Illinois Public Media News


NPR - Illinois Public Media News - February 27, 2013

Supreme Court Weighs Future Of Voting Rights Act

By Nina Totenberg

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(Duration: 7:40)

 People wait in line outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 27,2013, to listen to oral arguments in the Shelby County, Ala., v. Holder voting rights case.

Once again, race is front and center at the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday. And once again, the bull's eye is the 1965 Voting Rights Act, widely viewed as the most effective and successful civil rights legislation in American history. Upheld five times by the court, the law now appears to be on life support.




WILL - Illinois Public Media News - January 18, 2013

Member of ‘Little Rock Nine’ Speaks in Champaign

Students became symbol of the Civil Rights Movement

By Jeff Bossert

Ernest Green

In September 1957, a group of African-American teens who came to be known as the ‘The Little Rock Nine’ would play a large role in the civil rights movement.

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WILL - Illinois Public Media News - August 10, 2012

Interfaith Vigil Held Following Temple Shooting, Mosque Fire

Story by Sean Powers

Interfaith Vigil Held Following Temple Shooting, Mosque Fire

An interfaith vigil at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign attracted more than 30 people Thursday, who showed their support following two tragedies this week at a mosque and a temple.


AP - Illinois Public Media News - July 03, 2012

Downstate County Clerks Move to Defend Gay Marriage Ban

(With additional reporting from The Associated Press)

Two county clerks from downstate Illinois are asking to intervene in a lawsuit over the state's gay marriage ban.

The Thomas More Society late Friday filed a request on behalf of Effingham County Clerk Kerry Hirtzel and Tazewell County Clerk Christie Webb, seeking to intervene in the lawsuit filed in Cook County by 25 same-sex couples who were turned away when they tried to get marriage licenses from Cook County Clerk David Orr.

The move to intervene is being spearheaded by the Chicago-based Thomas More Society, a conservative non-profit law group. All of this comes just a couple of weeks after Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez announced she would not defend the state's same-sex marriage ban against the lawsuits, because she, too, thinks it violates the Illinois Constitution. In early June, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan also filed court papers indicating she would not defend the state law.

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WILL - Illinois Public Media News - July 03, 2012

llinois Clerks Defend Gay Marriage Ban

Two county clerks from downstate Illinois are throwing their support to an effort to defend the state's gay marriage ban in court.

In May, twenty-five gay and lesbian couples represented by the ACLU and Lambda Legal launched separate cases that were later consolidated, which argued that Illinois' same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional.

The Effingham and Tazewell county clerks decided to intervene after Cook County's State's Attorney and the Illinois Attorney General refused to defend the marriage ban.

Tazewell County Clerk Christie Webb said she has no position on gay marriage, but just wants to ensure there's a uniform law for all counties.

Effingham County Clerk Kerry Hirtzel said the marriage debate should stay out of court.

"This I realize is a volatile subject, I suppose, but it should be changed by our legislature or a vote of our people of the state," Hirtzel said.

But Camilla Taylor, who is the lead lawyer in Lambda Legal's lawsuit, said this is exactly the type of issue that belongs in a courtroom.

"When a law deprives you of your dignity, your equality, and your humanity, you always go to the court to vindicate your state constitutional guarantees," Taylor said.

Taylor said she doesn't object to the county clerks intervening in this case since she says they have a right to voice their concerns.

The Thomas More Society, which is a public-interest law firm that opposes gay marriage, is representing the county clerks.

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WILL - Illinois Public Media News - March 05, 2012

Urbana City Council Approves Naming Courthouse After Burgess

Urbana City Council Approves Naming Courthouse After Burgess

The Urbana's City Council Monday night approved a resolution to name the city's federal courthouse after Champaign County's first African-American elected official.

Categories: Civil Rights, History

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