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JBNH

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker addressees the New Hampshire Democratic Convention on Saturday, June 18, 2022

MANCHESTER, N.H. — New Hampshire Democrats zeroed in on abortion rights during their annual convention here Saturday, bringing in Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker to prop up the campaigns of Sen. Maggie Hassan and governor candidate Tom Sherman, who will likely ease through September’s primary but face tough races heading into November’s general election.

“The Republican Party is so afraid of the power and influence women have achieved in our society that they are seeking to shame and criminalize your very autonomy,” said Pritzker, who leads a state that has a law that codifies Roe v. Wade.

It’s a subject that generated the most applause throughout the day, including during a speech by Marty Walsh, Secretary of Labor and the former mayor of Boston (Massachusetts also has codified Roe). For the record, Walsh told the crowd, he’s not running for president.

Pritzker’s name, on the other hand, has popped up repeatedly as a potential future presidential candidate, most recently when it was announced he’d be speaking Saturday in New Hampshire. But the Democratic governor’s political team says Pritzker is only focused on his reelection and on helping elect Democrats across the country who support abortion rights.

Pritzker, a self-described “Ukrainian-American, Jewish, Democratic, billionaire, businessman,” was scheduled to travel to Maine after leaving New Hampshire to campaign for Democratic Gov. Janet Mills.

By the end of his speech, Pritzker had won over a cadre of Belknap County delegates who enthusiastically told a POLITICO reporter that they’d like to see him run for higher office.

“I think he should be our next president,” Johnna Davis, co-chair of the Belknap County Democrats, said as a couple other delegates seated in her row nodded along. “He’s got great energy. He’s perfect.”

Oy. Read more of the story here.

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Property Taxation

A proposed change to the Illinois Constitution would effectively transfer power over taxpayer money to government worker unions. The trend of property tax hikes would likely grow even worse during the next four years.

It’s election season in Illinois, and politicians are running on the promise of property tax relief as usual, including every major candidate for governor.

Illinois’ property taxes are already the second-highest in the nation and a major reason taxpayers are fleeing to lower-tax states. That problem could be made worse on Nov. 8 when voters will be asked to decide the fate of Amendment 1, a tax hike disguised as a “workers rights amendment.”

The change would prevent commonsense reforms to reduce homeowners’ tax burdens while giving government union leaders virtually limitless new ways to demand higher costs from taxpayers. If it passes, Illinois’ trend of large annual property tax increases will likely grow faster than ever. Gov. J.B. Pritzker has failed to deliver on property tax relief during his term – the average family paid $1,913 more during his administration.

Amendment 1 would guarantee that family pays at least $2,149 in higher property tax bills over the next four years, no matter which politicians win this November or how well they try to follow through on their promises.

This is a conservative estimate, assuming the rapid growth of Illinois’ property tax burden holds steady. It’s likely property taxes would grow at an even faster rate, because Amendment 1 would give Illinois government unions unprecedented bargaining powers that don’t exist in any other state. Exactly how much faster is an open question.

Read on here.

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JBNH

Gov. J.B. Pritzker launches an East Coast trip Friday, ostensibly to sell Chicago as a 2024 presidential convention site and campaign for Democrats, but a stop in New Hampshire has stirred presidential speculation and criticism from his Republicans opponents.

Pritzker, at an unrelated news conference Wednesday, stopped short of eschewing any future interest in seeking the party’s presidential nomination.

“I can’t tell you anything other than I love the job that I have. It’s why I’m running for reelection as governor of our state, and I intend to continue to do a good job for the people of the state for the next four years,” a smiling Pritzker said.

Some Democrats nationally have questioned whether President Joe Biden, whose tenure has been battered by a poor economy, high inflation and Russia’s war with Ukraine, will seek another term in 2024. His vice president, Kamala Harris, also has had a rocky term and is not viewed as an automatic replacement for Biden should the president not seek reelection.

New Hampshire has historically been home to the country’s first-in-the-nation presidential primary elections after the Iowa caucuses — something that may change as Democrats look to adopt a new national presidential calendar. But its historic role in the winnowing out process of choosing presidential nominees makes any politician’s appearance in New Hampshire suspect as part of a future White House bid.

Pritzker campaign aides sought to downplay any potential presidential aspirations by the governor, saying the trip is part of an extensive effort by the governor to support Democrats nationally on one of his top issues protecting reproductive rights for women. The U.S. Supreme Court is poised to potentially overturn the landmark 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision that gave women the right to seek an abortion without undue government interference.

Read more here.

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Early Voting

Following are the nearest locations for residents to vote in the primary elections by county:

Cook: 112 Algonquin Rd, Barrington Hills.  All other Cook County locations can be found here.

Kane: 102 South Second St, West Dundee.  All other Kane County locations can be found here.

Lake: 23860 North Old Barrington Rd, Lake Barrington.  Other Lake County locations can be found here.

McHenry: 3702 US Hwy 14, Crystal Lake.  For other locations, click here.

The 2022 General Primary election is Tuesday, June 28th.

Residents venturing over to Lake Barrington’s Village Hall should make a point of saying hello to Peggy Hirsch, who is arguably the finest Village Treasurer Barrington Hills has ever had. Those who follow Village matters since her departure last year recognize she’s sorely missed.

