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Question of the day: 2021 Golden Horseshoe Awards

Wednesday, Dec 15, 2021 - Posted by Rich Miller

* The 2021 Golden Horseshoe Award for Best House Democrat goes to House Speaker Chris Welch

Speaker Welch deserves the award this year for the historical appointment and navigating the House through a monster session on several policy fronts. The writer of this blog said Welch’s handling of the energy bill was a “spectacular” accomplishment. Greg Harris has had a magnificent career and deserves an honorary mention; but this award goes to the best House Democrat in 2021. That has to be Welch for exceeding beyond all beliefs and keeping it all together.

I was pretty much ready to hand it to Greg Harris until I saw that nomination. The person is right on both counts.

* The 2021 Golden Horseshoe Award for Best House Republican goes to Rep. Seth Lewis

A reasonable guy who votes his district, even when it means breaking with most of his caucus. Hope he continues his approach when he moves over to the Senate.

I was super hesitant to go with a freshman, in his first year no less. But he received some strong nominations and I asked folks in both parties for their opinions and decided what the heck. There will be a lifetime achievement award for each party, so maybe the Batman and Leader Harris will win those.

* On to today’s categories…

Best Senate Democrat

Best Senate Republican

Do your best to vote in both categories and make sure to explain your votes or they won’t count. Thanks.


  1. - SaulGoodman - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:25 pm:

    SDEMS: Robert Peters — he continues to impress. This year has been huge for him — first, passing a bill to end cash bail (as part of the black caucus pillars), and then coming back with a bill to transform mental health first response by mandating mental health professionals respond to mental health crises rather than law enforcement, along with resentencing and numerous other bills. He isn’t a show horse, he works his bills, and he continues to pass huge, transformative legislation that will help people and save lives. He has found a way to balance his leftie ideology with a pragmatic streak that is focused on getting things done.

    SGOPs: I’ve honestly got nothing here. I can’t really come up with solid reasons to nominate any of them.

  2. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:25 pm:

    ===There will be a lifetime achievement award for each party, so maybe the Batman and Leader Harris will win those.===

    Good news. Congrats to the winners.

  3. - The Opinions Bureau - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:27 pm:

    SGOP: Sen. Don DeWitte is a classy guy who represents the “just get it done and don’t embarrass us” attitude most of his constituents (of all political stripes) hold. His work with Sen. Villivalam on the Transportation Committee is a model for bipartisan collaboration.

    SDem: This is honestly a difficult decision. The Senate Democrats are insular to a fault. It often feels as though things get accomplished in spite of them.

    Rich often laments that posts about the Senate are dead air. As I write this, the post has been up for half an hour without any nominations. Draw from that what you will.

  4. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:32 pm:

    DEM: Senator Sims. Everyday he is becoming more of a force with the amount of institutional knowledge he possesses from being a member of both and a former ranking staffer. He will only become more of a force as time progresses, excited to see what awaits him.

    GOP: Senator Barickman. He plays devil advocate when its needed. He has and continues to work across the aisle in a time where that is become less and less popular. A fair and respectable lawmaker.

  5. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:36 pm:

    a better decision would have been to select co-horseshoians, but that requires vision

  6. - John - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:45 pm:

    I would nominate Sen. Castro for best Senate Democrat.
    - As her (sometimes probably annoying) constituent I have been thoroughly impressed with her attention to my many questions. She is ever present at community events while somehow being in Springfield at the same time. Everyone in Elgin knows of her and respects her.
    - She has been at the forefront of so many major efforts this year—the clean energy law, immigration reform (such as the Way Forward Act), workers’ rights (like the Future of Work taskforce), and most recently the midwife law. Whenever I hear about a good idea, she is already on top of it. I often see her on the news either up here or on downstate programs I listen to, helping to communicate the policy agenda.
    - She is knowledgable about anything I bring up to her. She often personally responds to my questions late at night shortly after she receives them.
    - I know she is a mentor to many young or new public servants and she advocates for Elgin’s Latino community and others who aren’t always fully represented in government.

    I have lived in many districts and worked with lots of politicians. Sen. Castro is a true leader, someone who puts her constituents first and looks out for the future of our state and its people. She is always hustling, always above the drama, and I am lucky to be represented by her.

