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State Week: Dems Welcome Pelosi, GOP Embraces Trump

State Week 23 logo (capitol dome)
Brian Mackey
NPR Illinois

As Democrats and Republicans gear up for next year’s election, the parties rallied in Springfield this week with events timed to the Illinois State Fair.

After four years out of power, Governor’s Day once again belongs to the Democrats. They invited U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Springfield to address a crowd of thousands in a hotel ballroom. She heaped praise on Illinois Democrats, particularly Gov. J.B. Pritzker, saying she wanted to “capture the spark of Illinois.”

A day later, Republicans acknowledged last year’s defeats and listened to U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana tout the achievements of the Trump administration and its allies in Congress. The days of establishment Illinois Republicans keeping their distance from Trump appear to be a thing of the past.

Meanwhile, an independent analysis looked at current proposals and laws surrounding a proposed Chicago casino and found it wanting. Seems like someone — or more likely some unit of government — will have to settle for less money.

Sean Crawford hosts with regular panelists Charlie Wheeler and Brian Mackey, and guest Jamie Munks of the Chicago Tribune.

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.
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.
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