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e-poll Devices

Thousands of new iPad pollbook devices will be available for use by suburban Cook County voters leading up to the June 28 election. | Brian Rich/Sun-Times

Voters in suburban Cook County will be casting their ballots in upcoming elections with the help of new devices that aim to streamline check-in at the polls.

Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough announced the purchase of the 4,500 new e-poll devices that will be used in the June 28 primary election.

The equipment uses secure iPad applications to check in voters at every poll location in suburban Cook County, Yarbrough said at a news conference Thursday. That means poll workers won’t need to check in voters by finding their names on bulky paper ledgers.

The devices load each voter’s registration information and verify their signature to ensure they receive the correct ballot.

“We fully expect this new equipment will improve the voting experience for, again, the voters certainly, but also our election judges,” Yarbrough said. “And it’s going to make the process more efficient.”

“One of the great things” about the new, digital system “is that it allows voters to check in in a seamless way,” Edmund Michalowski, Cook County’s deputy clerk for elections, said during the news conference.

First-time voters can register to vote on the new equipment as well, Michalowski said.

Read more here.

Editorial noteExpectations on June 28th..

OMG

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Early Voting

Following are early primary voting information links for all Village counties:

The 2022 General Primary election is June 28th.

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Cook County Election Judges

The Cook County clerk’s office is seeking suburban voters to serve as election judges for the June 28 primary election.

Election judges are paid $200 and Polling place technicians earn $365, and the clerk’s office provides training for both positions.

The clerk’s office is also putting out a call to encourage high school and college students, as well as bilingual residents, to consider serving as judges.

Judges greet voters, sign them in and work together to ensure the polling place is running smoothly and voters are properly served. Polling place technicians work with election judges to check supplies and equipment and assist with the setup, maintenance, and breakdown of election equipment.

Judges must be a registered Cook County voter or an eligible college or high school student (16 or older).

Anyone who wishes to serve can apply online at cookcountyclerk.com/work.

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Uhaul

Some Illinois politicians are using an estimate to revise the Census count and claim Illinois doesn’t have a problem with its residents moving away. A closer look shows they are wrong, and the danger of denial.

On May 19, the U.S. Census Bureau released state-level results for their Post-Enumeration Survey. The survey estimates Illinois’ household population was undercounted by 1.97% during the 2020 official Census.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker used that information to claim Illinois welcomed over 250,000 new residents.

But the Census Bureau’s Population Estimates Program tells a different, consistent story. It has estimated Illinois population declines each year since 2014, including in 2021 when its numbers showed a record-setting loss of 114,000 residents.

Two separate estimates and a head count each yielding different numbers complicate this simple question: “Are Illinoisans leaving for greener pastures?” That is, unless you have a data analyst to help sort through it, which the Illinois Policy Institute is happy to provide. Stay with us.

What is really going on with Census data?

To accurately decipher the various estimates of population levels and changes it is important to have a fundamental understanding of what each program from the Census Bureau does, and how it is intended to be used.

Let’s start with the official decennial census, the most recent of which was the 2020 census count. Each decennial census is an count of the U.S. population on April 1 of the reference year. The population is determined based on physical responses from each household and the results are used to determine representation in Congress and the allocation of some federal spending. These counts include those living in group settings such as college dorms, nursing homes and prisons. The 2020 official Census count estimated Illinois’ population to be 12,812,508 as of April 1, 2020.

Read more here.

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Election 2020 Illinois

May 19 was the start of voting for the June 28 primary for early in-person voting and for those who’ve requested mail-in ballots.

Illinois citizens who want their voices heard in the community can take the first step by voting early in the June 28 primary election.

Polls opened May 19 for in-person early voting and for mail-in voting for the primary. Primaries are key to rooting out corruption by creating the competition that holds incumbents accountable by ensuring voters have choices.

What is early voting?

Registered voters can go to their election authority or early voting site and vote early for any reason from May 19 until June 27, the day before the primary election. A list of local election authorities can be found at the Illinois State Board of Elections website. Early votes are not counted until after polls close at 7 p.m. on Election Day, June 28.

What is vote by mail?

Registered voters can apply to vote by mail, but must do so no later than five days before the election: June 23. No reason is needed. The system replaced Illinois’ absentee ballot system in 2016. May 19 was the first day to submit completed mail-in ballots. 

Read more here.

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madigan-bribery-768x576

Ethics reform advocates say they’re disappointed but not surprised little was done during the Illinois legislature’s spring session to curry the public’s trust, even as former House Speaker Michael Madigan’s indictment in March put public corruption back in the spotlight.

But they still hold out hope for the future.

“You would think after what we saw with former Speaker Mike Madigan, there would be a fire under legislators … especially with an election coming up,” Bryan Zarou, director of policy for the Better Government Association, said regarding the inaction on ethics reform.

The BGA plans a new push for ethics reform this summer, with a set of proposals to be considered for the 2023 legislative session.

The subject will soon be brought to the forefront of public attention again, with former state Sen. Thomas Cullerton’s sentencing scheduled for June 21 and Madigan’s next status hearing set for Aug. 2.

Cullerton, a Democrat from Villa Park, pleaded guilty March 8 to a federal embezzlement charge for receiving nearly $250,000 in pay and benefits from the Teamsters union without working for it.

Madigan, once the most powerful politician in Illinois, was indicted on charges of racketeering and bribery and accused of running a “criminal enterprise.” He has pleaded not guilty.

Read more here.

Related:Kane County officials at odds over hiring of IT director’s wife

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