  7. - Polihack - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:50 pm:

    Dem: Sen. Fine. One of the kindest people in the GA and super easy to work with on any issue. Helped create the mental health committee in the Senate to focus on this important issue that often goes overlooked.

    GOP: Sen. Curran. A GOP Senator who actually works with the Dems and compromises to get things done, especially on issues concerning the environment and ethics. We definitely need more Currans in the Senate and less Darren Baileys.

  8. - Mr. Illinois - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 1:57 pm:

    GOP: I would have to second the nomination for DeWitte. He is a decent, classy guy. I am probably far to the left of most IL Senators, but man, we need more people like him in office. I have watched him vote across the aisle, I have seen him shrewdly settle down a rowdy crowd of ‘base’ voters, I have heard him stand up for values I disagree with admirably. I even got to watch, from a few feet away, as he respectfully defended our election system from a constituent who was almost in tears about what she perceived as the ‘massive fraud’ of the 2020 election. He puts the office first and politics second. He is always looking out for his district’s needs.

  9. - Leslie K - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 2:12 pm:

    Senate Dem: Elgie Sims. In the middle of police reform efforts since his time in the House (such as 2015 reforms and this year’s SAFE-T act), Sen. Sims has always taken the time to understand the details of the topics–from all sides–before coming to a final position. He deftly handles the politics, all while focused on finding reasonable solutions that work on the ground. He is a calming, rational voice in rooms that can get very heated.

    Sen GOP: Being less involved on the ground than I used to be, I really have nothing here. But the nominations for DeWitte are pretty persuasive for me. Knowing nothing but the nominations and his bio, I’m inclined to sign on.

  10. - Pot calling kettle - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 2:20 pm:

    SDems: Sen. Dave Koehler He’s easy to talk to and work with and seems to be well informed on most issues. I’m especially interested in higher ed and environmental stuff and he does well in both areas. He ends up with a lot on his plate and he gets a lot done. He’s accessible in district and in Springfield.

    SGOPs: I’m at a loss. What do they do? I had to look at the ilga website to get some names. Mostly, they seem to complain. I’m tempted to nominate Bailey because he’s such a gift to the Dems. Barickman has a lot of potential, but he falls back on Trumpy talking points a bit too frequently. (That comes to mind with several others as well.)

  11. - vern - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 2:33 pm:

    SDems: Patrick Joyce. He stuck with Pembroke Township through thick and thin. He had a no-brainer bill that would help some of his poorest constituents, and the environmental lobby lost its mind. Joyce was patient, effective, and got it done. If it had been me, I would’ve filed bills to turn off natural gas in the district of every legislator who thought they knew best for his constituents. Instead, he kept his cool, worked the vote, and came away with a big win.

    SGOP: Dan McConchie. It’s not easy to be a leader in today’s Republican Party, but McConchie has admirably kept a lid on the intra-party craziness happening everywhere else. He had his first Eastern Bloc Senator to deal with this year, and he’s already on his way out. He dodged the far right’s ire without sacrificing his dignity or principles. That’s about all you can ask for these days.

  12. - ChiTeach - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 2:51 pm:

    GOP- Sue Rezin for being an outlier in the GOP and voting for legislation to give teachers and other school workers 30 days of paid sick leave after becoming parents.

    DEMS: No contest here- Chicago finally will have an Elected Representative School Board thanks to the Polish Prince, Senator Robert Martwick.

  13. - Leigh John-Ella - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 2:52 pm:

    SDEM: Senator Ann Gillespie. Deep thinking, behind-the-scenes workhorse unafraid of tackling major issues — school seclusion/restraints, ethics — and working across the aisle to get results. Never mind the fact that her baking alone could win debates.

    SGOP: Senator Sue Rezin. In the midst of partisan politics made her constituents a priority in supporting the energy deal. Nice to see that can still happen.

  14. - Cook Resident - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 3:31 pm:

    DEM: Senator Robert Martwick 10th District Office—I’ve seen this man tirelessly work on behalf of his constituency, attending event after event. In addition, his candor and heart-felt expressions demonstrate his commitment to the work—both to serve his community and to provide support for his fellow Dems.

  15. - Wow - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 3:32 pm:

    Sen Dem: Leader Cunningham. He takes in every difficult issue and manages to create deals that actually pass

  16. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 3:33 pm:

    People, y’all need to start nominating in both categories or I’m not counting your votes.

