November 30, 2018 Update

The Illinois General Assembly concluded its second week of the two-week Veto Session. The General Assembly remains adjourned until January 7th. The 100th General Assembly is scheduled to be in session for two days to conclude its work before the 101st General Assembly takes office at noon on January 9th.


The General Assembly had 73 vetoes (46 total vetoes/27 amendatory vetoes) pending during the Fall Veto Session. Of those, the Legislature overrode 13 amendatory vetoes, 16 total vetoes and accepted 1 amendatory veto.
Failed Veto Override Attempts:
The following veto overrides were debated this week and failed to garner enough votes for passage.
SB2332 (Morrison/Lilly) which would raise the legal age to buy tobacco, including electronic cigarettes and vaping devices, in the state from 18 to 21. The House fell short of overriding this veto by a vote of 62-45.
SB2376 (Harris/Ford) which creates the Cook County Water Infrastructure Fund as a special fund in the State treasury. The Fund will be used by the Environmental Protection Agency to make grants to municipalities to fund infrastructure improvements to facilitate water supplies from Lake Michigan for residents of Cook County. The vote fell three votes short in the House.
HB5481 (Guzzardi/Acquino) fell short by two votes in the Illinois House. HB 5481 addresses goals for K- 12 class sizes.
SB65 (Hastings/Williams) which allows for the bifurcation of title insurance. The House fell short of overriding this veto by a vote of 65-39-5.
HB1262 (Currie/Bertino-Tarrant) which requires school waiver requests to come before the General Assembly if the waiver could result in a property tax increase. The Senate voted twice on the measure and fell one vote short both times.
HB5175 (Hoffman/Cunningham) which prevents a charter school from appealing to the Charter’s School Commission a denial or revocation by a local school board. The Senate fell short of overriding this veto by a vote of 31-14.
Amendatory Vetoes accept
HB5177 (K. Burke/Cunningham) which deals with establishing credit in the Chicago Pension Fund. Both chambers voted to accept this amendatory veto and it now becomes law.
Legislation Overridden in both chambers:
The following vetoes have been overridden by both chambers and will now become law, the veto of the Governor notwithstanding.


SB34 (J. Cullerton/Hernandez) which creates the Voices Act dealing with immigrant crime-victim visas.
SB427 (Raoul/Currie) which extends from 2 to 3 the number of terms a person may serve on the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority Board.
SB904 (Hastings/Hoffman) which makes changes to the medical billing rules under the worker’s compensation system. Two trailer bills were passed addressing worker’s compensation. They are highlighted below.
SB1737 (Munoz/Unes) which is the omnibus insurance legislation passed last Spring.
SB1830 (Hastings/Turner) which deals with informant testimony.
SB2297 (Hutchinson/Reick) which provides that rescue squads can levy a special tax to provide for ambulance service.
SB2345 (Lightford/Currie) which provides that a school report card shall include the most current data possessed by the State Board of Education relating to whether or not a school has participated in the Illinois Youth Survey.
SB2407 (Clayborne/Hoffman) which amends the Child Death Review Act to allow certain professionals to review child deaths.
SB2589 (Harris/Davis) which deals with the Midlothian Park District.
SB2419 (Martinez/Burke) which addresses surgical assistant certifications.
SB2481 (Hastings/Riley) which increases the cap from $100,000 to $2 million on tort awards issued with the court of claims. The measure allows relief for the victims of the Legionnaires outbreak at the Quincy Veterans Home among others.
SB2619 (Anderson/Willis) which requires paid fire departments to hire Chiefs with certain fire related qualifications.
SB2629 (T. Cullerton/Willis) which provides that a member of the board of trustees of a fire protection district may satisfy the training requirements of the Open Meetings Act by participating in a course of training sponsored or conducted by an organization that represents fire protection districts.
SB2662 (Murphy/Mussman) which creates the Task Force on Human Services Contracting Act.
SB3041 (Holmes/Moeller) which expands the County Care for Persons with Developmental Disabilities Act to municipalities and townships.
SB3136 (J. Cullerton/Currie) which allows employers to use discretion regarding termination of state troopers or corrections officers who are found to have used cannabis.
HB126 (Willis/Holmes). The legislation gives 58 full-time paramedics in 6 units of local government the same rights as firefighters under the Public Labor Relations Act.
HB127 (Willis/Holmes) which protects paramedics under the Public Safety Benefit Act if they are catastrophically injured in the line of duty.
HB3418 (Harper/Hunter) which allows counties and municipalities to create Urban Agricultural Zones.
HB4282 (K. Burke/Cunningham) which prohibits the disconnection of private property from a municipality if the property is located within a TIF district.
HB4284 (Chapa LaVia/Bertino-Tarrant) which requires 3 of the 9 members of the Illinois State Board of Education to be from the educator community.
HB4514 (Olsen/Connelly) which provides that only persons licensed and endorsed as a school counselor under the Code may use the title “school counselor”.
HB4645 (Davis/Harris) which extends for 10 years the sunset date for the certificate of need process for the Health Facilities Services Review Board.
HB4657 (Manley/Sims) which creates the Emotional Intelligence Education Task Force to develop curriculum guidelines on emotional intelligence.
HB4743 (Ford/Lightford) which amends the Equal Pay Act to prohibit employers from discriminating in wages for African Americans from other employees in similar jobs.
HB4771 (Hammond/Mulroe) which is designed to eliminate the backlog of Medicaid expedited long-term care eligibility determinations.
HB5195 (Greenwood/Clayborne) which addresses Safe Passage to Schools in high crime areas.
HB5221 (Willis/Holmes) which puts paramedics under the Public Employee Disability Act.
HB5342 (Martwick/Mulroe) which allows firefighters who are elected to office and are members of the Fireman’s Annuity Benefit Fund of Chicago to continue with the Fund.
Additional Legislation:
The House approved two worker’s compensation trailer bills this week. HB3452 (Soto/Hastings) limits the ability to go to circuit court only for collection of the 1% interest and HB200(Hoffman/Hastings) clarifies that the explanation of benefits that is required to go to the medical provider and the injured worker. Both bills now head to the Governor’s desk.
The Senate Executive Committee voted to concur with the House amendments on SB 482 (Zalewski/J. Cullerton) which deals with sales tax on jet fuel and how the taxes may be used.  The concurrence motion is now pending before the full Senate.
The General Assembly approved legislation, HB4637(Link/McSweeney), that allows road district dissolution by referendum in Lake and McHenry counties. The sponsor indicated that this applies to 5 road districts in Lake and McHenry. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.


