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State Week: Looking back on 2021

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Brian Mackey
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It was an historic year in Illinois. Longtime Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan was pushed out of his job amid a scandal. The state adopted new laws dealing with criminal justice and energy policy. Democrats approved new political boundaries. And while Illinois rolled out its COVID-19 vaccination program, the pandemic cast a shadow over the entire year.

We'll recap the year that was on our year in review episode.

Host Sean Crawford is joined by emeritus professor Charlie Wheeler, Statehouse Editor Hannah Meisel and reporter Amanda Vinicky from WTTW's Chicago Tonight.

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Hannah covers state government and politics for NPR Illinois and Illinois Public Radio. She's been dedicated to the statehouse beat since interning at NPR Illinois in 2014, with subsequent stops at outlets including WILL-AM/FM, Law360, The Daily Line and a temporary stint at political blog Capitol Fax before returning to the station in 2020.
The former director of the Public Affairs Reporting (PAR) graduate program is Professor Charles N. Wheeler III, a veteran newsman who came to the University of Illinois at Springfield following a 24-year career at the Chicago Sun-Times.
Amanda Vinicky moved to Chicago Tonight on WTTW-TV PBS in 2017.
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