  17. - SouthSide Markie - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 3:37 pm:

    SDems: Agree with SaulGoodman about Sen. Peters and add this: He is a potent mix of policy, pragmatism and a sense of history that looks at issues from a much broader perspective than many others. Those things cause him to take (and work) big picture issues and craft transformative AND passable solutions. That world view also causes him to take his issues seriously, but himself less so.

    SGOP: Like others on here, I vote for None of the Above. Those who have engaged in theatrics are underserving for appealing to people’s worst instincts instead of leading. Those that haven’t engaged in theatrics are underserving for failing to lead by tamping those who do.

  18. - Chicago Ed - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 3:52 pm:

    State Sen Martwick deserves props for finally getting ERSB across the finish line. He and many others have been working on this for more than a decade, and the legislation will have a long-term benefit for the thousands of CPS students. Martwick even successfully shepherded this bill through after changing chambers. Give Martwick the gold!

  19. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 3:53 pm:

    Again, y’all need to start nominating in both categories or I’m not counting your votes. The two votes above this comment and after my previous warning will not count.

  20. - Skywalker - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:00 pm:

    Senate Dem: A rising star, Sen. Cristina Castro is great on issues and has proven to be a “go to” person in a short time. She is thoughtful, stretegic and always has a thorough command on the subjects that she champions. Castro has developed a strong political team and will generously help constituents and political allies alike. A self-made woman, she is tough and does not forget where she comes from or why she was elected.

  21. - Chicago Ed - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:01 pm:

    SDEMS: Sen. Martwick deserves the footwear for getting ERSB across the finish line. His persistence in fighting for this legislation over several terms and even across two chambers should be recognized. ERSB will benefit thousands of CPS students, which is huge!

    SGOP: Sen. Tracy for being a smart and energetic whip.

  22. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:02 pm:

    I’m going to start deleting comments that do not nominate in both categories.

  23. - Skywalker - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:04 pm:

    Oops.. I did not see that I needed to nominate for both. I honestly do not know who to select for the GOP. The growing number of moderates has shrunk. I guess I will select Dewitte as he is at least pleasant to talk with and understands his distict having served as mayor.

  24. - Cook Resident - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:07 pm:

    REP: SenatorJohn F. Curran—I’m not a big fan of the GOP, but I’ve heard good things about Senator Curran.

    DEM: Senator Robert Martwick 10th District Office—I’ve seen this man tirelessly work on behalf of his constituency, attending event after event. In addition, his candor and heart-felt expressions demonstrate his commitment to the work—both to serve his community and to provide support for his fellow Dems.

  25. - Chi - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:09 pm:

    Dem - State Senator Martwick for his years of hard work in getting an elected representative school board as well as his dedication and support for other democratic candidates.

    GOP - State Senator Rezin - She has listened to her constituents over her party, especially in regard to the energy deal and paid leave - which is something we need to see more of.

  26. - Just Another Anon - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:10 pm:

    I always enjoy the comments section echo chamber.

    SDem: I have a great deal of respect for Rachelle Crowe. I could always rely on Bill Haine to take a strong stance on public safety issues and routinely went to him to get highly technical legal bills passed. Among the last of the moderate Democrats, he was uniformly on the side of effective policy, cogent civil procedure practices, and criminal law. He neither got all his news from the Trial Lawyers, nor the Chamber. Crowe inherited his senate seat, but also has done a good job continuing his legacy.

    SGOP: Lots of interesting folks to choose from. DeWitte is a classy guy, good constituent services. Pragmatic legislator. Curran is a great senator for his district and is incredibly effective at passing legislation. Sue Rezin has a complicated district to represent. She manages the competing interests very well. Win Stoller does wonderful work passing bills on thankless and unexciting, but important topics. He frequently advocates for the sportsmen and digs in on such exciting topics as licensure and procurement. Craig Wilcox is a little off-beat, but so is his district. I will give him credit for working hard to assess the positions of his constituents and commitment to voting their interest. In a close decision, I’d pick Sue Rezin, with Win Stoller getting an honorable mention.

