Tom Balanoff is the president of Service Employees International Union Illinois Council and the Vice President of its International Executive Board, as well as the President of SEIU Local 1 with 40,000 janitors and security guards.He comes from a family of labor union officials. His father, James Balanoff, Jr., was the president of the largest United Steelworkers local in the country which was Local 1010 based in East Chicago, Indiana. He received a Master's degree in Labor from the University of Illinois.
Balanoff gave a speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention, supporting Barack Obama for President.
Balanoff is believed to be the unnamed "SEIU official" mentioned in the December 9, 2008 federal criminal complaint against Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
In 2018, J. B. Pritzker appointed Balanoff a member of the gubernatorial transition's Job Creation and Economic Opportunity Committee.
Jesse Louis Jackson Jr. is an American politician. He served as the U.S. representative from Illinois's 2nd congressional district from 1995 until his resignation in 2012. A member of the Democratic Party, he is the son of activist and former presidential candidate Jesse Jackson and, prior to his career in elected office, worked for his father in both the elder Jackson's 1984 presidential campaign and his social justice, civil rights and political activism organization, Operation PUSH. Jackson's wife, Sandi Jackson, served on the Chicago City Council. He served as a national co-chairman of the 2008 Barack Obama presidential campaign. Jackson established a consistent liberal record on both social and fiscal issues, and he has co-authored books on civil rights and personal finance.
Rod Blagojevich, often referred to by his nickname "Blago", is an American politician, political commentator, and convicted felon who served as the 40th governor of Illinois from 2003 to 2009. He was impeached, removed from office, convicted, and incarcerated for eight years on federal charges of public corruption. A member of the Democratic Party, Blagojevich previously worked in both the state and federal legislatures. He served as an Illinois state representative from 1993 to 1997, and the U.S. representative from Illinois's 5th district from 1997 to 2003.
Andrew L. Stern is the former president of the Service Employees International Union, and now serves as its President Emeritus.
Lisa Murray Madigan is an American lawyer and politician. A member of the Democratic Party, she served as Attorney General of the U.S. state of Illinois from 2003 to 2019, being the first woman to hold that position. She is the adopted daughter of indicted politician Michael Madigan, who served as Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives from 1983 to 1995 and from 1997 to 2021.
Roland Wallace Burris is an American retired Democratic politician and attorney who served as Attorney General of Illinois from 1991 to 1995. In January 2009, he was appointed a United States Senator, succeeding Barack Obama, who resigned to become president of the United States. Burris held this position until November 2010, retiring from front-line politics shortly after.
Emil Jones Jr. is an American politician who was the President of the Illinois Senate from 2003 to 2009. A Democrat, Jones served in the Illinois Senate from 1983 to 2009, where he served as President of the Illinois Senate from 2003 to the end of his term. Previously, he was a member of the Illinois House of Representatives from 1973 until 1983.
Kwame Raoul is an American lawyer and politician who has been the 42nd Attorney General of Illinois since 2019. He is a member of the Democratic Party.
Alexander Giannoulias is an American financier and politician who is the Secretary of State of Illinois. He previously served as the 72nd Illinois Treasurer from 2007 to 2011.
Penny Sue Pritzker is an American billionaire businesswoman and civic leader who served as the 38th United States secretary of commerce in the Obama administration from 2013 to 2017. She was confirmed by a Senate vote of 97–1.
The United States Senate career of Barack Obama began on January 3, 2005, and ended on November 16, 2008. A member of the Democratic Party from the state of Illinois, Obama previously served three terms in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2005. He resigned his seat in the U.S. Senate upon being elected President of the United States.
Daniel "Dan" Joseph Seals is an American business consultant and a Democratic politician from Illinois. Seals was the Democratic nominee in three campaigns to become U.S. Representative for Illinois's 10th congressional district. In 2006 and 2008, he was defeated by the incumbent Mark Kirk. In his third run, he was defeated by Republican candidate Robert Dold, on November 2, 2010, after Kirk vacated the seat to successfully run for the U.S. Senate.
The presidential transition of Barack Obama began when he won the United States presidential election on November 4, 2008, and became the president-elect. Obama was formally elected by the Electoral College on December 15, 2008. The results were certified by a joint session of Congress on January 8, 2009, and the transition ended when Obama was inaugurated at noon EST on January 20, 2009.
In December 2008, then-Democratic Governor of Illinois Rod Blagojevich and his Chief of Staff John Harris were charged with corruption by federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald. As a result, Blagojevich was impeached by the Illinois General Assembly and removed from office by the Illinois Senate in January 2009. The federal investigation continued after his removal from office, and he was indicted on corruption charges in April of that year. The jury found Blagojevich guilty of one charge of making false statements with a mistrial being declared on the other 23 counts due to a hung jury after 14 days of jury deliberation. On June 27, 2011, after a retrial, Blagojevich was found guilty of 17 charges, not guilty on one charge and the jury deadlocked after 10 days of deliberation on the two remaining charges. On December 7, 2011, Blagojevich was sentenced to 14 years in prison.
Emil Jones III is the Illinois State Senator for the 14th Senate District since 2010. The 14th district covers all or parts of Palos Heights, Oak Forest, Crestwood, Blue Island, Alsip, Midlothian, and Riverdale. Jones is the son of former Illinois Senate President Emil Jones.
A number of controversies related to Rod Blagojevich, formerly the Governor of Illinois, were covered in the press during and after his administration. In addition to a reputation for secrecy that was noted by the Associated Press, Blagojevich was the subject of political, legal, and personal controversies similar to those of his predecessor, Republican Governor George Ryan. To the surprise of many, Blagojevich said in 2008 that he agreed with the idea of commuting Ryan's federal prison sentence.
Barack Obama assumed office as President of the United States on January 20, 2009, and his term ended on January 20, 2017. The president has the authority to nominate members of his Cabinet to the United States Senate for confirmation under the Appointments Clause of the United States Constitution.
Jay Robert Pritzker is an American businessman, philanthropist, attorney and politician serving as the 43rd governor of Illinois since 2019. A member of the wealthy Pritzker family, which owns the worldwide hotel chain Hyatt, Pritzker is based in Chicago. He has started several venture capital and investment startups such as the Pritzker Group, where he is a managing partner.
The Illinois Fair Tax was a proposed amendment to the Illinois state constitution that would have effectively changed the state income tax system from a flat tax to a graduated income tax. The proposal, formally titled the "Allow for Graduated Income Tax Amendment", appeared on the ballot in the November 3, 2020 election in Illinois as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment striking language from the Constitution of Illinois requiring a flat state income tax. Concurrent with the proposed constitutional amendment, the Illinois legislature passed legislation setting a new set of graduated income tax rates that would have taken effect had the amendment been approved by voters.
Will Guzzardi is a Democratic member of the Illinois House of Representatives who represents the 39th District. The 39th District includes parts of the Avondale, Belmont Cragin, Hermosa, Old Irving Park, Portage Park and Logan Square. Guzzardi is a co-chair of the Illinois House's Progressive Caucus.
Cristina Castro is a Democratic member of the Illinois Senate who took office in January 2017. Castro represents the 22nd district, which includes all or portions of Elgin, Barrington Hills, Carpentersville, East Dundee and South Elgin, Streamwood, Hoffman Estates, Hanover Park, Schaumburg, and Bartlett.