The 21st Show

Gubernatorial Candidate Sam McCann; Immigration In The Midterm Elections; State AG Candidates


Rachel Otwell/NPR Illinois

On The 21st: We speak with Republican State Senator Sam McCann who is running for governor as a third-party candidate. Plus, immigration is a divisive issue across the country, including here in Illinois. We break down where Illinois candidates stand on immigration and, what these state and local officers can actually do about it. And, we’ll hear from the Democratic and Republican nominees for Attorney General. Also, we get the early voting numbers from the Illinois State Board of Elections. 

Over the past week we’ve been airing our interviews with candidates for governor. Gov. Rauner’s campaign staff did not respond to repeated invitations to be interviewed. Today, we spoke with Sam McCann.  He’s a state senator who represents Illinois’ 50th district. It stretches from the area just west of Springfield, all the way to the Missouri border and just north of St. Louis. He’s now running for governor as a member of the Conservative Party. 


For more than a decade, leaders in Washington have called for an overhaul of the US immigration system. But they’ve never been able to agree on what the best way forward is. Everything from the DREAM Act, originally proposed by Senator Dick Durbin, to a bipartisan Senate bill in 2013. None of these ideas ever completely materialized.

Since President Donald Trump took office, immigration has become an even more divisive issue. Families have been separated at the southern border. Federal authorities have continued to detain and deport immigrants living in the country illegally. And the government was shut down for two days over the future of the Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals program, which President Trump tried to end, but is currently in place, for now. Even this morning, we heard news reports of President Trump saying he would like to end birthright citizenship via an executive order.

All this week, we’re diving into the biggest issues in the midterm elections. And today, we were joined by Melissa Sanchez, a reporter for ProPublica Illinois.

Elizabeth Rompf Bruen is an immigration attorney at Delgado Rompf Bruen in Chicago. She’s also Secretary of the Chicago chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers’ Association and she also joined us. 


The Illinois attorney general is the state’s chief legal officer. And for more than 15 years that office has been held by Lisa Madigan. But this time she’s not running for another term.

We’re following the ballot order in Champaign County, and so first we heard from Senator Kwame Raoul. He’s represented Illinois 13th Senate district since 2004, it stretches from Chicago’s Near North Side south to Indiana border along the lake.He’s also a former prosecutor for Cook County.

Next up we spoke with Erika Harold who is the Republican nominee for attorney general. She’s a lawyer based in Champaign-Urbana. She ran for Congress in 2014, and also serves on the Illinois Supreme Court Committee on Equality.


A week from today, millions of Americans will go to a polling place to cast their ballot. But millions of others have already done that.

Early voting locations have been open all over the state, including your local county clerk’s office. Voters have also been sending their mail-in ballots ahead of time. And so far, the number of Illinoisans voting early is higher than it was at the same time before the last midterm election in 2014.

Matt Dietrich is the spokesperson for the Illinois State Board of Elections. He joined us from Springfield. 

Story source: WILL