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PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
6:10pm
Wed Mar 16, 2016

Rauner Takes A Hit In Illinois' Primary Elections

Progress Illinois breaks down the winners and losers in some key legislative races in which stakes were high for Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan. 

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
5:53pm
Tue Mar 8, 2016

New Americans Hit The Polls In Chicago As Immigrant Advocates Gear Up For Anti-Trump Protest

A few dozen newly naturalized American citizens living in Chicago voted Tuesday afternoon for the first time in a U.S. election, casting ballots during the early voting period for the March 15 Illinois primary.

Representatives from the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) assisted the new Americans of Polish, Irish and Mexican descent in the naturalization and voter registration process.

ICIRR representatives led the group on a march in downtown Chicago that started at the Dirksen Federal Building, where the long-term immigrants were naturalized as new American citizens. Afterward, the group headed to the Chicago Board of Elections. There, the new Americans registered to vote and voted early.

"Fortunately, we have early voting and grace period registration to facilitate people who are just getting naturalized now a few days before the primary to be able to still have the opportunity to vote," said ICIRR's Fred Tsao. "It used to be that if you missed the voter registration deadline four weeks before the election, you were out of luck."

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
5:04pm
Mon Jul 14, 2014

Foster, Community Leaders Analyze Modern Day Civil Rights Issues (VIDEO)

The country has made great strides in the 50 years since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed into law, but much remains to be accomplished, U.S. Rep. Bill Foster (D-IL,11) said at a panel discussion on the topic in Darien Monday morning.

July 2 marked 50 years since President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex and natural origin.

"As we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act and all the steps forward ... we really have to continue to ask ourselves: What are the great civil right struggles that we face today," Foster asked at the talk with community members, held at the Indian Prairie Public Library in DuPage County.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
6:56pm
Wed Apr 23, 2014

Rand Paul Visits Chicago To Talk Politics, Education Reform (VIDEO)

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) was in Chicago Tuesday to discuss politics and education reform at two events in the city. Progress Illinois recaps some of the highlights from the discussions. 

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
3:57pm
Wed Sep 25, 2013

Local Organizations Push For Increased Civic Engagement On National Voter Registration Day (VIDEO)

With the 2014 general election just 13 months away and voter registration numbers at an all-time low, hundreds of volunteers took to Chicagoland streets Tuesday to mark National Voter Registration Day in an effort to get as many new voters on the rolls as possible.

“Election after election, millions of voters aren’t able to vote because they miss voter registration deadlines or they didn’t know how to register,” said Rebecca Reynolds, 28, executive director of Chicago Votes. “This day is a day to try to make sure we leave no one out.”

Chicago Votes, a volunteer-run civic engagement advocacy group, served as Illinois’ lead organization on Tuesday’s national day of action to increase voter registration. More than 40 local groups, including the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) and the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, partnered with Chicago Votes to encourage residents to exercise their basic right to vote.

“Voter registration has hit an all-time low in the city of Chicago,” said Reynolds. “We’re trying to make voter registration easier, and more accessible to everybody.”

Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
2:30pm
Mon Nov 5, 2012

New Polling Places Could Mean Confusion For Chicago Voters

The Chicago City Council’s remap of its 50 wards this year means new polling places for Chicago residents looking to cast their ballots tomorrow.

“It is going to be an issue for some of our voters who don’t check their polling places,” acknowledged Langdon Neal, chairman for the Chicago Board of Election at a press conference this morning. “If you do not follow the instructions and you don’t check your polling place, you cannot vote.”

Neal said that Chicago voters uncertain about where to vote tomorrow can call the Chicago Board of Elections at 312-269-7870 and “we can tell you where to go.”

Windy City voters may also text message their street address to 312-361-8846 to get their polling place. For example, the common address number then street format of 1234 W. 56th St. would produce a reply text with a polling place.

Neal gave these nitty-gritty logistics at a press conference intended to promote the success of early voting in Chicago and suburban Cook County. Neal and Cook County Clerk Orr say the percentage of registered voters who participated in early balloting this year set a new record.

PI Original
by Aricka Flowers
7:18pm
Thu Nov 1, 2012

Early Voting Outlook Good For Obama, Sandy Causes Firestorm For Romney Campaign

Early voting numbers and poll results are not the only troublesome issues plaguing the Romney campaign this week. From Superstorm Sandy to endorsements to a controversial campaign ad, there are quite a few things that are dogging the Republican's campaign this week, just days before the election.

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