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Pritzker: Will, Kankakee, DuPage and Kane counties heading for mitigation on Friday

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Those four counties make up two IDPH regions. A positivity rate of 8 percent or higher for three days straight is one way for regions to be put into mitigation.

Pritzker said of the 7 regions that currently are not under mitigation, five have a rolling average positivity rate at or above 7 percent, while two are at 6.5 percent.

Click here to watch the governor’s daily press conference.

…Adding… In case you need the reminder, here are the Tier One mitigations

Bars and restaurants

    • All bars and restaurants close at 11pm and may reopen no earlier than 6am the following day
    • No indoor service
    • All bar and restaurant patrons should be seated at tables outside
    • No ordering, seating, or congregating at bar (bar stools should be removed)
    • Tables should be 6 feet apart
    • No standing or congregating indoors or outdoors while waiting for a table or exiting
    • No dancing or standing indoors
    • Reservations required for each party
    • No seating of multiple parties at one table

Meetings, social events and gatherings (including weddings, funerals, potlucks, etc.)

    • Limit to lesser of 25 guests or 25% of overall room capacity both indoors and outdoors
    • No party buses
    • Gaming and Casinos close at 11:00pm, are limited to 25 percent capacity, and follow mitigations for bars and restaurants, if applicable

Nothing changes with schools, which set their own rules under broad state guidelines.

…Adding… Press release…

Governor Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) are announcing COVID-19 resurgence mitigations will be implemented in Region 7 (Will and Kankakee counties) and Region 8 (Kane and DuPage counties), beginning at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, October 23, 2020. Both regions are seeing a 7-day rolling average test positivity rate of 8 percent or above for three consecutive days, which exceeds the threshold set for establishing mitigation measures under the state’s Restore Illinois Resurgence Plan.

The administration continues to distribute emergency relief for small businesses and communities impacted by the ongoing pandemic. In Regions 7 and 8, approximately $14 million has already been awarded for small businesses and community aid. Businesses in both regions, as well as other regions currently under additional mitigations, will receive priority consideration for the current round of Business Interruption Grants (BIG), with $220 million available to help offset costs and losses businesses have incurred as a result of the pandemic.

“By the end of this week, four regions will all be operating under the standard resurgence mitigations – that includes no indoor dining or indoor bar service and limiting in-person gatherings to no more than 25 individuals,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “As colder weather approaches and flu season is upon us, we’re going to see the rippling effects of these current unfortunate trends. The massive surge of cases in our neighboring states will continue to have a spillover effect. There is no easy fix for the effects of this virus on our economy and our public health. But we can and will manage through this. We’re Midwestern tough here in Illinois. We know how to deal with a crisis. And we know how to take care of each other.”

“We have seen regions move into mitigation measures, but also move back out,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “Working together we can bring down the number of new cases and hospitalizations. Increases are being seen not only across Illinois, but across the country, and in many other countries around the world. Until there is a safe and effective vaccine and a significant proportion of the population has received it, we must all stay the course. What you do in your community affects those around you, so please, do your part and help slow the spread.”

“The actions we take today to slow the spread of this virus will define what happens in the coming days, weeks and months,” said Dr. Justin Macariola-Coad, Interim Chief Medical Officer at Advocate Sherman Hospital. “Wearing a mask, washing your hands, and keeping your distance from others will prevent the spread of this illness and save lives. The more we ignore taking these basic steps, the more people will get sick and the harder it will be on the health care system and our brave frontline clinical workers to keep up with the pandemic this winter and help care for our communities across the Northwest suburbs.”

- Posted by Rich Miller   36 Comments      

Willie Wilson “honored” to have Rod Blagojevich endorsement

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Media advisory…

Wilson Honored to Receive the Endorsement of Former Governor Rod Blagojevich
WHO: Humanitarian & Businessman Dr. Willie Wilson, former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich WHAT: Dr. Wilson will receive the formal endorsement of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich in his race to
become the next U.S. Senator from Illinois
WHEN: Wednesday , October 21, 2020 at 10:00am
WHERE: Corner of Ogden and Harrison (Cook County Hospital)

WHY: Dr. Wilson stated: I am pleased to have the support of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich. He did more to help African Americans, Latinos and senior citizens than any previous governor. He understands that Illinois needs a senator that will put people ahead of politics. His Seniors Ride Free program was very creative and helpful to senior citizens taking public transportation.