  27. - Proud Sucker - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:14 pm:

    SGOP: DeWitte. Former mayors often have that constituent support built-in before heading to Springfield. Plus, they understand the value of partnering. And, Don knows his constituents aren’t big on the far right junk.

    DGOP: Tough. The SDEMS have been extra insular this past session, as I heard our Third House Speaker analogize this morning. Based upon results, I’d go with Sen Martwick as well. CPS has needed an elected board since before I started Kindergarten in 1970.

  28. - Linus - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:16 pm:

    Agree with the nomination of Sen. DeWitte for Repubs. He’s thoughtful, practical, and not given to partisan extremes.

    For the Dems, Sen. Pacione-Zayas gets the nod. She’s energetic and unafraid to roll up her sleeves to learn and work. She’s becoming a real leader on education issues in the upper chamber.

  29. - CollarCounty - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:16 pm:

    For SDems I nominate Senator Cristina Castro. Since her election in 2016, Senator Castro has repeatedly shown her ability to comprehend complicated legislation, and be a leading voice on all sorts of pressing issues. Just this last session she was a leader on Clean energy, Midwife legislation, cannabis legislation, and the redistricting committee.
    She has been a fierce advocate for all of her district, including the growing latino population in elgin and suburban Cook county. We are lucky to have her

    For SenGOP I nominate Senator DeWitte. As a former mayor, he has proven his ability to articulate the needs of local government. For example, he has done a lot of necessary work related to transportation and infrastructure.

  30. - Whose post is it anyway - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:16 pm:

    SDEMs: Concur with what was mentioned about Sen. Martwick. Passing an elected school board in Chicago was no easy task and he was (mainly) able to bring each stakeholder to the table and hear their concerns and do his best to address those.
    SGOP: Leader McConchie. I’m sure it’s quite arduous taking over a caucus of just 18 members and being in the super minority. A lot of praise was given the other day for the SGOP’s ability to break into the news cycle last year despite not often being in the best position to get that done. McConchie seemed to understand this is necessary to reach voters going forward considering they’ll seldom have many policy wins to flaunt in their position. He just seems to be trying to re-organize a bit and I think the state is better off with that caucus potentially being a little more competitive.

  31. - Tis the Season - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:21 pm:

    SDems: This is tough because there are so many strong and effective members. When force to choose based on this past session, I’d nominate Sen. Castro who tackled several tough issues and helped land the plane on a number of important policy issues for the state.

    SGOP: Sen. Curran is the most reasonable of the bunch. The rest have been pulled too far to the fringe to appease the vocal minority of their party.

  32. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:58 pm:

    Senate Dem- Senator Cunningham was at the forefront of some of the most complicated pieces of legislation to move this year. He deserves the award for his ability to not only successfully manage this workload but to thoroughly comprehend each omnibus bill he worked on. Senator Cunningham is the person to talk to if you want to get something done right.

    Senate GOP - Senator DeWitte is very level-headed and kind.

  33. - Sergiusz Zgrzebski - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:58 pm:

    DEM: Sen. Rob Martwick. As constituent in the past I observed Rob Martwick working diligently on truly important issues like Fair Tax or Policing reform. As a public servant he always takes taxpayer dollar into consideration together with multiple viewpoints allowing for more participatory governance. He is accessible to voters and has great Leader skills. I would highly recommend Senator Martwick for the award in future.

  34. - Chicago Ed - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 4:59 pm:

    I didn’t initially see the requirement to nominate from both parties. My DEM nomination for Martwick. is above. I hope this GOP nomination earns my vote back.

    SGOP: Sen. Tracy has been a smart and energetic whip. It’s tough working on votes when you’re in a superminority.

  35. - JJ - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 5:00 pm:

    SGOP- Senator Tracy. She’s amazing, rational and everything a Republican should be. Senators Curran & Anderson are right up there too in being rational and respectful.

    SDEM - Senators Crowe & Feigenholtz, both represent their districts so well and are champions for what is important to their constituents.

  36. - Sergiusz Zgrzebski - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 5:33 pm:

    I didn’t see that I had to have nominees from both parties, so I’ll add this in. I many not agree with his politics, but GOP Senator Neil Anderson is a decent person.

  37. - Southside Progressive - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 5:38 pm:

    SDem: Senator Sims; he’s a pragmatic, politically astute workhorse who just goes about getting the work done. From Criminal Justice Reform, Redistricting and the Budget you can always count on him to get the job done.

