WBEZ | Bill Brady http://www.wbez.org/tags/bill-brady Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Morning Shift: The role of universities in curbing sexual assault on campus http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-03-13/morning-shift-role-universities-curbing-sexual <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/sexual assault Flickr howlmontreal.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>We examine the role of universities in preventing and responding to sexual assaults on campus. Plus, GOP gubernatorial candidate State Senator Bill Brady tells us why he should be Illinois&#39; next chief executive. And remembering Free to be You and Me.</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-the-role-of-universities-in-curbing/embed?header=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-the-role-of-universities-in-curbing.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-the-role-of-universities-in-curbing" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: The role of universities in curbing sexual assault on campus" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Thu, 13 Mar 2014 08:13:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-03-13/morning-shift-role-universities-curbing-sexual GOP candidate for governor says unemployed need motivation to get a job http://www.wbez.org/news/gop-candidate-governor-says-unemployed-need-motivation-get-job-109633 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Bill Brady_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Illinois State Sen. Bill Brady &ndash; a candidate in the Illinois Republican primary for governor &ndash; said he is hearing from manufacturers that people are not motivated to return to the workforce because they are &ldquo;enjoying&rdquo; their unemployment insurance.</p><p>Brady made the comment near the end of a debate, sponsored by the Illinois Manufacturers&rsquo; Association and the Valley Industrial Association, that was held this morning in the Chicago suburb of Naperville.</p><p>Brady participated along with all three opponents for the March 18 primary: venture capitalist Bruce Rauner, state Sen. Kirk Dillard, and state Treasurer Dan Rutherford.</p><p>The candidates were asked by Greg Baise, who heads the Illinois Manufacturers&rsquo; Association, about their positions on increasing Illinois&rsquo; unemployment benefits.</p><p>Rauner noted, &ldquo;Most [manufacturers] have said, &lsquo;It&rsquo;s not the biggest problem we face, and workers comp is much bigger, taxes are much bigger, and some of the regulatory burden overall is a bigger problem.&rsquo;&rdquo;</p><p>But Brady said he&rsquo;s heard something different than Rauner from manufacturers.</p><p>&ldquo;I have to differ with Mr. Rauner on this,&rdquo; Brady said. &ldquo;The number one issue I run into when I travel around to manufacturing plants particularly, when I ask them, &lsquo;How&rsquo;s it going?&rsquo; They say, &lsquo;I can&rsquo;t hire my people back.&rsquo; They say, &lsquo;They&rsquo;re enjoying &ndash; I&rsquo;ll use &ndash; their unemployment insurance. And I can&rsquo;t get them back to work.&rsquo; So we&rsquo;ve gotta motivate people to get back into the workforce.&rdquo;</p><p>In a phone interview after the debate, Brady would not say which manufacturers have said people enjoy their unemployment benefits and are not motivated to return to work.</p><p>Rutherford, in responding to the unemployment question at the debate, related the problem to Chicago&rsquo;s gun violence. Dillard was cut off for time purposes without answering the question.</p><p>The Illinois Department of Employment Security reported in December that the state&rsquo;s unemployment rate stood at 8.6 percent, nearly 2 percentage points higher than the national average.</p><p>Brady is making his third run for the governor&rsquo;s office. He lost in the 2006 Republican primary. In 2010, he lost in the general election to Democratic incumbent Gov. Pat Quinn. Dillard is making his second bid for governor after losing a close primary contest to Brady in 2010.</p><p><em>Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics. Follow him <a href="http://twitter.com/tonyjarnold" target="_blank">@tonyjarnold</a>.</em></p></p> Tue, 04 Feb 2014 13:42:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/gop-candidate-governor-says-unemployed-need-motivation-get-job-109633 Hey (future) governor! Here's what you should talk about! http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/hey-future-governor-heres-what-you-should-talk-about-109594 <p><p><em>Editor&#39;s note: WBEZ&#39;s Tony Arnold and Alex Keefe would still LOVE to have your politics-related questions (and others), but their focused campaign to solicit questions about the 2014 race for Illinois governor has ended. What came of it? Many <a href="http://curiouscity.wbez.org/questions/archive/race-for-illinois-governor">great questions </a>about the political process, the state&#39;s future governor and much more! Tony and Alex will be taking on several of those questions, but they also placed three into a <a href="http://curiouscity.wbez.org/voting_rounds/50">Curious City voting round</a>, to let people like you decide which should be the highest priority.