WBEZ | Elections http://www.wbez.org/tags/elections Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Morning Shift: How to get boys on board with reading for fun http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-05-15/morning-shift-how-get-boys-board-reading-fun-110186 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/books Flickr sleepyneko.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>We delve into why boys are reading less and discuss some solutions for getting them more enthusiastic about books. Also, the co-chairs of the Presidential Commission on Election Administration join us and a we hear a tribute to jazz vocalist Mose Allison.</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-how-to-get-boys-on-board-with-readin/embed?header=false&amp;border=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-how-to-get-boys-on-board-with-readin.js?header=false&border=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-how-to-get-boys-on-board-with-readin" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: How to get boys on board with reading for fun" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Thu, 15 May 2014 07:36:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-05-15/morning-shift-how-get-boys-board-reading-fun-110186 Morning Shift: Looking ahead to primary day in Illinois http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-03-17/morning-shift-looking-ahead-primary-day-illinois <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/by Teemu008.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>We take a look at a handful of other notable races in Tuesday&#39;s primary. Also, we see what Illinois&#39; youngest voters are looking for. And the music of Julie Pommerleau.&nbsp;</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-primary-day-in-illinois/embed?header=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-primary-day-in-illinois.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-primary-day-in-illinois" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Primary day in Illinois" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Mon, 17 Mar 2014 08:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-03-17/morning-shift-looking-ahead-primary-day-illinois Compare: Illinois governor candidates' views on concealed carry http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/compare-illinois-governor-candidates-views-concealed-carry-109845 <p><p><em>Editor&rsquo;s note: This episode of the Curious City podcast includes a story about what the candidates for Illinois governor think about the state&rsquo;s new concealed-carry law. It starts 6 minutes, 30 seconds into the program. (Subscribe via <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/curious-city/id568409161">iTunes </a>or <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/CuriousCityPodcast">Feedburner</a>!) This topic was also <a href="https://soundcloud.com/afternoonshiftwbez/curious-city-gay-marriage-and" target="_blank">discussed on WBEZ&#39;s The Afternoon Shift</a>.&nbsp;</em></p><p>Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford of Elgin, Ill., had a perception about guns and violence that made her curious about the crop of primary candidates vying to be the state&rsquo;s governor. Her suspicion? The more that people carry guns in public, the higher the likelihood of gun violence.</p><p>With this highly-debated viewpoint in hand, she sent Curious City this question, just in time for the March 18 primary:</p><p style="text-align: center;"><em>What would the candidates for Illinois governor do to prevent gun violence once thousands of residents are granted concealed carry permits?</em></p><p>There&rsquo;s a lot to unpack here, including some basic information about the state&rsquo;s concealed carry law.</p><p>First, Illinois was the last state in the country to adopt concealed carry and, even then, the lawmakers didn&rsquo;t act on their own; they were forced to pass a bill &mdash; any bill &mdash; by a federal judge who had ruled it&rsquo;s unconstitutional to not allow people to carry concealed guns in public. The legislature approved such a bill in May 2013.</p><p>The timing&rsquo;s not lost on Cheryl, who tells us she once appreciated that Illinois had not allowed concealed carry, and she feels the policy was foisted on the state.</p><p>But now, she said, &ldquo;The way our elected officials respond is going to be crucial.&rdquo;</p><p>Cheryl&rsquo;s onto something here. The first few thousand applicants have just begun receiving their concealed carry permits from the Illinois State Police. That means that &mdash; between the primary and November&rsquo;s general election &mdash; state residents will have a better idea of what living in a state with concealed carry really feels like.</p><p>And there may be pressure, one way or another, to rework the policy.</p><p>So how would the candidates respond?</p><p>To the best of our ability, we let the<a href="#views"> candidates themselves speak to this</a>. But since several of them cite studies about the relationship between violence, crime and concealed carry policy, we also compared their statements to what&rsquo;s being said about concealed carry by academics. While answering Cheryl&#39;s question, we found the bottom line is that the lack of consensus among the candidates is pretty much reflected by a lack of consensus in the research.