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Durbin with reporters at the DNC in Philadelphia
Amanda Vinicky / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Who Will Take On Bruce Rauner? Democrats' Search Begins at DNC

Illinois Democrats joined fellow party members in Philadelphia Monday for the Democratic National Convention. But state politics, not the national scene, was the focus of the delegation’s first official day of business.
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Lawyer: This Is How You Cut Illinois Pensions ...

Illinois continues to have the worst funded government pension systems of all 50 states. Legislators have taken several swipes at reducing those costs. But so far they’ve all been batted away by the Illinois Supreme Court.
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Election 2016

Even before the primetime portion of the Democratic National Convention began, news was made on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. If you're just catching up, here's what's happened so far:

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit NPR.

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Education Desk: Conversation With Jim Broadway

Jim Broadway publishes the Illinois School News Service. It’s a subscription-based online newsletter for educators, documenting policy as it’s crafted and implemented at the state level. He recently wrote a roundup of education bills that came before the 99th General Assembly, and talked to Illinois Edition about some that became law, and some that didn’t.
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Illinois Issues

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Illinois Issues: The Battle Over Transgender Rights — In The Bathroom and Beyond

The state has some of the most aggressive protections for transgender people in the country, but the issue still generates controversy here.
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Even before the primetime portion of the Democratic National Convention began, news was made on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. If you're just catching up, here's what's happened so far:

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit NPR.

"Miss Cleo," the television psychic indelibly fixed in the memories of '90s TV-watchers, died Tuesday in Palm Beach, Fla., of cancer. She was 53.

Midwest Travel: Amish Heritage In Shipshewana

1 hour ago
flickr/AnitaRitenour

The horse’s hooves clip-clop along the pavement, pulling the black buggy in the early morning mist. The aroma of cinnamon rolls and berry pie wafts from the bakery, tempting all who pass by. Hand-sewn quilts wave gently in the breeze as the vendor sets up shop.

These and other symbols of simpler times beckon visitors to the Shipshewana area in northeast Indiana, the third largest Amish community in the United States. Settled by Dutch and German immigrants 200 years ago, the area is just south of I-80 before the Ohio border.  

The Obama administration announced today that it is expanding a program that helps Central American refugees, including minors, to reunite with their families in the United States. The effort is designed to discourage people from leaving their homeland and flooding the southern U.S. border, say administration officials.

The program has three components.

Trevor Burbank is single, 27 years old, and has been house hunting in Nashville for the last year.

"My rent's going up in August, so I have to figure out what I'm doing," he says.

The last time Burbank looked for a place was five years ago. He decided to use his down payment to start a business instead.

"There was a house that I really liked that was going for $60,000, and I saw the house being sold in the past few months for just shy of $300,000," Burbank says.

With recent reports that drugmakers have sharply raised the prices of some prescription drugs, a reader has written in to ask why a common generic drug is also suddenly costing him more. Another reader has questions about health plans with high deductibles. Here are those readers' questions, and what I've learned about the answers.

The 2,200-year-old mummy of an Egyptian man who spent a lot of time sitting and eating carbs went on display at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem on Tuesday and will be open to the public beginning Wednesday.

Elizabeth Cook On World Cafe

4 hours ago

Grand Ole Opry member and East Nashville singer-songwriter Elizabeth Cook has dealt with many personal challenges, including deaths in her family and her own divorce, over the last few years. The upside is that those experiences provided the seeds for some new songs. Cook, who also hosts the satellite-radio show Apron Strings, has never shied away from writing about her family — whether it's her father, who ran moonshine before becoming a welder, or her sister, who's battled heroin addiction.

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Featured

Collards And Canoodling: How Helen Gurley Brown Promoted Premarital Cooking

Helen Gurley Brown, the tiny, tough and influential editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan, who transformed the staid family magazine and took circulation to giddy heights, did so by lubricating its pages with one word: sex.Make that extra-marital sex.Under her bold auspices, the once stolidly suburban magazine gleefully smashed the prevailing taboos by pushing single women to play by the same sexual rules that applied to men. Sex, sermonized Cosmopolitan, should be uncoupled from marriage, made...
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Statehouse

Trump and Rauner
Trump by Michael Vadon / Flickr, Rauner by Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

State Week: Rauner *Really* Doesn't Want To Talk About Trump

Gov. Bruce Rauner may be done with the presidential campaign, but the presidential campaign isn’t done with Gov. Rauner.
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Labor unions are attacking Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner for several vetoes issues late last week. The Republican governor rejected measures that would have raised wages for state contractors that take care of the elderly and disabled.

Trump and Rauner
Trump by Michael Vadon / Flickr, Rauner by Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Gov. Bruce Rauner may be done with the presidential campaign, but the presidential campaign isn’t done with Gov. Rauner.

Gov. Bruce Rauner
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Gov. Bruce Rauner is apologizing for saying half of Chicago public school teachers are “virtually illiterate.”

Education Desk

Is There A Better Way To Pay For America's Schools?

