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Chicago Sun Times

Why You Should Resist Term Limit Temptation

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.26.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

We're hearing a lot about term limits these days because Republican candidate for governor Bruce Rauner has started a strongly financed initiative to add term limits to the Illinois Constitution.

Take our Poll: Capitol Doors -- Sound Investment or Insane Boondoggle?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.25.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin is a staunch defender of the state Capitol refurbishing project that cost more than $50 million and included historically correct copper doors that cost $670,000.

Top 10: Illinois Remains in National Unemployment Cellar

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.23.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

New unemployment figures last week showed Illinois' jobless rate unchanged in August. That also means our second-worst national ranking is unchanged.

6 Things You Didn't Know About Bill Daley

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.20.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

When Bill Daley bowed out of the governor's race this week, we lost not only an exciting contested Democratic primary. We also lost one of the most potentially colorful candidates in recent election history.

Term Limits and Unintended Consequences

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.19.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

With Republican governor candidate Bruce Rauner backing a well-financed effort to put a term limits constitutional amendment on the 2014 ballot, the issue has more momentum today than it's had in 20 years -- since then-Treasurer Pat Quinn nearly got term limits onto the 1994 ballot.

Mad As Hell? Don't Just Yell: Use Reboot Illinois' New Sound Off Tool

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.17.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Our state's in sorry shape. Debt's growing. Higher taxes are looming. You're mad as hell, now who do you tell? Introducing: Sound Off.

Eliminate 'Lite Gov' Office? Let the People Vote, Says BGA

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.16.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Gov. Pat Quinn has sought to cast his race against Bill Daley for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination as a case of the populist who fights for the little guy (Quinn) vs. the "big shot" who has traveled in elite political and business circles.

Sponsor: Progressive Tax Push Coming in Spring

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.13.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

There are a handful of bills in the General Assembly seeking to change the state constitution to allow Illinois to drop its one-rate-for-all income tax system and implement a progressive income tax. But so far there's been no legislative push to get things moving.

Capitol Doors: Boondoggle, Investment or Symptom?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.12.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

It seems like there are only two people who are happy about the shiny new $680,000 doors on the State Capitol: the architect overseeing the project and former Gov. Jim Thompson.

Tribune's Stantis Remembers 9/11

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.11.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

We remember 9/11 today and so does the Chicago Tribune's Scott Stantis.

2014: Former Govs. Thompson, Edgar endorse Dillard

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.09.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Republican gubernatorial hopeful Kirk Dillard already had the endorsement of former Gov. Jim Edgar, for whom Dillard was chief of staff before launching his Illinois Senate career in 1993.

No Joke: You Paid $700,000 for Doors

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.05.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Turns out that Illinois state employees are among the highest paid, though Illinois does not top the list even among Midwestern states. But Illinois also has the fewest state employees per capita of all states. We break it all down in today's infographic. You be the judge of what constitutes "overpaid."

Legislators Doubling as Lobbyists? No Shortage of Work to Be Done

Madeleine Doubek | Posted 11.04.2013 | Chicago
Madeleine Doubek

Part of our problem in Cook County and Illinois is that the stories come so fast and furious and so frequently, that they no longer are eye popping. Too often, we're doing some eye rolling and clicking and scrolling to find some good news.

2014: Dillard, Rutherford Announce Running Mates via Social Media

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 11.03.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Republican gubernatorial candidates Dan Rutherford and Kirk Dillard used social media over the long holiday weekend to preview their running mate choices.

Will Quinn Campaign Get Minimum Wage Increase Back on Track?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 10.23.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

This could be an uphill battle, however, due to two statistics: Illinois already has the highest minimum wage in the region and unemployment is 9.2 percent -- second highest in the nation.

GOP Day at IL State Fair: 4 Gov Candidates Square Off

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 10.16.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Republicans this year are giddy about their chances for retaking the governorship for the first time since Rod Blagojevich's victory in 2002.

Bruce Rauner: I'm Ready to Fight Unions

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 10.14.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

Illinois has never seen a candidate for governor like Republican hopeful Bruce Rauner. The Chicago venture capitalist has nearly endless wealth he could put into his campaign. He has no experience in elected office.

Who's Connected to Whom and How in the Lawmaker Pay Lawsuit?

Madeleine Doubek | Posted 10.14.2013 | Chicago
Madeleine Doubek

Sometimes you need a flowchart to understand all the connections between public figures in Illinois. That certainly could be useful in the case of the suit filed by Senate President John Cullerton and House Speaker Michael Madigan against Gov. Pat Quinn.

Double-dip Dem Debate

Madeleine Doubek | Posted 10.12.2013 | Chicago
Madeleine Doubek

Gov. Pat Quinn and his opponent, Bill Daley, are fully sparring now over cronyism as this Daley says Quinn's nomination to the Chicago Transit Authority of Thornton Township Supervisor Frank Zuccarelli violates the spirit of a law that doesn't allow some board nominees to get multiple government salaries.

Madigans' Summer Blockbuster: Conflicted

Madeleine Doubek | Posted 10.12.2013 | Chicago
Madeleine Doubek

In the latest chapter of the Madigan summer blockbuster, House Speaker Michael Madigan revealed to the world that his daughter, Lisa, our attorney general, knew for many moons that her dad had no intention of retiring.

Family Biz Hurts Us

Madeleine Doubek | Posted 10.09.2013 | Chicago
Madeleine Doubek

Here's our one-stop shop to the best news and views on reform topics from around the state.

Metra chairman resigns: No politics here, he says

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 10.02.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

METRA CONTINUED The Metra board chairman portrayed by former CEO Alex Clifford as a pawn of House Speaker Michael Madigan resigned on Thursday. Cliffo...

Madigan/Cullerton lawsuit: "Quinn acting like Blagojevich"

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 09.30.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

"NOT SINCE GOVERNOR BLAGOJEVICH..." House Speaker Michael Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton begin their lawsuit against Gov. Pat Quinn by in...

2014: Daley officially in for governor

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 09.29.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

DALEY OFFICIALLY IN Maybe it was a foregone conclusion, but Bill Daley today made his run for governor official, filing paperwork with the Illinois St...

Quinn's lawmaker salary veto: Playing with fire?

Matthew Dietrich | Posted 09.28.2013 | Chicago
Matthew Dietrich

SALARY VETO AS STRATEGY This week Illinois lawmakers will miss their first monthly paycheck after Gov. Pat Quinn vetoed their salaries after their fai...