</p><p><strong>Good guy gun ownership, bad guy gun ownership</strong></p><p>So what effect do concealed carry laws have on violence? It&rsquo;s important to tease out because politicians often cite research to back their positions. And &mdash; as you&rsquo;ll read and hear below &mdash; the academic findings run the gamut..</p><p>(A clarification: Cheryl asked about positions related to concealed carry and violence. Researchers we reached out to look at violent crime, but other types of crime, as well.)</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Tio%20H%20from%20campaign.jpg" style="margin: 5px; height: 190px; width: 285px; float: right;" title="Tio Hardiman is challenging Governor Quinn in the Democratic Primary. (Photo courtesy of the Tio Hardiman campaign)" /><a href="http://www.press.uchicago.edu/Misc/Chicago/493636.html" target="_blank">John Lott</a> has studied the effects of concealed carry laws on crime rates. He wrote a book called More Guns, Less Crime, which pretty much sums up where he stands.</p><p>&ldquo;The fact that a would-be victim might be able to defend themselves also deters crime,&rdquo; Lott said in a phone interview with WBEZ.</p><p>Lott&rsquo;s research of municipal crime data from across the country suggests crime drops after concealed carry laws take effect, and the more concealed carry permits that are issued, the more it drops.</p><p>&ldquo;You know, all sorts of claims about &lsquo;Bad things are gonna happen, you know, blood in the streets?&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;A year from now, everybody&rsquo;s gonna say, &lsquo;What was this debate all about?&rsquo;&rdquo;</p><p>That&rsquo;s particularly true for Illinois, Lott said, because strict requirements on obtaining a concealed carry permit may limit the number of people who get them.</p><p>But here&rsquo;s where things get a little complex, if not outright confusing.</p><p><a href="http://www.law.stanford.edu/profile/john-j-donohue-iii" target="_blank">John Donohue</a>, a professor at Stanford, has also studied the effects of concealed carry laws on crime rates, and his research suggests the exact opposite of what Lott found.</p><p>&ldquo;If I had to bet my house, I&rsquo;d say more likely that they have adverse impacts than that they have a beneficial impact,&rdquo; Donohue said, adding the caveat that the current available research models aren&rsquo;t perfect.</p><p>Still, Donohue said he&rsquo;s doing preliminary work with a new research model that suggests right-to-carry laws lead to more aggravated assaults.<img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/4655925819_1f5bc72c99_o.jpg" style="margin: 5px; float: left; height: 183px; width: 275px;" title="Incumbent Pat Quinn advocates for firmer restrictions on concealed carry. (Flickr/Chris Eaves)" /></p><p>And then there&rsquo;s a third position held by other researchers about what happens to crime rates in right-to-carry states, as expressed by Prof. <a href="http://www.criminology.fsu.edu/p/faculty-gary-kleck.php" target="_blank">Gary Kleck</a> from Florida State University.</p><p>&ldquo;Other things being equal, nothing happens,&rdquo; Kleck said. &ldquo;Good guy gun ownership has crime-reducing effects and bad guy gun ownership has crime-elevating effects.&rdquo;</p><p>The reason there are so many contradictory opinions is that none of these folks can agree on what data they should be looking at or how they should be looking at it. Kleck said this gets into differences over the minutiae of crime research models.</p><p>&ldquo;There may be only one right way to do it, but there&rsquo;s like a million different wrong ways to do it. And yeah, if you&rsquo;re a layperson, you&rsquo;re just &lsquo;Joe Regular Guy&rsquo; trying to figure it out, you&rsquo;re doomed,&rdquo; Kleck said. &ldquo;I mean, there&rsquo;s nothing I can say to help you out because you&rsquo;re not gonna be qualified to see those ... flaws in the research.&rdquo;</p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP463233027879.jpg" style="margin: 5px; height: 303px; width: 450px;" title="The GOP candidates, from left to right, state Sen. Bill Brady, state Treasurer Dan Rutherford, state Sen. Kirk Dillard, and businessman Bruce Rauner prepare to debate. (AP Photo/Chicago Tribune, Terrence Antonio James, Pool)" /></div><p><strong>Where the candidates stand</strong></p><p>All this is to show that concealed carry is a complicated, controversial issue. But we wanted to illustrate that even among the experts &mdash; the folks whom politicians are citing &mdash; there&rsquo;s not a consensus.</p><p>We posed Cheryl&rsquo;s question to all six major party campaigns, but we had to track down responses in very different ways. In three cases we were able to ask candidates directly, either at press conferences or via phone calls. For the others, we had to search for answers through other avenues. In some cases, we extrapolated a position based on the candidate&rsquo;s previous statements on concealed carry, crime, violence and guns.</p><p><strong>Democrat Tio Hardiman</strong></p><p>He is the only candidate who acknowledged the conflicting research that we encountered.