    SGop: It’s difficult to have a vote here because I don’t really would like to the Rs participate more in the process, I would give the nod to Sen. DeWitte as someone who works across the aisle.

  38. - Son of Lincoln - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 5:43 pm:

    SGOP - Curran; he’s a quiet force on the R side of the aisle. Strong on policy and someone who has the respect of members on both sides of the aisle.

    SDEM - Sims; the unsung force of that caucus. He’s a leader and respected voice on all topics and the man flat out know how to pass a bill.

  39. - Santas Elf - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 6:05 pm:

    SDEM: Senator Cunningham. He’s the Presidents right hand and does that job as well as anyone in that caucus could. As others have said, his workload is heavy, but his intimate knowledge of the myriad of issues instills confidence from others. If this award is about getting things done, then Cunningham has my vote. Plus he does it all with a very approachable style.

    SGOP: Senator Rezin. She delivers a message as well as anyone in that caucus and does her homework to learn any issue she’s working on. This year she was laser focused on delivering for her district with the energy deal and indeed delivered. She also isn’t afraid to buck the party line if its best for the constituents back home.

    While I understand many other nominations based on general likability, both Cunningham and Rezin delivered this year and earned my vote.

  40. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 6:12 pm:

    SDEM - Elgie Sims, he took the complicated issue of police reform and got it across the finish line and then kept working with all stakeholders to address their concerns. Add to his resume, his work on the Budget, which led to a credit upgrade and Redistricting, the guy is a force to be reckoned with.

    SGOP - Sue Rezin, she’s a strong voice for her district and was one of the leading voices on the Republican side on the climate change bill.

  41. - Southside Progressive - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 6:23 pm:

    SGOP - It’s difficult to have a vote here because I want to see the Rs come to the table more, but I would give the nod to Sen. DeWitte because he seems to be someone who will work across the aisle.

    SDEM - Hands down the nod goes to Sen. Sims. He just goes about his work, his work on the budget is underrated because his work on criminal justice reform gets most of the attention. His great institutional knowledge and even demeanor helps him get things done.

  42. - Flexible One - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 6:26 pm:

    Senate GOP goes to Don DeWitte as he makes himself available to those that need their issues addressed. Don willingly works both sides of the isle with a collaborative attitude. Easy to talk to as his actively listens with kindness.

    On the D side we can’t forget Senator Munoz. He respectfully and humbly listens to folks on both sides of the isle and truly attempts to find common ground. He’s a get it done legislator while staying under the radar. He doesn’t seek accolades just results.

  43. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 6:30 pm:

    SGOP - this one is tough because I’d like to see the SRs come to the table more, but my vote goes to Sen. DeWitte because he seems to work across the aisle better than most of his caucus.

    SDEM - hands down the nod goes to Sen. Sims, his work on the budget sometimes gets overshadowed by his work on Criminal Justice Reform. He’s got a ton of institutional knowledge and an even demeanor and is respected on both sides of the aisle.

  44. - Frank talks - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 6:55 pm:

    SGOP- while it looks like Sen.Dewitte has the votes Sen. Curran has done very well across the aisle. He was the only GOP member to vote for any of the black caucus pillars, even getting a speaking role at the press conference. Consistently works with Dems on tough issues that his caucus would want him to bash. Ethics reform and black caucus pillars being just a couple.

    SDems- Sen. Martwick for the win with the CPS elected school board. Years in the making and with massive opposition from the mayor and even members of his own caucus he still muscled it through, rather impressive.

  45. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 7:31 pm:

    Capt. Fax a little grouchy
    PRESIDENT Harmon kept the train moving.
    GOPPiE…how about Barickman…surprised not a lot picks here

  46. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 7:32 pm:

    SGOP - John Curran a quiet and moderate voice in a caucus where that’s becoming increasingly rare.

    SDEM - Elgie Sims he passes police reform, gets vilified on social media by a misinformation campaign, gets a gun pulled on him by a nut job and just keeps on getting the job done.

  47. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 7:44 pm:

    SGOP - John Curran, a moderate voice in a caucus where that is becoming increasingly rare.

