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Isabel’s afternoon roundup

Tuesday, Feb 20, 2024 - Posted by Isabel Miller

* Rich told subscribers about Rep. Cyril Nichols’ withdrawal Friday evening. From the Illinois State Board of Elections’ website

As Rich explained in one of his recent newspaper columns, House Speaker Chris Welch was opposing Rep. Nichols’ reelection and several unions were providing big dollars to his Democratic primary opponent Lisa Davis.

* Sun-Times

White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf is heating up his pitch for a new South Loop baseball stadium.

Reinsdorf had a meeting scheduled Tuesday afternoon with Illinois House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch, D-Hillside, to discuss his ambitious proposal for a ball park-anchored megadevelopment at the undeveloped plot known as “The 78” near Roosevelt Road and Clark Street, according to a spokesperson for the speaker.

The billionaire owner was expected to hold court with other officials on the glitzy plan as lawmakers gather in Springfield ahead of Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s annual budget address on Wednesday.

A spokesman for Illinois Senate President Don Harmon, D-Oak Park, didn’t have any details on a potential meeting with Reinsdorf. […]

A spokeswoman for Pritzker said no meeting with Reinsdorf was on the agenda, and he still hasn’t been briefed by the developer. The second-term Democratic governor has been lukewarm on the prospect of putting taxpayer dollars into a stadium.

He’ll be meeting with each of the four legislative leaders this afternoon.

* US Senator Tammy Duckworth…

U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)—lead sponsor of the Access to Family Building Act, which would protect every American’s right to access in-vitro fertilization (IVF) and other assisted reproductive technology (ART) services—issued the following statement after Alabama’s State Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos created during the IVF process are “children” under state law, threatening access to IVF for those who need it to start or grow their family:

“Since the Supreme Court threw out Roe v. Wade, our nation has seen a wave of Republican-led states enacting strict abortion bans to severely limit their residents’ right to access basic reproductive care, leaving many hopeful parents—and those of us who relied on IVF to start and grow our own families—worried about whether access to these important technologies could be next. The ruling from the Alabama Supreme Court—effectively labeling women who undergo IVF as criminals and our doctors as killers—proves that we were right to be worried. No one looking to start or grow their family, in any state, deserves to be criminalized. Now is the time for Congress to pass my Access to Family Building Act and establish a statutory right to access IVF and other ART services for all Americans nationwide.”

* Here’s the rest…

    * Crain’s | For hospitals, largely exposed to cyberattacks, Lurie demonstrates how bad it can get: “Not only is the organization a victim in these crimes, but obviously the patient inside the hospital or health systems is a victim, their care delivery is disrupted and delayed, and any delay, urgent or not, can harm patients’ health,” said John Riggi, the AHA’s national advisor for cybersecurity and risk. The state of care in these situations can be especially harrowing. A report from the Associated Press described a heart surgery performed at Lurie on a 7-month-old without the use of some high-tech devices.

    * Daily Herald | ‘It’s very dangerous’: Residents lobby for traffic light amid rise in fatal crashes across Illinois: The situation took on added urgency after pedestrian Paige Donahue was killed by a hit-and-run driver about a mile east of Marian Park on Jan. 2, 2023. IDOT engineers studied the vicinity and decided a traffic signal was warranted at the nexus of Target and St. Francis. But it’s up to the city of Wheaton to sign off on the improvement, and residents say they’re frustrated by delays after years of peril.

    * SJ-R | Bill would permit supervised use, decriminalize magic mushrooms in Illinois: It’s the latest attempt to pass the Compassionate Use and Research of Entheogens Act, previously introduced by state Rep. LaShawn Ford, D-Chicago, last year. The naturally occurring psychedelic is seen as “breakthrough therapy” by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a way to help those dealing with anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental health conditions.

    * WBEZ | Victor migrated from Venezuela. He’s grown to love Chicago: For much of his journey to the United States, Victor walked in a pair of mismatched Crocs, both made for left feet. With each painful step forward, he said he kept his kids in mind. Victor is originally from Maracaibo, the second-largest city in Venezuela. He moved his family to Colombia in 2019, hoping to escape the humanitarian and economic crisis in his home country.

    * Tribune | Cannabis companies go ‘vertical’ to both grow and sell products: Galaxy is believed to be the first vertically integrated Black-owned cannabis company in Illinois. It boasts a state-of-the-art, multitiered electronic growing system that monitors and can control factors like humidity, lighting and carbon dioxide. The Ringolds raised capital from themselves, family, friends and a private lender. Like all craft growers, they initially were limited by law to 5,000 square feet of growing space, while the 21 originally licensed marijuana corporations can grow up to 210,000 square feet. After complaints that the small size limit was keeping craft growers from getting financing, the Illinois Department of Agriculture recently raised the craft limit to 14,000, but it will take time to get the agency’s approval and build the extra capacity.

    * CBS Chicago | Suburban Chicago village to reimburse homeowners to replace lead pipes: As towns across Illinois work to replace their lead pipes, suburban Mount Prospect is taking its first steps in this massive undertaking. The village created a program to help residents who want to replace lead or galvanized steel water pipes with copper ones. They will reimburse 100% of the cost to replace the service line from the water main to the water shutoff valve.

