Tuesday, 11 March 2014 02:36
CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn's re-election campaign is getting an out-of-state boost.
The Chicago Democrat flew to Los Angeles on Friday for a fundraiser attended by actors and others in the movie industry.
Quinn campaign spokeswoman Leslie Wertheimer confirmed Monday that Quinn was in Los Angeles for the fundraiser. She said a similar one was thrown in his honor in 2013.
The Chicago Sun-Times reported those in attendance included actor Joe Mantegna of CBS' "Criminal Minds."
Quinn has kept a low-profile on the campaign trail so far. He faces one lesser-known Democratic challenger on March 18. Activist Tio Hardiman of suburban Hillside is running.
Four Republicans are running for Illinois governor. They are state Sens. Kirk Dillard and Bill Brady, business man Bruce Rauner and state Treasurer Dan Rutherford.
Monday, 17 February 2014 08:28
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn is urging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency not to follow through on its own proposal to reduce amounts of ethanol that must be blended with gasoline.
The EPA wants to reduce by billions of gallons the amount of biofuels required in gasoline sold in America. The agency says the additive is less necessary with more fuel-efficient engines and lower fuel demand.
Governor Quinn says lowering the requirement could hurt farmers growing renewable fuel crops, like corn. His office says Illinois' ethanol industry is one of the nation's largest.
Critics say ethanol isn't as environmentally friendly as advertised. The pressure to grow more crops for ethanol has led to planting in areas that might otherwise be set aside for conservation. Critics also say diverting crops for fuel has contributed to rising food prices.
But ethanol advocates say its essential to American energy independance.
Friday, 07 February 2014 16:27
CHICAGO (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn won't debate his lone Democratic challenger ahead of next month's primary.
Activist Tio Hardiman wrote Quinn a letter requesting debates ahead of March 18, saying the public "deserves a serious debate."
Quinn campaign spokeswoman Leslie Wertheimer said Friday she hadn't seen the letter but no debates were to "take place."
Hardiman faces an uphill battle. Records for the most recent quarter show Quinn's campaign has $4.5 million in the bank, compared with $550 for Hardiman, who's mostly self-financed.
He's been active in anti-violence efforts, but doesn't have statewide name recognition or party backing.
Hardiman insists he'll run a credible campaign.
The Republican gubernatorial candidates are participating in numerous debates. They are Treasurer Dan Rutherford, businessman Bruce Rauner, and state Sens. Kirk Dillard and Bill Brady.
Friday, 31 January 2014 10:27
CHICAGO (AP) - The state of Illinois is offering more help to low-income households struggling to heat their homes because of a shortage of propane.
Earlier this week, Gov. Pat Quinn declared the shortage in Illinois an emergency. He relaxed rules on truck drivers so they could travel out of state in search of propane supplies.
On Friday, Quinn announced other steps, including an additional credit of $1,000 for each household taking part in a program that helps low-income residents with home energy bills.
The governor says no one should have to choose "between feeding their families and heating their homes."
In another change, the state will temporarily waive inspections of trucks carrying propane shipments to speed up delivery.
Officials are also asking consumers to report any suspected price gouging.
Wednesday, 29 January 2014 15:39
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Republican candidate for governor Bruce Rauner says Gov. Pat Quinn's annual address to the Legislature was "a campaign speech from a governor that is failing the people of Illinois."
Rauner spoke following the Chicago Democrat's State of the State address Wednesday in Springfield.
The Winnetka businessman says Quinn has been in office for five years and is now proposing a new five-year plan for jobs. Rauner notes Illinois has one of the country's highest unemployment rates and higher income taxes than when Quinn took office.
Rauner says Illinois is in an "economic death spiral" and Quinn "is trying to cover it up and put a rosy picture on it."
Rauner is facing Republican state Sens. Kirk Dillard and Bill Brady and Treasurer Dan Rutherford in the March primary.
Monday, 27 January 2014 03:18
CHICAGO (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn heads into a critical election-year State of the State address this week with his top priority of pension reform inked into the law.
The speech on Wednesday is a chance for Quinn to lay out goals for the year and recap his accomplishments.
But how much credit the Chicago Democrat can take for what he's called the signature achievement of his governorship is up for debate.
Quinn has won praise for keeping pension reform in the public sphere with his populist tactics, like withholding legislator pay. Pension reform was once a topic more common among economists and business groups.
However, he's also been criticized for those methods and not doing more to broker the deal himself. Some say he only took notice when there weren't other options.
Monday, 20 January 2014 02:34
CHICAGO (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn is using the holiday weekend honoring Martin Luther King Jr. to continue pressing for raising Illinois' minimum wage to at least $10.
The Democratic governor said while visiting a Chicago church Sunday that raising the state's minimum wage from $8.25 would be a key component in what he called the "war on poverty."
Quinn says "Dr. King's legacy was one of service, compassion and inclusion," and that "we can continue his mission to eliminate poverty by raising the minimum wage."
Republicans and business groups say raising the minimum wage kills jobs. Both the Illinois Retail Merchants Association and the Illinois Chamber of Commerce have come out against proposed minimum wage increases.
Illinois last raised its minimum wage in 2010 under a series of incremental increases.
Thursday, 26 December 2013 15:37
A boost in funding will clear the way for some road repairs in Illinois. Governor Pat Quinn announced a capital investment of more than $15.3 million on Thursday to fund a bridge repair project in St. Clair County. It is all a part of the Governor's Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program aimed at creating jobs and boosting llinois' economy.
Bridge repairs and resurfacing are planned along Interstate 64 from 18th Street to the Illinois Route 111 interchange in Washington Park.
The $31-billion Illinois Jobs Now! project is the largest capital construction program in Illinois history.The project will support nearly 440-thousand jobs over a six year span.
Friday, 20 December 2013 09:11
CHICAGO (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn is heading to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to deliver holiday cards to wounded armed service members from Illinois.
Visiting the troops during the holidays has become an annual tradition for the governor. During the last eight years, he has traveled to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany - the largest American hospital outside the United States. But his office says in a news release that because so many service members have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan, he decided to go to Walter Reed instead.
Quinn will be giving wounded service members cards made by Illinois children when he visits the hospital Friday. He says the cards are the children's way of saying thank you to men and women who can't be home during the holidays.
Wednesday, 18 December 2013 15:58
CHICAGO (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn says he wants to raise Illinois' minimum wage to at least $10 by Christmas of next year.
The Chicago Democrat who's seeking re-election campaigned on the issue in 2010 and mentioned it during his annual address this year.
The minimum wage in Illinois is $8.25. Quinn said Wednesday that raising the wage will help eliminate poverty.
Illinois last raised the minimum wage in 2010. There's legislation pending in Springfield to increase it, including a call for $15 an hour.
However Republicans and business groups say raising the minimum wage kills jobs. Quinn says that claims are flat wrong.
Some business groups have also accused Quinn of trotting out the issue ahead of the 2014 election.
Quinn says it's not a new issue for him.