SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (IRN) — The new session of the Illinois General Assembly will resume next week – and it’s a new career for close to twenty of the members in Springfield.
State Rep. Michelle Mussman (D-Schaumburg) says she brings a “common-sense” perspective of a suburban mom: “How would you run your own home?”
State Rep. Adam Brown (R-Decatur) says he’d like to crack down on Medicaid fraud and calls the outgoing legislature’s vote for a tax increase “a jobs killer.”
State Rep. Daniel Biss (D-Evanston) is a former University of Chicago math professor who hopes to lend his expertise in both finance and education: “There aren’t so many people in this chamber with direct teaching experience.”
State Rep. Joe Sosnowski (R-Rockford) has served on city councils in both DeKalb and Rockford, and says he is not worried about being in the minority party and being last in seniority: “You’ve got to reach across the aisle … that’s really the goal, let’s get people together.”
State Rep. Ann Williams (D-Chicago) is familiar with the process from her previous job – as legislative director for Attorney General Lisa Madigan. “I helped work on her legislative agenda, a lot of consumer protection.”
State Rep. Kelly Burke (D-Evergreen Park) has experience as an attorney and also in higher education. What’s more, “I was the president of our local library board, so I have a little local government experience – experience with literacy, things like that.” She is not related to the Burke family that includes a Chicago alderman, an Illinois Supreme Court justice, and one of her fellow lawmakers.
State Rep. Rich Morthland (R-Cordova) is not worried about his status as a freshman in the minority party: “I just came off the Rock Island County Board, where as a 24-1 minority, was able to win a pay issue … just by being able to have people hear the situation and bring pressure to their elected officials.” He’s already introduced a bill to cut lawmakers’ pay.
State Rep. Dwight Kay (R-Glen Carbon) says the Metro East region is unlike others in the state: “We have a very, very high unemployment rate … people in the Metro East are very, very conservative folks, whether they are Republican, Democrat, or independent.”
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