    * Block Club | Bridgeport Without The White Sox? Potential Move Has Some Locals Stressed: Ald. Nicole Lee (11th), a lifelong Sox fan whose ward includes Guaranteed Rate Field, said she’s committed to finding a “viable alternative to what the 78 is painting for the White Sox to keep them at 35th Street.” “Those are really nice drawings … and compared to what we have today, I understand the desire to have that and not what we currently have,” Lee told Block Club. “I think it’s incumbent upon us leaders that are down here on the South Side to really put some thought and work into providing the White Sox with another option of staying in their ancestral home.”

    * Springfield News-Leader | Here’s how Missouri State’s rivals are filling the bleachers at basketball games: Chambers, along with more than 230 members of the Dawg Pound, set an example for other schools of SIU’s size about how to build a consistent student section that creates the desired college basketball atmosphere where others, including Missouri State, have struggled. Student leaders from across the Midwest have gone to SIU’s Dawg Pound leader for advice. University administrators at Southern Illinois have invested in the student organization, knowing the impact it has on its athletics event and university as a whole.

    * NBC Chicago | Pequod’s has a message after being named best pizza in US by Yelp: “The team at Pequod’s Pizza want to take a moment to express our sincerest gratitude to all of our loyal customers for your continued and unwavering support,” Pequod’s wrote in a message on social media. “Your patronage means the world to us, and we are truly honored to serve you each time you dine with us, place an order for pick up or delivery or share your experiences with others. We will continually strive for excellence in every aspect of our restaurants to best serve you for years to come!”

    * AZ Central | Polarizing Fountain Hills council member facing 6 ethics charges. Here’s why: Fountain Hills City Councilmember Allen Skillicorn is the subject of six ethics complaints, all filed in the last 60 days. Four people cited multiple incidents involving Skillicorn in numerous settings allegedly breaking Fountain Hills City Council’s code of ethics. Two Fountain Hills residents, as well as Fountain Hills Vice Mayor Sharron Grzybowski and Councilmember Brenda Kalivianakis, filed the allegations.


  1. - TheInvisibleMan - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 2:41 pm:

    –Allen Skillicorn is the subject of six ethics complaints–

    Sounds like it’s about time for Allen to move to another state again.

  2. - wowie - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 2:50 pm:

    what did nichols do to make Welch angry again?

  3. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 2:57 pm:

    I have a feeling Rep. Nichols will land on his feet somehow.

  4. - Anon 3:01 - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 3:01 pm:

    –Allen Skillicorn is the subject of six ethics complaints– “If you don’t think your family has a black sheep, it’s you.”

  5. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 3:06 pm:

    ===will land on his feet somehow. ===

    I mean, he has a job at City Colleges.

  6. - Annon'in - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 3:26 pm:

    Wondering if the Senate GOPie Big Guy(always forget the name) will feel better about funding the new SOX giveaway than he did about “non-citizen welfare state”? How many giveaways does the Rezko land need before something happens? Does this mean the U of I expansion can happen at the existing U of I campus.

  7. - Unionman - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 3:27 pm:

    If I move to Alabama does that mean I can claim the 8 frozen embryos I have as dependents for taxes and to collect public benefits (larger family means closer to poverty line even if I am making a Union salary)? More than worth the continued storage costs against my taxes.

  8. - ;) - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 3:37 pm:

    Welp, way to disenfranchise all those voters.

  9. - The Truth - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 3:41 pm:

    As for Skillicorn - woof, what a childish man. He is correct that his speech is protected by the First Amendment…and Allen, no one’s trying to arrest you for it. But if you wanna be on the city council, there’s a code of conduct there to follow.

  10. - Amalia - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 3:50 pm:

    decriminalizing magic mushrooms? let’s get more basic. who will write a bill to make growing pot at home legal? isn’t this what the NYGov just announced? make homegrown legal.

  11. - Dotnonymous x - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 4:12 pm:

    - who will write a bill to make growing pot at home legal? -

    Anybody listening?…Kelly Cassidy?

  12. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 4:37 pm:

    re: the Alabama embryo case -

    When one of the concurring Justices invokes God multiple times in his concurrence you know the level of jurisprudence you are dealing with so it should be no surprise that a decision as ridiculous as this has come to be.

  13. - Captain Obvious - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 7:32 pm:

    Re: Alabama
    So this decision does not in any way prevent or outlaw IVF. It simply means that embryos, once created, cannot be destroyed without legal consequence. The unborn are being rightfully recognized as persons with rights. It’s about time. I can only hope this legal doctrine can one day be expanded to include every state and every unborn person and the abhorrent practice of abortion on demand for personal convenience can be ended once and for all.

  14. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 8:05 pm:

    @ Captain Oblivious

    Why are someone’s embryos any of your business? Once again you and your ilk want to get involved in someone’s personal medical business. Keep your nose out of other people’s business.

  15. - IllinoisCitizen - Tuesday, Feb 20, 24 @ 10:01 pm:

    Re: CaptainObvious … without making this like Twitter, I do wonder. How do you rectify what you’re saying — which is a legitimate point of view that one can hold — with a belief that embryos are not persons. What legal standard can you bring forward that is not based on a religious belief, but simply on a “can’t be argued with” approach. The problem with using religion or faith as the basis of a legal argument is that not everyone even shares the basic definition. So … if you can, what the is the non-religious argument for this point of view?

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* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* Isabel’s afternoon roundup
* Feds to provide more migrant funding... Just $19.3 million for Illinois
* Question of the day
* It’s just a bill
* Bill to expand IVF/infertility insurance coverage overwhelmingly passes Senate
* Open thread
* Isabel’s morning briefing
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