The Kansas Supreme Court gave state lawmakers an ultimatum:Make school funding more equitable by June 30, or it will consider shutting down the state's public schools.Since then, things have gotten ugly.Lawmakers followed up with a plan — to make it easier to impeach Supreme Court judges who attempt to "usurp the power" of the Legislature or governor.Then came a plan to address the court's concerns over school funding: Send a little more money to roughly two-dozen of the state's poorest...
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A new White House report on student loan debt reveals that how people repay student loans has changed dramatically in a short time.

Why can't kids today just work their way through college the way earlier generations did?

The answer to that question isn't psychology. It's math. A summer job just doesn't have the purchasing power it used to, especially when you compare it with the cost of college.

Math is "contemptible and vile."

That's not from a disgruntled student. It's from a textbook.

The author, 16th century mathematician Robert Recorde, nestled the line just after his preface, table of contents and a biblical quote citing God's command to measure and number all things.

Recorde didn't believe in math's awfulness — quite the opposite. He was simply reflecting popular opinion on his way to a spirited defense of math. Why?

Arts & Culture

http://www.nikkilane.com/

The Scene Is Visited By Sean Burns Of Bedrock 66

This week Scott and Rachel talk with Sean Burns. He's been booking roots and Americana music in the area for nearly 20 years and founded the Bedrock 66 Live! concert series which has been sponsored by NPR Illinois. He tells us about the very first Bedrock music festival happening this weekend in conjunction with DSI's Downtown Bacon Throwdown in downtown Springfield.
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Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Now that the latest season of Game of Thrones has ended, fans may be feeling a little untethered — and some publishers would like to fill that gap with serialized books. As TV dramas get better and better, book publishers are hoping to convert binge TV watchers into binge readers.

Novelists have always put their heroines through awful ordeals. But over time, these tribulations change. Where the 19th Century was filled with fictional women trapped in punishing marriages — think of Middlemarch or The Portrait of a Lady — today's heroines face trials that are bigger, more political, and more physically demanding. They fight in hunger games.

Equity

The Code Switch Podcast, Episode 9: Black And Blue

After more than a week of violence and racial tension sparked by the deaths of black men at the hands of police and the shooting deaths of five officers in Dallas, we're getting more perspective from African-American law enforcement officials. We wanted to know how black officers, folks who find themselves right in the middle of heated conversations about race and policing, are processing everything that happened.Gregory A. Thomas, who leads the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement...
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In her speech Monday night at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Michelle Obama said she wakes up "every morning in a house that was built by slaves." She spoke about the feeling of watching her daughters, "two beautiful, intelligent, black young women, playing with their dogs on the White House lawn."

Charles Kinsey, a Florida health worker, was swept into the national debate about police and African-Americans after video of police shooting him went viral.

After years of lagging behind other ethnic groups when it comes to accessing the Internet, the "digital divide" between Latinos and whites is now at its narrowest point since 2009.

Illinois Economy

wikimedia.commons

Survey Shows Sangamon County Businesses Worried About State Finances

The Survey Research Office at the University of Illinois Springfield has released the Spring 2016 Sangamon County Economic Outlook Survey.
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SJ-R.com

Sean Crawford talks with the State Journal-Register's Business Editor Tim Landis.

flickr/KatherineJohnson

  NPR Illinois' Sean Crawford talks with Tim Landis, Business Editor for the State Journal-Register.

SJ-R

NPR Illinois' Sean Crawford talks with the State Journal-Register's Tim Landis.

Harvest Desk

The American Cheese Society will begin proctoring its next Certified Cheese Professional Exam in Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday, during the group's annual conference. The rigorous test is only in its fifth year, but nearly 600 people have passed it already. Industry experts say the exam is necessary because of the evolving standards in the growing American cheese business.

The baristas have spoken, and Starbucks is listening: The company says it's loosening its dress code for in-store employees. Yes, the green aprons remain, but you may begin noticing more personal flair underneath.

A company announcement invites baristas "to shine as individuals while continuing to present a clean, neat and professional appearance."

Helen Gurley Brown, the tiny, tough and influential editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan, who transformed the staid family magazine and took circulation to giddy heights, did so by lubricating its pages with one word: sex.

Make that extra-marital sex.

Health Desk

With recent reports that drugmakers have sharply raised the prices of some prescription drugs, a reader has written in to ask why a common generic drug is also suddenly costing him more. Another reader has questions about health plans with high deductibles. Here are those readers' questions, and what I've learned about the answers.

Two studies released at an international Alzheimer's meeting Tuesday suggest doctors may eventually be able to screen people for this form of dementia by testing the ability to identify familiar odors, like smoke, coffee and raspberry.

In both studies, people who were in their 60s and older took a standard odor detection test. And in both cases, those who did poorly on the test were more likely to already have — or go on to develop — problems with memory and thinking.

It used to be one of the worst places in the world when it came to protecting children.

A 2007 Violence Against Children Survey coordinated by UNICEF and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention found one in three girls in Swaziland was sexually abused before age 18. (The global rate is 1 in 5, according to the World Health Organization.)

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