“We need a senator with new bold and fresh ideas. A senator that will listen to the people and not party bosses. Sen. Durbin over 37 years in office has forgotten about the people that sent him to Washington.

Dr. Wilson is a man of the people. He has used his resources to help seniors, children, people losing their homes because of high property taxes, and those who could not afford to post bail for misdemeanor offenses. Dr. Wilson will make us proud in Washington, DC. I am very pleased to endorse Dr. Wilson for the United States Senate,” says former Gov. Blagojevich.

“I pledge to bring federal resources to all communities in Illinois. Especially, those communities that have high levels of unemployment and violence. Also, I will advocate for Transportation resources to stimulate local economies and improve the infrastructure. I will utilize my position to advocate for lower federal taxes and property taxes with elected officials in Illinois,” says Dr. Wilson.

Dr. Wilson stated: Additionally, I will work to bring federal resources for local governments to deal with COVID-19. Our municipalities need money for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and their businesses that are struggling. As a businessman, I understand the importance of economic development, and connecting entrepreneurs to international business opportunities. Clearly, small businesses drive jobs and stabilize communities. I am committed to working with all elected officials across Illinois to improve the quality of life for all residents.

- Posted by Rich Miller   27 Comments      

Republican state Senator says state mitigations should be based on hospitalizations, not positivity rates

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Illinois Radio Network

Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced new restrictions Monday for a region of southern Illinois and raised concerns about the spread of COVID-19 across the state.

Pritzker said Region 5, which includes Carbondale, Marion, and Harrisburg, had reported a 7-day positivity rate of 8% or more for 3 straight days. The region will have additional restrictions put into place on Thursday, including a ban on indoor service at bars and restaurants. Gatherings of more than 25 people also are restricted. […]

State Sen. Paul Schimpf, who represents a part of Region 5, said the governor is putting too much emphasis on positivity rates.

“I think it really is the wrong metric to be using when we are making a decision on whether or not to close businesses that are already struggling,” he said.

* So, I followed up and asked Sen. Schimpf (R-Waterloo) what metric the governor should be using…

I continue to be frustrated by Governor Pritzker’s misguided focus on an arbitrary positivity rate threshold that is neither meaningful nor reliable as an assessment of the actual local situation. These mitigations, which will close businesses and destroy livelihoods, should only be used when the hospitalization rates and ICU bed capacity data clearly show that it is absolutely necessary.

* And then I asked for a react from Jordan Abudayyeh…

Waiting for hospitalization rates to increase means there is more serious illness spreading, long term health consequences and unnecessary death. The Governor is committed to keeping people health and safe.

The resurgence mitigation plan put in place by the state does rely on both positivity rates and hospitalization rates. But, when a region’s positivity rate reaches 8 percent the region automatically triggers increased mitigations because that high of a positivity rate can quickly lead to uncontrolled spread without additional mitigation in place. We also know that hospitalization rates are a lagging indicator and often increase in the days and weeks after increased positivity rates are identified.

Right now, hospitalization rates are trending upward across the state. Waiting until hospitalization rates “clearly show that it is absolutely necessary” is not a measurable metric.


* Related…

* COVID-19 ‘Long-Haulers’: Symptoms Persist for Some Patients

- Posted by Rich Miller   31 Comments      

Question of the day

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* The voting is over two weeks from today. Your thoughts as the campaign hits the home stretch?

- Posted by Rich Miller   48 Comments      

Arduin resurfaces

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Center Square

The American Legislative Exchange Council released its first Governors ranking, the 2020 Laffer-ALEC Report on Economic Freedom. The scorecard ranked America’s 50 governors based on policy performance and executive leadership before and after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Economic policy expert and co-author of the report, Stephen Moore, said Pritzker was ranked 44th in the country.

