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Deputy House Majority Leader Turner steps down

Monday, Jul 6, 2020

* Subscribers were told about this last week. Here’s Hannah Meisel at the Daily Line

State Rep. Art Turner (D-Chicago) submitted his resignation from the Illinois House on Friday, cutting his last term in the General Assembly six months short. Turner, who is expected to become a lobbyist, announced he would not run for a sixth full term last year and backed his brother, Aaron Turner, for the seven-way race for the 9th District seat. SEIU Healthcare organizer Lakesia Collins ultimately won the primary in March. Turner has served in the House for nearly a decade, including rising to deputy majority leader, after being appointed to replace his father, Art Turner Sr., in 2010 after he served for 30 years. In a statement, Turner noted he’s resigning at a time of renewed awareness of the challenges faced by the Black community. … Chicago Ald. Michael Scott Jr. (24) is the committeeman with the most weighted votes to choose Turner’s replacement, which must be done in the next 30 days.

* Turner’s press release

“It has been the honor of my life to serve as state representative for the people of the 9th District, ensuring that the voices of Chicago’s West Side communities were heard loud and clear in Springfield,” Turner said. “While this is a bittersweet moment for me, I am proud of the work of I’ve done building a stronger Illinois through criminal justice reform and creating economic opportunity for communities that are too often left behind.”

Turner has served in the Illinois House since December 2010 and rose to the rank of Deputy Majority Leader in the House Democratic Caucus. Turner’s legislative work focused on improving opportunities for communities that have historically faced disinvestment, disproportionate contact with the criminal justice system and a lack of economic opportunity.

During his tenure as a legislator, Turner was a leader in criminal justice reform efforts, fighting to improve conditions for incarcerated individuals and working to reduce recidivism for formerly incarcerated individuals by making it easier for them to find employment.

Turner also fought for educational equity to help level the playing field for Illinois students and families and stronger personal privacy measures to protect consumers. New education funding formulas help ensure that students and schools most in need receive their fair share of education funding in order to reduce academic achievement gaps while Turner’s push for greater consumer protection would ensure that Illinoisans are able to know what personal information online companies and services collect.

“Every day I have had the opportunity to serve the community I’ve always called home, my focus has been on showing the leaders of our state the realities that people in historically underserved communities face on a daily basis, and building consensus for change,” Turner said. “Now at the conclusion of my time in the House, we see that not only people across our state, but throughout our country are awakening to those realities and committing to work together for change. Like everyone in our community, I look forward to seeing this resolve continue to shape our city, our state and our country for the better.”

* And Amdor updates…


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - NIU Grad - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 11:21 am:

    I’m pretty ignorant when it comes to internal House matters, but I worry that one of the by-products of Speaker Madigan’s long tenure is that fewer members have ambition to climb the ladder, because the leadership of the chamber is so centralized behind one man. Does anyone in the Democratic Caucus have ambitions to be Speaker one day or have they all just assumed that Madigan will serve in that role in perpetuity, so why bother?

    Amdor’s tenure caucus chart does not fare well for our future, as fewer experienced hands will be at the positions of power. I’d be curious to see the ages of those in that members with over 10 years of experience column.

  2. - Elmer Keith - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 11:23 am:

    “Turner was a leader in criminal justice reform efforts…” I don’t know about that. I met with Rep. Turner in spring of 2013 prior to the passage of Brandon Phelps’ concealed carry bill about the Duty to Inform. After being politely whisked out of his office, he did nothing about this provision that was placed in the bill by police unions.

    LaShawn Ford and Will Davis opposed Phelps on the record about the DTI, knowing that it would be most abused by police in the black community, like the killing of Philando Castile in Minnesota. As far as I know Turner did nothing. I don’t see him as a huge civil rights advocate, more of a go-along with the party guy.

  3. - Nagidam - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 11:47 am:

    @Elmer Keith.

    There is not a “Duty to Inform” in the traditional sense that most people would think. When a law enforcement officer conducts a traffic stop, referred in statute as “investigative stop”, a CCW license holder in not compelled to disclosed the presence of a weapon unless asked by the officer.

  4. - Just Me 2 - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 12:06 pm:

    I’ve always been disgusted by elected officials who resign before their terms end to join the private sector. They begged, absolutely begged, their constituents to trust them to be their voice, and then they play games with sliding someone else into the seat when something better comes along.

  5. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 12:21 pm:

    ===They begged, absolutely begged, their constituents to trust them to be their voice===

    He didn’t run again.

  6. - Amalia - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 12:41 pm:

    Art Turner stepped down? oh wait, there’s a younger Art Turner. I’m feeling very old.

  7. - Nagidam - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 12:53 pm:

    @Just Me Too

    Turner announced he was leaving. There was a primary to pick the Democratic nominee. Nobody slid into the seat. I may regret my remarks as the place holder has not been picked yet for the remainder of the term. I would hope they would choose the democratic nominee.

  8. - Ostomie Wedgie - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 2:33 pm:

    so Happy for Art Turner. Now he can millions selling influence. Father and son two generations of lobbyist multimillionaires.

  9. - UGH - Monday, Jul 6, 20 @ 4:37 pm:

    Lobbyists help explain state government to their clients, and help to make sure their clients’ voices are heard. More than ever, with a near-future of very little in person meetings, even in state government, I’m thinking any client would be fortunate to have Leader Turner as their lobbyist. Any other son joins their father in the family business and everyone would be happy for him and his father. Check yourself. What particularly bothers you so badly about Leader Turner and his father’s hard-earned and well-deserved success which stems directly from their expertise in state government and law, Ostomie Wedgie?

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