</p><p>&ldquo;I cannot penalize, not with a good conscience, penalize legal gun owners for the violence problem in Illinois. There&rsquo;s no data to back it up. So if people would like to exercise their right to the Second Amendment, they should be able to do so.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Republican State Sen. Bill Brady</strong></p><p>&ldquo;We also have to understand that this is about public safety and driving down crime. We know that in every state where concealed carry took place, crime went down. And we need to give our citizens the opportunity to protect themselves and watch crime go down.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Republican State Sen. Kirk Dillard</strong></p><p>&ldquo;Illinois is the last state in America to allow people to protect themselves. It took the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to force the state of Illinois to allow people to have the same right they had in all 49 other states, let alone keep the criminals guessing. I take a wait and see approach. I think we ought to wait and see how this law unfurls for a while before we make any changes, pro or con, to it.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Republican businessman Bruce Rauner</strong></p><p>We didn&rsquo;t get a direct response from Bruce Rauner, but he addressed themes in Cheryl&rsquo;s question during a debate.</p><p>&ldquo;I think concealed carry was long overdue. Gun ownership is an important constitutional right. We should end the approach that many politicians take in Illinois and that is to blame our crime problems on gun ownership. Our crime problems are one of, crimes about inadequate police staffing, high unemployment and horrible schools, not about gun ownership.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Republican State Treasurer Dan Rutherford</strong></p><p>In previous statements, including this one from a debate in northwest suburban Hoffman Estates, he&rsquo;s said he wants the Illinois State Police to oversee gun licenses efficiently.</p><p>&ldquo;If I was king of the forest or if I was the governor and I was able to help influence it, it would be a different bill than what it was. I think what we need to be very, very sensitive to, though, is the evolution of this. The evolution could be, as you suggested, perhaps making it better and more enhancing. But as well an evolution could also put us backwards if we don&rsquo;t have the right people in the governor&rsquo;s office, we don&rsquo;t have the right people in the General Assembly. One of the performance reviews that I will be doing is with regards to State Police. Why does it take so long to process a FOID card? Why does it take so long to process the application for your concealed carry? Those are unacceptable.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Democratic incumbent Gov. Pat Quinn</strong></p><p>The governor didn&rsquo;t seem to like any part of the process of negotiating the concealed carry bill last year, and he <a href="http://www3.illinois.gov/PressReleases/ShowPressRelease.cfm?SubjectID=2&amp;RecNum=11323" target="_blank">vetoed parts of it </a>in the name of safety. Those changes were overridden by the General Assembly.</p><p>&ldquo;This is about public safety. I think that public safety should never be compromised, never be negotiated away. The governor, that&rsquo;s me, my job is to protect public safety and I think that&rsquo;s what I&rsquo;m doing here with these common sense changes. I think we need to repeat that over and over again. The things I&rsquo;ve outlined today that have changed this bill are all about common sense and public safety and I think the General Assembly and the members should put aside politics and focus on people and their safety.&rdquo;<a name="views"></a></p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="400" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/playlists/26501739&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_artwork=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><em>Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics for WBEZ. Follow him <a href="http://twitter.com/tonyjarnold">@tonyjarnold</a>.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/akeefe">Alex Keefe</a> is a political reporter at WBEZ. You can follow him on <a href="https://twitter.com/WBEZpolitics">Twitter</a> and <a href="https://plus.google.com/102759794640397640028">Google+</a>.</em></p><p><em>This report received additional support through <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/front-center">Front &amp; Center</a>, an occasional WBEZ series funded by The Joyce Foundation.</em></p></p> Wed, 12 Mar 2014 19:02:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/compare-illinois-governor-candidates-views-concealed-carry-109845 Could Illinois' next governor undo same-sex marriage? http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/could-illinois-next-governor-undo-same-sex-marriage-109844 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/thumb_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicagoan Christie Pettitt-Schieber has spent a lot of time thinking about the future of same-sex marriage in Illinois. Apparently, so has her girlfriend of two years.