• Senate President calls for law enforcement investigation of possible rape cover-up

    jjc 031419Senate President John Cullerton is calling for a law enforcement investigation of a possible politically connected rape cover-up that came to light in a recent WBEZ story.

    Cullerton issued the following statement:

    “I urge law enforcement to investigate and get to the bottom of this disturbing situation. Sexual assault will not be tolerated. If anyone has information about this crime, please contact police. I am appalled at the idea that someone would be politically rewarded for covering up a rape. We are all outraged and want answers.”


  • Senate President statement on the passing of former Senator Pat Welch

    WelchSPRINGFIELD —Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton issued the following statement regarding the passing of former Senator Pat Welch.

    “It’s with a heavy heart that I express my deepest condolences to the family and friends of my former colleague Pat Welch. He was a man with the savvy and the determination to be a true, principled public servant to the people he represented.

    “Pat was a fighter for his ideals. He left behind a legislative legacy of equal pay for equal work, environmental protection and investment in local infrastructure. The Pat Welch I had the honor of serving with is the sort of person we speak of when we talk about statesmanship. He will be dearly missed.”

  • Cullerton: Chemical cigarettes are a public health epidemic

    Sen. President John J. Cullerton

    SPRINGFIELD – Vaping has taken the life of three Illinoisans and injured 166 more. Senate President John J. Cullerton is committed to stopping the lung illness outbreak before even more lives are lost – and it starts with the passage of Senate Bill 668.

    “Chemical cigarettes are a public health epidemic,” President Cullerton said. “I don’t want to see these numbers go any higher. I don’t want to see any more teenagers lured to addiction by fruit flavored chemical cigarettes.”

    President Cullerton is the sponsor of SB 668, which would ban flavored nicotine products, including flavored electronic cigarettes and vapes, flavored cigars and flavored chewing tobacco.

    This step toward addressing the epidemic is supported by the Illinois attorney general, the American Lung Association, the American Cancer Society and the Respiratory Health Association.

  • Senate welcomes Consul General of Australia in Chicago

    consul gen 050819On Wednesday, Illinois Senate President John Cullerton welcomed David Bushby, Consul General of Australia in Chicago, to the Senate. The Consulate General of China serves the Midwest Region of the United States: Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, Indiana and Iowa.

    Prior to being named Consul General, Mr. Bushby served for 12 years in Australia’s Parliament, representing Tasmania in the Senate. He was party whip for 10 years and chief government ship in the Senate for four years.

  • Health advocates join President Cullerton in supporting increase to tobacco tax

    jjc 050719Health advocates from across the state joined Senate President John Cullerton in Springfield to announce support for an increase in the state tax on tobacco products.

    “It’s rare that you can sponsor legislation and know that it will save lives. That’s exactly what this will do,” President Cullerton said. “It will stop children from starting to smoke and cause many adult smokers to quit, sparing them from a lifetime of addiction and associated health problems. That’s why the public supports it.”

    President Cullerton’s proposal would raise Illinois’ cigarette tax by $1 per pack and raise taxes on other tobacco products – including cigars and smokeless tobacco – to 64 percent of the wholesale price.

  • Senate marks Holocaust Remembrance Day

    fine 050219SPRINGFIELD – Today the Illinois Senate commemorated Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, in honor of those who lost their lives and those whose lives were forever altered by the horror of the Holocaust. 

    Members of the Illinois Senate released the following statements to reassert their commitment to human rights:

    “Now more than ever, the world needs to remember and reflect on the atrocities that occurred and the sentiments that led to them so that we, for the sake of basic human decency, can ensure they never again happen,” Senate President John J. Cullerton (D-Chicago) said.

  • Cullerton introduces Chicago mayor-elect in Senate

    lightfootOn the heels of a new era beginning in Illinois this year with a new governor, the City of Chicago has set a new course as well by electing Lori Lightfoot as its incoming mayor. Lightfoot is already reaching out to the General Assembly and was introduced by President John Cullerton in the Senate Thursday afternoon.

