Stories by Nick Blumberg

Aldermanic Candidates in 19 Wards Headed for Runoffs

Voters in more than a third of Chicago’s 50 wards will head to the polls again in April. In Tuesday’s election, no clear winner emerged in 19 races for alderman across the city. 

Voters Support an Elected School Board

Voters across Chicago overwhelmingly support an elected school board, according to results of a non-binding referendum that appeared on the ballot Tuesday in 37 of the city’s 50 wards.

Second Eastland Disaster Archived Film Located by NIU Graduate

This week, there was another new discovery of footage from Chicago's Eastland Disaster. 

New Dietary Guidelines: What's In, What's Out?

We discuss the recent changes in dietary guidelines and how they affect the way we're supposed to eat.

Illinois Lawmakers Talk Budget Priorities & Challenges Ahead

Gov. Bruce Rauner and legislative leaders are trying to find ways to close a gap in the current year's budget and will soon start debating the governor's austere proposal for the coming fiscal year. We talk with lawmakers about what to expect.

Gov. Rauner Unveils His Budget

| Kristen Thometz

Gov. Bruce Rauner releases his budget for the coming fiscal year. We'll analyze his priorities with fiscal experts, and discuss how likely he is to get the Democratically controlled General Assembly to see things his way.

Who is the “Superstar” On Gov. Rauner’s Team?

When Gov. Bruce Rauner announced the hiring of former Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle, he called the two-term Republican a "superstar governor" with a proven track record. We'll learn more about Lingle's time in office and her legacy in Hawaii from Chad Blair, political reporter for the Honolulu Civil Beat.

A Fiscal Roadmap for Illinois

With just two days until Gov. Bruce Rauner delivers his first budget address, analysts are debating how best to tackle Illinois’ massive budget deficit. The Institute for Illinois' Fiscal Sustainability at the Civic Federation has released a five-year state budget roadmap that it says will stabilize Illinois while protecting important government services.

Civic Federation Offers "Painful, but Necessary" Solutions to Illinois Budget Crisis

The Institute for Illinois' Fiscal Sustainability at the Civic Federation has released a five-year state budget roadmap that it says will stabilize Illinois while protecting important government services. The group says its plan will eliminate the state's unpaid bills by Fiscal Year 2020 and make sure state budgets are balanced.

Retailers Try to Avoid RadioShack’s Fate

As electronics retailer RadioShack files for bankruptcy protection and stores like Sears and JCPenney look for ways to revamp their image, we discuss the challenges for major retailers with Crain’s Chicago Business retail reporter Brigid Sweeney.

Pullman District to be Designated as National Monument

President Barack Obama plans to visit Chicago next week where he’ll reportedly declare part of the Pullman neighborhood on the far south side a national monument, Chicago’s first.

Measles Outbreak Spreads to Illinois

Three new cases of measles have been confirmed in Cook County, health officials announced Monday. That brings the statewide total to nine infected people. Seven of the cases, including six small children, have been linked to a Palatine day care center.

IL Lawmakers on What's Ahead After Rauner's First State of the State

| Travis Cornejo

As Gov. Bruce Rauner lays out his policy priorities in his first State of the State address, Illinois lawmakers analyze what he had to say -- and what we can expect from his budget address later this month.

The Beauty of the "Not Impossible"

Mick Ebeling went from being a film and TV producer to founding an organization that solves challenging problems around the world. His hands-on approach to "hacking" processes has helped him make extraordinary changes to people's lives.

Israeli Consul General Roey Gilad

Roey Gilad, Consul General of Israel to the Midwest, joins Chicago Tonight to discuss the elections in Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's upcoming visit to the U.S. Congress, as well as relations between the U.S. and Israel, and in the Middle East.

Youth Employment Rate Lagging in Chicago

As the economy and employment rates improve, young people may be getting left behind. We’ll learn about a new report on the jobless rate among teens in Chicago.

Gov. Rauner Sets Up Fight with Unions

| Travis Cornejo

Gov. Bruce Rauner has proposed "right-to-work zones" that would weaken union control in certain areas. The move is sure to touch off a fight with labor unions, and may need legislative action to become a reality. We'll talk about the governor's ideas about unions, his management style, as well as the new COO and CFO he's appointed.

Hospital Beds Lying Empty Around Illinois

A new report from Crain's Chicago Business found in 2013 nearly four out of every 10 hospital beds in Illinois were vacant. We'll talk with reporter Kristen Schorsch about why there are so many extra beds and what hospitals can do about the problem.

Students Caught in Middle of PARCC Debate

Teachers, parents, and administrators have been debating whether schools should start implementing the PARCC standardized test, designed to align with the new Common Core standards. We talk with two educators about whether it's time to put the PARCC in place and the value of standardized testing.

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle

| Kristen Thometz

Toni Preckwinkle is heading into her second term as president of the Cook County Board. She hopes to reform juvenile criminal justice and reduce the daily jail population, and has goals for the regional economy and public health. She joins us.

Martin Luther King, Jr. & Civil Rights Today

As we reflect on the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., we take a look at his lasting impact and what the Civil Rights struggle can tell us about the social movements of today.

Rauner Takes Aim At Political Hires

Gov. Bruce Rauner signed another executive order Thursday morning, this one requiring that the state of Illinois publish the names of political hires. Rauner accused the Quinn administration of carrying on in the tradition of imprisoned former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

Could Aldermanic Races Reshape City Council?

| Kristen Thometz

Aldermanic races around the city are heating up, with candidates getting kicked off the ballot, charges of intimidation, and packed fields of contenders. With less than six weeks until the municipal election, we check in on some of the races with our panel.

Author Wes Moore On Finding His Life’s Work

Wes Moore is a Rhodes scholar, combat veteran, and nonprofit executive. In his new book, The Work: My Search For a Life That Matters, Moore writes about how his widely varied life experiences helped shape who he is, and how the lessons he learned can help us find a sense of purpose.

Mayoral Candidate Willie Wilson

| Travis Cornejo

Chicago businessman Willie Wilson has put $1 million of his own money into his effort to take down incumbent Mayor Rahm Emanuel. We talk with Wilson about his background, why he wants to be mayor, and whether he thinks he has enough support to win.