The General Assembly approved SB1469 (Steans/Harris) which reflects negotiations with stakeholders to make some corrections related to the hospital assessment previously passed. The bill corrects errors that resulted in decreases to rural critical access hospitals, makes corrections to the hospital assessment, extends rates for psychiatric hospitals, makes changes to the SMRF Act, extends and sunsets the Hospital Transformation Committee and provides for a 5-year sales tax exemption for not-for-profit hospitals. A procedural hold has been placed on the bill in the Senate. Once removed, the bill will head to the Governor’s desk.


The General Assembly approved legislation, SB3051(Clayborne/Hoffman), which allows municipalities to sell their water systems. The bill now heads to the Governor’s desk.


The General Assembly approved legislation, SB849(McGuire/Zalewski), to extend by two years the sunset to prohibit home rule units from taxing sources of electric generation. The bill now goes to the Governor’s desk.


Other News:
Republican Senator Chris Nybo, who lost his re-election bid to his Democratic opponent Suzy Glowiak, resigned at the end of the first week of veto session. Nybo is temporarily being replaced by Republican Milton Township Trustee Nick Nathwani. Glowiak will be sworn in January 9th.


The ballots in three undecided races are now counted. Democrat Mary Edly Allen defeated appointed Republican Representative Helene Miller Walsh. Republican Representative Tom Morrison barley survived a tight race winning by 37 votes over Democratic challenger Maggie Trevor. And in the Senate, Democratic challenger Mary Ellman defeated incumbent Republican Senator Michael Connelly.


With November ballots counted, the House of Representatives will contain 74 Democrats and 44 Republicans in the 101st General Assembly while the Senate will contain 40 Democrats and 19 Republicans. The Democratic House supermajority represents the most Democratic House members since Speaker Madigan assumed leadership over the chamber in 1982. The Democratic supermajority in the Senate ties with the year 2012 for the greatest number of Democratic Senators. The Senate will contain 20 women, the most in the state’s history. The Illinois House has a net loss of 3 women from the current General Assembly.


The Illinois House is forming a “Progressive Caucus” for the 101st General Assembly. According to Representative Guzzardi, “the members of the caucus will determine what’s progressive and what they want to push forward, but he cited popular support for issues like a hike in the minimum wage and a graduated income tax, as reflected in a statewide poll released last month with the launch of the Forward Illinois umbrella group of progressive organizations.”


Democratic Comptroller Susan Mendoza, who earlier this month won her re-election bid, officially filed petitions to run for Mayor of Chicago. She joins a crowded field of 21 candidates seeking the chance to replace Chicago Mayor Emmanuel.


Governor Elect JB Pritzker announced the formation of additional transition committees. The 25-member Committee on Quality, Equity and Opportunity will be chaired by Access Living President and CEO Marca Bristo, Casa Central interim President and CEO Marty Castro, and Pride Action Tank Executive Director Kim Hunt and consist of 25 members. The Committee on Equality, Equity, and Opportunity will tackle civil rights issues and work to ensure Illinois can protect children and families from policies from the federal government.


The Educational Success Committee will be chaired by Senator Andy Manar, Representative Emanuel “Chris” Welch, Chicago Public Schools CEO Dr. Janice Jackson, and Illinois Education Association President Kathi Griffin and consist of 35 members.
The Powering Illinois’ Future Committee will be chaired by Illinois Environmental Council Executive Director Jennifer Walling, Exelon Utilities CEO Anne Pramaggiore, and IBEW Local 51 Business Manager John Johnson and consist of 30 members. In announcing the committee’s formation, Lt. Governor elect Stratton indicated investing in infrastructure will be a top priority in the new administration. Stratton believes this committee will bring both advocacy and industry stakeholders together to put our state on a path toward mutually agreed upon projects that move us toward a clean energy economy.