    In her comments, Lightfoot spoke to cooperation and shared concerns, saying solutions forged together should have resonance across the entire state. She is open and eager to work together.

    Lightfoot grew up in a union household and, having seen workers lose their pensions due to financial mismanagement, said she believes pensions are a promise and wants to work together to ensure these commitments.

  • Tobacco 21 signed into law

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  • Senate President: New governor offers new hope in fight to curb teen vaping, smoking

    jjc 031419SPRINGFIELD — Hoping a new governor results in a better outcome, the Illinois Senate overwhelmingly approved raising to 21 the legal age to buy cigarettes and alternative nicotine products, clearing the way for the proposal to go to Gov. JB Pritzker and become state law.

    The 39-16 vote Thursday comes less than a year after the Senate approved an identical proposal only to have it vetoed by then-Gov. Bruce Rauner. Since then, the proposal has steadily picked up support.

  • Cullerton joins Chicago Tonight discussion on proposed budget

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  • Senate President disappointed by Supreme Court redefining ‘collective’ bargaining

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  • Senate President applauds approval of legislative ethics reforms

    jjc 053118SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate overwhelmingly supported an overhaul of the state legislative ethics process, clearing the way for more independence and accountability from the Legislative Ethics Commission.

    Illinois Senate President John Cullerton voted for the changes championed by Senator Melinda Bush, a Grayslake Democrat.

  • Senate President: Balanced, bipartisan budget a needed step toward stability

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  • Senate welcomes Consul General of China in Chicago

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  • Illinois Senate welcomes Director General of Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (AUDIO)

    jjc taipei 051518Today, Senate President John J. Cullerton welcomed the Director General of Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Chicago, Mr. Eric Huang. Mr. Huange spoke about the relationship and trade between the US and Taiwan.

    TECO in Chicago’s jurisdiction include seven states in the Midwest which are Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin, The geographical size of the seven states is approximately 378,400 square miles, and is 10.5% of the whole landmass of the United States.

  • Cullerton, senators: Don’t use death penalty for politics

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  • Illinois Senate sends message: Religious registries “fundamentally un-American”

    jjc 051018SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Senate overwhelmingly voted to oppose the government creating a database to track people by their religion, sending a message to the White House and Washington that the Land of Lincoln won’t be part of such narrow-minded politics.

    “With this, Illinois sends a message. The government forcing people to register their religion is fundamentally un-American. It conjures up ugly imagery of the past that should never be repeated,” said Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton, the lead sponsor of the legislation opposing religious registries.

  • Senate advances protections for immigrants who assist police

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  • Illinois Senate welcomes British Consul General of Chicago (AUDIO)

    Sen. President John J. Cullerton and British Consul General of Chicago, Mr. John SavilleToday, Senate President John J. Cullerton welcomed the British Consul General of Chicago, Mr. John Saville. Mr. Saville spoke about the relationship and trade between the US and UK, and the value of exports from Illinois to the UK.

    Mr. Saville joined the FCO in 1981 and has had a range of Diplomatic Service appointments including as Deputy Head of Mission in Cuba and as High Commissioner to Brunei Darussalam. His most recent appointment was Her Majesty’s Ambassador to The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

  • Illinois Senate welcomes consul general of Lithuania (AUDIO, VIDEO)

    Sen. President John J. Cullerton and Mantvydas Bakesius, the consul general of the Republic of Lithuania in Chicago

    Senate President John J. Cullerton welcomed the consul general of the Republic of Lithuania in Chicago to the Senate on Wednesday.

    Mantvydas Bakesius has served in the foreign service for nearly 20 years. He began his career in the public relations department of the Ministry of Defense in Lithuania.

    He went on to complete two special missions in Afghanistan before returning to Lithuania to serve as chief of staff for the speaker of Parliament and then as deputy foreign minister.

    He became the consul general in 2017.

    You can listen to or watch his full remarks to the Senate below.