</p><p>As Pettitt-Scheiber tells it: &ldquo;She goes on Etsy all the time, and she will, pull up, like, hundreds and hundreds of engagement rings, and then force me to look at the website and go, &lsquo;Do you like this one? Do you like this one? What do you think about this one?&rsquo;&rdquo;</p><p>But before they take the plunge, Pettitt-Schieber, 26, asked Curious City a more fundamental question about Illinois&rsquo; gay marriage law, which was <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/quinn-says-he-will-sign-marriage-equality-bill-month-109084" target="_blank">approved by the legislature</a> late last year and is set to take effect statewide on June 1st.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><em>Could the next governor reverse the same-sex marriage legislation that just passed?</em></p><p>Gay marriage has been a hot-button political issue in Illinois for a few years, and the allegiances and beliefs involved don&rsquo;t always break along party lines. After months of furious lobbying and nose-counting by both backers and opponents, the bill to legalize same-sex marriages passed by a <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/quinn-says-he-will-sign-marriage-equality-bill-month-109084" target="_blank">narrow margin</a> in the state House in early November.</p><p>But the foundation of Christie&rsquo;s question gets to an apolitical issue: the relationship between the branches of Illinois government.</p><p><strong>Illinois Civics: 101</strong></p><p>To find out whether an Illinois governor could unilaterally undo the state&rsquo;s same-sex marriage law &mdash; or any law, for that matter &mdash; we called up Charles Wheeler, director of the Public Affairs Reporting Program at the University of Illinois at Springfield and an expert on the state constitution.</p><p>Wheeler&rsquo;s answer is pretty straightforward: &ldquo;No.&rdquo;</p><p>But there&rsquo;s a civics lesson behind that &ldquo;no.&rdquo;</p><p>&ldquo;The Illinois governor has no ability to unilaterally rewrite the statutes,&rdquo; Wheeler said. The only way a governor could undo a state law was by the same way it was done in the first place: with the approval of a majority of state Senators and Representatives.</p><p>The closest an Illinois governor can get to ruling by fiat is an executive order, Wheeler said. But the <a href="http://www.ilga.gov/commission/lrb/con5.htm" target="_blank">Illinois Constitution</a> only lets governors use that power to reorganize parts of state government, not to magic away laws they dislike. And even then, the legislature can overturn an order.</p><p>But that doesn&rsquo;t mean governors haven&rsquo;t tried.</p><p>When former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was impeached by the Illinois House in 2009, the charges against him weren&rsquo;t limited to the corruption that would later send him to prison. Buried in the <a href="http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/95/HR/09500HR1671.htm" target="_blank">laundry list</a> of Blagojevich&rsquo;s misdeeds was Article 9, which accused him of &ldquo;utter disregard of the doctrine of separation of powers&rdquo; when he unilaterally expanded a state healthcare program that the legislature rejected.</p><p>Complicating matters more recently is a ruling <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/judge-allows-same-sex-couples-marry-cook-county-starting-now-109751" target="_blank">last month</a> by Chicago Federal Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman, ordering that gay couples in Cook County must be issued marriage licenses immediately, rather than waiting for the new law&rsquo;s original June 1 start date. Coleman <a href="http://llnw.wbez.org/140221%20Federal%20gay%20marriage%20ruling%20Cook%20County.pdf" target="_blank">wrote</a> that the state&rsquo;s current prohibition of same-sex marriages (which is still in effect until June) violates the U.S. Constitution. That ruling <a href="http://www.senatormccarter.com/index.cfm?sectionid=22&amp;parentid=21&amp;sectiontree=21,22&amp;itemid=532" target="_blank">put an end</a> to one downstate Illinois Senator&rsquo;s move to repeal the gay marriage law.</p><p>For Wheeler, all of this adds up to one conclusion: &ldquo;I would be willing to bet any amount of money that Illinois will not repeal same-sex marriage.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Answers from the candidates</strong></p><p>Given that any repeal of the gay marriage law would take an act of political will (versus executive decree), Curious City asked the two Democrats and six Republicans running in the March 18th gubernatorial primary whether they would work to overturn same-sex marriage.</p><p>Some answers required some tooth-pulling (as you&rsquo;ll hear in the <a href="#playlist">audio excerpts</a>&nbsp;below), but here&rsquo;s what they had to say.</p><p><strong>Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn:</strong> &ldquo;The Governor led the charge to make Illinois the 16th state to embrace full marriage equality, and he is proud to have gotten the job done,&rdquo; spokeswoman Brooke Anderson wrote in an email. &ldquo;This was a major step forward for Illinois. As long as he&rsquo;s Governor, he will defend this law and make sure all couples have equal rights in Illinois.