Brian Mackey

Reporter - Statehouse

Brian Mackey covers state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. He was previously A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.

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John Cullerton, Bruce Rauner and Michael Madigan
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Gov. Bruce Rauner has called state legislators back to Springfield this week. He says he wants a budget deal. But Rauner is also spending money attacking Democrats.

Rodney Davis
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Two Illinois Congressmen held a rare bipartisan community meeting Saturday.

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, a Democrat, and U.S. Representative Rodney Davis, a Republican, discussed health care policy with the Ministerial Alliance of Springfield.

State Week logo
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Gov. Bruce Rauner has called 10 special sessions on the budget for the final days of the month. For the first time, he's publicly endorsed a specific set of tax increases to accompany the non-budget demands he's been making since he came into office. Does this represent real movement? Or is it just marketing?

Bilandic Building
Google Street View

Illinois’ struggling social-service agencies lost another round in court Thursday. An appellate panel in Chicago says Illinois does not have to pay unless the state has a real budget.

Bruce Rauner
Illinois Office of Communication and Information

Gov. Bruce Rauner has called 10 special sessions of the Illinois General Assembly for the end of the month.

St. Clair County Building
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

BELLEVILLE — Dozens of Illinois’ social service providers were back in court Wednesday. Many have gone nearly a year without funding during the budget stalemate. They’re asking a St. Clair County judge to force Illinois to pay.

Fifth District Appellate Court
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

MOUNT VERNON — A case with the potential to upend Illinois' budget impasse was argued Tuesday before the Fifth District Appellate Court.

St. Clair County Building
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Two court hearings this week could shape the future of Illinois’ budget impasse.

opensource on Flickr

A new report says repealing the Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — would have a disproportionately negative effect in rural parts of Illinois.

flickr/sideonecincy

Gov. Bruce Rauner on Friday signed legislation intended to improve the fairness of Illinois courts. It should mean more people will be eligible for bail while awaiting trial.

State Week logo
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

A federal judge says Illinois has to prioritize payments for Medicaid providers, but the state doesn't have enough revenue to meet its spending obligations. Could Illinois soon run out of money? Does the market really think Illinois could default on its debt?

Capitol in fog
Amanda Vinicky / NPR Illinois

Members of the Illinois House on Thursday heard stories of misery resulting from nearly two years without a state budget. Democrats used the opportunity to attack Gov. Bruce Rauner.

Barbara Flynn Currie
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

The Illinois House has blocked Governor Bruce Rauner’s attempt to merge the parts of state government that deal with discrimination complaints.

Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois government has been deadlocked on a state budget for 23 months. During that time, the once-perfunctory job of comptroller has gained in power and prominence.

Scott Drury
ILGA.gov

Democratic state Rep. Scott Drury, from the Chicago suburb of Highwood, is entering the race for Illinois governor.

flickr/ TaxCredits.net

A court hearing scheduled for Tuesday has the potential to shake up Illinois' already-precarious financial situation. Organizations that run the state’s Medicaid program are asking a judge to speed up their payments.

State Week logo
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois government ended another legislative session without a budget. Because of that, credit rating agencies downgraded the state's debt while public universities announced more layoffs.

Meanwhile, Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker was in the news because of his relationship with imprisoned former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

A day after the Illinois General Assembly ended it’s spring session without passing a budget, two bond rating agencies have downgraded the state’s credit.

The actions, by S&P Global Ratings and Moody's Investors Service, leave state government debt just one step above “junk” status.

Michael Madigan
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

The Illinois General Assembly ended its annual legislative session last night without agreeing on a budget.

Top Democrats and Republicans blamed each other.

As Brian Mackey reports, state government's long, slow financial crisis will accelerate.

Lou Lang
file / Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Wednesday is the last day of the Illinois General Assembly's annual legislative session.

It also happens to mark 700 days since Illinois last had a real budget. Majority Democrats still aren’t saying whether they plan to do anything about that.

Capitol in fog
Amanda Vinicky / NPR Illinois

The Illinois House has approved a plan to raise Illinois’ minimum wage to $15 an hour. But it faces an uphill climb to become law.

Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois Democrats remain divided over how to address the state’s financial crisis.

I voted sticker
Vox Efx / flickr

Illinois’ top election officials say the nearly two-year budget stalemate could interfere with preparations for next year’s election. The warning came at a budget hearing Sunday afternoon.

Illinois State Senator Kwame Raoul
NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Democrats in the Illinois Senate on Friday made another attempt to meet the demands of Gov. Bruce Rauner’s economic agenda.

The Republican governor has said the expense of workers compensation insurance has driven businesses out of the state.

State Week logo
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Senate Democrats go it alone on a tax hike — will their House counterparts follow suit? And what happens if legislators don't pass a budget by the scheduled end of session on May 31?

Dick Durbin
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin says talk of impeaching President Donald Trump is premature.

That's at odds with positions taken last week by at least three of the Democrats running for governor in Illinois.

State Week logo
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Senate Democrats hold another set of votes on what was once referred to as the "grand bargain," but Republicans say the deal isn't there yet. Can anyone in Springfield trust anyone else long enough to make something happen?

Meanwhile, Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker is under attack by Republicans over his property taxes.

The Illinois Senate has adjourned for the day without taking action on remaining items from the "grand bargain" budget compromise.

Democrats who run the chamber had said they might push forward Thursday with remaining items after approving several parts of the compromise on Wednesday.

But what remains are some of the tougher measures. One would increase the personal income tax from 3.75 percent to 4.95 percent and the corporate rate from 5.25 percent to 7 percent.

Jason Barickman and other members of the Illinois Senate Republican cuacus.
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Illinois Senate Democrats on Wednesday passed part of a budget plan for state government.

If it also passes the House and is signed into law, it would be the first real budget Illinois has had since 20-15. But that’s a big “if.”

Heather Steans
Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

Both the Illinois House and Senate return to work in Springfield today. Just over two weeks remain before the annual legislative session is scheduled to end.

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