    SDEM - Elgie Sims, he passes police reform, gets beat up on social media by a misinformation campaign, gets a gun pulled on him by a nut job and just keeps showing up and getting the job done.

  48. - Average Joe - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 7:57 pm:

    I think Rob Martwick is very deserving. He is able to reach across her aisle and build support. There are few people who feel more passionately about legislation they introduce. And the occasionally jam sessions aren’t bad either.

    Dan McConchie has been great as the leader of his caucus. In years past I doubt members would so freely have had the support of the leader to vote yes on a collective bargaining constitutional amendment.

  49. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 8:19 pm:

    SDEM: Peters, he stands true to his roots and his votes represent those roots.

    SGOP: honestly surprised no one has nominated Senator Fowler yet. He is a true gem in southern Illinois and brings real things home for his district. Cairo Port is the biggest thing to happen to southern Illinois in over a decade. Proof that you don’t have to feud with the administration to be a Republican down south, take notes Senator Bryant.

  50. - Cardinal Lover 23 - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 8:54 pm:

    SDem - Sen. Sims, a pragmatic progressive, one who is rooted in his beliefs, not hostile to business and knows how to work across the aisle.

    SGOP-Sen. Barickman, an able floor leader for his caucus and able to work with the majority party.

  51. - BearFan85 - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 9:18 pm:

    SDem - Sims, the workhorse of the Senate. He is in the middle of all the tough issues and does it with a steady hand and with the ability to work with anyone, regardless of party or perspective.

    SGOP - Anderson, an all around good guy. He’s a guy who is easy to talk to and even when you disagree, he’s someone you know you can at least have a conversation with.

  52. - Southsider - Wednesday, Dec 15, 21 @ 10:06 pm:

    SDEM - I can’t think of any SD more deserving this year than Sen. Sims. He started the year leading the charge on police reform, only to be met with a series of misinformed attacks, then had a gun waved in his face by a crazed gunman and how did he respond, by going out and leading the SD budget team to the state’s first credit upgrade in 2 decades. All while working to pass several important pieces of legislation AND being an integral part of the SD efforts on Redistricting.

    SGOP - I would nominate Leader McConchie, he is leading a caucus that is struggling to find its identity and is finding ways to keep them relevant.

  53. - Justin - Thursday, Dec 16, 21 @ 5:34 am:

    Senate Dems: Rachelle Aud Crowe. She has largely maintained the legacy of the late Bill Haine. [She’s my State Senator].

    Senate GOP: Don DeWitte. He is a relatively bipartisan Senator for the increasingly radical Illinois GOP.

  54. - JohnJames - Thursday, Dec 16, 21 @ 7:26 am:

    Dem - State Senator Martwick for his years of hard work in getting an elected representative school board as well as his dedication and support for other democratic candidates.

    GOP - State Senator Rezin - She has listened to her constituents over her party, especially in regard to the energy deal and paid leave - which is something we need to see more of.

  55. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 16, 21 @ 7:26 am:

    SDems - By keeping things on track and getting the agenda passed without many changes, President Harmon gets my vote, especially when it could’ve gone sideways on a couple of issues.

    SGOP - I nominate Sen. Curran for continually turning to be the rational voice in a caucus that has dwindled in size but has a want at times to crank up rhetoric, mostly by newer members.

  56. - Central Illinois Guy - Thursday, Dec 16, 21 @ 7:39 am:

    Senate President Harmon is a calm, thoughtful, and experienced legislator who is a perfect leader for a Majority Caucus which has not hesitated to be a voice for constituents when State Government has failed them.

    Senate Republican Leader McConchie has quickly demonstrated his leadership skills in a new position by establishing a Caucus list of priorities and doing more than just complaining about Democrats in State Government. He has made a small caucus relevant.

  57. - Anonymous - Thursday, Dec 16, 21 @ 8:07 am:

    Sen. Rezin continually puts in the work to be at the table. She fought for her constituents throughout it the energy debate and took an unpopular position in her(super minority) caucus to save hundreds of nuclear jobs in her community. She is a strong female role model and doesn’t let people push her around.

    Sen. Joyce for Dems is one of the few senators in the Illinois majority who continues to represent the working class. He embodies bipartisanship and works for his community to get this done - like finally getting lines in Pembroke Township. He’s a good senator and a great person.

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