&rdquo;</p><p><strong>Democrat Tio Hardiman, anti-violence advocate:</strong> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s the law. If somebody was to bring some legislation to my desk, we would look at it. But ... I plan to enforce that law. People need to be happy in their lives. I&rsquo;m not here to, you know, try to play God with people&rsquo;s lives.&rdquo;</p><p>The four candidates running for the Republican Party&rsquo;s nomination <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/videogallery/79102861/Live-Republican-candidates-for-Illinois-governor" target="_blank">were asked a similar question recently</a> by the Chicago Tribune editorial board.</p><p><strong>Republican Illinois State Sen. Bill Brady:</strong> &ldquo;I&rsquo;d be consistent with my position,&rdquo; Brady said. He clarified that he would sign a repeal &ldquo;if it came to me,&rdquo; but added &ldquo;it&rsquo;s unrealistic to even address the issue.&rdquo; Brady <a href="http://ilga.gov/legislation/votehistory/98/senate/09800SB0010_11052013_001000C.pdf" target="_blank">voted against the bill</a> in the legislature.</p><p><strong>Republican businessman Bruce Rauner: </strong>&ldquo;I would not sign it if there hasn&rsquo;t been a referendum on it. I wanna see what the voters want on that issue. I won&rsquo;t take any action on that issue unless I see what the voters want.&rdquo; Rauner has repeatedly refused to reveal how he feels about gay marriage.</p><p><strong>Republican Illinois State Sen. Kirk Dillard:</strong> &ldquo;If [a repeal] got to my desk [I would sign it], but that&rsquo;s not gonna happen. Let&rsquo;s focus on things like the economy and how we&rsquo;re gonna fix the state&rsquo;s finances.&rdquo; Dillard <a href="http://ilga.gov/legislation/votehistory/98/senate/09800SB0010_11052013_001000C.pdf" target="_blank">voted against the bill</a> in the legislature.</p><p><strong>Republican Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford: </strong>&nbsp;&ldquo;It&rsquo;s not gonna get to the desk. It&rsquo;s not gonna pass. It&rsquo;s not gonna get there. It is the law. ... I did not support the bill from the religious standpoint of it.&rdquo; Rutherford was out of the legislature when the same-sex marriage bill was passed, though he previously <a href="http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/votehistory/96/senate/09600SB1716_12012010_006000C.pdf" target="_blank">voted in favor</a> of same-sex civil unions when he was a state senator.<a name="playlist"></a></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="400" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/playlists/26498163&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_artwork=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><strong>It&rsquo;s all politics</strong></p><p>If the unilateral repeal of gay marriage by an Illinois governor is legally impossible, it&rsquo;s also politically improbable, said Gregg Durham, an Illinois pollster who has worked with many Republican candidates (though he said he is not currently working for any gubernatorial campaign.)</p><p>Durham said the Republican candidates&rsquo; hesitation to talk about repealing gay marriage &mdash; even if they believe it should be repealed &mdash; is because it&rsquo;s a losing issue for the Illinois GOP.</p><p>&ldquo;I would tell them to run away as fast as they could from the question,&rdquo; Durham said.</p><p>Why?</p><p>Public opinion, for one: Durham&rsquo;s polling reflects growing approval of same-sex marriage in Illinois, and more resignation from people who are still opposed to it.</p><p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re starting to hear less and less about changing it, and more about, &lsquo;Fine, can we get onto more important issues now?&rsquo;&rdquo; he said.</p><p>Durham also cites the political math in Springfield. Democrats enjoy large majorities in both houses of the General Assembly, and the party has two powerful leaders &mdash; House Speaker Michael Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton. Both exercise broad control over which bills are actually called up for a vote.</p><p>And even with those hefty majorities, and the support of some heavy-hitting Democratic pols, the gay marriage vote was still a tough one for rank-and-file lawmakers. And the difficulty wasn&rsquo;t just for Republicans, whose party platform defines marriage as being between one man and one woman.</p><p>Durham&rsquo;s own polling also showed opposition from some Democrats in Chicago and southern Illinois.</p><p>&ldquo;No one likes to pay for real estate twice,&rdquo; Durham said. &ldquo;The passage of that bill took a long time and a lot of effort by a lot of people. Now they don&rsquo;t wanna go back and have a second vote on it &mdash; anybody, probably on either side of the issue.&rdquo;</p><p><em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/akeefe">Alex Keefe</a> is a political reporter at WBEZ. You can follow him on <a href="https://twitter.com/WBEZpolitics">Twitter</a> and <a href="https://plus.google.com/102759794640397640028">Google+</a>.