Key Session Dates:
January 7th/8th – Lame Duck 100th
January 9th -101st General Assembly Inauguration
January 14th – Executive Branch Inauguration
February 1 – DEADLINE – Senate and House LRB Requests
February 15 – DEADLINE – Introduction of Substantive Senate and House Bills
February 20 – Governor’s Budget Address
February 26 – Consolidated Primary Election
March 22 – DEADLINE – Substantive Senate Bills out of Senate Committee
March 29 – DEADLINE – Substantive House Bills out of House Committee
April 2 – Consolidated Election
April 12 – DEADLINE – Third Reading Substantive Senate Bills and Substantive House Bills
May 10 – DEADLINE – Substantive Bills out of Committee in 2nd chamber
May 24 – DEADLINE – Third Reading Substantive Bills in 2nd chamber
The Spring 2019 General Assmebly Calendars were released.  Here is a link to the Senate Calendar, and here is a link to the House Calendar.

November 16, 2018

The Illinois General Assembly adjourned its first week of the two-week Fall Veto Session. Both chambers return to Session on Tuesday, November 27th.
They were busy this week overriding several of lame-duck Republican Governor Rauner’s vetoes.   In total, the General Assembly overrode 18 amendatory vetoes and 28 total vetoes. All but one of those vetoes, which was approved by both chambers, will now go to the opposite chamber for consideration. The House moved to accept the Governor’s specific recommendations on just one bill, HB5177   (K. Burke/Cunningham) which deals with establishing credit in the Chicago Pension Fund. Both chambers failed to override a total of four vetoes.
Failed Veto Override Attempts:
The Illinois Senate failed by a vote of 34-5-1 to override SB2493   (Rose/Halbrook) which required a study on supplemental deer feed.
The Illinois Senate failed by one vote, 35-21, to override the total veto of SB2273 (Raoul/Williams ) which provides that ERICS shall be the exclusive voter registration system for Illinois.
The Illinois House failed by a vote of 67-44 to override the total veto of HB3792 (Lilly/Harmon) which amends the Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness Act to provide that, beginning in grade 6, students should be introduced to the importance of developing and applying a work ethic in a variety of contexts.
The Illinois House failed 61-45 to override the Governor’s total veto of HB 4882 HB4882 (Mayfield/Martinez) which makes changes to the Grow Your Own Teacher Act.
Legislation Overridden in both chambers:
The General Assembly overwhelmingly voted to override the Governor’s amendatory Veto of HB4515 (Swanson/Nybo) which creates the Lyme Disease Prevention and Protection Act. The Act creates a Task Force to develop policies regarding Lyme Disease education and allows physicians to treat outside of the CDC protocols. The bill now becomes law.
Additional Legislation:
The Illinois Senate approved two worker’s compensation trailer bills this week. HB3452 (Soto/Hastings) limits the ability to go to circuit court only for collection of the 1% interest and HB200 (Hoffman/Hastings) clarifies that the explanation of benefits that is required to go to the medical provider and the injured worker. Both bills now advance to the House for concurrence.
The Senate approved legislation, SB 0279 (Koehler) which re-appropriates prior capital projects to allow those projects to continue. The bill now heads to the House. This bill will require three Readings in the House.
The House approved legislation, HB5698 (Welch) to make term limits on local municipal officials, including home rule units, prospective in nature. The bill now heads to the Senate. This bill will require three Readings in the senate.
The Illinois Senate approved legislation, SB515 (Haine) which creates the Statewide Relocation Towing Licensure Commission to evaluate the state’s current towing laws. The bill now heads to the House. This bill will require three Readings in the House.
The House approved negotiated legislation, HB5769 (Conroy), which requires the Department of Insurance to develop a uniform electronic prior authorization form to be used by an insurer that provides prescription drug benefits when requiring prior authorization for prescription drug benefits. The bill now heads to the Senate. This bill will require three readings in the Senate.
Other News:
One week after winning her re-election as Illinois’ Comptroller, Democrat Susana Mendoza announced her candidacy for Mayor of Chicago. She joins a growing field of Democratic candidates seeking to replace retiring Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel.
Following Tuesday’s mid-term elections, the Conservative Party qualified as an established political party in over 80 Illinois counties by securing more than 5% of the vote. As an established political party, the Conservative Party candidates will require far fewer signatures than other third party candidates making it easier to secure a position on the ballot in 2020. For Congressional races, the threshold for minor party candidates is five percent of the total votes cast in the last election for that race, while established party candidates need only half of one percent. In State Senate and House races, established party candidates need only 1,000 and 500 signatures, respectively. Minor party candidates require five percent of the electorate. However, because party status is conferred with respect to districts and political subdivisions and not geographic areas that exist independently of districts and political subdivisions, it will not be until precinct level data is available to determine which Congressional, House and Senate districts confer party status to the Conservative Party.
Governor Pritzker announced the formation of two more transition committees. The 19 member Serving Illinois Heroes Committee will be chaired by US Senator Tammy Duckworth. Committee members include Secretary of State Jesse White and State Representative David Harris. Prizker also formed the Healthy Children and Families Committee which will focus on how we should rebuild social services, identify ways we can help children and families build better lives, and expand health care. The Healthy Children and Families Committee will be chaired by state Sen. Heather Steans, Howard Brown Health President and CEO David Munar, and Children’s Home and Aid President and CEO Nancy Ronquillo and consist of 36 members.
The 2019 Spring Legislative Calendar is expected to be released by the end of the month.

