Good Wednesday morning, Illinois. NEWS: State legislators will caucus at 1 p.m. today as they near a deal on the clean-energy bill. Lawmakers close to the House speaker are optimistic that support is there to pass it, though it’s easy to find skeptics, reports WTAX’s Dave Dahl
The Chicago City Council’s map room, where ward redistricting will take place, opens in the coming days. Hardware and software will be installed through the weekend in the second floor City Hall office of the Legislative Reference Bureau overlooking “The Flight of Daedalus and Icarus” mosaic on LaSalle (take whatever symbolism you wish out of that).
It’s called a map room but you will be hard-pressed to find any tributes to geography on the walls.
This is a high-tech, sophisticated set-up with computers and big screens where each council member will enter at an appointed time to tweak their ward boundaries according to census data. A demographer and cartographer will be on hand to assist.
Important note: There will be no peeking at other wards. Aldermen will be contacted when it appears that ward maps overlap, then aldermen will sit in the room together to adjust boundary lines accordingly.
That’s how the crooked lines and skewed shapes emerge. One alderman wants to make sure a certain block stays in his ward so he gives another block to the alderman next door.
This is Chicago, so of course the work will be done behind closed doors. Ald. Michelle Harris (8th), who heads the council’s Committees and Rules Committee, will oversee the process. Once council members have had their way with the boundaries, the maps will become public, allowing residents to chime in. Then aldermen take a vote — all by Dec. 1.
Each ward must create boundaries that include about 55,000 residents. Aldermen will work to create wards that allow them to safely get re-elected. But some wards, where population has dipped, especially on the South Side, may find their ward eliminated, potentially forcing a run-off between aldermanic colleagues in the 2023 municipal election.
There’s already tension about how to create wards that reflect those populations while also applying federal rules that ensure minority representation. So far, Black and Latino caucuses are dancing around each other on how the boundaries will square with new census figures showing Latinos make up 30 percent of the city, though they only have 24 percent of council seats. African Americans make up 29 percent of Chicago’s population and make up 40 percent of the council. White residents make up 31 percent of the city and hold 36 percent of the council seats.
FIRST IN PLAYBOOK: The Federal Election Commission has flagged Republican congressional candidate Esther Joy King for her campaign’s handling of financial contributions, according to documents obtained by Playbook.
In a letter sent to King’s campaign last month, the FEC says some donors have exceeded the $2,900 total limit for donating to a primary or general election.
This isn’t King’s first congressional race, so it’s unclear how the mistakes happened. King, who narrowly lost in 2020 to retiring 17th District Democratic Rep. Cheri Bustos, has been actively campaigning for months even though congressional boundaries have yet to be decided.
The notice requires King’s campaign to return the funds or reallocate them by Sept. 27 or face “an audit or enforcement action.”
King’s campaign said it would follow the FEC’s recommendations. “If any donor gives beyond the FEC limit we have a standard process in place with our treasurer, legal team, and compliance team to ensure any gifts made over the $2,900 per person, per election limit are returned within the FEC’s predetermined allowable window,” the campaign said in a statement to Playbook.
The FEC caps individual donations per election at $2,900, but it counts primary and general races separately, so an individual can give up to $5,800 across each election cycle.
King is also late in filing her personal financial disclosures.
The FEC documents show Dr. Jeffrey R. Jay donated $8,700, George Weber donated $4,900, Jacquilyn Anseeuw donated $4,000, and Thomas Dee donated $3,000 all for the 2022 primary; and Robert Lauter donated $5,000 for the 2022 general election.
King is out with a list of more than 50 elected officials from around the state — and in Congress — who are endorsing her, including House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
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No official public events.
At Mandrake Park at 9:30 a.m. for the launch of a public art exhibit that promotes “restorative justice, love and unity,” according to organizers of the event. And at the Union League Club of Chicago at 2 p.m. to honor graduates of James B. Moran Second C.H.A.N.C.E. Reentry Program.
