Suburban Political Recount
President Barack Obama's outreach to Senate Republicans hit home Monday, as he called Mark Kirk, the Highland Park Republican elected to his former Senate seat in 2010.
Kirk, spokesman Lance Trover tells us, spoke about Kirk's involvement in bipartisan gun control efforts, the budget, and Iran sanctions.
The call follows the president's Wednesday Jefferson Hotel dinner with 12 Republican senators, where he picked up the tab. Kirk was not part of that group.
What is being called Obama's "charm offensive" is part of the first formal congressional budget debate in his tenure.
We learned today that Josh Wessell, the longtime Illinois GOP staffer who ran House Leader Tom Cross's district office over the past year, has been named communications director for Congressman Randy Hultgren, of Winfield.
Wessell replaces Laura Finch, who earlier this year took a post at C-SPAN.
Wessell, 30, says he's excited to transition from state to congressional politics.
A Des Plaines native like Kerry, he tells us his favorite hometown spot to eat is the Mr. Pup hotdog stand on Algonquin and Lee.
Some members of Congress do townhalls, or teleconferences with constituents. Putting sort of a coffee klatch spin on things, Eighth District Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth on Saturday held her first "Congress at Your Corner" events businesses in Lombard and Glendale Heights. This follows some veterans meetings at diners and discussions with local business owners over lunch.
U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk - who eight weeks ago returned to Congress following a yearlong recovery from a stroke - wasn't present at Friday's gun control news conference with fellow Senator Dick Durbin and Chicago Police Superintenent Garry McCarthy in Chicago.
State Sen. Kirk Dillard this week said he doesn't think he'll announce his official intentions when it comes to running for governor until after the legislative session ends this spring.
We caught up with him right after Gov. Pat Quinn's budget address, and the Hinsdale Republican said he wants to focus on the weighty issues facing lawmakers like him this spring.
In the meantime, though, some other potential candidates are starting to go through the campaign motions.
Dillard called Chicago millionaire and potential Republican candidate Bruce Rauner a "friend" and remained polite in maybe suggesting Rauner shouldn't run.
Three new Illinois reps. have been named to Frontline, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's program to protect vulnerable members.
Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel Tuesday named 26 House Democrats to the Frontline program, a committee program designed to protect their most vulnerable incumbents.
On the (alphabetical) list are 17th District Rep. Cheri Bustos, 12th District Rep. Bill Enyart and 10th District Rep. Brad Schneider.
U.S. Sen. Rand Paul will keynote tonight's Northwest Suburban Lincoln Day Dinner at the Cotillian in Palatine. Schaumburg Township Committeeman Ryan Higgins tells us that U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, who will be honored, has recorded a special video for guests.
WLS's Dan Proft will serve as the master of ceremonies.
Friday, we told you 5 reasons the state budget matters in the suburbs.
Sunday, we laid that out in more detail.
This morning, Doug T. Graham explains how the state's financial crisis means more college costs for local students and parents.
And as Gov. Pat Quinn is scheduled to give his budget plan to lawmakers Wednesday, here are five reasons why the state's budget hole exists. More in tomorrow's paper. Stay tuned.
Friday has finally come on a wild week in politics, from the federal sequester to Illinois lawmakers positioning same-sex marriage for a final vote and rejecting severe cuts to teachers' pensions.
And next week, Gov. Pat Quinn will deliver his budget address on Wednesday. To mark the occasion, we'll start running a handful of stories starting Sunday about the depths of Illinois' budget despair and what it means to people in the suburbs.
We know this can be a complicated topic. So we put this Storify together to outline five reasons the state's budget trouble brewing 200 miles away might affect you in the suburbs.
U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk's bipartisan plan to help veterans - one that first began to materialize through a conversation between Democratic colleagues in the wake of his stroke last year - is formally taking off in the 113th Congress.
The Highland Park Republican's office tells us that Wednesday, Kirk, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin, of West Virginia, Republican Rep. Jeff Denham, of California, and Democratic Rep. Tim Walz, of Minnesota - co-chairs of the Congressional Veterans Jobs Caucus - held a "Day on the Hill" session highlighting the caucus' commitment to increasing veterans employment.