November 12. 2018 Update

Tommorw, the General Assembly will reconvene for the first week of its scheduled two-week veto session. The General Assembly is expected to consider action on numerous Gubernatorial vetoes as well as considering other new and pending legislation. It is unknown at this time exactly how much the lame-duck 100th General Assembly will try to accomplish in its remaining days. With Governor-elect Pritzker prepared to take office in January and new super-majorities in both legislative chambers, leadership may decide to postpone action on several measures until the new General Assembly takes office.
There are 73 vetoes pending before the General Assembly (46 total vetoes and 27 amendatory vetoes). Once vetoed, legislation is returned to the chamber of origin. After the Governor’s veto message is read into the record in the original chamber, the original chamber has 15 days to consider the motion to override or in the event of an amendatory veto – to accept the Governor’s recommendations for change. If the motion passes the original chamber, the legislation then proceeds to the second chamber. The second chamber then has 15 days to consider the veto motion. There is no limit on how many times a chamber may vote on a veto message within that 15-day window. If a veto motion fails to pass a chamber at the conclusion of the 15-day period, the legislation is considered dead. Passage of veto motions requires a 3/5ths vote in each chamber (36 votes in the Senate and 72 votes in the House).
Governor-elect JB Pritzker announced both his Transition Committee and his new administration’s Chief of Staff. Serving as his Transition Committee Chair is Lieutenant Governor-elect Juliana Stratton. Pritzker’s campaign manager, Anne Caprara, will serve as chief of staff for the Governor’s Office. Transition Committee members will include Co Chairs: Barbara Bowman, Mike Carrigan, Former Governor Jim Edgar, Sol Flores and Marty Nesbitt. Transition Committee Staff include Anne Caprara, Chief of Staff; Nikki Budzinski, Transition Director; Sean Rapelyea, Deputy Transition Director; Former Comptroller Dan Hynes, Senior Advisor; Representative Christian Mitchell, Senior Advisor; Michael Sacks, Senior Advisor and Jesse Ruiz, Counsel. The Transition Committee will be divided into several working groups composed of subject-matter experts that will advise and guide the incoming Pritzker-Stratton administration.
Governor-elect JB Pritzker and Lieutenant Governor-elect Juliana Stratton announced the formation of the first Transition working group, the Budget and Innovation Committee. The working group will be chaired by former state Comptroller Dan Hynes and consist of 17 members. Committee members include: State Representative Greg Harris, State Senator Toi Hutchinson, State Senator Andy Manar, Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara, Decatur Mayor Julie Wolfe, Chicago City Treasurer Kurt Summers, House Speaker Madigan Chief of Staff Jessica Basham, Chicago CFO Carole Brown, Associated Fire Fighters President Pat Devaney, Center for Tax and Budget Accountability Executive Direct Ralph Martire, IFT President Dan Montgomery, Civic Federation President Laurence Msall, Former Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno, President Cullerton’s Chief of Staff Kristin Richards, Chairman of GCM Gorsvenor Michael Sacks, and Springfield Park District President Leslie Sgro.\


Several Subject Matter Hearings are scheduled for the upcoming week:
Senate Subject Matter Hearings:
3:15 PM
212 Capitol – Springfield, IL
Subject Matter On: Early Childhood Education Funding
9:00 AM
Environment and Conservation
212 Capitol – Springfield, IL
Subject Matter On: Ethylene Oxide Emissions, SB 3630, SB 3640
3:30 PM
Higher Education
212 Capitol – Springfield, IL
Subject Matter On: Solutions Regarding The Shortage Of Behavioral Healthcare Workers In Illinois.
Joint Hearing With Senate Human Services Committee
3:30 PM
Human Services
212 Capitol – Springfield, IL
Subject Matter On: Solutions Regarding The Shortage Of Behavioral Healthcare Workers In Illinois.
Joint Hearing With Senate Higher Education Committee
House Subject Matter Hearings
10:00 AM
Judiciary – Criminal Committee
C-600, 6th Floor Michael A. Bilandic Building – Chicago, IL
SUBJECT MATTER: Prison Reform and Reinstating Parole.
10:00 AM
Restorative Justice Committee
C-600, 6th Floor Michael A. Bilandic Building – Chicago, IL
SUBJECT MATTER: Prison Reform and Reinstating Parole.
10:00 AM
Tourism, Hospitality & Craft Industries Committee
Room 118 Capitol Building – Springfield, IL
SUBJECT MATTER: Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum and Foundation.
3:00 PM
Public Utilities Committee
Room 118 Capitol Building – Springfield, IL

November 8, 2018 Update 2

Sorry to email you again today but I thought the below informaiton was just released and is important.


