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Voices in the News 2018

Pritzker and Rauner
Brian Mackey
NPR Illinois
Gov.-elect J.B. Pritzker, left, and Gov. Bruce Rauner

As we get ready to welcome 2019, we thought we’d take a few minutes to listen back to the past year in Illinois government and politics.

We heard the most expensive campaign for governor in American history, a leading politician pulling the plug on his career, and a range of accusations from hacking to harassment.

Here now are some of the voices that made news in 2018.

GOV. BRUCE RAUNER: “To those of you around the state of Illinois who wanted to send me a message, let me be clear: I have heard you.”

STATE REP. JEANNE IVES, R-Wheaton: “You know as I know that Bruce Rauner had to be challenged in this election. You knew that. … But today the popular revolt against the political ruling class fell just a bit short.”

CHRIS KENNEDY: “The voters of Illinois have spoken and now we must follow their lead and give Mr. Pritzker the support that he has earned.”

GOV.-ELECT J.B. PRITZKER: “I'm J.B. Pritzker and I'm going to beat Bruce Rauner.”

RAUNER: “Four of my nine predecessors as governor went to jail. Mr. Pritzker has a very good chance of being number five.”

PRITZKER: “This is, first of all, you've just heard a desperate rant by a failed governor who is in the final hours of his campaign and his governorship.”

RAUNER: "This person does not deserve to hold the highest office in the state of Illinois or any elected office.”

NEWS ANCHOR: “A lot of feedback today over Gov. Rauner's new ad.”

POLITICAL AD: “By the power vested in me, I now pronounce Illinois f-----."

REPORTER: “Equality Illinois issued a statement saying ‘The governor should be ashamed of using the LGBTQ community for comedic value to make a political hit.’”

KASH JACKSON: “They're pretending as though we do not exist. I spent $25,000 — you two gentlemen spent, what, $200 million to get on this stage? Who's the fiscally minded guy? I'm spending less than a thousand dollars fora percent in the poll — you guys are spending $400,000.”

LT. GOV.-ELECT JULIANA STRATTON: “Please join me in welcoming my friend: Gov.-elect J.B. Pritzker!”

PRITZKER: “Join me in beginning our third century in Illinois with hope and optimism and living every day better.”

RAUNER: “I'll say this about the election: I'm very scared for the people of Illinois. The things that have gotten us in a mess are now going to be dominant, with it with no voice pushing back. One-party rule? It's very scary.”

STATE REP. EMANUEL CHRIS WELCH, D-Hillside: “We have a president in the White House right now — if he could gut the Civil Rights Act of 1965, he would do it and he’d do it now. I would rather rely on the U.S. Constitution than a statute that can be changed by Donald Trump. Let's vote ‘yes’ and pass the ERA now.”

STATE REP. TERRI BRYANT, R-Murphysboro: “My daughter doesn't need an equal rights amendment. My granddaughters don't need it. We don't need something on a piece of paper that says it. We're at a place today, ladies, where we are equal.”

ALAINA HAMPTON: “My name is Alaina Hampton. During my time of employment with the Democratic Party in 2016 and 2017, my supervisor was harassing me for a span of five months.”

HOUSE SPEAKER MICHAEL MADIGAN: “I received a letter in my home from Miss Hampton. I turned it over to Heather (Wier Vaught) and within days she opened an investigation, at my request, and met with Miss Hampton and proceeded with her investigation.”

NEWS ANCHOR: “A second high-ranking operative of Speaker Mike Madigan has been removed from his role with Democratic campaigns.”

NEWS ANCHOR: “An Illinois state representative is resigning after an ex-girlfriend filed a revenge-porn complaint against him.”

MARYANN LONCAR: “I was asked to come forward today by the people who knew about the abuse that I've suffered.”

STATE REP. LOU LANG, D-Skokie: “I'm going to say this just once: From beginning to end the allegations are absurd.”

NEWS ANCHORS: “Twelve Russian intelligence officers are charged with hacking into the email servers of the Democratic Party ... and based on a reference in the indictment, state officials say it’s also likely they stole voter data from Illinois.

MATT DIETRICH: “Count number 72 references not the Illinois State Board of Elections specifically, but a generic SBOE 1. … And we think it's pretty likely that that's us.

NEWS ANCHOR: “It is a political shocker: Mayor Rahm Emanuel announces that he will not run for re-election.”

CHICAGO MAYOR RAHM EMANUEL: “As much as I love this job and will always love this city and its residents ... this has been the job of a lifetime, but it is not a job for a lifetime.”

Brian Mackey formerly reported on state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. Before that, he was A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.
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