</em></p><p><em>Note: This report received additional support through <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/front-center">Front &amp; Center</a>, an occasional WBEZ series funded by The Joyce Foundation. </em></p><div>&nbsp;</div></p> Wed, 12 Mar 2014 15:35:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/could-illinois-next-governor-undo-same-sex-marriage-109844 Whistleblowing, ethnic clashes in Guinea and remembering Chiwoniso Maraire http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2013-07-31/whistleblowing-ethnic-clashes-guinea-and-remembering-chiwoniso-maraire <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/_68946464_chiwoniso2.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>We assess the Obama administration&#39;s treatment of whistleblowers. Ethnic clashes erupt after the killing of a young man in Guinea Conakry. Zimbabwean musician Chiwoniso Maraire dies unexpectedly at age 37.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F103448125&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-ethnic-clashes-in-guinea.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-ethnic-clashes-in-guinea" target="_blank">View the story "Worldview: Whistleblowing, ethnic clashes in Guinea and remembering Chiwoniso Maraire" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p></p> Wed, 31 Jul 2013 11:11:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2013-07-31/whistleblowing-ethnic-clashes-guinea-and-remembering-chiwoniso-maraire Mali prepares for elections, developing legal infrastructure in Burma and using trees to feed people http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2013-07-11/mali-prepares-elections-developing-legal-infrastructure-burma-and <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP428612102121.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Mali prepares to elect its next leader. We learn what it will take to rebuild Burma&#39;s legal system. Mary McLaughlin explains tells us about the various benefits of breadfruit trees and introduces us to her organization, Trees that Feed.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F100651179&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-legal-infrastructure-lags-in-burma-and-u.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-legal-infrastructure-lags-in-burma-and-u" target="_blank">View the story "Worldview: Mali prepares for elections, developing legal infrastructure in Burma and using trees to feed people" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p></p> Thu, 11 Jul 2013 10:25:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2013-07-11/mali-prepares-elections-developing-legal-infrastructure-burma-and Venezuela's incredibly sad elections http://www.wbez.org/blogs/achy-obejas/2013-04/venezuelas-incredibly-sad-elections-106636 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/RS7208_AP13040406993-scr_0.jpg" title="This is likely Henrique Capriles' last shot at being president of Venezuela (AP)" />Henrique Capriles&rsquo; suicide mission will likely come to an end Sunday, when Venezuelans go to the polls and elect Nicolás Maduro, Hugo Chávez&rsquo;s handpicked successor, in a nasty, rigged campaign. If Capriles should somehow win -- an improbability by almost any measure -- it is, frankly, unlikely the Maduro forces don&rsquo;t have a Plan B to hold on to power, such as an appeal to the Venezuelan Supreme Court -- handpicked by Chávez and a vital player in these last few months in the drama of Chávez&rsquo;s death, Maduro&rsquo;s presidential succession and the laying out of the campaign frame work.<br /><br />The brief 30-day campaign has favored Maduro not simply because of his association with Chávez and because Chávez&rsquo;s last public words were an endorsement of him as heir -- though this alone is a mighty reason for many Venezuelans to support him.<br /><br />Maduro&rsquo;s incumbency, however controversial, has&nbsp; meant the full weight and credit of the Venezuelan government media machine going all out, blacking out Capriles (who&rsquo;s been reduced to campaigning on one TV station and social media while Maduro campaigns on 7 channels whenever he wants and travels on the government&#39;s dime) and constant attacks of the dirtiest kind. So far, Maduro has strongly implied Capriles is gay and outright called him an &ldquo;heir to Hitler,&rdquo; a particularly ironic and stinging barb considering Capriles&rsquo; grandparents were Holocaust survivors. On the final day, Maduro warned that anyone who didn&#39;t vote for him would awaken a 100 year-old curse.<br /><br />If anything makes the probable defeat of Capriles particularly sad is that his style of campaigning -- trying desperately to combat the irrational insults with reason, trying desperately to remain above the fray and maintain a respectful and dignified stance -- will be deemed futile and Maduro&rsquo;s mocking no-holds barred denigrating will be declared effective. The campaign has been grueling, depressing, a hate fest.<br /><br />Sadder perhaps is that Capriles, the only candidate to unite the opposition, will likely end his presidential ambitions with this campaign. At 40, he&rsquo;s certainly young enough to try again, but he may have spent all his electoral currency in these last two elections (he came within 8 points of Chávez in October, the closest anyone had ever gotten). After this, the next presidential elections are in 2019.