“Not only has Pritzker done just an awful job in terms of bringing that state back, but now they are talking about a massive tax increase that’s on the ballot sponsored by the governor which would, in my opinion, be the last nail in the coffin for the great Land of Lincoln,” Moore said. […]

Co-author Donna Arduin, who has served as budget director for several governors, including Arnold Schwarzenegger in California, said some states were in a better position to deal with the pandemic.

“I always advise my governors that you have to be prepared for some unknown crisis or disruption because they always come, and some governors were prepared for it and some were not,” Arduin said.

Pritzker did not respond to questions about the ranking.

Moore said the state-imposed lockdowns cost jobs and did nothing to save lives.

“Government lockdowns and unclear timetables have proven to be harmful to the health and economy of states,” Moore said. “It’s no surprise, states where governors mandated strict lockdowns and restricted individual freedom are in far worse shape than states that remained safely open.”

The top three governors on the scorecard are Greg Abbott of Texas, Brian Kemp of Georgia, and Kristi Noem of South Dakota. Gina Raimondo of Rhode Island was ranked the worst governor, followed by Mike Dunleavy of Alaska and Phil Murphy of New Jersey.

Lot to unpack there.

1) Stephen Moore is more of a pundit than an expert and co-wrote the book Trumponomics. He’s known for some nutty comments about women, admitted he didn’t understand what his duties would be on the Federal Reserve after being nominated to a slot (which was withdrawn because he was even too much for Senate Republicans), and has been known to get things wrong quite often.

2) Moore claiming that stay at home orders didn’t save lives is just crackpot goofiness.

3) Donna Arduin was once a business partner with Moore and Art Laffer. She is best known in Illinois for being Gov. Bruce Rauner’s disastrous “superstar” budget guru. If your memory needs refreshing, just click here. She was pushed out of her Alaska gig shortly after that post was published. It turns out, Arduin herself was often the “unknown crisis or disruption” that governors should prepare for.

4) The Alaska governor who saved his own hide from a fast-building recall attempt by booting Arduin is Mike Dunleavy, who was just coincidentally named one of the country’s worst governors by Arduin and Moore. Dunleavy, by the way, brought in Hans Zigmund to help clean up Arduin’s mess. Zigmund had experience with that task. He was Rauner’s last budget director who helped clean up what Arduin had helped mess up. Perhaps Hans should create a new consulting company and follow Arduin around the country.

* Jordan Abudayyeh…

I can assure you this administration is not interested in a ranking from the same ideologues who manufactured the state’s budget crisis under Bruce Rauner. Since taking office, the Governor has been focused on cleaning up the mess the previous administration left and rebuilding a hollowed out state government. Gov. Pritzker passed a balanced budget during his first six months in office that resulted in month to month surpluses, an accomplishment that eluded the previous administration and all of their budget “experts” for an entire term.

While that’s mostly true, there’s no hiding from the fact that the state budget is a freaking disaster right now. And if the graduated income tax goes down in flames, it’s all gonna get worse. Much, much worse.

- Posted by Rich Miller   17 Comments      

Protected: SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Veto session and campaign updates

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

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- Posted by Rich Miller   Comments Off      

3,714 new cases, 41 additional deaths, 2,261 in hospitals, 5.5 percent positivity rate

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Not good…

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) today reported 3,714 new confirmed cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Illinois, including 41 additional deaths.

    Boone County: 1 male 90s
    Clark County: 1 female 70s, 1 female 80s, 1 male 90s
    Cook County: 1 female 50s, 1 female 60s, 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s, 1 male 80s
    DuPage County: 1 female 70s
    Fayette County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s
    Henry County: 1 female 70s, 1 female 80s
    Jo Daviess County: 1 female 80s, 1 female 90s
    Kane County: 1 male 80s
    Lake County: 1 male 40s, 1 male 60s, 1 female 90s
    Macoupin County: 1 male 80s
    Marion County: 1 male 80s
    McLean County: 1 female 90s
    Peoria County: 2 female 80s
    Richland County: 1 male 80s
    Rock Island County: 1 male 70s
    Sangamon County: 3 female 80s, 2 male 80s, 1 male 90s
    Tazewell County: 1 male 50s, 1 80s
    Wayne County: 1 male 70s
    Will County: 1 male 70s, 1 female 80s, 1 female 90s
    Winnebago County: 1 male 70s, 1 male 80s