After winning yesterday’s gubernatorial election by 15 points, today, Governor-elect JB Pritzker announced his Transition Committee and his administration’s Chief of Staff. Serving as his Transition Committee Chair is Lieutenant Governor-elect Juliana Stratton and campaign manager Anne Caprara will serve as chief of staff.
“I am honored to be chairing the transition committee with a remarkable group of leaders who represent the diversity and strength of our state,” said Lieutenant Governor-elect Juliana Stratton. “From day one, JB and I have made a commitment to making sure Illinoisans across the state have a seat at the table as we build an administration to put Springfield back on the side of working families.”
For those interested in positions with the administration, they can apply online at:
Chair, Lieutenant Governor-elect Juliana Stratton
Co-Chair, Barbara Bowman
Co-Chair, Mike Carrigan
Co-Chair, Former Governor Jim Edgar
Co-Chair, Sol Flores
Co-Chair, Marty Nesbitt
Chief of Staff, Anne Caprara
Transition Director, Nikki Budzinski
Deputy Transition Director, Sean Rapelyea
Senior Advisor, Former Comptroller Dan Hynes
Senior Advisor, State Representative Christian Mitchell
Senior Advisor, Michael Sacks
Counsel, Jesse Ruiz
Chair, Lieutenant Governor-elect Juliana Stratton: State Representative Juliana Stratton has been serving the public, solving problems, and fighting for what’s right throughout her career. As a state representative for the 5th District, Stratton has worked to reform our criminal justice system, raise the minimum wage, and protect a woman’s right to choose. As the Director of the Center for Public Safety and Justice at the University of Illinois at Chicago, she worked to build trust between law enforcement officers and the communities they serve. She graduated with a B.S. from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a J.D. from DePaul University and is a proud former delegate at the Illinois Women’s Institute for Leadership. Stratton was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago and currently resides in Bronzeville.
Co-Chair, Barbara Bowman: Barbara Bowman is a nationally recognized advocate for early childhood education and is the Co-Founder of the Erikson Institute and an Irving B. Harris Professor of Child Development. She has worked as Chief Officer for early childhood education for the Chicago Public Schools and served as a consultant to U.S. Secretary of Education during President Obama’s first term. She is a professor, author and award winner.
Co-Chair, Michael Carrigan: Michael Carrigan is currently president of the Illinois AFL-CIO and will be a partner in putting Springfield back on the side of working families. He has served as Secretary-Treasurer of the Illinois AFL-CIO for seven years before becoming president. Prior, he was Business Manager and Financial Secretary for IBEW Local 146 in Decatur from 1992 to 2000. Carrigan served as a journeyman wireman in Decatur before becoming Assistant Business Manager of Local 146.
Co-Chair, Former Governor Jim Edgar: Governor Jim Edgar served as the 38th Governor of Illinois and brings decades of government experience to his role on the transition. During his time as governor, he eliminated a backlog of $1 billion of unpaid health care bills, provided income tax relief and left an unprecedented $1.5 billion in the treasury for his successor. After retiring from elective office, he has continued his commitment to responsible and responsive government as a distinguished fellow at the University of Illinois’ Institute of Government and Public Affairs and he spearheads the Edgar Fellows program.
Co-Chair, Sol Flores: Sol Flores is an emerging leader in her community with a strong knowledge of the social service structure. She is Founding Executive Director of La Casa Norte and founded the organization in 2002. La Casa Norte is a nonprofit organization that provides housing and social services to homeless Latino and African American youth and families in Chicago. She was raised by a single mother who came to Chicago from Puerto Rico and has been recognized as a national Champion of Change for her work by the Obama White House.
Co-Chair, Marty Nesbitt: Martin Nesbitt will bring his extensive business experience to focus on creating jobs and building an inclusive economy that works for everyone. Nesbitt is the Co-CEO of the Vistria Group, LLC and prior to that was the CEO of the Parking Spot, an executive with Pritzker Realty Group, L.P and an Equity Vice President and Investment Manager at LaSalle Partners. He was also the National Treasurer of President Obama’s 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns. Martin serves on the Board of Directors of FowardLine Financial and Vanta Education. He serves on the Board of Directors of CenterPoint Energy, Norfolk Southern Corporation and American Airlines Groups, he is a Trustee of Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art and Chairman of the Barack Obama Foundation.
Anne Caprara will serve as Chief of Staff for the administration and senior advisor during the transition. Anne Caprara recently served as campaign manager for JB Pritzker and Juliana Stratton’s gubernatorial campaign. Caprara is a political professional with over 17 years of experience in Democratic campaigns and legislative offices, Caprara has managed and consulted with candidates and elected officials at every level of state and federal government. Caprara served as chief of staff to Congresswoman Betsy Markey’s from 2008 until 2010. Before that, Caprara served as Chief of Staff for Ohio Congresswoman Betty Sutton. Caprara also served as political director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Executive Director of Priorities USA during the 2016 election cycle. She obtained her Masters degree from George Washington University and her undergraduate degree from American University.
Nikki Budzinski will serve as Transition Director. Nikki Budzinski served as Senior Advisor to the JB Pritzker for Governor campaign. Budzinski led JB Pritzker’s exploratory effort for Governor and in her latest role she advised the campaign on political strategy, messaging and outreach. From 2015-2016, Budzinski served as the Labor Campaign Director on Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Presidential Campaign. Prior, Budzinski worked in the labor movement for ten years in Washington, DC, working for the Laborers International Union of North America, International Association of Fire Fighters and United Food and Commercial Workers Unions. Budzinski is a Peoria native and worked for Comptroller Dan Hynes from 1999-2004 in Springfield, Illinois, serving in numerous roles within the Office of the Comptroller and working on both Comptroller Hynes’ reelection campaign and the 2004 U.S. Senator primary election.
Sean Rapelyea will serve as Deputy Transition Director. Sean Rapelyea served as Political Director for JB for Governor He previously served as Illinois Political Director for the Hillary For America campaign during the general election, where she garnered a 17-point win margin. Rapelyea previously served as Deputy Director of Government Affairs for the Office of the Mayor in Chicago after working as a Regional Field Director and Advisor to Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s 2011 and 2015 re-election campaigns. In 2010, he worked on Arkansas Senator’s Blanche Lincoln’s primary, runoff, and general election campaign.
Former Comptroller Dan Hynes will serve as a senior advisor. Dan Hynes currently serves as a senior executive at UBS Asset Management in Chicago, after a distinguished 12-year career in public service as the Comptroller for the State of Illinois. Hynes was elected Comptroller in 1998 as the youngest state constitutional officer since World War II. He was re-elected in 2002 and 2006 by wide margins. In 2011, President Barack Obama named Hynes as the United States Observer to the International Fund for Ireland, which makes investments in Northern Ireland for the purpose of promoting peace and stability in the region. Hynes also serves a member of the Democratic National Committee.
State Representative Christian Mitchell will serve as a senior advisor. Christian Mitchell is the State Representative for the 26th District and Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Illinois. Mitchell began his career as a community organizer, working with churches on the south side of Chicago. He went on to become a trusted advisor to reform minded political leaders. He served as a deputy field director on Lisa Madigan’s re-election campaign, managed the city council race of former 4th Ward Alderman Will Burns, and was Midwest Paid Media and Polling Director for President Obama’s re-election campaign in 2012. He has consulted for State Assembly and Congressional races across the country, and was a Senior Advisor to Senator Tammy Duckworth’s successful 2016 race. Before being elected to office, Mitchell also served on senior staff for Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle.
Michael Sacks will serve as a senior advisor. Sacks is the Chairman and CEO of GCM Grosvenor. Grosvenor specializes in the management of multimanager investment portfolios and is a leader in the alternative investment industry. Prior to joining Grosvenor in 1990 he was an Associate with Harris Associates, L.P. He graduated from Tulane University and received his M.B.A and Juris Doctor from Northwestern University. He serves as the Vice Chairman of the World Business Chicago Board of Director and is active in various philanthropic and community activities. He and his wife, Cari have three children.
Jesse Ruiz will serve as counsel to the transition. Ruiz is a Partner at Drinker Biddle and is the President of Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners. He currently serves as a member of the firm’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Ruiz has served as Vice President of Chicago Board of Education and Chairman of the Illinois State Board of Education and President of the Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois. He was appointed to serves on the U.S. Department of Education Equity and Excellence Commission.

