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  • Political newcomer challenging Roskam for U.S. Congress seat Sep 30, 2014 9:57 AM
    Democrat Michael Mason of Naperville is challenging incumbent Peter Roskam of Wheaton for the 6th Congressional District seat in the Nov. 4 election. Both say they want to help lead the country's economic recovery, but they differ on how to do it.

  • GOP opposition to school funding bill irks sponsor Sep 29, 2014 5:00 PM
    Suburban House Republicans, fearing that majority Democrats could take money away from their school districts in a postelection vote, have thrown up prominent if symbolic opposition on Senate-approved legislation to overhaul state funding for public education.

  • Durbin, Oberweis debate background checks for guns Sep 29, 2014 7:12 PM
    U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin and GOP challenger Jim Oberweis disagreed Monday on whether to require universal background checks for firearms purchases, with Durbin saying it would reduce violence in a country “awash in guns” and Oberweis saying he’s not convinced the checks would have the intended impact.

  • Lake County sheriff candidate: Cut high-ranking jobs to hire new deputies Sep 29, 2014 5:38 PM
    The Democratic challenger for Lake County Sheriff on the Nov. 4 ballot said he would put more deputies on the street and fund the change by cutting two high-ranking deputy chief positions. Incumbent Mark Curran, a Republican, said Jason Patt’s idea to decrease the number of deputy chiefs from five to three shows his lack of management skills.

  • House District 64 state representative candidates differ on minimum wage, income tax Sep 29, 2014 5:28 PM
    A Republican incumbent and her Democratic challenger have set themselves apart on the minimum wage debate and Illinois’ income tax in their race for a state representative seat covering McHenry and Lake counties. Barbara Wheeler, the incumbent, faces firefighter/paramedic Joel Mains in the Nov. 4 election.

  • Herman Cain in Hoffman Estates Friday for Oberweis Sep 29, 2014 2:40 PM
    Former presidential contender Herman Cain will headline a fundraiser in Hoffman Estates Friday for Republican U.S. Senate candidate Jim Oberweis.

  • 84th House candidates split on how to drum up business Sep 29, 2014 8:12 PM
    State representative candidates in the 84th District have different views on improving the business climate in Illinois. Republican challenger Krishna Bansal says state government needs to lower taxes, decrease regulations and step out of the way. But Democratic incumbent Stephanie Kifowit said providing better workforce training and creating a financially stable government are the best ways to help current Illinois businesses and attract more companies to locate here.

  • Stormwater funding divides DuPage chairman candidates Sep 28, 2014 5:59 AM
    DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin and his Democratic opponent in the Nov. 4 election — Robert Peickert — have differing views on how the county could raise additional dollars for stormwater projects. Peickert suggests increasing property taxes, while Cronin opposes that.

  • High-profile rematch race for Dold, Schneider Sep 28, 2014 5:55 AM
    Former Republican U.S. Rep. Robert Dold sounds confident when he talks about his chances to win back the seat he lost to Democrat Brad Schneider in 2012. "We don't have President Obama at the top of the ticket this time," Dold said. "And Congressman Schneider now has a record." Schneider isn't worried.

  • Gazprom, Ukraine in a gas dispute as winter approaches Sep 27, 2014 4:33 PM
    “People understand what the situation is. They know that Russia switched off gas, they know that Russia is leading a war against us, not just war but also an economic war. And naturally they expect a complicated fall and winter period,” said Ukrainian Energy and Coal Industry Minister Yuriy Prodan.

  • James Traficant, convicted ex-congressman, dies Sep 27, 2014 1:52 PM
    Traficant loved to play the buffoon during his 17 years in Congress. He got plenty of notice within the staid, buttoned-down Capitol and airtime on C-SPAN for his messy mop of hair — revealed to be a wig when he went to prison — his typical wardrobe of cowboy boots, denim or polyester suits, and his bombastic speaking style.

  • New mom Chelsea Clinton celebrates baby daughter Sep 27, 2014 1:50 PM
    Bill Clinton, who canceled a fundraising visit Saturday to Denver for Democrats running for the Senate and governor, has been eager to become a grandfather. During an event with former President George W. Bush in September, Clinton’s cellphone rang on stage and he joked that only two people had the number “and they are related to me,” musing that he hoped he wasn’t becoming “a premature grandfather.”

  • Quinn, Rauner address Illinois millennials Sep 27, 2014 6:07 PM
    Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn and Republican Bruce Rauner each appealed to younger voters Saturday for help in winning the Illinois governor’s office, telling a crowd of about 1,500 that much is at stake for their generation. The candidates separately addressed what was billed as the first statewide convention for millennials, or Illinois residents ranging from the late teens to about 34.