Currently, IDPH is reporting a total of 350,875 cases, including 9,277 deaths, in 102 counties in Illinois. The age of cases ranges from younger than one to older than 100 years. The preliminary seven-day statewide positivity for cases as a percent of total test from October 13 – October 19 is 5.5%. Within the past 24 hours, laboratories have reported 59,077 specimens for a total of 6,883,314. As of last night, 2,261 people in Illinois were reported to be in the hospital with COVID-19. Of those, 489 patients were in the ICU and 195 patients with COVID-19 were on ventilators.

*All data are provisional and will change. In order to rapidly report COVID-19 information to the public, data are being reported in real-time. Information is constantly being entered into an electronic system and the number of cases and deaths can change as additional information is gathered. For health questions about COVID-19, call the hotline at 1-800-889-3931 or email

- Posted by Rich Miller   15 Comments      

Once again, with feeling, attempts to game the testing system won’t work

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020


The leader of one of the largest towns in southern Illinois says getting more people to get tested will help get local communities released from new virus mitigations. […]

[Marion Mayor Mike Absher] says if more people get tested and don’t have the virus it will help bring down the area’s positivity rate.

“Please go get a test even if you are healthy,” Absher said. “I’m asking you to do this even if you feel perfectly healthy, no symptoms, no temperature anything like that.” […]

“If there are people that are carrying the virus and don’t know it. Finding that out so they can isolate while they get healthy will help control the spread of the virus to others and that will clearly help us all including this specific time where we need to get out from under these mitigations, so the restaurants and bars can fully open again. Because what we need is to get more people not only to test but to test negative. It simply helps us get below that 8 percent threshold,” Absher said.

This part is true: “If there are people that are carrying the virus and don’t know it. Finding that out so they can isolate while they get healthy will help control the spread of the virus to others and that will clearly help us all”

But if that is true, then this will likely not pan out: “Because what we need is to get more people not only to test but to test negative”

* As DeWitt County discovered the hard way, increased testing did not “allow the County to come off the Governor’s COVID warning list.” More testing found more positive cases and DeWitt is still on the IDPH warning list.

- Posted by Rich Miller   11 Comments      

Civic Federation, which supported taxing retirement income last year, opposes graduated income tax amendment now

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Press release

This election cycle, Illinoisans have been presented with the option of amending the state constitution to allow for a graduated income tax. As proposed, the amendment represents a disappointing repeat of Illinois fiscal history. The enacted rate structure is far from best economic practice, the significant shift in the state’s tax code is not part of a comprehensive plan and the proceeds will provide very little assistance, if any, to struggling local governments and pension funds. Accordingly, the Civic Federation opposes the proposed Illinois constitutional amendment to allow for a graduated income tax.

While the Civic Federation is not opposed to the concept of a graduated income tax and understands the state’s need for more revenue, the rate structure enacted by the General Assembly is anything but ideal. Low income Illinoisans will continue to bear roughly the same tax rate as their middle and upper-middle class counterparts. As the Federation has long cautioned, the flat rate at the top of the structure is unusual and could cause tax avoidance behavior and increase revenue volatility at a time of economic uncertainty. Additionally, nothing in the package protects any one group of taxpayers from being overburdened now or in the future. A better rate structure would further reduce rates for the lowest income bracket(s), maintain only marginal rates and restrict the highest and lowest rates to within a certain percentage spread. The General Assembly’s structure meets none of these standards.

