Stories by Paul Caine

Vasquez Vanquishes O’Connor in 40th Ward

Aldermanic candidate Andre Vasquez appears on “Chicago Tonight” on April 3, 2019.

Veteran Ald. Patrick O’Connor is taken down by democratic socialist and former battle rapper Andre Vasquez in the city’s 40th Ward. Vasquez joins us to talk about his victory and his aldermanic plans.

Preckwinkle Questions Lightfoot’s Progressive Credentials

Mayoral candidate Toni Preckwinkle joins us as her campaign goes after the progressive bona fides of her challenger, Lori Lightfoot.

Lightfoot Accuses Preckwinkle Campaign of Spreading False Rumors

Mayoral candidates Lori Lightfoot appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Feb. 27, 2019.

Mayoral candidate Lori Lightfoot tells Carol Marin on “Chicago Tonight” that the Preckwinkle campaign had previously tried to “take her out” by spreading a rumor that she would quit the race.

What to Make of This Extraordinary Chicago Election

Fourteen mayoral candidates? A possible runoff? Political reporters and political scientists give us their take on this unprecedented election.

Record Number of Mayoral Candidates Leaves Voters Spoiled for Choice

Chicago voters may want change, but with so many mayoral candidates to choose from, what are they to think? We get election analysis from political reporters Craig Dellimoreo, A.D. Quig and Greg Hinz.

Brookfield Zoo at Forefront of Fight to Save World’s Most Trafficked Animal

David, a young male pangolin, is part of Brookfield Zoo’s “Habitat Africa! The Forest” exhibit. (Credit: Chicago Zoological Society)

Researchers estimate that more than one million pangolins have been taken from the wild over the past decade as demand has soared for their meat and scales. What one local institution is doing to save these scaly anteaters.

Officials React to Pritzker’s State Budget Address

Gov. J.B. Pritzker delivers his first budget address on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019 to a joint session of the Illinois House and Senate at the Illinois State Capitol building in Springfield. (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune via AP, Pool)

State and local politicians and officials weigh in on Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s first state budget address. 

Pritzker to Unveil State Budget Proposal, Facing $3B Deficit

Gov. J.B. Pritzker answers questions about Senate Bill 1, a bill to raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025, after it passed the Illinois Senate on Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019. (Justin L. Fowler / The State Journal-Register via AP)

Gov. J.B. Pritzker unveils his first annual budget proposal amid an estimated $3.2 billion deficit and billions more in unpaid bills. Watch the address and get complete coverage throughout the day.

UIC Study of High School Cliques Finds Some Disturbing Trends

On the first anniversary of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, we examine the role of cliques and alienation in high school life – and what lessons may be learned.

Of Mice and Men in Space: Chicago Researchers Helping NASA Prepare for Mars

NASA has sent a group of laboratory mice into orbit to study the physiological effects of living in space. (Courtesy NASA)

An ongoing NASA study aided by Northwestern researchers sent mice into orbit with the goal of learning more about the physiological effects of living in space. 

Inspector General Decries ‘Keep Your Mouth Shut’ Culture at City Hall

Amid a stunning corruption scandal that includes government raids, undercover moles, Viagra and massage parlors, Joe Ferguson has called for reform of the City Council’s culture.

School Discontent Prompts Calls for an Elected School Board

In this file photo, Board of Education President Frank Clark speaks during an August 2017 board meeting. (Chicago Tonight)

As calls grow for an elected school board, we examine whether more democracy can help bring about better schools.

Former Federal Prosecutors Expect More Charges in Burke Probe

In this May 4, 2011 file photo, Chicago Ald. Ed Burke speaks at a City Council meeting. (AP Photo / M. Spencer Green, File)

A bombshell report about secret recordings of embattled Ald. Ed Burke. We discuss the latest developments in the corruption probe.

Activists, Local Business Leaders Push Back Against Lincoln Yards

| Paris Schutz
An artist’s rendering of the Lincoln Yards master plan released in January 2019. (Courtesy Sterling Bay)

A master plan for the $6 billion Lincoln Yards development is released. The developer says it has taken community concerns to heart, but critics say the plan is being pushed too fast.

Heartland Cafe in Rogers Park Prepares to Close After 42 Years

After more than four decades, a beloved Rogers Park restaurant is shutting down – possibly for good – at the end of the year.

Fed Ignores Trump and Hikes Interest Rates for 4th Time in 2018

“Nothing will deter us from doing what we think is the right thing to do,” Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2018.

The Federal Reserve hikes its benchmark interest rate for the fourth time this year, by one-quarter of 1 percent to 2.5 percent. We discuss the outlook for the markets and the economy.

Chinese Spacecraft Enters Lunar Orbit Ahead of Planned Moon Landing

A Chinese spacecraft enters the moon’s orbit and prepares to be the first to land on its far side. Rabiah Mayas joins us with stories making headlines in the world of science.

Year-End Tax Tips as Trump Tax Code Changes Take Effect

(Ken Teegardin / Flickr)

As the end of the year approaches, it’s time to get your tax affairs in order. Two local tax experts offer their advice.

Former Chief of Staff Remembers George H.W. Bush

In this May 11, 2008 file photo, former President George H.W. Bush arrives on the South Lawn of White House in Washington. Bush died at the age of 94 on Friday, Nov. 30, 2018, about eight months after the death of his wife, Barbara Bush. (AP Photo / Lawrence Jackson, File)

Chicagoan Samuel Skinner knew former President George H.W. Bush, who died Friday at age 94, for nearly 40 years. Skinner joins us in conversation.

What FBI Raid Could Mean for Chicago’s Most Powerful Alderman

Investigators carry boxes away from Ald. Ed. Burke’s 14th Ward office on the city’s Southwest Side on Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. (Jose M. Osorio / Chicago Tribune via AP)

Powerful Chicago Ald. Ed Burke appears to be the target of a federal investigation. Former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti weighs in on the events of the day.

Rosellen Brown Spins Epic Tale of Gilded Age Chicago in ‘Lake on Fire’

A new novel by the New York Times bestselling author and Hyde Park resident is getting rave reviews. Rosellen Brown joins us in discussion.

Trump Declares Support for Saudis Despite Khashoggi Murder

“It’s a very complex situation, it’s a shame, but it is what it is,” President Donald Trump said after releasing a statement about Saudi Arabia on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018.

President Donald Trump says the U.S. stands with Saudi Arabia despite the murder of a Washington Post journalist by agents of the Saudi regime.

Illinois Rolls Out New Savings Program for Workers Without Retirement Plans

We learn about a new state-sponsored savings program aimed at more than one million Illinois workers not already covered by a retirement plan.

Former NATO Ambassador Says Trump Abdicating Global Leadership

In his new book, Ivo Daalder argues that President Donald Trump has chosen to abandon America’s leadership role in the world just as China is becoming more assertive on the global stage.

State Rep. La Shawn Ford Enters Crowded Race for Mayor

State Rep. La Shawn Ford appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Nov. 12, 2018.

He is the 18th declared candidate hoping to replace incumbent Mayor Rahm Emanuel. State Rep. La Shawn Ford tells Carol Marin about his decision to throw his hat in the ring.