<br /><br />Saddest of all is that Maduro winning won&rsquo;t modernize the Venezuelan economy, which -- no matter what anyone thinks of the Bolivarian Revolution -- is sputtering (the national currency recently suffered a 32 percent devaluation and inflation is at 26 percent). Nor will Maduro, whose campaign made attacking the U.S. an integral theme, move to open up the economy or to invite in outside investors. (especially the many Venezuelans who&rsquo;ve taken their investments out of the country).</p><p>Venezuela&rsquo;s annual oil production has declined by 25 percent since 1999, when Chávez took office, and oil exports have dropped by nearly a half in that time. Consider what that means to a country that <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/09/world/americas/venezuelas-role-as-oil-power-diminished.html?_r=0">depends on oil</a> for 95 percent of its exports and 45 percent of its revenues. Consider too that Venezuela depends on the U.S., its sworn enemy, to buy as much as 40 percent of its oil, in cash, in order to stay afloat.</p><p>Nor will Maduro make the kinds of structural changes countries such as <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/01/world/americas/01peru.html?_r=0">Brazil, Mexico and Peru</a> have made with an eye toward the long-term. Venezuela&#39;s <a href="http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324000704578386771059515346.html">budget deficit</a> reached 12 percent last year, an astounding figure considering its riches. In fact, though Venezuela has one of the largest crude reserves in the world, it still needs to import gasoline (which it sells at a subsidized price of about a nickel a gallon). Does that make sense to anyone?<br /><br />But Maduro, whose primary goal seems to be to hold on to power, will continue to depend on oil exports to pay for the more than 70 percent of consumer goods Venezuela imports. In other words, Maduro will continue on the road to making Venezuela a one-trick pony with its oil monies, depending entirely on the price and power of oil to pay, first and foremost, for the ever growing domestic subsidies that Venezuela has taken on in the last 14 years.<br /><br />But his first task -- or that of Capriles, on the very off chance he wins and gets to keep the win -- will be to reconcile the country, now dramatically and bitterly divided. There is a tidal wave of resentment waiting to hit no matter who wins. And there is an economic deluge coming, no matter who the president turns out to be.<br /><br />&nbsp;</p></p> Sun, 14 Apr 2013 05:55:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/achy-obejas/2013-04/venezuelas-incredibly-sad-elections-106636 The constant candidate: Lar Daly http://www.wbez.org/blogs/john-r-schmidt/2012-10/constant-candidate-lar-daly-103478 <p><p>I learned the meaning of the word &ldquo;incumbent&rdquo; when I was 11 years old.</p><p>It was the evening of the 1959 mayoral primary.&nbsp;Grandpa was a Democrat precinct captain, and while he was off doing whatever he was doing, the rest of the family listened to the returns over the radio.&nbsp;Every fifteen minutes or so, I&rsquo;d hear the announcer say something like, &ldquo;Daley the incumbent, 244,978.&nbsp;Lar Daly, 302.&rdquo;</p><p>So &quot;incumbent&quot; meant our current mayor, Richard J. Daley.&nbsp;But who or what was a Lar Daly?</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/11-06--Lar%20Daly%20button.jpg" style="float: right; height: 252px; width: 275px;" title="Lar Daly campaign button (author's collection)" /></div><p>Lawrence Joseph Sarsfield Daly, that&rsquo;s who.&nbsp;He was born in 1912, lived on the South Side, was married, and had five children.&nbsp;He operated a business that sold bar stools.</p><p>What made him famous was his hobby.&nbsp;He ran for public office&ndash;and lost.&nbsp;He did it about 30 times.&nbsp;</p><p>Strangely enough,&nbsp;in his first campaign, he actually won.&nbsp;In 1932&nbsp;Daly was elected a Republican ward committeeman.&nbsp;Then it was discovered&nbsp;he was only 20 years old, and&nbsp;not eligible for the job.</p><p>He next ran for Cook County Superintendent of Schools in the 1938 Democrat primary.&nbsp;He began using the name &ldquo;Lar&rdquo; because he thought it would win him some Swedish votes.&nbsp;It didn&rsquo;t work, and his losing streak began.</p><p>Daly was an equal-opportunity candidate.&nbsp;He ran on whichever ticket gave him the best shot at victory.&nbsp;In the 1959 mayoral primary, was a candidate in <em><u>both</u></em> the Democrat and Republican contests.</p><p>In philosophy, he was a Libertarian.&nbsp;He favored legalized gambling, was against public education, and called for major tax cuts.&nbsp;He was also a staunch isolationist&ndash;he billed himself as Lar &ldquo;America First&rdquo; Daly.&nbsp;Often he campaigned&nbsp;wearing an Uncle Sam suit.</p><p>People who knew him well liked him.&nbsp;He played the fiddle and loved to entertain friends at parties.&nbsp;He was also a pretty&nbsp;good public speaker, with a rich, baritone voice.</p><p>Still, it was hard to take him seriously.&nbsp;At one outdoor gathering, Daly was dressed in his Uncle Sam costume, telling the audience what was wrong with government.