Since the tax rates were enacted 16 months ago, the General Assembly has not delivered on a number of opportunities to streamline and modernize state government. For years, the Federation has publicly encouraged the General Assembly to work toward consolidation of Illinois’ 7,000 local governments, modest changes to pension benefits and rationalization of the property tax system, among others. However, significant measures to cut costs or create efficiencies have not been enacted to accompany a significant change in the way Illinoisans will pay taxes. While the Federation has long recognized that cuts alone will not solve Illinois’ financial crisis, the lack of comprehensive plan to begin tackling it once-and-for-all is a disappointment.

Finally, the state will not share any but a miniscule portion of the proceeds of the proposed graduated income tax with Illinois’ many struggling local governments. An initial plan to share $237 million of the billions in proceeds was whittled down to $100 million, the future of which now remains uncertain. Another $100 million had been set aside for supplemental payments to Illinois’ five pension funds, but was not included in the state budget even if the amendment passes and in any event falls far short of a real solution.

While attractive in the abstract, the graduated income tax amendment and its accompanying rate structure are far from a panacea for Illinois’ many financial challenges. Further, the Federation remains concerned that with an influx of revenues, lawmakers may consider their work finished and abdicate their responsibility to make the hard decisions that would actually complete the work of the state shoring up its finances. For these reasons, the Civic Federation is unable to support the proposed graduated income tax amendment.

The governor has been saying that opponents of his “Fair Tax” have historically supported taxing retirement income, even though many opponents are now warning that taxing retirement income is a very real possibility if the tax is approved. Pritzker is right to a point. Not all groups have backed taxing retirement income, but the Civic Federation did, indeed, propose taxing the income just last year, as well as some services.

Also, if you click here, you’ll see that billionaire Ken Griffin is a Civic Federation trustee. Griffin is bankrolling most of the opposition to the graduated income tax proposal.

…Adding… Press release…

Vote Yes For Fairness Chairman Quentin Fulks released the following statement in response to the Civic Federation:

“Yet another organization made of the wealthiest people in the state has announced its opposition to the Fair Tax, which isn’t surprising considering they’re the select few our current tax system benefits. Members of the Civic Federation would rather keep the burden on our middle and lower-income families and implement a retirement tax on our seniors instead of finally paying their fair share.

“It’s clear that despite their rhetoric today, the wealthy only care about protecting their own bottom line, even when that means denying 97% of Illinoisans a tax cut. They continue to advocate for policies that allow them to keep building their wealth on the backs of hardworking families, while opposing any effort to bring relief to millions of struggling Illinoisans. The Fair Tax will set things right, and allow everyone an opportunity to get ahead.”

See the Civic Federation’s call for taxing retirement income here. The Civic Federation’s opposition to the Fair Tax comes just weeks after a similar announcement from the Civic Committee, which has also advocated for taxing retirement income and for increasing the flat tax by 20%.

…Adding… Lissa Druss,spokesperson for the Coalition to Stop the Proposed Tax Hike Amendment…

More and more are joining our bi-partisan coalition of middle-class families, retirees, small business owners, and family farmers because after two tax hikes over the last ten years and an $8 billion deficit, now is the worst time to trust Springfield politicians with another tax increase.

- Posted by Rich Miller   37 Comments      

“Until consumers feel safe, they’re going to stay away”

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* James Surowiecki, the author of The Wisdom of Crowds, writes about the demand shock to sectors of the service economy

But as lockdowns have been lifted in most of the country and businesses have been able to reopen, that supply shock has waned, only for a new problem to emerge: weak demand. In other words, a supply shock has been replaced by a shock to demand.

Some of the weakness in demand is because we’re on the verge of a classic recessionary cycle: Since the stimulus payments to unemployed workers ended in July, people either have less money to spend or are worried about spending it, which means businesses have less revenue, which makes them cut back on hiring and investment, which means less spending.