&nbsp;</em></p><p>Illinois voters head to the polls March 18 to select their party&rsquo;s candidate for Illinois governor.</p><p>How&rsquo;s this involve you? WBEZ&rsquo;s Curious City is looking for the questions you feel are important but the candidates for governor may not be talking about. We suspect some issues will get a lot of coverage: tax policy, pensions, guns and same-sex marriage. But what more do you want to know? The candidates&rsquo; positions on Illinois&rsquo; nuclear power industry? Animal rights? Or, maybe you&rsquo;ve always wondered what goes on inside a campaign.</p><p><a href="http://curiouscity.wbez.org/">Write your question </a>about Illinois&rsquo; 2014 governor&rsquo;s race right now, and &mdash; if you&#39;re using a PC or Mac &mdash; it helps to&nbsp;select the category &quot;Race for Illinois governor.&quot; Here&#39;s what to look for at the top of the page:</p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://curiouscity.wbez.org " target="_blank"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/CC%20screenshot%20for%20Al_Tony%20story.png" style="height: 64px; width: 600px;" title="" /></a></div><p>WBEZ&rsquo;s political reporters Alex Keefe and Tony Arnold will pore over the questions, looking out for ones that can broaden &mdash; and maybe even shake up &mdash; this election.</p><p>If you have to sort out who&rsquo;s running in the March 18 primary, the Illinois State Board of Elections keeps an updated <a href="http://www.elections.state.il.us/ElectionInformation/CandList.aspx?SearchType=office&amp;ListType=RESULTS+OF+SEARCH+BY+OFFICE&amp;ElectionID=41&amp;ElectionType=GP&amp;ElectionDate=3%2f18%2f2014&amp;ElectionYear=2014&amp;QueryType=CANDIDATE&amp;OfficeIDSearchType=Matches&amp;OfficeID=6746&amp;StatusSearchType=Matches&amp;Status=AP&amp;OrderBy=ORDER+BY+OfficeBallotGroup%2c+OfficeSequence%2c+PartySequence%2cFileDateTime%2cvwCandidates.Sequence%2cvwCandidates.ID%2cLotteryLastName%2cLotteryFirstName">list of candidates</a>.</p><p><em>Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics for WBEZ. Follow him on <a href="http://twitter.com/tonyjarnold" target="_blank">Twitter</a>.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/akeefe">Alex Keefe</a>&nbsp;is a political reporter at WBEZ. You can follow him on&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/WBEZpolitics" target="_blank">Twitter</a>&nbsp;and&nbsp;<a href="https://plus.google.com/102759794640397640028" target="_blank">Google+</a>.</em></p></p> Tue, 28 Jan 2014 18:46:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/hey-future-governor-heres-what-you-should-talk-about-109594 For GOP hopefuls, Labor Day is for politicking http://www.wbez.org/news/gop-hopefuls-labor-day-politicking-108585 <p><p>The Republican field for the 2014 Illinois governor and lieutenant governor races began to crystalize Monday, as Tuesday marks the day that candidates can begin gathering signatures to get on the ballot for March&rsquo;s primary.</p><p>Among the Republican gubernatorial hopefuls who spent their holiday politicking was Illinois State Sen. Bill Brady, R-Bloomington, who greeted voters with his two frisky golden retrievers at Schaumburg&rsquo;s Labor Day parade.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s just a good opportunity to visit and mingle with the voters, people who care about Illinois,&rdquo; Brady said before Monday&rsquo;s parade stepped off. &ldquo;This election&rsquo;s gonna be about who can best lead our state. Clearly [Democratic Governor] Pat Quinn&rsquo;s failing.&rdquo;</p><p>The parade&rsquo;s marching order put Brady not far from a navy blue-shirted troupe of volunteers supporting Bruce Rauner, a venture capitalist seeking to be the GOP gubernatorial candidate.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s about shaking up Springfield and turning it around,&rdquo; said Rauner, who has sought to play up his role as a political outsider. &ldquo;Taking the government in Springfield back from the corrupt, career politicians who are controlling it for their own benefit, and get it so it&rsquo;s responsive to the voters again.&rdquo;</p><p>Earlier in the day, Dan Rutherford, the Illinois treasurer, announced a Chicago attorney as his lieutenant governor pick.</p><p>Rutherford revealed on Twitter that his choice is Steve Kim, a 42-year-old attorney who lives in Northbrook. Kim, who has served as a Northfield township trustee, unsuccessfully challenged Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan in 2010.