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Brian Mackey

Illinois Statehouse Reporter

Brian Mackey covers Illinois state government and politics from the WUIS Statehouse bureau. He was previously A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. He can be reached at (217) 206-6020.

Ways to Connect

A new report says repealing the Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — would have a disproportionately negative effect in rural parts of Illinois.

Democratic state Rep. Scott Drury, from the Chicago suburb of Highwood, is entering the race for Illinois governor.

Illinois government has been deadlocked on a state budget for 23 months. During that time, the once-perfunctory job of comptroller has gained in power and prominence.

A court hearing scheduled Tuesday has the potential to shake up the precarious financial situation in Illinois. Organizations that run the state’s Medicaid program want a federal judge to speed up their payments.

The state already owes money to  a variety of organizations due to the budget impasse, but Medicaid providers want a federal judge to put them at the front of the line. Comptroller Susana Mendoza said Illinois already spends heavily on Medicaid, and letting those groups cut in line means Illinois would soon run out of money.

The Illinois General Assembly ended its annual legislative session Wednesday night without agreeing on a state budget.

Top Democrats and Republicans blamed each other, reflecting the main political divide in Springfield that has played out over the two yearlong budget impasse. But this spring's budget failure exposed an additional set of fault lines -- among Democrats.

The Illinois House has approved a plan to raise Illinois’ minimum wage to $15 an hour. But it faces an uphill climb to become law.

Wednesday is the last day of the Illinois General Assembly's annual legislative session.

It also happens to mark 700 days since Illinois last had a real budget. Majority Democrats still aren’t saying whether they plan to do anything about that.

Illinois U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin says talk of impeaching President Donald Trump is premature.

That's at odds with positions taken last week by at least three of the Democrats running for governor in Illinois.

Illinois Senate Democrats on Wednesday passed part of a budget plan for state government.

If it also passes the House and is signed into law, it would be the first real budget Illinois has had since 20-15. But that’s a big “if.”

A nonpartisan research group says Illinois’ desperate financial condition is getting even worse.

The Civic Federation of Chicago says unless something is done soon, by next year the state’s pile of unpaid bills could consume half of all new tax revenue.

A controversial abortion measure was approved Wednesday in the Illinois Senate. It would expand government funding of the procedure.

There was another setback Wednesday for efforts to end Illinois' budget stalemate.

Senate Democrats attempted a series of test votes on items in the so-called “grand bargain.” But Republicans refused to go along, saying more negotiation is needed to reach a deal they can support.

Brian Mackey

The death of a one year old child in Joliet Township has Illinois' child-welfare agency on the defensive. Department of Children and Family Services director George Sheldon testified Wednesday before a state Senate committee.

Illinois Senate Democrats are hoping to win bipartisan support for a partial government spending plan.

The proposal would release more than $800 million that’s been collected in special state accounts for higher education and human services, areas that have been particularly squeezed during the 22-month budget stalemate.

Ten Republican senators voted for at least one bill in the grand bargain. We asked all of them about Gov. Bruce Rauner's role in stopping them from going further.

The Illinois Senate’s so-called grand bargain was put on hold Wednesday. After months of negotiations and a deadline from their own caucus leader, Senate Republicans say they aren't quite ready to vote.

Democrats blame the last-minute withdrawal on interference by Gov. Bruce Rauner. 

The Illinois Senate made progress Tuesday on its so-called grand bargain.

City governments across Illinois are asking to have their state funding passed along automatically. It’s the latest consequence of Illinois’ 20-month budget stalemate.

Rich Egger

A group of Illinois legislators is pushing an agenda intended to help farmers who sell at local markets. The legislation covers a variety of issues.

Democrats say no. Rauner says yes. Brian Mackey tries to figure out who's right.

Illinois Information Service

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner struck an upbeat tone in his third State of the State address Wednesday.  He also tried to project an image of someone willing to compromise -- but in such a way that Democrats say he glossed over his own role in the crisis that's hobbling Illinois government.

The Illinois Supreme Court considered a case Thursday that asks whether not-for-profit hospitals have to pay property taxes.

Public Domain

With the dysfunction in Illinois politics, state government this year is projected to spend as much as $13 billion more than it will collect in taxes. And the situation could be getting worse.

Governor Bruce Rauner's administration is accusing Illinois' biggest government union of an unfair labor practice.

Former Congressman Aaron Schock has pleaded not guilty to federal corruption charges.

It happened Monday afternoon in Springfield’s federal courthouse. That’s just across the street from what had been one of the 35-year-old Republican’s district offices.

Could a campaign emphasis on "law and order" derail the emerging bipartisan consensus on crime and punishment?

Could a campaign emphasis on "law and order" derail the emerging bipartisan consensus on crime and punishment?

Could a campaign emphasis on "law and order" derail the emerging bipartisan consensus on crime and punishment?

A number of Illinois politicians continue to push the issue of of term limits.

Gov. Bruce Rauner is apologizing for saying half of Chicago public school teachers are “virtually illiterate.”

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