Stories by alexandra silets

Evan Osnos on New Book ‘Joe Biden: The Life, the Run, and What Matters Now’

(Courtesy of Scribner, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.)

In 50 days, Joe Biden is set to become the country’s 45th president, but he still faces an ongoing assault on transition norms from President Donald Trump. Author Evan Osnos joins us to discuss the challenges Biden faces. 

Crain’s Headlines: Cyber Monday Sales Expected to Break Records

(WTTW News via CNN)

The coronavirus pandemic is driving holiday shoppers in the U.S. online — and they’re expected to spend a record $12.7 billion on Cyber Monday. Crain’s Chicago Business reporter Danny Ecker has details.

The Week in Review: Who Will Run for Illinois House Speaker?

(WTTW News)

More Democrats announce they won’t support Speaker Michael Madigan, who vows to run again. As the coronavirus surges, officials urge residents to stay home while CPS announces reopening plans.

Spotlight Politics: Pritzker Announces New COVID-19 Restrictions, Addresses Threats to Family

Gov. J.B. Pritzker provides an update on the coronavirus in Illinois on Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020. (WTTW News)

Gov. J.B. Pritzker tells his political opponents that his family is off limits as he announces new restrictions designed to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Our politics team takes on those stories and more in this week’s roundtable. 

Columnist Heidi Stevens Talks About Her COVID-19 Diagnosis

Heidi Stevens appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020. (WTTW News)

Heidi Stevens is a writer at the Chicago Tribune who taps into many of her own experiences for her “Balancing Act" column. But writing about her COVID-19 diagnosis — and an underlying heart condition — gave her pause.

The Week in Review: Lightfoot, Pritzker Sound Alarm on COVID-19 Surge

(WTTW News)

Coronavirus cases soar. Local contenders for Biden’s Cabinet. President Trump makes unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud. Mayor Lightfoot threatens aldermen. A winner in a close congressional race.

The Week in Review: Biden Inches Toward Victory

Ballots are counted in Wisconsin. (WTTW News)

The count continues in the race for Electoral College votes. A congressional race in Illinois is too close to call. Top Democrats want Illinois House Speaker Madigan to step down as party chairman.

Stressed Out? How to Cope With Election Anxiety and Uncertainty

(PDPics / Pixabay)

If you’re experiencing some fear and trepidation around the 2020 election, you’re not alone. That heightened stress and anxiety has a name that was coined in 2016: election stress disorder.

The Week in Review: Illinois Sets New Daily COVID-19 Records

(WTTW News)

Illinois reports a record 6,943 new COVID-19 cases in a single day, surpassing the previous record set one day earlier. As cases rise so do tensions between Gov. J.B. Pritzker and business owners amid pandemic-related closures.

Spotlight Politics: Pritzker Surprises Lightfoot with COVID-19 Rollbacks

(Andrew Seaman on Unsplash)

A pandemic rollback battle plays out between Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot as Election Day draws near. Our politics team takes on those stories and more in this week’s roundtable. 

DePaul Researchers Help Narrow Data Gap in COVID-19 Testing

(WTTW News)

When the pandemic hit, city officials found there was a significant information gap when trying to collect race and ethnicity data. What researchers at DePaul University is doing to help narrow that gap.

Spotlight Politics: Lightfoot’s Pandemic Budget

(WTTW News)

The mayor’s budget plan, the next coronavirus wave and the final presidential debate. Our politics team takes on those stories and more in this week’s roundtable. 

Candidate Forum: Republican Ives Aims to Unseat Casten in 6th District

Republican Jeanne Ives talks about her bid to unseat freshman Democratic U.S. Rep. Sean Casten.

The Week in Review: Johnson Hit with Lawsuit, Report of Special Treatment

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Nov. 14, 2019. (WTTW News)

Former top cop Eddie Johnson is accused of sexual assault in a lawsuit filed by a member of his security detail. And a new report says he received special treatment after being discovered unconscious behind the wheel last year.

Spotlight Politics: Pritzker Family Feud Over ‘Fair Tax’

Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks with the media on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. (WTTW News)

Billionaire Pritzker cousins are hurling cash at opposing sides of the “fair tax” amendment. Our politics team tackles that story and more — including the battle over the Supreme Court — in this week’s roundtable.

Spotlight Politics: Chicago Faces Major Belt-Tightening

Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks to the media on Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2020. (WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot this week painted a grim picture ahead of her Oct. 21 budget address as the city tries to close a massive budget gap. Our politics team tackles those stories and more in this week’s roundtable.

The Week in Review: Probe Into Madigan’s Conduct Begins

Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan (WTTW News)

Illinois Republicans probe Michael Madigan. U.S. Attorney General Barr touts a drop in Chicago crime. Recordings reveal President Trump knew about COVID-19 dangers while publicly saying the opposite.

Spotlight Politics: Attorney General Barr Touts ‘Operation Legend’ Arrests

U.S. Attorney General William Barr speaks about Operation Legend in Chicago on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. (Pool camera)

Attorney General William Barr credits a federal operation with a significant decline in homicides in Chicago, but Mayor Lori Lightfoot blasts Barr’s “victory lap” as “factually inaccurate.” Our politics team weighs in on that story and more.

Spotlight Politics: Trump, Biden Visit Kenosha

Damage in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Aug. 27, 2020. (WTTW News)

Our politics team of Amanda Vinicky, Heather Cherone and Carol Marin weighs in on the presidential candidates’ visits to Kenosha, demands for an investigation of House Speaker Michael Madigan and more.

The Week in Review: Trump Makes Case for Reelection at RNC

President Donald Trump delivers a speech at the White House on the final day of the Republican National Convention on Thursday, Aug. 27, 2020. (WTTW News via CNN)

A norm-busting Republican National Convention comes to an end. Kenosha takes the national spotlight after the police shooting of Jacob Blake. And COVID-19 cases are on the rise in Illinois.

Spotlight Politics: Democratic National Convention Kicks Off

A still image from former first lady Michelle Obama’s speech for the Democratic National Convention.

A preview of Michelle Obama’s keynote speech and more in this special edition of our weekly roundtable as the convention gets underway.

The Week in Review: City Officials Vow to Crack Down on Looting

Mayor Lightfoot announces a plan to prevent looting as the Chicago Police Department seeks the public’s help in apprehending additional suspects. As Election Day draws closer, the Postal Service issues a warning about mail-in ballots.

The Week in Review: Rising COVID-19 Cases Prompt New Rules from Pritzker

Mayor Lightfoot tests negative for COVID-19 after appearing with an alderman who later tested positive. Gov. J.B. Pritzker takes aim at businesses flouting public health guidance with new rules designed to enforce capacity limits and the state’s mask mandate.

Spotlight Politics: Chicago Public Schools Goes Remote

(WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Wednesday that Chicago Public Schools is moving to a fully remote schedule this fall. Our politics team of Amanda Vinicky, Paris Schutz and Heather Cherone digs into that story and more in this week’s roundtable.

Life After COVID-19: What Will it Look Like?

(Daniel Dionne / Flickr)

What will life, concerts, the workplace and education look like in a post-COVID-19 world? A futurist and a University of Chicago epidemiologist weigh in.

The Week in Review: Pritzker Issues Stern Warning

Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Thursday, July 31, 2020: “We’re at a danger point, everybody. Pay attention.”

The governor warns of a “danger point” as COVID-19 cases rise. Three cops are injured in a shooting. ComEd gets a grilling from aldermen, while House Speaker Madigan says he isn’t going anywhere.