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Bruce%20Rauner.jpg" style="float: right; margin: 5px; height: 290px; width: 285px;" title="Bruce Rauner, a venture capitalist seeking the 2014 GOP gubernatorial nomination, talks with supporters before Schaumburg’s 2013 Labor Day parade. (WBEZ/Alex Keefe)" />&quot;He comes from having been on the statewide stage before,&quot; Rutherford told The Associated Press. The Chenoa Republican said his first priority was choosing someone who could succeed him if he wins. Rutherford said he would release more details Thursday at a news conference.</p><p>Rutherford became the first among the four Republicans and two Democrats seeking the state&#39;s highest office to announce his running mate.</p><p>It&#39;s the first time that candidates for governor will run with their lieutenant governor choices. The change was instituted after 2010 when it was revealed after the primary that the Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor &mdash; Scott Lee Cohen &mdash; had past troubles including domestic battery charge. Cohen dropped out after pressure from Democratic leaders who feared it would hurt Quinn.</p><p>Other Republicans are expected to announce their picks soon.</p><p>Republican state Sen. Kirk Dillard of Hinsdale scheduled a statewide fly around with his pick for Tuesday. Sen. Brady has said his choice is also coming soon. The other candidates &mdash; including Rauner and Chicago Democrats, Gov. Pat Quinn and his challenger former White House chief of staff Bill Daley &mdash; have said they&#39;re not in a rush to make their choices public. Rutherford said he considered Kim&#39;s business experience and his background.</p><p>Kim is a managing partner at Rosenberg Kim &amp; Jimenez, Ltd., which does international and trade law and business development law, among other areas. Kim is also Korean American. He immigrated with his family as a young boy and is a U.S. citizen.</p><p>Rutherford said Kim has the ability to reach out to Illinois&#39; diverse residents, particularly the growing Asian population.</p><p>&quot;We&#39;re a state where there is a very strong and vital immigrant community,&quot; Kim said, adding that his family&#39;s immigration story was one that would resonate with many groups.</p><p>Kim declined to talk specifics on where he stands on issues, like gay marriage, saying that he still formulating his opinions.</p><p>He said his focus is improving Illinois&#39; business climate.</p><p>&quot;I understand how to create jobs,&quot; he said. &quot;I strongly believe the climate in Illinois is not right now best suited for jobs and economic growth. We can change that.&quot;</p></p> Mon, 02 Sep 2013 15:27:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/gop-hopefuls-labor-day-politicking-108585 Morning Shift: Let's get political http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-27/morning-shift-lets-get-political-107878 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Capitol-Flickr-Teemu008.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Today we get the down-low from Illinois State Senator Bill Brady about his current campaign to be governor. He is hoping the third time will be the charm. But will it?&nbsp;</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-let-s-get-political.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-let-s-get-political" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Let's get political" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Thu, 27 Jun 2013 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-27/morning-shift-lets-get-political-107878 Veteran Illinois lawmakers try to hang on against ambitious primary challengers http://www.wbez.org/story/veteran-illinois-lawmakers-try-hang-against-ambitious-primary-challengers-97226 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2012-March/2012-03-12/IMG_1293.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>Just over a week to go before Illinois' primary election day. Candidates for all sorts of offices are knuckling down and knocking on doors.</p><p>That includes the multitudes running for the 177 seats that're up in the Illinois House and Senate. We looked at a pair of those elections, which couldn't be more different.</p><div class="inset"><div class="insetContent"><p><strong>DISCUSSION: </strong>More on Monday's <em>Afternoon Shift with Steve Edwards</em></p><p><audio class="mejs mediaelement-formatter-identified-1332752351-1" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2012-march/2012-03-12/leg-races.mp3">&nbsp;</audio></p></div></div><p>Last year when Democratic leaders drew new boundaries for state legislative districts, they manufactured some match-ups that otherwise would not have been. Take the 24th state Senate District in the Western suburbs: held by Republican Kirk Dillard, a senator since 1993.</p><p>"You know, essentially I went Northward, very much like a glacier would move," said Dillard on Sunday in his campaign office, looking at a map of his new district. "You know I think [Democratic leaders] did it because they needed to take care of some senators on the south suburban area."