Federal Court Rules Illinois’ Panhandling Law Unconstitutional
A federal judge has permanently banned Illinois’ panhandling law from being enforced on the basis the statute violates the First Amendment. The case was part of a yearlong effort by advocates, including the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, to eliminate such laws.
McConnell: Trump ‘Provoked’ Capitol Siege, Mob Was Fed Lies
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday explicitly blamed President Donald Trump for the deadly riot at the Capitol, saying the mob was “fed lies” and that the president and others “provoked” those intent on overturning Democrat Joe Biden’s election.
Lawmakers Discuss Pros, Cons of Ending Cash Bail
A massive criminal justice bill is heading to Gov. J.B. Pritzker's desk. Approved last week by the Illinois Senate and House, the measure covers everything from police use of force to body cameras. It would also end the practice of cash bail.
Legacy of Muddy Waters to Live On at MOJO Museum
A museum honoring the “father of modern Chicago blues” is headed to North Kenwood. Family members of the late musician Muddy Waters tell us what’s in store for the MOJO Museum.
January 19, 2021 - Full Show
Watch the Jan. 19, 2021 full episode of “Chicago Tonight.”
Exploring the Link Between Unemployment and Poverty
When Illinois required businesses to shut down last March because of the coronavirus pandemic, many workers were left without an income. Now, researchers say they are seeing a dramatic increase in poverty.
The Growing Problem of Poverty in the Suburbs
Poverty is not just an urban issue. We speak with Lake County resident Gary Ladehoff, who is featured in WTTW’s new documentary series “Firsthand: Living in Poverty,” and Maggie Morales of the Lake County Community Foundation.
State and Local Governments Battle Entrenched Poverty Made Worse by the Pandemic
Long before the coronavirus pandemic, communities of color across Illinois and in Chicago were experiencing an epidemic of poverty. We discuss the root causes of poverty and what public officials are doing to address it.
Basic Income: Providing Cash Assistance Directly to Adults, Families
What are basic income payments, and why do some advocates say they can help families in poverty reach their financial goals? We discuss the concept as part of WTTW’s new “Firsthand: Living in Poverty” initiative.
January 18, 2021 - Full Show
Watch the Jan. 18, 2021 full episode of “Chicago Tonight.”
FBI Vetting Guard Troops in DC Amid Fears of Insider Attack
U.S. defense officials say they are worried about an insider attack or other threat from service members involved in securing President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, prompting the FBI to vet all of the 25,000 National Guard troops coming into Washington for the event.
After House Speaker, State Lawmakers Tackle Other Initiatives
A lot happened in Springfield besides the selection of a new Illinois House speaker. Amanda Vinicky has the legislative scorecard.
Respiratory Therapists Seeing More Patients, People on Ventilators Amid Pandemic
Respiratory therapists care for some of the sickest COVID-19 patients. We hear from two local therapists about their experiences and workloads amid the pandemic.
How Virtual MLK Day Celebrations Are Continuing the Activist Mission
From dance and musical numbers to excerpts from some of Martin Luther King Jr.’s most prominent speeches to science experiments, Chicago artists are finding creative ways to further his movement in virtual celebrations.
‘Chicago Tonight’ in Your Neighborhood: North Lawndale
North Lawndale on Chicago’s West Side has faced challenges of economic depression, unemployment and violence for many years, all before the pandemic exacerbated those issues last spring.