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Biden backing Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker caught on hot mic sharing gloomy outlook on presidential race

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Biden backing Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker caught on hot mic sharing gloomy outlook on presidential race


Democratic Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, a vocal supporter of President Biden, was caught on a hot mic Wednesday expressing his dissatisfaction with the state of the presidential race. 

“I mean, we’re just going to keep fighting. I don’t know what to say. You know, got to do what we have to do,” Pritzker was heard telling a man on the sidelines of a crime-fighting event in Chicago.

“I don’t like where we are,” the governor added. 

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker was caught on a hot mic Wednesday expressing his dissatisfaction with the state of the presidential race.  Getty Images for The Democratic Party of Wisconsin

A spokesperson for the governor told NBC Chicago that Pritzker was discussing the presidential race and the debate regarding the 81-year-old president’s status as the presumptive Democratic nominee when he made the comments. 

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The governor’s office did not respond to The Post’s request for comment.

Pritzker, 59, has been floated as a possible replacement for Biden on the Democratic ticket should the president step aside from the race. 

The first-term governor has repeatedly said that he supports Biden’s candidacy even after his disastrous debate against former President Donald Trump last month.

“Joe Biden is our nominee. I’m for Joe Biden. I’ve been campaigning for Joe Biden,” he told reporters earlier this week while refusing to rule out a presidential run of his own if the incumbent were to end his re-election effort. 

Pritzker has repeatedly said that he supports Biden’s candidacy even after his disastrous debate against former President Donald Trump last month. REUTERS
Pritzker, 59, has been floated as a possible replacement for Biden on the Democratic ticket should the president step aside from the race.  AP

Pritzker was among 10 Democratic governors who attended an in-person White House meeting with the president last week, during which Biden reportedly informed them that he needed more sleep and planned to stop holding events after 8 p.m. 

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The governor’s hot mic moment comes on the same day the Biden campaign pulled the plug on a fundraiser that was set to be held in Chicago next month, according to CNN.  

“I think everything’s fluid right now,” Pritzker told reporters Wednesday when asked about the report.

“I honestly think the president is doing a fine job of raising money. You see all the money that they’ve raised online for the Biden-Harris campaign. I know of fundraisers that are ongoing,” he added. “So any rumor that you may have heard about something like that, I think, is overblown.”



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Illinois

Illinois domestic violence deaths increased 110% in 2023, report shows

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Illinois domestic violence deaths increased 110% in 2023, report shows


CHICAGO (WLS) — A staggering number of people are losing their lives to domestic violence.

The number has more than doubled in Illinois in 2023, according to one advocacy group.

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The revelation is now leading to more support for stricter laws to protect survivors.

Normally the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence doesn’t release their annual report until October, but when they noticed that domestic violence homicides increased by 110% in 2023, they told ABC7 they had to take those numbers public.

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“This is such a dramatic increase, we felt like we couldn’t wait until October,” said Vickie Smith, the former CEO of the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

Smith said the spike in the state’s domestic violence-related deaths is cause for concern.

“When a person begins to take steps related to their safety… that increases the danger that the violence will increase,” Smith said.

SEE ALSO | Illinois domestic violence hotline calls increase 90% compared to pre-pandemic levels

“The two to three days after someone gets a protective order is an incredibly dangerous time,” said Amy Milligan, Director of Domestic Violence Services at Metropolitan Family Services.

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Milligan is urging legislators to pass “Karina’s Bill.” The bill was named after Karina Gonzalez and her 15-year-old daughter, who were shot and killed in Little Village after filing for an order of protection from her husband.

“We’re sitting here and debating this bill while families and women and children are dying,” Metropolitan Family Services attorney Loren Gutierrez.

“Karina’s Bill” would require law enforcement to remove a firearm from a home when a survivor is granted an order of protection. It’s something the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence believes can make a difference, especially after the coalition found there were 94 incidents of domestic violence that led to 120 deaths in 2023. Data shows the presence of a gun in a domestic violence situation increases the risk of homicide by 500%.

“Domestic violence is something that effects every community no matter your race, your socioeconomic status,” Gutierrez said.

MFS said the community can help take pressure off of survivors by believing victims if they come forward, being aware of services within your neighborhood and helping them find a safe place to make phone calls or have conversations on getting help.

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“If we can do something to stop that, we need to,” Gutierrez said.

If you or someone you know is in need of support, you are urged to call the domestic violence hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE, or 1-800-799-7233.

Copyright © 2024 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.



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In wake of rule change, Wisconsin football’s Luke Fickell looks back at last year’s win at Illinois

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In wake of rule change, Wisconsin football’s Luke Fickell looks back at last year’s win at Illinois


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INDIANAPOLIS – Luke Fickell said he wasn’t trying to bend any rule.

During Big Ten media day Tuesday, Wisconsin’s football coach was asked about the rule change that appeared to be inspired by the Badgers’ game-winning touchdown at Illinois last season.

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Braedyn Locke threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Nolan Rucci on a tackle-eligible play with 27 seconds left to complete a 14-point, fourth-quarter comeback. UW won, 25-21.

Rucci, listed as No. 66 on the roster, wore No. 93 in the game, a change that gave him the potential to be an eligible receiver. When UW lined up after breaking the huddle, Rucci was a tackle. He became an eligible receiver after the two tight ends who were lined up next to him shifted to other spots in the formation.

After faking a block, Rucci ran to the flat and used all of his 6-foot-7 frame to catch the game-winner.