</p><p>Dillard could be governor right now if he'd managed to swing a couple hundred votes in 2010. In the GOP primary, he fell just short of beating fellow state Senator Bill Brady, who later fell just short of beating Democratic Governor Pat Quinn.</p><p><strong>Dillard v. Nybo</strong></p><p>But instead of ruling the state, Dillard is going door to door to fend off a Senate challenge. His campaign is buying no TV ads, no radio. Just mail - and lots of it.</p><p>"It is amazing how fast when you really focus on it, you can get mail out the door. But literally in the last weeks, you could be talking upwards to 800,000 to a million pieces of mail," Dillard said.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2012-March/2012-03-12/IMG_1299.JPG" style="width: 350px; height: 263px;" title="State Sen. Kirk Dillard of Hinsdale"></p><p>And that's to a district with about 217,000 residents, by the last Census count.</p><p>Most of Dillard's mailings are positive, he says, but one this week will knock his opponent, state Rep. Chris Nybo.</p><p>"You know, if you put a sign up, you just mark it down 'Yes,' you know, 'YS" for yard sign, and the notation that you placed it. But it should be a good day out there. I mean the weather's nice so people should be in a good mood," Nybo said in a pep talk Sunday to about a dozen volunteers wearing his green campaign T-shirts.</p><p>He's a state representative with little more than a year of House experience. But he's running for Senate against Dillard in part because Democrats drew him into a district with another Republican House member. Nybo chose instead to go for the promotion, against Dillard.</p><p>"You know, I mean, Kirk is a nice guy, but he's been down there a long time," Nybo said. "And I think we need some new energy down there. I don't think anybody should be making careers of this stuff."</p><p>And with all those votes in Dillard's career, Nybo's found quite a few to criticize. Dillard's campaign, meanwhile, put up an attack website featuring "The Chris Nybo Report Card."</p><p>Oddly enough, both these Republicans have ties to the Democratic president. Dillard appeared in a TV commercial for then-U.S. Senator Barack Obama during the Democratic primary for president, praising him for bipartisan work. Nybo volunteered on the congressional campaign of Mr. Obama, who was his law professor at the time.</p><p>As you can imagine, both men are quick to deflect blame for their cracks in party loyalty.</p><p>"I don't think he should say anything about my 15 nice words about President Obama about an ethics bill he sponsored with me when he was walking precincts and a student coordinator at the University of Chicago," Dillard said.</p><p>"Kirk Dillard is criticizing what I did as a 22-year-old college student with what he did as a 50-something-year-old party - acknowledged - party leader," Nybo said.</p><p>This is one of four Illinois Senate primaries statewide that feature two current Republican members of the General Assembly. Not an uncommon occurrence in elections following redistricting.</p><p>Boundaries changed all over the state, though not all that much in one Chicago Senate district that nonetheless is seeing a big Democratic primary fight. The 5th District is entirely within Chicago - a bit of the North Side, but mostly on the West.</p><p><strong>Collins v. Watkins</strong></p><p>"How you doing? God bless you," Patricia Van Pelt Watins greeted potential voters in the entranceway of a charter school in the Lawndale neighborhood.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2012-March/2012-03-12/IMG_1283.JPG" style="width: 350px; height: 263px;" title="Patricia Van Pelt Watkins of Chicago"></p><p>Some parents tell Watkins they voted for her last year when she ran for Chicago mayor. Watkins hears that a lot, but doesn't always believe it.</p><p>"Right. Because there's too many of them," Watkins said. "Wait a minute. I only got [9,704] votes. How in the world did all these people vote for me? I guess they wanted to in their hearts."</p><p>The state Senate, some voters tell Watkins, is where she ought to be.</p><p>"Yeah, because they think this position fits me better," she said.</p><p>The seat used to be held by the outspoken Rickey Hendon, until he resigned - suddenly and without much explanation - early last year. Watkins applied for the vacancy, but Democratic leaders chose Annazette Collins, who'd served a decade in the state House.</p><p>"Well, if I win [a full term], people will have recognized that we've done a good job," Collins said in an interview last week at her office.</p><p>Collins talked of her efforts to overhaul the state's youth prison system. She boasted of bringing lots of state money home to the district, a positive symptom of seniority she said Watkins would be without.</p><p>"If I lose, it means that there are people who want change, and they want something different. And our community is upset. People are mad. They're mad at the president because things aren't changing fast enough. They're mad at everybody, except themselves," Collins said.