Soft on crime in Cook County

By Ray Hanania January 8, 2021 I guess if I were a criminal in America, I would want to move to Cook County. Cook County achieved another record last week, recording more gun-related homicides last than in any other prior year. Until 2020, the worst year was 1994, with 838 gun-related homicides. In 2020, there…

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House Dems mum on Madigan reelection

By Rich Miller January 1, 2021 I reached out to several House Democrats who could be considered politically vulnerable in 2022 to ask them how they plan to vote on Speaker Michael Madigan’s reelection in January. With one exception, I didn’t make much headway. Much has been made about the number of Democratic women who…

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Honeymoon over, opportunity lost

By Rich Miller December 25, 2020 “What if” games are never quite accurate, but I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that Gov. JB Pritzker had the opportunity and most probably the votes to balance the state budget with an income tax hike during 2019, his “honeymoon” year with the General Assembly. Instead, the…

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Outsiders don’t get insider Madigan

By Rich Miller December 18, 2020 Outsiders may not get it, but it makes some sense that the majority of House Democrats still back House Speaker Michael Madigan’s reelection. He’s been a genius at getting things done for his caucus. He is loyal to his people and has infinitely more institutional memory and can pull…

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Opposing Madigan not an easy call

By Rich Miller December 11, 2020 Illinois House Democratic Caucus Chair Kathleen Willis (D-Addison) told me last week that her decision to oppose Speaker Michael Madigan’s reelection was a process that she’s been struggling with since the summer. Willis became the 19th House Democrat to declare opposition to Madigan, putting him six votes shy of…

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Madigan didn’t change with the times

By Rich Miller November 27, 2020 On page 9 of last week’s federal indictment of four people accused of conspiring to bribe House Speaker Michael Madigan with favors from ComEd is this heading: “Defendants and Relevant Individuals.” But the first person listed is not one of the defendants. “Public Official A was the Speaker of…

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Chuy’s in the catbird seat

By Rich Miller November 20, 2020 With the announcement by Rep. Bob Morgan (D-Deerfield) earlier this month that he will not vote to re-elect Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan in January, the opposition numbered eight House Democrats, with at least a few more privately leaning their way. They’ll need 13 or 14 Democrats, depending on…

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Cable TV rates are a killer

By Ray Hanania November 20, 2020 The presidential election results are meaningless for most of us. The media makes us think the election has meaning, but it really doesn’t. In the end, whether Donald Trump or Joe Biden won Ñ the media says Biden won and no one has the right to challenge them without…

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No simple explanation for Dem failure

By Rich Miller November 13, 2020 Illinois Democrats were hoping for some big election night wins last week, but now everything has devolved into finger-pointing chaos. Gov. JB Pritzker’s graduated income tax proposal was in some doubt for a while. The governor’s campaign chose not to advertise early because of the delicacies of politics during…

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JB facing ‘horrible’ choice

By Rich Miller November 6, 2020 For generations now, Chicago has had its own separate set of state laws for just about every topic under the sun. The city’s mayor is allowed to appoint the school board, Chicago has its own “working cash fund” law, the state’s mayoral veto law does not apply to the…

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