November 8, 2018 Update

We wanted to give you a brief update as to what happened on election day.  As I am sure you are aware, some races are still very close and could result in re-counts.  All constitutional offices, including the Governor, were up for election on November 6, as well as all 118 House seats, 39 of 59 Senate seats, and all 18 Congressional seats.  Illinois’ Democrats rode a blue wave to victory in Tuesday’s mid-term elections sweeping all six constitutional offices. Democrats expanded their super majority hold in the Illinois Senate and picked up a super majority vote in the Illinois House.  Democrats also defeated two incumbent suburban Republican congressmen to turn the Illinois Congressional delegation to a 13-5 Democrat majority. It is being reported that democratic candidates in Illinois benefited from voters angry with President Trump and the unpopular first-term Republican Governor Bruce Rauner, increased voter turnout and a large vote by mail program.


As expected, Democrat candidate JB Pritzker overwhelming defeated first-term Republican Governor Bruce Rauner and third-party candidates State Senator Sam McCann and Kash Jackson. Pritzker, who broke national campaign records for a self-funded cammpaign in US history, stayed on message emphasizing the Governor’s failures in office, especially with the budget crisis and benefited from the powerful endorsement of labor unions and trial attorneys.

  • Attorney General

State Senator Kwame Raoul defeated Republican attorney and former Miss America Erika Harold. Like Pritzker, Raoul gained important union endorsements and benefited from riding the “blue wave” of a considerably higher turnout of Democrat voters than in 2016. The sitting Attorney General, Lisa Madigan, chose not to run for a fifth term.

  • Secretary of State

Secretary of State Jesse White (D) easily won his six term in office defeating Republican Jason Helland.

  • Comptroller

Comptroller Susan Mendoza (D) easily defeated former State Representative, Congressional candidate, and member of Governor Rauner’s administration Darlene Senger.  Mendoza may consider a run for Chicago Mayor in 2019.

  • Treasurer

Treasurer Michael Frerichs (D) easily defeats Republican challenger Jim Dodge for another term.

Below is a detailed break down of Congressional, State Senate and State House races.  Winners are highlighted in yellow.

  • Congressional Races:

All 18 Congressional seats were up for re-election.  Heading into election day, the Democrats controlled 11 of the state’s 18 Congressional Seats.  There was one open Congressional seat being vacated by Congressman Luis Gutiérrez who is retiring.  Two Suburban Republican Congressman lost their elections:  Randy Hultgren and Peter Roskam.