</p><p>A loss could also mean that voters gave weight to some of the negatives lobbed Collins' way in recent months. Media reports have questioned whether she really lives in the district, as required by law. Last week the<em> Sun-Times</em> reported she gave university scholarships to people who live outside her district.</p><p>"I don't know that [this election is] so much tougher [than in the past], but it's very nasty," Collins said.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2012-March/2012-03-12/IMG_1288.JPG" style="width: 350px; height: 263px;" title="State Sen. Annazette Collins of Chicago"></p><p>Collins had a public showdown recently with Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White, a Watkins supporter who compared Collins to former Governor Rod Blagojevich.</p><p>But with turnout expected to be brutally low, Collins is counting on a strong get-out-the-vote game. Helping lead those efforts as a paid member of her campaign team: Rickey Hendon, the onetime politician whose abrupt resignation a year ago put this seat in play.</p></p> Mon, 12 Mar 2012 19:28:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/veteran-illinois-lawmakers-try-hang-against-ambitious-primary-challengers-97226 Quinn indicates layoffs coming, another break to pact with union http://www.wbez.org/story/quinn-indicates-layoffs-coming-another-break-pact-union-91582 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-September/2011-09-07/AP110601082693.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Ill. Gov. Pat Quinn said he'll announce further budget cuts later this week. Quinn indicated on Tuesday that will include layoffs, a move that would constitute another break from an agreement the governor made last year with the major state employee union.</p><p>Quinn would not say how many layoffs to expect.</p><p>"You know, we have to do what we have to do in order to make sure we get through this fiscal year with the appropriation that the General Assembly provided," Quinn said during a press conference at LaSalle II Magnet Academy in Chicago's East Ukrainian Village neighborhood.</p><p>Quinn, a Chicago Democrat, claims lawmakers didn't appropriate enough money for him to keep his agreement with AFSCME, the union representing thousands of state employees. Before last year's election, he signed a deal with the union, pledging not to close facilities or lay off any workers though June of 2012.</p><p>But he already broke part of the deal earlier this summer when he halted pay increases. That fight is still taking place in court.</p><p>"Those who are unhappy about any cuts really should visit their members of the General Assembly, their representatives and senators," Quinn said, while denying the layoff threat is just an effort to force lawmakers to appropriate more money.</p><p>A spokesman for House Speaker Mike Madigan said Tuesday that - to his knowledge - the speaker's staff has yet to hear anything from the governor's office regarding potential layoffs or facility closures.</p><p>The expected budget moves, which were reported Tuesday in the <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-09-06/news/ct-met-pat-quinn-illinois-budget-20110906_1_quinn-plans-major-state-employees-union-pat-quinn"><em>Chicago Tribune</em></a>, would further strain Quinn's relationship with AFSCME.</p><p>"Anytime somebody enters into a contract, you expect them to live up to it. And anytime somebody gives you their word, you expect them to keep it," said Anders Lindall, an AFSCME spokesman.</p><p>During the 2010 election for governor, the union declined to endorse either Quinn or his opponent in the Democratic primary, then-Illinois Comptroller Dan Hynes. AFSCME ultimately supported Quinn in the general election, donating more than $225,000 to his campaign.</p><p>Quinn's opponent in the November election, Republican state Sen. Bill Brady, on Tuesday released a statement chastising the governor for his budget maneuverings, while refusing to endorse any additional appropriations.</p><p>"Once again, Governor Quinn is betraying the citizens of Illinois and proving that his word is suspect," Brady said, referring to the governor's election year agreement with AFSCME as a "campaign deal."</p></p> Wed, 07 Sep 2011 10:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/quinn-indicates-layoffs-coming-another-break-pact-union-91582 Politicians react to Blagojevich verdict http://www.wbez.org/story/politicians-react-blagojevich-verdict-88411 <p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Pat Brady:</strong></p><p><strong>Illinois Republican Party Chairman</strong></p><p>“I'm glad that the verdict is finally in on Rod Blagojevich. However this closes only one chapter of Democrat corruption in Illinois. Illinois Democratic politicians who now try everything they can to hide their past support of Rod Blagojevich should look themselves in the mirror and remind themselves that little has changed since the day Blagojevich was arrested.