But what makes this demand shock exceptional is that the U.S. still has 40,000 to 50,000 new Covid-19 cases and 600 to 700 deaths every day, and as a result lots of Americans are still leery of doing normal, not particularly indulgent things like eating out, going to the gym, or going to the movies. A recent survey by research firm Datassentials, for instance, found that 58% of those surveyed described themselves as “uncomfortable” with dining indoors, and 36% described themselves as “very uncomfortable.” Not surprisingly, then, no matter how creative restaurants get, traffic is still down sharply in most places, and 2.5 million restaurant workers who lost their jobs in April remain unemployed. Similarly, gyms have been open in most states for months now. But a recent survey of 5,000 gym-goers by RunRepeat found that 70% haven’t returned and 43% said they had no plans to go back. Half a dozen gym chains have filed for bankruptcy in recent months, including 24 Hour Fitness, the owner of New York Sports Club, and Gold’s Gym, with many of them permanently shuttering a majority of their locations.

Or take movie theaters. By September, theaters were open in 44 of 50 states, and Warner Bros. decided to go ahead with plans to release Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, which had been one of the most highly-anticipated films of the year even before the pandemic hit. Even though theaters in New York City and Los Angeles remained closed, Tenet opened on almost 3,000 screens across the country. But even as Tenet did big box-office numbers overseas in countries where the virus has been contained, it made just $9.4 million on its opening weekend, despite facing essentially no competition. The hope had been that Tenet would prove people were ready to go back to the movies. Instead, it proved most weren’t. Hollywood studios concluded there was no point in trying to release big films for the rest of the year, and pulled their tentpole films from the fall schedule. And thanks to the combination of consumer anxiety and the lack of new content, Cineworld, owners of Regal Cinemas, shut down all 536 of its theaters in the U.S., while AMC, the largest U.S. theater chain, says it could run out of cash by the end of the year.

This shouldn’t be a revelation. In fact, myriad studies have now shown that in the early days of the pandemic, people began voluntarily socially distancing and avoiding places they perceived as risky even before lockdowns were put in place. And if you go further back in history, during the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, businesses stayed open in most cities, yet economic activity still fell sharply, and contemporary accounts suggest that the economy only started to rebound when people became less afraid of catching the flu. The point is that lifting stay-at-home orders and opening restaurants isn’t enough: Until consumers feel safe, they’re going to stay away.

Links are in the original.

- Posted by Rich Miller   28 Comments      

Still think your vote doesn’t matter?

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* A one-vote difference in a 2018 election is still under dispute two years later and heading to trial

A trial to determine who won the 2018 Macon County sheriff race has been delayed to late October.

A Monday court docket entry related to a pre-trial hearing said the parties involved “represent they continue to work on the terms of a partial stipulation as to the disputed ballots.” As a result, Associate Judge Anna Benjamin set a status hearing in the case for Oct. 26, with trial following on Oct. 27 and Oct. 29.

The trial was going to start on Thursday, Oct. 22.

Tony Brown, a Democrat, became sheriff after the initial race led to him being declared winner over GOP challenger Jim Root by one vote. Root then filed for a discovery recount in certain districts.

- Posted by Rich Miller   8 Comments      

Oppo dump! O’Brien blamed for millions in wrongful conviction settlements

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Regarding Cook County State’s Attorney candidate Pat O’Brien

The City Of Chicago, The State Of Illinois & Cook County Paid Out A Total Of Over $64 Million In Settlements Due To Wrongful Convictions Under Pat O’Brien

From March 1989 through October 1993, O’Brien served as chief of criminal prosecutions for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office. In total, 20 men who were wrongfully convicted during O’Brien’s tenure later received monetary compensation from the City of Chicago, Cook County or the State of Illinois, or are currently suing for compensation. Due to these wrongful convictions under O’Brien, Illinois taxpayers were on the hook for over $64 million in settlement payouts (with several lawsuits pending), including $61.2 million from the City of Chicago, over $1.9 million from the State of Illinois, and $1.25 million from Cook County. The cases are as follows:

    • Juan Johnson was wrongfully convicted of murder based on witness misidentification that was coerced by police. After his 2004 acquittal, Johnson settled with the City of Chicago for $16.4 million in damages.
    • Pat O’Brien was the “lead prosecutor” in the 1986 rape and murder of 23-year-old medical student Lori Roscetti. Four men were wrongfully convicted in 1988 of kidnapping, rape, and murder, and sentenced to life in prison. Almost 15 years after the trial, key witnesses recanted their testimonies, including witnesses who said they gave false testimony for reduced sentences. DNA evidence also cleared them. The wrongfully convicted men received a total of $10.4 million in compensation from the City of Chicago and $480,000 from the State of Illinois
    • James Kluppelberg was convicted in 1989 of arson and multiple counts of murder; the conviction was overturned after it was discovered police tortured a false confession out of Kluppelberg. In 2004 the City of Chicago agreed to pay $9.3 million to settle a lawsuit filed by Kluppelberg and in 2013 Kluppelberg received $213,600 from the State of Illinois in compensation.
    • Madison Hobley was arrested for setting a fire that claimed the lives of his wife, infant son, and five other people; the 1990 conviction was overturned after it was discovered police tortured a false confession out of Hobley. Hobley settled with the City of Chicago for $7.5 million after he was wrongfully convicted of arson and spent over a decade on death row. He also received $161,005 in compensation from the State of Illinois.
    • Ronald Kitchen was convicted in 1990 of murdering five people; the conviction was overturned after it was discovered police tortured a false confession out of Kitchen. The City of Chicago agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by Kitchen for $6.15 million over his wrongful conviction, and Kitchen received $199,000 in compensation from the State of Illinois.
    • Aaron Patterson was wrongfully convicted in 1989 of murder after his confession was obtained via torture. Patterson settled a federal civil rights suit against the City of Chicago for $5 million and received $161,500 in compensation from the State of Illinois.
    • Shawn Whirl was wrongfully convicted in 1991 of murder due to a false confession. In 2017 Whirl settled a civil rights lawsuit with the City of Chicago for $4 million.
    • In 1991, Miguel Castillo was convicted of murdering Rene Chinea. A decade later, based on affidavits and its own reinvestigation of the case, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s office agreed that a new trial was warranted and prosecutors dismissed the charges. Castillo settled a civil case with the City of Chicago for $1.2 million. He also received $127,786 in compensation from the State of Illinois.
    • John Willis was convicted of two armed robberies and rapes; the conviction was overturned after it came to light that an analyst withheld lab results exonerating Willis. In compensation Willis received $1.25 million each from the City of Chicago and Cook County, $100,000 from the State of Illinois, and $125,035.97 from the Illinois Court of Claims.
    • Anthony Jakes was wrongfully convicted of murder in 1993. After the Illinois Torture and Relief Commission concluded Jakes’s claims of abuse were credible, his conviction was vacated. Jakes was awarded $230,810 in compensation from the State of Illinois. In 2019 Jakes filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the City of Chicago seeking damages for his wrongful conviction.
    • Lathierial Boyd was wrongfully convicted in 1990 of murder based on coerced witness identification. Boyd was awarded $213,624 in compensation by the State of Illinois.
    • James Gibson was wrongfully convicted in 1991 of murder after his confession was obtained through police torture. Gibson was awarded $177,071 in compensation by the State of Illinois and has a pending lawsuit against the City of Chicago seeking compensation for his wrongful conviction.
    • Algie Crivens was wrongfully convicted in 1992 of murder after eyewitness testimony which would have confirmed another man’s confession was rejected. Then-Illinois Governor George Ryan would pardon Crivens based on innocence, qualifying Crivens for $128,000 in restitution from the State of Illinois.
    • Xavier Catron was wrongfully convicted in 1992 of murder based on coerced witness testimony. Catron received $127,786 from the State of Illinois in compensation.
    • Richard Johnson was wrongfully convicted in 1992 due to ineffective legal counsel. The Illinois Court of Claims gave Johnson a $61,023 reward as a result of his wrongful conviction.
    • In 1992, Demetrius Johnson was charged and convicted of first-degree murder and first-degree attempted murder. He was wrongfully convicted due to mistaken witness identification and the concealment of an initial witness identification of a different suspect. In 2020, Johnson filed a lawsuit against the City of Chicago over his wrongful conviction.
    • Kevin Bailey was wrongfully convicted of murder in 1990 due to a coerced confession. In 2019 Bailey filed a federal civil rights suit seeking compensation for his wrongful conviction


Links and a lot more in the original.