2018 Congressional Candidates
District Democrat Republican
1 Bobby Rush (I) Jimmy Lee Tillman, II
2 Robin Kelly (I) David Merkle
3 Dan Lipinksi (I) Arthur Jones
4 Jesus “Chuy” Garcia (I) Mark Lorch
5 Mike Quigley (I) Tom Hanson
6 Sean Casten Peter Roskam (I)
7 Danny Davis (I) Craig Cameron
8* Raja Krishnamoorthi Jitendra “JD” Diganvker
9 Jan Schakowsky (I) John Elleson
10 Brad Schneider (I) Douglas Bennett
11 Bill Foster (I) Nick Stella
12 Brendan Kelly Mike Bost (I)
13 Betsy Londrigan Rodney Davis (I)
14 Lauren Underwood Randy Hultgren (I)
15 Kevin Gaither John Shimkus (I)
16 Sara Dady Adam Kinzinger (I)
17 Cheri Bustos (I) Bill Fawell
18 Junius Rodriguez Darin LaHood(I)
Notes An (I) denotes an incumbent.

* Denotes an Open Seat





  • State Senate Races:

In the Senate, out of its 59 seats (21 of 37 Democrats and 18 of 22 Republicans) were up for election in November.  Of the 39 Senate seats up for election November 6th, only 18 were contested races.  Even without contested seats, there will be at least 11 new Senators on Inauguration Day in 2019 who weren’t in office in January of 2017.   Five current Senators were not seeking re-election:  Three Democrats –  Dan Biss (9th District); Bill Haine (56th District); James Clayborne (57th District); and two Republicans:  Tim Bivins (45th District) and Kyle McCarter (54th District).  Three appointed Republican Senators were in contested races seeking election to their first full term in office:  Craig Wilcox (32nd District); Donald DeWitte (33rd District) and John Curran (41st District).

The Democrats already held a 37-22 super-majority, the party increased its majority to 39-20 (or 40-19, depending on final ballot counts).  At this time, one Senate races remain too close to call. Republican Senator Michael Connelly leads his opponent, Laura Ellman, by 12 votes. Incumbent Republican Senators Chris Nybo and Tom Rooney lost their races to Democratic challengers.

2018 State Senate Candidates
District Democrat Republican
9* Laura Fine Joan McCarthy Lasonde
21 Laura Ellman Michael Connelly (I) – Too close to call
23 Thomas Cullerton (I) Seth Lewis
24 Suzy Glowiak Chris Nybo (I)
26 Tom Georges Dan McConchie (I)
27 Ann Gillespie Tom Rooney (I)
29 Julie Morrison (I) Barrett Davie
30 Terry Link (I) Soojae Lee
32 Mary Mahady Craig Wilcox (I)
33 Nacy Zettler Donald DeWitte (I)
36 Gregg Johnson Neil Anderson (I)
38 Heidi Henry Sue Rezin (I)
41 Bridget Fitzgerald John Curran (I)
45* David Simpson Brian Stewart
48 Andy Manar (I) Seth McMillan
54* Brian Stout Jason Plummer
56* Rachelle Aud Crowe Hal Patton – Downstate United Candidate
57* Christopher Belt Tanya Hildenbrand
59 Steve Webb Dale Folwer (I)
Notes An (I) denotes an incumbent.

* Denotes an Open Seat



  • State House Races:

Of the 118 House seats up for election, 64 were contested.  There are 13 Representatives not seeking re-election:  three Democrats – Laura Fine (17th District); Scott Drury (58th District); and Carol Sente (59th District) and nine Republicans:  Jeanne Ives (42nd District); David Harris (53rd District); Mike Fortner (49th District), Barb Wheeler (64th District); Steve Andersson (65th District); Brian Stewart (89th District); Sara Wojcki Jimenz (99th District); Bill Mitchell (101st District);  John Cavaletto (107th District); and David Reis (109th District).  Seven newly appointed Representatives were in contested races seeking election to their first term of office:  Deanne Mazzachi (47th District); Helene Miller Walsh (51st District); Jeff Keicher (70th District); Mike Marron (104th District); Chris Miller (110th District); Monica Bristow (111th District); and Natalie Phelps Finne (118th District).  Prior to the election, 30 of the 118 members who took the oath of office to begin the 100th General Assembly will not be returning for the 101st, which is roughly a 25% turnover before the ballots are even counted.

There are 20 sitting House members not on the ballot, as some were retiring or seeking different offices, while others lost primary battles:  nine Democrats – Dan Burke (1st District); Cynthia Soto (4th District); Julianna Stratton (5th District); Laura Fine (17th District); Barbara Flynn Currie (25th District); Al Riley (38th District); Scott Drury (58th District); Carol Sente (59th District); Litesa Wallace (67th District), and eleven Republicans:  Jeanne Ives (42nd District); David Harris (53rd District); Mike Fortner (49th District); Barb Wheeler (64th District); Steve Andersson (65th District); Brian Stewart (89th District); Sara Wojcki Jimenz (99th District); Bill Mitchell (101st District);  John Cavaletto (107th District); David Reis (109th District), and Reggie Phillips (110th District).  Six newly-appointed Representatives were in contested races seeking election to their first term of office:  Deanne Mazzachi (R – 47th District – Bellock); Helene Miller Walsh (R – 51st District – Sauer); Jeff Keicher (R – 70th District – Pritchard); Mike Marron (R – 104th District – Hays); Monica Bristow (D- 111th District – Beiser); and Natalie Phelps Finnie (D – 118th District – Phelps).