</p><p>“Our current governor (Pat Quinn) has appointed lame duck legislators to high paid positions after they changed their views and voted for late night tax hikes. The Speaker of the Illinois House (and state Democratic Party Chairman Mike Madigan) is partner in a law firm that has reaped millions in appealing tax assessments in a relationship that even Forrest Claypool (now a member of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s Administration) said ‘has caused our taxes to go up and the level of faith in government to go down.’”</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>John Cullerton:</strong></p><p><strong>Statement from Illinois Senate President John Cullerton:</strong></p><p>"Once again, the former governor's pattern of dishonesty has been confirmed. I thank the jury for its public service. Just as it was sad but necessary for the Senate to remove him from office, today is another sad event for Illinois. I would hope that this verdict would further allow us as a state to move on and ahead."</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>David Morrison: </strong></p><p><strong>Deputy Director, Illinois Campaign for Political Reform </strong></p><p>“The jury today has ratified the sense of millions of Illinoisans, that Rod Blagojevich was a pox on Illinois' political system. His conviction also serves as a warning that no one is above the law and that anyone today thinking of abusing the public trust for their private benefit should consider the very real consequences. The jury today made clear that criminal acts are not "just politics." Blagojevich, and many of his advisors and staff, are facing serious prison time, financial penalties, and separation from their families and friends.</p><p>“Illinois has taken great strides to ensure that the next scandal will not follow the&nbsp;Blagojevich blueprint. Today's laws make it much harder to commit yesterday's actions. But preventing tomorrow's scandals require more vigilance. Voters must accountability from candidates. Officeholders must stand ready to call out their wavering colleagues. Staffers must understand the risks they take when they follow criminal orders. Reform is possible, one step at a time, and Illinois has a long road ahead.”</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Dan Rutherford: </strong></p><p><strong>Illinois State Treasurer</strong></p><p>“The guilty verdict against former Governor Rod Blagojevich closes a long, embarrassing chapter for the citizens of Illinois. He deserves everything he’s going to get.”</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Judy Baar Topinka:</strong></p><p><strong>Illinois Comptroller </strong></p><p>"I am heartened by the Jury's verdict against Rod Blagojevich, and pleased to see justice after many months of waiting. But make no mistake: this is nothing to celebrate. Through his unconscionable behavior and reckless leadership, Blagojevich inflicted damage on Illinois that will take years, if not generations, to repair. He broke the public trust and mismanaged dollars with a zeal that was unique even in our storied state.</p><p>"I find his behavior reprehensible and am personally pleased to see him held responsible. But more important, I hope that today's verdict delivers a reminder that elected leaders serve the public, not the other way around - and they will be held accountable, even if it takes a while.</p><p>“While I look forward to turning the page on Blagojevich, I hope that the lessons learned from his prosecution live on. Ironically, it would prove to be his greatest contribution to our state."</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Adam Kinzinger:</strong></p><p><strong>Republican U.S. Representative</strong></p><p>“Rod Blagojevich never seemed to understand the difference between serving the public and serving his personal self interests. The evidence presented and verdict confirms that he was found guilty of seventeen of the twenty counts including wire fraud, attempted extortion and attempting to sell President Obama's old Senate seat, but far worse, he abused and shattered public trust. The shame and national embarrassment Blagojevich cast onto our state has only created further financial bearing.&nbsp;</p><p>"I applaud the U.S. Attorney’s office for their hard work, dedication and effort to see to it that justice has somewhat been served.&nbsp; Unfortunately, Blagojevich's verdict and punishment will not restore statewide, much less nationwide certainty in Illinois.&nbsp; We must now move beyond Rod Blagojevich and turn our focus toward working together to rebuild Illinois.”</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Jeff Schoenberg:</strong></p><p><strong>Senator, 9th District, Assistant Majority Leader</strong></p><p>"With this guilty verdict, Illinois has now been shamed once again as its second consecutive chief executive has failed its citizens in the most fundamental way possible. We must all redouble our efforts to restore confidence and integrity to Illinois government."