On February 26, 2009, CHANGE Illinois, Coalition for Honest New Government Ethics, met for a news conference in downtown Chicago wherein it laid out its program to change Illinois politics. CHANGE Illinois’ statements of principles included a pledge to the citizens of Illinois for fair, open and honest government and for the efficient conduct of state business.
CHANGE Illinois is represented by leaders of civic, business, professional and philanthropic organizations and other leaders of Chicago and Illinois communities.
The purpose of CHANGE Illinois is to overhaul Illinois’ campaign finance systems, one of the most permissive and least regulated in the United States. The coalition urges that the General Assembly of Illinois adopts reasonable limits on individual and political action committee contributions to candidates and parties. CHANGE Illinois recommended implementing limits on fund transfers among political committees and instituting an aggregate limit on the amount of campaign money an individual donor can give to a political committee during an election cycle. CHANGE Illinois recommends that Illinois either prohibit the use of corporate and union treasury funds for political contributions or impose strict limits on direct contributions from corporate and union treasuries. Campaign finance limits are currently in place at the federal level and in most other states.
In attendence were U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky and Illinois State Senator Jeff Schoenberg (pictured).
In partnership with its many prominent members, the CHANGE Illinois coalition plans to build a grass roots network to keep the spotlight on campaign finance reform. It will offer a blueprint for change and help citizens who share its concerns become active in the state’s reform movement.
Civil justice attorney Robert Kreisman represented the Union League Club of Chicago at the news conference. Kreisman is a member of the Union League Club’s Political Affairs Committee and chairman of the subcommittee on External Relations.
Kreisman Law Offices has been practicing Chicago and Illinois law for over 30 years, serving areas in and surrounding Cook County such as Libertyville, Oak Brook, Schaumburg, and Oak Lawn.