Purkey, retired comms director of the Illinois Federation of Teachers, and Michael Negron, special adviser to the Small Business Administration, for correctly answering that Upton Sinclair’s “The Jungle” about Chicago’s meatpacking industry influenced Theodore Roosevelt to create the Food and Drug Administration. Roosevelt is said to have thrown his breakfast sausage out the window after he read the story.
TODAY’s QUESTION: In the fight to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment in 1982, which Illinois women’s organization organized sit-ins in the House chamber, chained themselves to the state Senate railing, and splattered cow’s blood on the doors of the governor’s office? Email to [email protected]
Heaven on Seven restaurateur Jimmy Bannos and political insider and lobbyist Shaw Decremer.
via Illinois Playbook https://ift.tt/2NknKhq
May 24, 2021 at 07:38AM