FILE - Illinois State Capitol

The dome of the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois.

New Illinois House Speaker Welch promises to ‘possibly make a lot of changes’ to House rules

New Illinois House Speaker Chris Welch promises to work across party lines to accomplish shared goals.

Welch, a Democrat from Hillside, is the first Black speaker and the first speaker since House Speaker Michael Madigan who held the post for all but two years since 1983.

House Minority Leader Jim Durkin retained his position and now is the longest-serving legislative leader in Illinois.

State's congressional delegation split on impeachment

Illinois’ Republican congressional delegation was split on the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

Channahon Republican U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger was one of ten Republicans across the country that supported Trump’s second impeachment.

Taylorville Republican U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis said impeachment only brought more division.

He said there was no evidence the President incited violence last week.

97,000 people in Illinois file for unemployment

Nearly 97,000 Illinoisans filed for initial unemployment claims last week than the week before.

The U.S. Department of Labor reports that’s more than 51,000 more than filed the week before.

Illinois now has 362,000 insured unemployed individuals, an increase from 330,000 from the week before.

Harmon sets agenda to Illinois Senate

The agenda for the Illinois Senate in the new 102nd General Assembly will focus on jobs and justice.

That’s according to Senate President Don Harmon’s office. Harmon said his agenda is focused on bridging the divide to “change the tone of our politics.”

The Oak Park Democrat was selected to be the Senate President, a role he’s held since John Cullerton stepped down before his term in 2019.

Illinois House passes sweeping police reform bill

There’s feedback from all sides in the aftermath of a sweeping measure bringing reforms to the state’s system of justice.

The ACLU of Illinois praised the measure it said holds police accountable. A coalition of law enforcement groups said the quote “criminal-favoring legislation” should be vetoed by Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

Pritzker signaled he will sign the expansive bill.

Illinois National Guard heads to D.C.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Tuesday ordered the activation of Illinois National Guard members.

The District of Columbia requested additional support from the Guard for the Jan. 20 festivities.

One hundred soldiers will be from Bloomington, Springfield, Freeport and Fort Sheridan with 45 soldiers from Peoria.

Staff Reporter

Greg Bishop reports on Illinois government and other issues for The Center Square. Bishop has years of award-winning broadcast experience and hosts the WMAY Morning Newsfeed out of Springfield.

Staff Reporter

Kevin Bessler reports on statewide issues in Illinois for the Center Square. He has over 30 years of experience in radio news reporting throughout the Midwest.

Staff Reporter

Cole Lauterbach reports on Illinois and Arizona government and statewide issues for The Center Square. He has produced radio shows for stations in Central Illinois and created award-winning programs for Comcast SportsNet Chicago.

Regional Editor

Brett Rowland has worked as a reporter in newsrooms in Illinois and Wisconsin. He most recently served as news editor of the Northwest Herald in Crystal Lake, Illinois. He previously held the same position at the Daily Chronicle in DeKalb.