Contributing to the Post Dispatch’s “Political Fix” blog was a large part of my work as an intern in the Illinois Statehouse. The expected contribution is 2 or 3 posts each day, but I often added more on days the Illinois legislature was in session. The topics range from current or former politicians in pop culture to primary election night updates to tracking legislation as it moves between chambers and to the governor’s office.

Contributions to the print edition were a part of my work for the Post Dispatch. The following work ran in the paper’s Illinois and Missouri editions.

Highlights:

Illinois set to get back into nuclear power race
Some Illinois lawmakers fought to lift a decades-old ban on the construction of new nuclear power plants, potentially putting the state in the first wave of a national nuclear renaissance. But opponents argued that Illinois — already home to the nation’s highest nuclear capacity — would become a natural destination for nuclear waste from other parts of the country if more plants are added in the state.

Video gambling differences put Illinois governor on the spot
An Illinois legislator’s proposal to punish communities that opted out of a statewide gambling expansion gained early attention from many media outlets. But I was the only reporter to follow up when the sponsor decided to pull his idea – at the insistence of Illinois’ governor Pat Quinn – and examine the politics surrounding Quinn’s decision.

Illinois school districts, universities slam state for late payments
As the state of Illinois grapples with a $13 billion budget deficit, service providers including school districts and state universities have gone without promised aid. I had been in communication with school districts in the Post-Dispatch’s distribution zones about the state’s owed payments, and when university presidents expressed their own displeasure with the situation, editors requested a combined story.

Other work:

Bill on adoption advances in Springfield – March 19, 2010

Measure sent to governor puts limits on Ill. tuition program – March 13, 2010, A2 Illinois edition PDF

Pat Quinn proposes tax hike for schools – March 11, 2010, A1 Illinois edition PDF and jump

Lawmaker pushes for cell phone ban – February 22, 2010

Michael Madigan proposes doing away with Illinois lieutenant governor’s job – February 11, 2010, A5 Illinois edition PDF

Illinois lawmakers consider cutting some scholarship, tuition reduction programs – February 9, 2010, A4 Illinois edition PDF

Family business provides backdrop for GOP nominee – February 6, 2010

Pat Quinn officially becomes the Democratic candidate for governor – February 5, 2010, A1 Illinois edition PDF and jump

Illinois recount wouldn’t start for a month – February 4, 2010, A5 Illinois edition PDF

Illinois GOP hopes scandal leads to opportunity – January 28, 2010, A1 Illinois edition PDF and jump

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn gives state of state message, fails to quiet critics – January 14, 2010, A2 Illinois edition PDF

Crises await Illinois lawmakers – January 11, 2010, A1 Illinois edition PDF and jump