</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Dick Durbin:</strong></p><p><strong>Democratic U.S. Senator </strong></p><p>“I hope today’s verdict finally draws this sad and sordid chapter in Illinois history to a close.”</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Bill Brady:</strong></p><p><strong>State Senator, Bloomington</strong></p><p>“I believe our state will grow stronger as a result of the conviction of Rod Blagojevich today.&nbsp; Rod Blagojevich abused the office of Governor and made every attempt to capitalize on his public office for personal and political benefit.</p><p>“His overwhelming conviction today should serve as yet another reminder that public officials are in office to serve the public and not their own personal interests and ambitions.&nbsp; We have made some progress in ending pay-to-play politics in Illinois, but the decision today underscores the need for us in government to continue our work to earn the trust and confidence of our citizens.”</p></p> Mon, 27 Jun 2011 21:06:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/politicians-react-blagojevich-verdict-88411 Rickey Hendon, outspoken Chicago Democrat, resigns from Illinois Senate http://www.wbez.org/story/bill-brady/rickey-hendon-outspoken-chicago-democrat-resigns-illinois-senate <p><p>An outspoken Illinois lawmaker from Chicago resigned his office Thursday. Democratic state Sen. Rickey Hendon has represented parts of the city's West Side in the legislature since 1993.<br /> <br /> &quot;I have decided to call it a day and retire from this wonderful institution,&quot; Hendon wrote in his letter of resignation. &quot;I appreciate my constituents and supporters and I pray that they will accept my decision and allow me to move on with my life.&quot;</p><p>The senator is known for his spicy sound bites - which at times have gotten him in trouble - and dramatic speeches. In a recent floor debate, he spoke about a bill abolishing the death penalty, which is an issue he has championed for years.<br /> <br /> &quot;Because when you put someone to death, it's too late!&quot; Hendon said.<br /> <br /> He also gave a speech in favor of legislation allowing for civil unions in Illinois.<br /> <br /> &quot;It's not going to destroy America, it's not going to destroy our state,&quot; Hendon said. &quot;It's just fairness, ya'll. That's all.&quot;<br /> <br /> And, in an interview with WBEZ, he spoke about Rahm Emanuel's quest to be mayor.<br /> <br /> &quot;I've heard that Rahm Emanuel curses more than Rod Blagojevich,&quot; Hendon said. &quot;So let him bring his nasty attitude right on into this race.&quot;<br /> <br /> A former alderman, Hendon himself flirted with a run for mayor last fall.</p><p>Other than to confirm his resignation, Hendon did not answer requests for comment on Thursday. But he has recently complained of high blood pressure. Governor Pat Quinn, a fellow Democrat, alluded to that when asked Thursday about the resignation.<br /><br />&quot;I've always liked Rickey Hendon,&quot; Quinn said. &quot;He has a big heart and a lot of energy. I know he's had a few health problems of late, and I know he's a good man.&quot;<br /><br />During Quinn's recent campaign, Hendon called the governor's opponent, Republican state Sen. Bill Brady, &quot;idiotic, racist, sexist [and] homophobic.&quot; Hendon later apologized for those remarks.<br /><br />Hendon was deeply involved in the campaign of city clerk candidate Patricia Horton, who is currently a Water Reclamation District commissioner. Horton lost by a wide margin in Tuesday's election.<br /><br />In a failed bid for the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor last year, Hendon bragged of his ability to bring home state money for his district. Some of those grants have reportedly been the subject of federal subpoenas to state agencies.</p></p> Thu, 24 Feb 2011 22:25:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/bill-brady/rickey-hendon-outspoken-chicago-democrat-resigns-illinois-senate Best Game in Town #18: Politics Year in Review http://www.wbez.org/blog/best-game-town/best-game-town-18-politics-year-review <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/AP100320043985.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><img src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2010-December/2010-12-29/AP100320043985.jpg" title="" alt="" style="width: 465px; height: 327px;" /></p><p>This week on WBEZ's political podcast The Best Game in Town, we recap the biggest stories of the year and get the dish on the top political players of 2010 (hint: one of them is pictured above). Joining us for the conversation are Northwestern professor Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, Democratic public affairs strategist Dave Lundy, and Republican public affairs strategist Scott McPherson.</p></p> Fri, 31 Dec 2010 21:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blog/best-game-town/best-game-town-18-politics-year-review