The play was legal. What bothered Illinois coach Bret Bielema, who contacted the Big Ten about the play, was that Rucci wore a different number during the game than in warmups.

Fickell said the number switch wasn’t an attempt to be deceptive.

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“The numbers thing was as unintentional as anything else I’ve ever done,” Fickell said while noting there were other more pressing rules matters that needed attention.

The rule in question wasn’t clear. Now it is spelled out more specifically. It says if a player enters the game after changing a jersey number or wears a number different from what is listed on the game day roster then he must report the change to the official, who then informs the opposing sideline. Failure to do so results in a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

The new language covers the individual who changes a jersey number during the game as well as the player who doesn’t change his number during the game but appears in a contest wearing something other than his listed number.

Fickell said Rucci, who transferred to Penn State after the season, had been given two jerseys on game day for weeks in case he was needed as an extra tight end.

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“I had been saying to do that for four weeks just for goal line purposes to have bigger guys out there,” Fickell said. “It wasn’t intentional in that they said we didn’t warm up in the number and then went inside (and changed). … The jersey was in his locker from the get-go. It wasn’t like we were like, ‘Warm up in a different number (and then) switch it.”

More: Wisconsin football coach Luke Fickell says leadership is No. 1 thing he will stress to his team

More: Why Wisconsin’s Jake Chaney changed his jersey number, other highlights from Big Ten media day



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Sonya Massey murder: Records show Illinois deputy worked for 6 agencies in 4 years

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Sonya Massey murder: Records show Illinois deputy worked for 6 agencies in 4 years


The former sheriff’s deputy charged with murder in the fatal shooting of Sonya Massey, a 36-year-old Black woman killed inside her Illinois home, had been employed by a half-dozen police agencies since 2020, according to state law enforcement records.

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Sean Grayson’s career included short stints as a part-time officer at three small police departments and a full-time job at a fourth department as well as working full time at two sheriff’s offices, all in central Illinois.

Grayson, 30, who is white, has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder, aggravated battery with a firearm and official misconduct charges in the July 6 killing. He was fired last week by the Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office.

Authorities said Massey had called 911 to report a suspected prowler. Two deputies eventually showed up at her house in Springfield, about 200 miles (320 kilometers) southwest of Chicago.

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Sheriff’s body camera video released Monday confirmed prosecutors’ earlier account of the tense moment when Grayson yelled across a counter at Massey to set down a pot of hot water. He then threatened to shoot the unarmed woman, Massey ducked and briefly rose, and Grayson fired his pistol at her. Massey was hit three times, with a fatal shot to her head.

Sonya Massey and Sean Grayson | Provided

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At a news conference Tuesday in Springfield, civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who is representing Massey’s family, asserted that the Justice Department had opened an investigation into the incident, “which is welcome, because there have been some concerns and revelations by the family that we think need to be investigated.” He said he did not know the scope of the probe.

But in a statement, the Department of Justice said it “is aware of and assessing the circumstances surrounding the tragic officer-involved death” and said it “will continue to track the criminal case.”

James Wilburn, Massey’s father, called for Sangamon County Sheriff Jack Campbell to resign.

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“I want to tell y’all the sheriff here is an embarrassment,” Wilburn said. “This man (Grayson) should have never had a badge. And he should have never had a gun. He should have never been given the opportunity to kill my child.”

A telephone message was left with Campbell’s office.

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The Associated Press is seeking Grayson’s employment history from the six agencies.

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The Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board shows Grayson was hired part time on Aug. 11, 2020, by the Pawnee Police Department. He also was hired part time on Feb. 4, 2021, by the Kincaid Police Department and on May 20, 2021, by the Virden Police Department.

Two months later, he was hired full time by the Auburn Police Department and remained there until May 1, 2022, when he was hired full time by the Logan County Sheriff’s Office. Grayson left Logan County on April 28, 2023, and was hired full time on May 1, 2023, by the Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office.

He received his part-time Law Enforcement Certification on June 5, 2021, according to the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board. His certification status currently reads as suspended on the board’s website.

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Grayson’s attorney, Daniel Fultz, declined comment.

Wilburn and Sonya Massey’s mother, Donna Massey, met with Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton at a Baptist church Tuesday morning.

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“They understood that oftentimes the Sonya Masseys of the world don’t get due process of the law. And that they were committed to saying this would be a fair and transparent investigation and process at every level,” Crump said.

The family wants Congress to approve the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, both of which U.S. House Democrats approved in 2021 before the legislation died in the Senate. The first aims to crack down on police misconduct, excessive force and racial bias in law enforcement, while the voting rights act would require local jurisdictions to seek federal approval before changing voting laws.

“Every member of Congress needs to vote today so that nobody else in this United States of America has to go through what we’re going through,” Wilburn said.

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In a statement released Tuesday, Vice President Kamala Harris said she is joining President Joe Biden in calling on Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.

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“Sonya Massey deserved to be safe,” Harris said. “After she called the police for help, she was tragically killed in her own home at the hands of a responding officer sworn to protect and serve. The disturbing footage released yesterday confirms what we know from the lived experiences of so many — we have much work to do to ensure that our justice system fully lives up to its name.”

Massey’s oldest child, 17-year-old Malachi Hill Massey, said he watched the beginning the body camera video of the shooting of his mother but didn’t finish it.

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“I don’t have no words for this,” Malachi Massey said.

Grayson was being held without bond in the Sangamon County Jail. If convicted, he faces prison sentences of 45 years to life for murder, six to 30 years for battery and two to five years for misconduct.



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