Correspondent, Chicago
James's Feed
Dec 13, 2012

After Michigan victory, Republicans target unions in other states

CHICAGO, Dec 13 (Reuters) – Laws that weaken the power of
organized labor could spread to more U.S. states in 2013 after
supporters of the measures scored a major victory over unions in
Michigan this week, and earlier in the year in Indiana, experts
said.

The next battles over what advocates term “right-to-work”
laws could be neighboring Midwest states of Wisconsin and Ohio,
where Republican governors and legislatures have shown a
willingness to take on the unions.

Dec 11, 2012

Appeals court strikes down Illinois ban on handguns in public

CHICAGO (Reuters) – A federal appeals court on Tuesday struck down an Illinois law banning most people in the state from carrying handguns in public, calling the restriction “arbitrary” and “unconstitutional.”

But the court stayed its ruling for 180 days to give Illinois lawmakers the opportunity to amend the measure and create a less sweeping ban on guns outside the home.

Dec 4, 2012

New child sex-abuse suit cites just-released Boy Scout documents

CHICAGO (Reuters) – A former Boy Scout who says he was sexually assaulted when he was 10 by his now-imprisoned former troop leader sued the Boy Scouts of America on Tuesday, citing recently released files the group secretly maintained on suspected molesters in its ranks.

The lawsuit claims the Boy Scouts allowed Thomas Hacker, a Scout leader barred from the group after a 1970s felony sex abuse conviction in Indiana, to rejoin as a volunteer in Illinois in the 1980s, where he went on to molest more boys, including the plaintiff.

Dec 4, 2012

Four with Illinois ties nominated for U.S. Attorney in Chicago

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Four prosecutors with Illinois ties were recommended on Monday to President Barack Obama for U.S. attorney in Chicago succeeding Patrick Fitzgerald, who left this summer after a tenure that included sending two of the state’s governors to federal prison.

The U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois will be expected to carry on the fight against Chicago’s political corruption after Fitzgerald was brought in from New York more than a decade ago to get tough on local politicians.

Dec 3, 2012

Cough keeps former US President George H.W. Bush in hospital

Dec 3 (Reuters) – Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush is
in stable condition in the Texas hospital where he has been
undergoing treatment for complications related to bronchitis and
no release date has been set, officials said on Monday.

“He has a nagging cough and his doctors are in no hurry to
send him home,” said George Kovacik, a spokesman for The
Methodist Hospital, Houston.

Nov 26, 2012

Illinois sets March election to replace Jesse Jackson Junior

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Illinois has set a date of March 19 for a special election to fill the U.S. congressional seat vacated by Democrat Jesse Jackson Jr., who resigned last week amid an ethics investigation and concerns over his health.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn announced the date in a statement on Monday but said the special election may be delayed a few weeks to coincide with local elections in April.

Nov 22, 2012

Jesse Jackson Jr. resigns from House, citing health

WASHINGTON/CHICAGO (Reuters) – Representative Jesse Jackson Jr., who has been treated for bipolar disorder and is reportedly under investigation for possible misuse of campaign funds, resigned his seat on Wednesday, citing health reasons.

“My health issues and treatment regimen have become incompatible with service in the House of Representatives. Therefore, it is with great regret that I hereby resign … effective today, in order to focus on restoring my health,” the Chicago Democrat said in a letter to U.S. House Speaker John Boehner.

Nov 21, 2012

Jesse Jackson Jr., promising political scion, resigns

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Jesse Jackson Jr. is the namesake son of one of the most prominent black men in the United States, a progressive-minded activist whose ascent into public life prompted talk of a new era of African-American political power.

In the early years, speculation swirled around the Democratic representative to the U.S. House and his appetite and ambition, almost all of it positive. Would he be the next mayor of Chicago? The next U.S. senator from Illinois?

Nov 16, 2012

U.S. gives states more time to make Obama health law decision

WASHINGTON/CHICAGO (Reuters) – The federal government on Thursday gave states another month to decide if they will operate insurance exchanges under the new U.S. healthcare law, after some Republican governors stalled in the hope President Barack Obama would lose last week’s election.

The delay was the second time in a week that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius showed flexibility on deadlines as a way to entice states to cooperate in implementing Obama’s signature domestic achievement.

Nov 11, 2012

Should this school be saved? The fight over Chicago’s Dyett High

CHICAGO (Reuters) – By just about any definition, Walter H. Dyett High School has failed.

Just 10 percent can pass the state math exam; barely one in six is proficient in reading. The technology lab is so ancient, some of the computers still take 3-inch floppy disks. More teens drop out than graduate.