Dave McKinney | WBEZ
Skip to main content
Dave McKinney

Dave McKinney

Reporter, State Politics

Dave McKinney, state politics reporter at WBEZ, spent 19 years as the Chicago Sun-Times Springfield bureau chief with additional stops at Reuters and the Daily Herald. His work also has been published in Crain’s Chicago Business, the New York Times and Chicago Magazine.

McKinney, named by the Washington Post in 2014 as one of the country’s best statehouse reporters, has won the Society of American Business Editors and Writers Best-in-Business award, the Chicago Headline Club’s Lisagor Award for political and government reporting, the Chicago Bar Association’s Herman Kogan Award for Meritorious Achievement and the Chicago Journalists Association’s Sarah Brown Boyden Award. McKinney also was named Journalist of the Year by his alma mater, Eastern Illinois University, inducted into the university’s journalism hall of fame and was recipient of the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform’s Dawn Clark Netsch “Straight Talk Award” in 2015.

In Springfield, McKinney captured Rod Blagojevich’s final words as governor on the day of his 2009 impeachment by asking if he felt obliged to apologize to Illinoisans. “Sorry for what?” Blagojevich answered in a phrase that became the next day’s front-page headline. McKinney also covered corruption under Blagojevich and George Ryan, came face to face with Fidel Castro during Ryan’s 1999 trip to Cuba and live-tweeted an exorcism by Springfield’s Roman Catholic bishop after Illinois legalized gay marriage in 2013.

A lifelong Illinoisan with family roots downstate, McKinney is married, the proud father of two children and owner of a golden retriever and Wheaten terrier.

Recent Stories

WBEZ News

Unredacted Search Warrant Shows Feds’ Sprawling Probe Into Illinois State Senator

Federal agents sought information on ComEd, a speed camera company, video gambling machines, and more.

WBEZ News

The Justice & The Alderman: The Ethical Conundrum Of A Longtime Power Couple

While on the Illinois Supreme Court, Justice Anne Burke has ruled in cases involving clients of her husband, indicted Chicago Ald. Ed Burke.

WBEZ News

WBEZ Sues Illinois Senate For Documents In FBI Probe Of Sen. Sandoval

Senate President John Cullerton has blacked-out details of the federal raids, despite open-records requests from media.

WBEZ News

Illinois Senate President Withholds Key Details Of Raid On State Senator

State Sen. John Cullerton released a search warrant on the FBI raid of Sen. Martin Sandoval’s office, but Cullerton concealed most details.

WBEZ News

Sources: Feds Also Raided Contractor With Close Ties to Sen. Sandoval

Authorities raided a northwest suburban company on the same day they hit the offices of the Democratic state senator.

WBEZ News

State Historian Finds ‘No Evidence’ Disputed Hat Belonged To Lincoln

The Lincoln presidential museum began research into the stovepipe hat last year, but newly released emails show no Lincoln connection.

WBEZ News

AG Advances Criminal Probe Into Deadly Quincy Legionnaires’ Outbreaks

A grand jury wants documents relating to the mistaken release of legionella-laden water into the state-run facility’s water supply in 2015.

WBEZ News

FBI Agents Hit Village Halls In Lyons, McCook And Summit

The FBI confirms it raided village halls in southwest suburban McCook and Lyons on Thursday.

WBEZ News

Pritzker Fires Top Official At Lincoln Museum

Without explanation, the Illinois governor’s office says it terminated the museum’s executive director in a major administrative shake-up.

WBEZ News

Threatened Sale Of Abraham Lincoln Artifacts Put On Hold

The foundation that owns Lincoln’s blood-soaked gloves, disputed stovepipe hat and other artifacts points to a fundraising uptick.

WBEZ News

State’s ‘Lowball’ Settlement Offers ‘Insult’ Quincy Legionnaires’ Families

Illinois lawmakers OK’d up to $2 million payouts, but the attorney general has offered as little as one-tenth of that to settle lawsuits.

WBEZ News

Report: Bullying Pervasive In Illinois House Speaker Madigan’s Office

A new report details a culture of bullying and sexual harassment within Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan’s office.

WBEZ News

WBEZ Head Goli Sheikholeslami Announces Departure

"The No. 1 thing I will take with me ... is the generosity of the people I’ve met in Chicago," Sheikholeslami said.

WBEZ News

Trump’s Idea Of Freeing Blagojevich Draws Bipartisan Fire In Illinois

Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One he is seriously considering commuting the prison term of Illinois’ ex-governor, Rod Blagojevich.

WBEZ News

Feds: Illinois State Sen. Thomas Cullerton Charged In Teamsters 'Scheme'

Sen. Thomas Cullerton, D-Villa Park, is accused of receiving more than $274,000 in payments and benefits from Teamsters Joint Council 25.

WBEZ News

Illinois Becomes 11th State To Legalize Recreational Marijuana

Legalized pot was a big gubernatorial campaign issue for candidate JB Pritzker, who stressed its impact on criminal justice.

WBEZ News

Here’s Where Illinois’ Congressional Democrats Stand On Impeachment

Six Democrats in Illinois’ Congressional delegation are now calling for impeachment proceedings against President Trump.

WBEZ News

Pritzker Signs Abortion-Rights Bill With Vow: ‘We Trust Women’

Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker says the bill makes the state "a national leader" in protecting reproductive rights.

WBEZ News

GOP Turns Illinois Abortion-Rights Law Into ‘Weapon’ In Bid To Retake U.S. House

The party is describing the abortion bill signed into law by Gov. Pritzker Wednesday as a tool of a "socialist Democrat death cult."

WBEZ News

10 Things Springfield Just Did That Will Affect Your Life

From pot legalization to massive infrastructure plans, the session just ending went big for change.

Get the WBEZ App

Download the best live and on-demand public radio experience. Find out more.

CLOSE X