Politics and Government | WGLT

Politics and Government

Judith Valente / WGLT

Bloomington Aldermen will vote on spending $107 thousand on engineering services to look at the costs of installing water supply wells near Lake Bloomington and Evergreen Lake.

Straying From GOP Message May Have Little Impact

Jul 21, 2016
Tom McClure

The Republican national convention was designed around presidential nominee Donald Trump's campaign theme, "Make America Great Again," with different subtitles such as Make America Safe Again, Make America Work Again and so on. ISU politics and government professor Tom McClure said during Sound Ideas, podium speakers at the Cleveland event have done a poor job of sticking to the theme.

David Gill

The State Board of Elections has ruled independent 13th District Congressional candidate David Gill does not have enough petition signatures to get on the November 8th ballot.

The Bloomington Physician collected nearly 8,600 signatures, but that's still 2,000 fewer than he needed.

McLean County Government Center
Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

McLean County Board members have given a little heat to the building and zoning department over a lack of transparency involving a change to wind farm rules.

And some board members are upset they didn't move up the food chain to chair committees in the wake of the latest shuffle of panel assignments.

Amanda Vinicky / IPR

Republican officials who’ve been holding out on endorsing Donald Trump are moving to his corner, albeit reluctantly.

Congressman Adam Kinzinger of Channahon said walked a tight political line Tuesday when asked directly about his stance on Trump.

Independent Maps Case Heads To Appeal

Jul 20, 2016
Creative Commons

A judge has ruled that a voter referendum seeking to change the way Illinois draws its political boundaries is unconstitutional for the November ballot.

It's the second time that such an attempt has been blocked in the courts.

Jennifer Wong/Network

 

The Nuns on the Bus who are touring the country rolled into the Republican Convention this week, hoping to talk with attendees and delegates about the nation's social issues.

Sister Mary Ellen Lacy said the sisters generally received a warm reception from those they encountered.

The sisters walked around the convention grounds with a lemonade wagon and invited attendees to talk with them about the issues they believe are important to the nation.

Tom McClure

One member of the Illinois State University contingent at the Republican convention in Cleveland says he sees strong similarities between support for Donald Trump and the Know Nothing party of a century and a half ago.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Some choices for committee chairs on the McLean County Board caused votes against the package. The Chair's picks for panels usually pass without dissent.

Board member Laurie Wollrab is not fond of Chair John McIntyre's choice of Dave Selzer to head the transportation committee.

ISU professor Tom McClure
Provided by Tom McClure

In spite of divisions in the Republican Party over the Presidential candidacy of Donald Trump, an ISU Professor of Politics and Government said he doesn't foresee a splintered party. Tom McClure said during GLT's Sound Ideas the short term is secure.

Gravity Aided / Wikimedia Commons

The Normal Theater could see an upgrade to its lighting system, allowing it to be used for more live performances and community events. The town council will consider spending $57 thousand on the energy efficient upgrade for the venue.

Michael Vadon / Flickr

Some Illinois delegates for Donald Trump say they’ll skip next week’s political convention in protest of their own state Republican Party.

Rich Nordstrom won election in the Republican primary to go to next week’s Republican National Convention as a delegate, and officially vote for Donald Trump to be the party’s nominee.

J.P. Mueller / Creative Commons

The Mayor of Normal is giving Congressional testimony on the merits of high speed rail.

Chris Koos is appearing before the subcommittee on Transportation and Public Assets of the Community on Oversight and Government Reform.

Clinton Warns Of Trump Danger

Jul 13, 2016
Marc Nozell / Creative Commons

Hillary Clinton said the Republican Party of Abraham Lincoln has been transformed into "the party of Trump."

Ratting off a series of attacks against her GOP rival during an appearance in Springfield, Clinton said Trump is "dangerous," "divisive," "fear-mongering" and is "pitting American against American."

Henry Lawford / Creative Commons

The stopgap spending measure approved by lawmakers and the Governor at the end of last month did nothing to fix the structural deficit or the backlog of bills State government owes in Illinois. Take dentists for instance.

There are about 18,000 dentists in Illinois. The state owes them 150 million dollars.

Michael Hill / WGLT

People from different parts of Illinois are agreeing to "mend the gaps" when it comes to issues such as healthcare, taxes, education and pay inequality. Residents from Bloomington, Normal, the Chicago area and other Illinois communities attended a discussion called the "Caucus to Mend the Gaps." The event is part of the "Nuns on the Bus" tour.