No official public events.
— One year after the bubble, the NBA’s Covid-19 response is helping the world understand the pandemic: “Scientists are using the league’s data to understand the delta variant and other topics,” via The Undefeated.
— Chicago’s Resurrection Medical Center resists pressure to provide unauthorized ivermectin treatment: The hospital received “hundreds of phone calls and emails” related to a patient’s care after word of her hospitalization spread on the Telegram social media platform, reports Tribune’s John Keilman.
— How U. of I. fought the clock to develop a Covid-19 test that schools will use this fall, by Daily Herald’s Marni Pyke.
— Illinois bill could solidify ISBE authority to penalize schools defying public health guidelines, by Quincy Media’s Mike Miletich
— FIRST IN PLAYBOOK: Rep. Jan Schakowsky is endorsing Democratic congressional candidate Nikki Budzinski’s campaign for the 13th District now held by Rep. Rodney Davis. Schakowsky, the senior deputy whip of the House Democratic Leadership, is also headlining a Sept. 27 fundraiser for Budzinski. “The events of the last week in Texas have shown why we need to elect more pro-choice, Democratic women to Congress,” Schakowsky said in a statement, referring to the anti-abortion law in Texas banning the procedure after six weeks that both she and Budzinski oppose. Joining Schakowsky at the top of the invite is former state Sen. Heather Steans.
— Rep. Robin Kelly, the Illinois Democratic Party chair, is hosting a fundraiser Thursday to benefit candidates running for federal office and she’s bringing in a notable name to headline the event: House Majority Whip James Clyburn of South Carolina, the highest-ranking African American lawmaker on Capitol Hill and the Democrat most credited with getting Joe Biden elected president.
It’s not a complete surprise that Clyburn, a friend and ally of Kelly’s, would join her. He zoomed into a fundraiser benefiting her campaign earlier this year. But joining in-person in Chicago is a feather in the Illinois congresswoman’s cap and sends a message that Kelly’s position as party chair brings cachet.
— FIRST IN PLAYBOOK: The WE WILL nonprofit that helped women get involved in local government is closing its door and shifting its resources. WE WILL, which stands for Women Empowering Women In Local Legislation, is donating $5,000 to City Clerk Anna Valencia’s campaign for Secretary of State and $2,500 to Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller. “Anna and Donna’s work ethic, commitment to all our communities, focus on seeing through an equity lens, and of course being mamas are why we are proudly supporting and contributing to their campaigns,” said WE WILL founder Alexandra Eidenberg in a release.
— Democrat Alexi Giannoulias, who’s running for Secretary of State, says if he’s elected he wants to allow Illinois drivers to choose the photo placed on their driver’s license. “I think at one time or another everyone has uttered the phrase, ‘I hate my driver’s license photo,’” Giannoulias said in a release announcing. Giannoulias would allow drivers to take up to three additional photos when they renew their license or state ID card at one of the Secretary of State’s facilities- before picking the photo they want to use.
— Republican Aaron Smith has donated $100,000 to his campaign for state Rep, breaking the caps on how much donors can contribute, according to documents filed with the State Board of Elections. Smith, who lives in Marion and works in construction, would be a Republican primary challenger to Rep. Paul Jacobs from Pomona in the newly drawn 118th District.
Adlai Stevenson III, former U.S. senator, Illinois candidate for governor, dead at 90: “Stevenson ran for governor of Illinois twice, losing his 1982 run by just 5,074 votes to Republican Gov. Jim Thompson. It is the closest Illinois election for governor in modern state history,” by Sun-Times’ Maureen O’Donnell and Rachel Hinton.
From Tribune’s Bill Ruthhart: “Perhaps the most memorable moment from [the gubernatorial race against Jim Thompson], aside from its close finish, was the debate over whether Thompson had implied Stevenson was a “wimp.”