The Illinois House is currently composed of 67 Democrats and 51 Republicans.  Democrats will hold a supermajority vote in the 101st General Assembly following Tuesday’s election.   As of Wednesday morning, House Democrats have the potential for a net +6/+7 increase.  Republican losses include:  Peter Breen, Christine Winger, Jerry Long, Sheri Jesiel, David Olsen, the David Harris open seat, and the Mike Fortner open seat.  Helen Miller-Walsh, who was recently appointed to replace Nick Sauer was winning by one vote at midnight.  Incumbent Democrat Natalie Phelps Finnie lost her election bid.

2018 State House Candidates
District Democrat Republican
15 John D’Amico (I) Amanda Biela
17* Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz Peter Lee
18 Robyn Gabel (I) Julie Cho
19 Robert Martwick (I) Ammie Kessem
35 Fran Hurley Herbert Hebein
37 Matthew Hunt Margo McDermed
41 Val Montgomery Grant Wehril
42* Kathleen Carrier Amy Grant
43 Anna Moeller Andrew Cuming
44 Fred Crespo Katy Dolan Baumer
45* Diane Pappas Christine Winger
46 Deb Conroy (I) Jay Kinzler
47 Jim Caffrey Deanne Mazzochi (I)
48 Terra Howard Peter Breen (I)
49* Karina Villa Tonia Khouri
50 James Leslie Keith Wheeler (I)
51* Mary Allen Helene Miller Walsh
53* Mark Walker Eddie Corrigan
54 Maggie Trevor Tom Morrison  (I)
55 Martin Moylan (I) Marilyn Smolenski
56 Michelle Mussman (I) Jillian Bernas
58* Bob Morgan Rick Lesser
59* Dan Didech Karen Feldman
61 Joyce Mason Sheri Jesiel
62 Sam Yingling (I) Ken Idstein
64* Trisha Zubert Tom Weber
65* Richard Johnson Dan Ugaste
68 Jake Castanza John Cabello
69 Angie Bodine Joe Sosnowski
70* Paul Stoddard Jeff Keicher
71 Joan Padilla Tony McCombie (I)
72 Mike Halpin (I) Glen Evans Sr.
76 Lance Yednock Jerry Long (I)
77 Kathleen Willis (I) Anthony Airdo
79 Lisa Dugan Lindsay Parkhurst (I)
81 Anne Stava-Murray David Olsen (I)
82 Tom Chlystek Jim Durkin (I)
84 Stephanie Kifowit (I) Patty Smith
86 Larry Walsh Jr. (I) Rick Laib
88 Jill Blair Keith Sommer (I)
89* Nicholas Hyde Andrew Chesney
90 Amy Davis Tom Demmer (I)
91 Carolyn Blodgett Mike Unes (I)
93 John Curtis Norine Hammond (I)
94 Richard Cramsey Randy Frese (I)
95 Dillon Clark Avery Bourne (I)
96 Sue Scherer (I) Herman Senor
97 Mica Freeman Mark Batinick (I)
98 Natalie Manley (I) Alyssia Benford
99* Marc Bell Mike Murphy
101* Jennifer McMillin Dan Caulkins
104 Cynthia Cunningham Mike Marron
105 Benjamin Webb Dan Brady (I)
107* David Seiler Blaine Wilhour
109* Cynthia Given Daren Bailey
110* Shirley Bell Chris Miller
111 Monic Bristow (I) Mike Babcock
112 Katie Stuart (I) Dwight Kay
113 Jay Hoffman (I) Doug Jameson
114 LaToya Greenwood (I) Jason Madlock
115 Marsha Griffin Terri Bryant (I)
116 Jerry Costello (I) David Friess
117 Jason Woodlard Dave Severin
118 Natalie Phelps Finnie (I) Patrick Windhorst
Notes An (I) denotes an incumbent.

* Denotes an Open Seat




The election of Mr. Pritzker as Governor means that Democrats are guaranteed control of at least one of the three influencers (governor, house, senate) for redistricting in 2021.  With a simple majority needed to pass a redistricted map, and the odds of the Democrats in either chamber falling from a super-majority to a minority in the 2020 election very slim, Democratic control of the legislature, if not the state, is likely well into future.

The lame-duck 100th General Assembly will reconvene November 13th through 15th and November 27th through 29th for the Fall Veto Session.  The General Assembly has 75 vetoes pending for consideration (47 total vetoes and 28 amendatory vetoes).  Typically, the General Assembly convenes again for a lame-duck session in January although no January dates are scheduled at this time.  Given the outcome of yesterday’s election, it is possible that the Democratic Leaders in the General Assembly may forgo meeting in January and wait to tackle any remaining or outstanding issues during the Spring Session. As a reminder, any legislation passed prior to December 31st that contains an immediate effective date will require passage with a 3/5 vote in each chamber (36 votes in the Senate/72 votes in the House).  After January 1st, legislation with an immediate effective date requires passage by only a simple majority vote in each chamber.

Per the Illinois Constitution, the newly elected members of the 101st General Assembly will be sworn into office on Wednesday, January 9th at noon and all Constitutional Officers will take office Monday, January 14th.  Schedules and deadlines for the 2019 Legislative Session should be distributed at the end of the month.