Michael Hill / WGLT

The City of Bloomington could have a final five-year capital improvement plan by the end of the year. Aldermen and city staff will work together in the coming months to finish up the proposal, which was presented in draft form during a city council work session.

Creative Commons

For the last half century  the courts have moved to a jurisprudence of law and order instead of one of individual rights.

That's according to Michael Gizzi, an Illinois State University Professor of Criminal Justice Sciences, who spoke with GLT's Charlie Schlenker. Gizzi has co-authored a new book on the fourth amendment to the constitution, the portion of the bill of rights preventing unreasonable searches and seizures so people can be secure in their property and possessions.

Jim Browne / WGLT

U-S Senator Dick Durbin says he's glad Illinois has a stop-gap budget. But he says the year-long budget crisis didn't help reduce urban violence in Illinois.

Il. Dept. Corrections / Facebook via Creative Commons

Federal prosecutors and defense attorneys face a midnight deadline for motions regarding the sentence they'd like former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich to receive when his case returns to court for a resentencing hearing next month. 

Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

Bloomington Aldermen will consider spending an additional $25 thousand this year to help with operational costs for the Route 66 Visitors Center at the entrance of the McLean County Museum of History.

Ralph Weisheit

Town of Normal Mayor Chris Koos is considering another run for Mayor.

During Sound Ideas Koos told GLT's Mike McCurdy he'd make a decision in "the next two to three weeks."

Steve Petteway / Staff Photographer Supreme Court

The absence of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia made a big difference in the last session of the high court. That's according to ISU scholar Meghan Leonard. Leonard told Charlie Schlenker not only were the four to four cases a big deal, but some of the 5-3 decisions would have had different emphasis if Scalia were there.

The death of not only affected the decisions handed down in the just completed term of the court, it is shifting what will happen next year too. Leonard said the court has not picked chosen many, if any, blockbuster cases to hear next term.

Court Rules PTSD Should Qualify For Medical Marijuana

Jun 29, 2016
Mike Hager / Vancouver Sun

A Cook County judge has sided with a veteran from Urbana and ordered the state to add Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder to the list of conditions eligible for treatment with medical marijuana.

Judge Neil Cohen ordered the Department of Public Health's director to add PTSD within 30 days. The sternly worded ruling says Director Nirav Shah “engaged in a private investigation, hidden from public view'' that was “constitutionally inappropriate.''

Illinois State Capitol exterior
Justin Brocke / Flickr

There's intense pressure on Illinois lawmakers to pass a budget before Friday, when a new fiscal year begins.  Governor Bruce Rauner spent hours meeting with legislative leaders Wednesday morning and negotiations are expected to continue throughout the day.  

After a year without a state budget, word is an agreement may be shaping up between the Republican governor and the Democrats who control the General Assembly.

U.S. Rep. LaHood

There's a lot Donald Trump says and does with which Congressman Darin LaHood doesn't agree.  He said voters will have a stark choice this November.

When asked during GLT's Sound Ideas, about Trump's response to the Orlando shooting, statements about a federal judge of Mexican descent, and a ban of people of the Muslim faith from entering the U.S., the Illinois 18th District U.S. Representative said "all of those things you mentioned are not necessarily things I agree with, with Donald Trump."

Mike Miletich / WGLT

The human services sector makes a major contribution to Illinois' economy, but the current budget impasse is making that area suffer. Human services hire more than 1,000 workers in McLean County. With a loss of these jobs, there will be less income to the community through taxes and spending.

McLean County Health Department

The last several weeks have involved a great deal of public turmoil involving a strained relationship between the County Health Department and its Board of Health and the County Board. Investigative efforts by the Bloomington Pantagraph turned up thousands of e-mails among health board members, and Health Department Director Walt Howe with some members of the board scheming to elect their slate of officers friendly to Howe's position.

Creative Commons

Some $2 billion in road construction projects will be shut down July 1 in Illinois without a state budget agreement. An Associated Press analysis of Illinois Department of Transportation data shows that collectively work on the 19 largest projects is less than halfway done in terms of money spent.

WIU To Furlough Again

Jun 27, 2016
Adam Moss / Creative Commons

Some Western Illinois University employees will have to take more unpaid days off as the school tries to cope with a drastic decrease in state aid.

This spring, Western imposed furloughs on non-negotiated staff earning more-than 40-thousand dollars. They had to take those days off between April and June.

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