From the New York Times: “As the Watergate scandal deepened in 1973, Mr. Stevenson called on Nixon to answer for the integrity of the country’s leaders. ‘All of us — Republicans and Democrats — have an interest in clearing the record,’ he said a year before Nixon resigned in disgrace. ‘The faith of the people in their system and their leaders — a faith that has already been shaken enough — is at stake.’”
Statement from Sen. Dick Durbin: “Adlai was my friend and partner in countless causes over the years. Like his father before him, Adlai was most at home in the cerebral world of politics. His most effective ally in retail politics was his beloved wife, Nancy. The two were inseparable and one of the best teams in Illinois Democratic politics. Loretta and I send our love and sympathy to Nancy and the family.”
Statement from Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot: “Amy and I are sending our sincerest condolences and thoughts to the family of Adlai Stevenson III. Adlai was a true public servant in every sense of the word. Whether as a lawyer, a former United States Senator or Illinois State Representative, he had an impactful career serving the people of Illinois ethically, dependably, and wholeheartedly. He was the epitome of a good government advocate. I pray that Nancy, his son and his other family and loved ones find peace and comfort during this difficult time, and that his legacy lives on through those whose lives have been changed for the better thanks to his hard work.”
— Kankakee school loses state recognition over mask policy: “A Christian school in northeastern Illinois that declined to enforce a mask mandate has lost state recognition but will seek accreditation in other ways, a newspaper reported,” by The Associated Press.
— ‘Little has been done with’ 17 years of data showing racial disparities in traffic stops: “Recently released data from the Illinois Department of Transportation shows Black drivers accounted for 46.2% of all traffic stops by the Springfield Police Department in 2020. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Black people make up 20.4% of the city’s population,” by State Journal-Register’s Natalie Pierre.
— Hurricane season: 17 times remnants of Atlantic storms passed through Illinois, by Tribune’s Kori Rumore and Jonathon Berlin
— Chicago mask mandate violations lead to at least 30 citations against businesses: “The city’s COVID-19 dashboard on Tuesday marked the first time the average number of new cases has dropped below 400 since Aug. 7, but some health officials are concerned that Labor Day weekend travel could contribute to another uptick,” by Tribune’s Alice Yin.
— New coalition works to provide ‘holistic’ approach to preventing crime: “Justice Rising bridges a gap between social and legal services, Yolanda Fields, executive director of Breakthrough, said. Breakthrough and organizations like it are able to provide support with things like education, housing and employment, but the people it helps struggle to find access to solid, affordable legal counsel,” by Tribune’s Zach Harris.
— When told more evidence was needed, CPD detective wanted prosecutors to reject charges against suspect in slaying of 7-year-old: “Once the charges were rejected, at least one high-ranking CPD official, in an unusual move, suggested police would circumvent prosecutors and have the suspect charged directly. The dispute and the memo illustrate the ongoing tensions between Chicago police and the Cook County state’s attorney’s office,” by Sun-Times’ Matthew Hendrickson.
Chicago cop charged in U.S. Capitol breach, accused of entering a senator’s office: “The 19-page complaint alleges [Officer Karol] Chwiesiuk broke into Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley’s office with the throng that stormed the building and took a selfie showing him grinning and wearing a hoodie with the Chicago Police Department logo on it,” by Tribune’s Jason Meisner and Gregory Pratt.
— Ex-Prisons officer suspected of leaking R. Kelly’s jail communications to blogger, federal records show: “A federal search warrant recently unsealed in Chicago shows that agents seized a laptop from a U.S. Bureau of Prisons officer who was suspected of illegally accessing Kelly’s recorded phone calls, emails, visitor logs and other restricted information during his stay at the Metropolitan Correctional Center on West Van Buren Street,” by Tribune’s Jason Meisner.
— Class action lawsuit against CPD alleges racial profiling in stop and frisk practices: “The lawsuit, certified on Aug. 31, has more than 2 million people negatively affected by alleged racial profiling in Chicago Police Department stop-and-frisk incidents,” by Sun-Times’ Cheyanne M. Daniels.
