Good morning, Chicago.
Illinois Republican U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger will take the national stage Thursday as he is set to chair a hearing of the committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.
An outspoken critic of former President Donald Trump, Kinzinger is one of just two GOP members on the committee. The other is Republican U.S. Rep Liz Cheney of Wyoming.
While Trump and his supporters have labeled the panel a “witch hunt,” Kinzinger and Cheney have also drawn praise for being the only GOP officials taking part. But Kinzinger said his participation has recently prompted a death threat.
Before Thursday’s hearing begins, take a look at what we’ve learned from the Jan. 6 hearings and what’s next.
Here are the top stories you need to know to start your day.
When Richard Irvin became mayor of Aurora five years ago, he named Michael Pegues — a close childhood friend — as one of his most trusted aides at Aurora City Hall. In addition to naming Pegues as Aurora’s chief information officer, Irvin also empowered him to help run OnLight Aurora, a quasi-city agency that managed and sold access to government-owned, high-speed internet lines.
But by 2018, Pegues’ leadership came under scrutiny. Records show that, while he was chairman of OnLight’s board, it sponsored events for his wife’s upstart business. And two contractors told police that Pegues fired them for not paying to sponsor his wife’s events. Pegues told the Tribune he didn’t do anything improper, and Irvin has not been implicated in any wrongdoing. But the allegations are taking on new relevance as Irvin battles to win the Republican nomination for governor on Tuesday.
Starting next school year, dress code policies at Chicago’s public schools can no longer ban head coverings tied to race, ethnicity or hair texture, a change approved without discussion by the Chicago Board of Education.
The Tribune last month found in a comprehensive review of recent school dress code policies that more than 115 public schools in the district banned protective hair-care items such as do-rags, wave caps, head-wraps, bonnets and bandannas. Some students of color who spoke with the Tribune said bans on protective head coverings made them feel like parts of their identities or their culture were not welcome at school.
Chicago speed cameras will continue to issue tickets for drivers going as little as 6 mph over the limit — for now — after Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s allies used a parliamentary maneuver to delay a vote on raising the minimum for speeding citations.
The move to block a vote that would repeal a signature policy of Lightfoot brought temporary relief for her and safety advocates who have sounded the alarm on a recent spate of crashes that injured or killed pedestrians, including young children, on Chicago roads. The lower ticket threshold has also put tens of millions of dollars in fines in city coffers.
A 19-year-old man was critically injured after being shot multiple times at a gathering at North Avenue Beach Tuesday night, Chicago police Superintendent David Brown said. One person was in custody following the large gathering of young people.
“It’s not illegal to come to the beach if you’re a young person. It’s not. It’s never going to be. But at the same time, we’re going to hold you accountable if you break the law, regardless of your age,” Brown said. “So what we’ve done is, obviously, added several layers of security measures, that includes the bag checks, officer presence, very aggressive patrol, very proactive policing around the beaches.”
Born five years after Title IX passed in 1972, Chicago Cubs co-owner Laura Ricketts was among the first generation of girls to benefit from the amendment, which included opportunities in sports. She recalled playing T-ball at 5 years old, and by the time she reached high school, volleyball, softball, basketball and track filled up her calendar. Recently she has started playing tennis with her wife, Brooke.
“It’s hard to overstate how it’s impacted my life — and it made me who I am today, honestly,” Ricketts said of sports. “Sports teaches you about being a teammate, it teaches you to put yourself out there, it teaches you to work really hard, it teaches you about resiliency, it teaches you that there’s no shame in failing as long as you try hard or try something new.
A spin around Lake Michigan easily exceeds 1,000 miles and 18 hours of road time when following shoreline instead of interstate. That’s no vacation for the driver, or travelers low on leisure time.
Another option: Shorten the loop by using two car ferries to cross the Great Lake, which turns the getaway into more of a one-tank trip and adds maritime adventure while exploring smaller chunks of Michigan and Wisconsin.