Daily Political Highlights
Wednesday 22, 2023
* Fox 2 | Illinois strengthens regulations on health insurance companies following Blue Cross Blue Shield investigation: Under the new rules, health insurance companies will need to clarify the distance a doctor is from a patient in their directory in two ways. One listing includes the distance between the patients address and the provider if a straight line was drawn between the two. The other is the distance and time it takes to drive to the provider’s office from the patients house. Before these new rules, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois was only including the former on their directories.
* Fox 2 | 2nd Illinois prison guard sentenced: According to the release, the government presented further evidence that Sheffler, as the lieutenant and senior officer to co-defendants Hedden and Banta, not only participated in the assault but had a duty to intervene to prevent it. The assault resulted in serious bodily injury to Earvin, including multiple broken ribs, a punctured mesentery (tissue in the abdomen), and other serious internal injuries, and resulted in Earvin’s death in June 2018.
* HuffPost | Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker Takes Swipe At Chicago Mayoral Candidate Paul Vallas: Pritzker campaign spokesperson Natalie Edelstein replied with a statement that both defended Pritzker’s conduct and took a subtle jab at Vallas, homing in on his affinity for right-wing talk radio. “Throughout the pandemic, Governor Pritzker spent every day fighting to save people’s lives and livelihoods,” Edelstein said. “He did it by following the advice of the nation’s best virologists and epidemiologists, many of whom are at Illinois’s world-class research institutions and hospitals.” “Leadership requires making tough choices and not pandering to the loudest voices driven by politics,” she added. “The next mayor of Chicago may be called upon to lead in a similar type of emergency and residents deserve to know if their next Mayor will listen to experts or instead to right wing talk show hosts when making decisions about people’s lives.”
* Tribune | Naperville stopped ticketing students at school. But it’s still pushing a 3-year-old case about AirPods to trial.: Her attorneys asked the judge at the end of February to dismiss the case, noting that the original ticket accused her only of having the classmate’s AirPods, not of intentionally taking them, which is required to prove theft. In response, prosecutor Joseph Solon Jr. updated Naperville’s allegation to state that Harris had “knowingly” taken the classmate’s AirPods. Judge Monique O’Toole set a hearing for next month to give Harris’ attorneys time to formally respond.
* Crain’s | State Farm nearly matches last year’s record pay for CEO despite deep losses: Unlike most companies its size, State Farm doesn’t pay its executives in stock as well as cash. As a mutual insurer, it’s technically owned by its policyholders and doesn’t have publicly traded shares to distribute to execs. So in recent years, State Farm has dramatically increased cash payouts to execs. In 2019 Tipsord’s total compensation was $10 million. That soared to about $20 million in 2020 and then $24.5 million in 2021, a record-setting payday for a State Farm CEO.
* Bob Seidenberg | ‘Neither solicited, nor requested,’ candidate says, turning back two large donations: Second Ward City Council member Krissie Harris said earlier today she has already taken steps to return a pair of $6,000 donations — the most allowed individuals under election law— that critics have maintained were being used to buy influence in Northwestern University’s stadium project. … Harris said the donations came in at a time when she had gone to the hospital for medical treatment, with members of her campaign team holding off notifying her about the money.
* AP | Federal Reserve raises its key rate by a quarter-point: At the same time, the Fed warned that the financial upheaval stemming from the collapse of two major banks is “likely to result in tighter credit conditions” and “weigh on economic activity, hiring and inflation.”
* Tribune | Chicago’s runoff election: Everything you need to know about races for mayor and aldermen: April 4 is the date of the runoff election and the deadline for a mail-in ballot to be postmarked in order for it to be counted. April 18 is the last day that mail-in ballots (postmarked by April 4) may arrive at the offices of the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners to be included in the count.
* WGEM | New initiative to reinvent grocery stores in rural, poor Illinois communities: Pritzker said the budget for 2024 includes $20 million to launch the initiative, with an additional $2 million going towards purchasing healthy, nutritious food from Illinois farmers.
* Tribune | Emergency injunction filed Tuesday to prevent imminent vendor lockout at Little Village Discount Mall: But for merchants, there’s a glimmer of hope, however temporary: They are now waiting on the Cook County Circuit Court to schedule an emergency hearing on their motion for a temporary restraining order. If vendors are locked out of the mall, the complaint filed Tuesday states, they would potentially face irreparable harm and suffer the loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars of merchandise and goods, given that they operate on small margins and day-to-day sales.
* AP | 119K people hurt by riot-control weapons since 2015: The vast majority of the data comes from cases in which a person came to an emergency room with injuries from crowd control weapons and the attending doctor or hospital staff made the effort to document it, said the report’s lead author, Rohini Haar, an emergency room physician and researcher at the University of California School of Public Health in Berkeley.
* WSJ | Job Listings Abound, but Many Are Fake: Hiring managers acknowledge as much. In a survey of more than 1,000 hiring managers last summer, 27% reported having job postings up for more than four months. Among those who said they advertised job postings that they weren’t actively trying to fill, close to half said they kept the ads up to give the impression the company was growing, according to Clarify Capital, a small-business-loan provider behind the study. One-third of the managers who said they advertised jobs they weren’t trying to fill said they kept the listings up to placate overworked employees.
* Tribune | Fast-food giant McDonald’s named founding promotional partner of the NASCAR Chicago Street Race: The televised Cup Series event on July 2 will feature a 12-turn, 2.2-mile racecourse, with top NASCAR drivers navigating Grant Park on closed-off streets lined with temporary fences, grandstands and hospitality suites. McDonald’s will have branding on a section of the course, at the start/finish line in front of Buckingham Fountain and additional locations throughout the event’s footprint.
* Sun-Times | Dare I say it? The White Sox get more media attention in town than the Cubs do.: The Sox have been much more interesting than the Cubs for several years. Now, my definition of interesting and your definition of interesting might be completely different, especially if you fall heavily on the Cubs side of the Cubs-Sox demarcation in Chicago. Many Chicagoans do. But from a newspaper writer’s perspective, it’s not even close. The Sox are compelling. The Cubs aren’t.