&nbsp;He was running&nbsp;through the list, saying &ldquo;Point One . . . Point Two . . .&rdquo;</p><p>Then a heckler yelled, &ldquo;Why don&rsquo;t you take&nbsp;off that hat, and show us Point Three?&rdquo;</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/11-06--Lar%20Daly%20ad.jpg" style="float: left; height: 214px; width: 275px;" title="Lar Daly campaign ad (author's collection)" /></div><p>In a way, Daly was responsible for the Presidential Debates.&nbsp;Federal law said that radio and TV stations had to&nbsp;grant equal time to all candidates.&nbsp;Daly routinely filed appeals when he was denied access&ndash;and in 1959, the FCC ruled in his favor!&nbsp;Local Chicago stations were forced to give him free air time.</p><p>To make a long story short, Congress soon rewrote the laws in question.&nbsp;When Kennedy and Nixon squared off in their historic 1960 debates, Lar Daly was nowhere to be seen.</p><p>So he went on, running and losing. 1962&ndash;U.S. Senate . . . 1963&ndash;Mayor of Chicago . . . 1964&ndash;Governor of Illinois . . . 1966&ndash;U.S. Senate . . . 1967&ndash;Mayor of Chicago . . . 1969&ndash;13th Congressional District special election.&nbsp;And so on, and so on.</p><p>In 1973, Daly won the Republican primary for the 7th Congressional District special election. That wasn&rsquo;t hard to do, since he was running unopposed in a heavily-Democrat district.&nbsp;In the general election, he was clobbered.</p><p>Politics costs money, even at Daly&rsquo;s level.&nbsp;During the 1970s he began appearing without the Uncle Sam suit.&nbsp;Rumor said that he&rsquo;d had to pawn it.</p><p>His last campaign was the Republican U.S. Senate primary in 1978.&nbsp;Running against Charles Percy, Daly polled 74,779 votes&ndash;at 15%, his best showing in years in a contested election.&nbsp;A month later, Lar Daly was dead.</p><p>Today he remains a legend among local political junkies.&nbsp;A story I heard confirms this.&nbsp;</p><p>In 1948, former Minnesota governor Harold Stassen almost became the Republican nominee for President of the United States.&nbsp;That near-miss did something to Stassen. For decades afterward, he ran a string of unsuccessful campaigns, and eventually became a national joke.&nbsp;So when Stassen died, a Chicago commentator was asked to describe him.</p><p>The response was classic&ndash;Harold Stassen had been &ldquo;a big-time Lar Daly.&rdquo;</p></p> Tue, 06 Nov 2012 05:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/john-r-schmidt/2012-10/constant-candidate-lar-daly-103478 A stark choice for Egyptians in upcoming elections http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-05-29/segment/egyptian-elections-99635 <p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP120528110469.jpg" title="A youth shouts next to an Egyptian flag as the revolutionary youth of Egypt return to Tahrir to protest the outcome of the Egyptian presidential election, Cairo, Egypt on Monday. (AP/Fredrik Persson)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Egyptian voters are bracing for a presidential runoff pitting the former head of the air force, Ahmeh Shafik, against Muslim Brotherhood candidate Ahmed Morsi. Shafik has some voters thinking the revolution is a stake with his candidacy &ndash; he was Mubarak&rsquo;s final prime minister plus he has a military background.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">A Morsi presidency would put both parliament and the presidency in the pocket of the Muslim brotherhood &ndash; an outcome undesirable to Christians and secularists.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Ahmed Rehab, director of the Chicago Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations, joins <em>Worldview</em><em> </em>to discuss the election.</div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 30 May 2012 12:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-05-29/segment/egyptian-elections-99635 Greeks vote against austerity measures http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-05-07/segment/greeks-vote-against-austerity-measures-98882 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP120502037670(2).jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Europe saw a political shake up this weekend when voters went to the polls in France, Serbia and Greece. Greek voters gave a majority to the center-right New Democracy party.&nbsp; But with only about 19 percent of the vote, they did not win enough seats to take control of parliament. They&rsquo;ve now got three days to try and form a coalition.</p><p>The two parties that were part of the previous coalition government suffered a big loss as voters cast their ballots against austerity measures.&nbsp; The vote split among at least seven parties, unseating socialists and conservatives that have dominated Greek politics. Voters delivered a clear message, they want a change. We&rsquo;ll got some analysis from Endy Zemenides executive director of <a href="http://hellenicleaders.com" target="_blank">Hellenic-American Leadership Council</a>.</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Mon, 07 May 2012 15:57:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/worldview/2012-05-07/segment/greeks-vote-against-austerity-measures-98882