  • Michelle Obama to campaign for Gov. Quinn Sep 27, 2014 6:05 PM
    First lady Michelle Obama is expected to campaign for Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn in Chicago next month. The White House confirmed Saturday that the first lady will attend a Quinn event on Oct. 7.

  • Michelle Obama to appear on ABC’s ‘The Chew’ Sep 26, 2014 12:04 PM
    Michelle Obama is making her debut on the ABC daytime talk show “The Chew.” The network says a taped segment featuring the first lady talking about school nutrition and the benefits of cooking at home will air Oct. 3.

  • Kane Co. Board District 19 race a solo act Sep 26, 2014 5:30 AM
    t’s a rematch scenario in the Kane County Board District 19 race. And, like last time, the Democratic challenger is absent from the discussion, leaving incumbent Kurt Kojzarek to share his views on important matters in the county.

  • Meyer, Moeller debate their parties’ influence on them Sep 26, 2014 7:13 PM
    The Republican challenger for the 43rd House District seat says voters’ choice is ultimately all about whether they want to continue House Speaker Michael Madigan’s rule. Jeffrey Meyer, 32, an attorney from Elgin, is running against incumbent Democrat Anna Moeller, who was appointed to fill Keith Farnham’s seat in March. “My principal difference with Anna is, I don’t have anyone pulling strings,” he said. Moeller objected to that. “I am not beholden to anybody for my position,” she said.

  • Quinn touts support from women without Steinem Sep 26, 2014 6:20 PM
    Famed women’s rights activist Gloria Steinem did not make it to Chicago as scheduled Friday to personally endorse Gov. Pat Quinn in a tough re-election race, but her support allowed the Democrat to tout his support from women anyway.

  • Ronald Burris’ name comes up in court Sep 26, 2014 10:18 PM
    An Illinois Democrat appointed by disgraced former Gov. Rod Blagojevich to the U.S. Senate in 2008 has become an issue in the lead-up to a federal trial in Chicago, with defense attorneys claiming onetime Sen. Roland Burris was once accused of seeking to extort a business. Word about the allegation against the 77-year-old Burris, who held the Senate seat from 2009 to 2010, arose during a pretrial hearing Friday for a Chicago man charged with illegally lobbying U.S. lawmakers to lift sanctions against Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. Prosecutors have indicated they will call Burris to testify against C. Gregory Turner, who has pleaded not guilty. Defense lawyers are attempting to dent the ex-senator’s credibility. The trial starts Monday. Blagojevich is serving a 14-year prison term on multiple corruption convictions, including for trying to secure campaign cash or a high-paying job for an appointment to the Senate seat, which was vacated by Barack Obama after he won the 2008 presidential election. Amid a political firestorm following his December 2008 arrest, then-Gov. Blagojevich, who is also a Democrat, named Burris to the seat. Burris, a former Illinois attorney general, was widely ridiculed for accepting the appointment. Turner’s attorneys said in court Friday that the extortion allegation against Burris was described in federal documents that prosecutors turned over to the defense as part of the pretrial discovery process. Neither the defense nor prosecutors provided details in court. But after the Friday afternoon hearing, defense attorney James Tunick spoke to reporters holding what he said was one of the federal documents. The word “SENSITIVE” was stamped across it in capital letters. “The accusation was that Sen. Burris offered to promote a ... business to the U.S. military in exchange for $250,000 a year when he (left) office,” said Tunick. He looked down at the document and appeared to be paraphrasing it — not quoting it directly. Defense attorneys did not say if federal prosecutors ever took the allegations seriously or, if they did, over what period of time — weeks, days or merely hours. A message left for Burris at his Chicago law firm wasn’t immediately returned Friday night, and he does not have a listed home number. A one-time attorney for Burris, Timothy W. Wright III, said he no longer represented the former senator. But he said he would forward a message to Burris that The Associated Press was seeking a comment regarding the allegations. The trial prosecutors did not speak to reporters outside court, and a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago, Randall Samborn, later declined to comment. A spokeswoman for the FBI in Chicago, Joan Hyde, also declined to make any comment.

  • Illinois schools seeking CO detector installation Sep 26, 2014 4:31 PM
    Some Illinois school officials who don’t want to wait months to find out if they have to install carbon monoxide detectors are taking matters into their own hands. Last week, state Sen. Sam McCann introduced legislation requiring school buildings to be equipped with the detectors. The proposal follows a carbon monoxide leak in a Macoupin County school that sent 150 students and staff to a local hospital.

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