- Posted by Rich Miller   27 Comments      

Investors expected to demand “fatter yields” on new state bonds, but not because of default danger

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Reuters

Illinois is scheduled to sell $850 million of bonds on Tuesday as investors demand fatter yields for the state’s debt due to increased worries over its deep financial woes, which were exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.

Ahead of the competitive sale of general obligation bonds due over the next 25 years, the spread for Illinois 10-year bonds over Municipal Market Data’s benchmark triple-A yield scale has widened by 10 basis points to 281 basis points since Oct. 1.

Howard Cure, director of municipal bond research at Evercore Wealth Management, pointed to “a legitimate fear that the state could go into junk status — although not default on its debt.”

“The state continues to delay tough decisions with a number of speculative revenues as part of its current budget, including additional federal aid, voter approval for a progressive income tax, and more Municipal Liquidity Facility (MLF) debt,” he said, referring to the possibility Illinois, which took out a $1.2 billion cash-flow loan in June from the Federal Reserve’s MLF, could borrow more.

If there’s no danger of default, then the rest is just Kabuki theater.

…Adding… Bond Buyer reporter…

…Adding… Translation…

- Posted by Rich Miller   21 Comments      

State loses narrow procedural issue, will file to reconsider on the merits

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Center Square

A judge on Monday denied Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s motion to vacate the orders of a Clay County judge who had ruled against the governor.

The governor could still challenge the ruling in the case filed by state Rep. Darren Bailey, which claimed Pritzker had exceeded his executive authority during the pandemic.

The ruling by Seventh Judicial Circuit Court Judge Raylene Grischow said the governor could challenge the Clay County ruling for other reasons, but not over jurisdiction.

Grischow ruled that a Clay County judge had jurisdiction to issue a July 2 order that struck down Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s executive orders on COVID-19 beyond the initial 30-day period.

Oral arguments on the merits of the case are set for Dec. 7.

Grischow entered an order Monday that denied the governor’s motion to vacate the Clay County Judge’s order. The governor had claimed Clay County Judge Michael McHaney didn’t have jurisdiction.

“Considering the foregoing cases, along with the fact that it is well settled that public documents which are included in the records of other courts may be the subject of judicial notice, along with the fact the parties handed the Clay County Court a copy of the Order of Remand which was filed instanter on July 2, 2020, this court finds that the Clay County Circuit Court did in fact have jurisdiction,” Grischow wrote.

The Order of Remand was from the federal court, which sent the case back to the circuit court.

McHaney’s order over the summary struck down Pritzker’s executive orders beyond the initial 30-day period from the first COVID-19 related order. The ruling said it shall apply to all commonly situated citizens of Illinois, not just state Rep. Darren Bailey, R-Xenia, who filed the case in Clay County.

Grischow said if the governor wants to challenge McHaney’s order on the merits, his legal team has until Oct. 30 to file such a motion. Final filings would be by Nov. 20, 2020. Oral arguments on that are set for 1:30 p.m. on Dec. 7.

The Illinois Attorney General’s office wasn’t immediately available for comment after 5:30 p.m. Monday.

Bailey’s attorney, Thomas DeVore, said he looked forward to arguing the substance of the case.

“Should the governor want to move to have Judge Grishow reconsider McHaney’s ruling, I look forward to arguing in front of her why we believe McHaney made the right decisions on the merits,” DeVore said.

The ruling is here.

* Rep. Darren Bailey

Failed Governor loses AGAIN!

Um, OK.

I was told last night by the attorney general’s office that this was a narrow procedural issue and the office will file a motion to reconsider the Clay County court’s July 2 ruling on the merits, pursuant to the schedule ordered by Judge Grischow.

- Posted by Rich Miller   14 Comments      

Open thread

Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Illinois-centric and polite, please. Thanks.

- Posted by Rich Miller   13 Comments      


Tuesday, Oct 20, 2020

* Follow along with ScribbleLive

- Posted by Rich Miller   Comment      

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