Duchossois Group selling Oak Brook-based Chamberlain to Blackstone in $5B deal: “Chamberlain, the maker of garage door openers and security products sold under several brand names, will remain privately held and the Duchossois Group "will retain meaningful ownership" in the company and two seats on its board of directors, under terms of the sale announced Tuesday,” by Daily Herald’s Charles Keeshan.
THE FIFTY: Fears of critical race theory unleash an army of school board candidates. "I certainly anticipated heated disagreement on issues coming before me as a board member, I did not anticipate getting Facebook messages telling me to kill myself," Kimberly Cavill, a school board member in Illinois, wrote in a letter to the editor. POLITICO’s Daniel Payne reports.
LaHood, Davis announce 183d Wing Base project up for funding: The National Defense Authorization Act that cleared the House Armed Services Committee includes $10.2 million for the 183d Wing of the Illinois National Guard based in Springfield. The bill was approved on a bipartisan basis and will be considered by the full House next. If it passes it will likely go to conference with the Senate to reach a final agreement. The funding was jointly requested by Reps. Darin LaHood (IL-18) and Rodney Davis (IL-13).
— Call it revenge: Trump chooses Cheney challenger in major test of political clout, by POLITICO’s Marc Caputo and Alex Isenstadt
— ‘There’s no good news’: Biden’s rough summer puts Dems on high alert, by POLITICO’s David Siders
— Encryption poised to hamper Jan. 6 investigators’ phone records push, by POLITICO’s Nicholas Wu
Reporter-turned-state senator fights for local journalism: “State Sen. Steve Stadelman, D-Rockford, a former TV reporter and anchor for 25 years, says the idea of a local journalism task force was driven by his concern for vanishing local reporters and shrinking newsrooms,” by WGLT’s Colleen Reynolds
— Anthony Driver, Paige Little and Julia Bradley have joined APS & Associates, a political consulting firm headed by Alex Sims. Driver is a senior associate and previously worked for SEIU Healthcare. Little is a senior associate and worked in the Judicial Education Division of the Illinois courts. And Bradley is a coordinator, and previously was a nonprofit organizer.
— Jaylin D. McClinton, a law student in his final year at the Chicago-Kent College of Law joins DiCello Levitt Gutzler as a 3L Law Clerk. McClinton is a history buff and regular contributor to Playbook’s Trivia section.
— Bryan Zarou is director of policy at the Better Government Association. He previously headed up Policy and Advocacy at Forefront.
Dr. Joanne C. Smith, president and CEO of the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab (formerly Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago) died after treatment for cancer, “which she battled privately while continuing to fully lead Shirley Ryan AbilityLab,” according to the organization. She was 60.
— Today at 2 p.m.: The General Assembly’s Statue and Monument Review Task Force hearing in Springfield and virtual will focus on former President Ronald Reagan’s life, career, achievements and legacy.
The University of Chicago Institute of Politics announced its fall fellows: Catherine Bertini, Ertharin Cousin, Tony Fabrizio, Janice Jackson, Mitch Landrieu, Russell Moore and Lotfullah Najafizada.
TUESDAY’s ANSWER: Congrats to Cunningham Township Assessor Wayne Williams and state Rep. Lamont Robinson for correctly answering that six Illinois governors have been charged with crimes during or after their governorships; four were convicted, and of those, one (Rod Blagojevich) was the first to be impeached and removed from office.
TODAY’s QUESTION: Who were the three family members who served in Congress all at the same time from different states — including one from Illinois? Email to [email protected]
Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton, former state Rep. Elizabeth Coulson, comms specialist Robert Flinn, governor’s deputy press secretary Alex Hanns, political analyst James Nowlan, Cinespace Chicago president Alex Pissios, and Dovetail Project founder Sheldon Smith.
September 8, 2021 at 07:43AM