ILLINOIS ELECTION-BALLOT-TERM LIMITS
Supreme Court won't take up term limits appeal
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Illinois Supreme Court is refusing to take up an appeal of a lower court's ruling that prohibits a vote on term limits from appearing on the November ballot.
The Supreme Court issued the order Friday afternoon shortly after the Illinois State Board of Elections certified the November 4th ballot.
Proponents of term limits for Illinois lawmakers, including GOP gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner (ROW'-nur), wanted a referendum question on the ballot that would limit legislators to eight years in office and make it more difficult to override a veto.
A circuit court judge found the measure violated a provision of the constitution that requires changes to the legislature be both "structural and procedural." An appellate court affirmed that decision earlier this week.
Rauner's campaign didn't immediately return calls seeking comment.
Rauner says Board of Election action a Quinn win
CHICAGO (AP) - Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner says Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and "Springfield career politicians" were winners with finalization of the November 4th ballot by the State Board of Elections.
The board's action Friday means the ballot does not include a referendum to limit the terms of Illinois lawmakers which Rauner championed. The board did allow on the ballot a Libertarian candidate who could undermine Rauner's support among conservatives.
The Illinois Supreme Court was silent on Rauner's request that it act quickly on an appeal of a lower court ruling that the referendum was unconstitutional.
Rauner contends Illinois voters will have a final say on term limits. He says voters should remember that a pro-term limits General Assembly, pushed by a pro-term limits governor, "can put this critical reform in place."
Cardinal George to get experimental cancer drug
CHICAGO (AP) - The Archdiocese of Chicago says Cardinal Francis George is trying an experimental drug to treat his cancer.
The archdiocese issued a statement Friday saying that the 77-year-old George has agreed to participate in a clinical trial at the University of Chicago Medicine. Officials say the drug may activate cells in the immune system so they can attack cancer cells.
The archdiocese says George is continuing treatment at Loyola University Medical Center, and that he's maintaining his regular work schedule.
George said early this year that he believes the cancer eventually will take his life. He survived bladder cancer eight years ago and was diagnosed with cancer in 2012.
George has been the spiritual leader of Chicago's more than 2 million Roman Catholics since 1997.
ICE BUCKET CHALLENGE-CHICAGO ARCHDIOCESE
Church cautions schools on ice bucket challenge
CHICAGO (AP) - The Archdiocese of Chicago is telling principals of its schools that if they take part in the ice bucket challenge to raise funds to fight Lou Gehrig's disease to ask the ALS Association to direct the money to non-embryonic cell research.
Archdiocese officials say the Catholic Church supports only adult stem cell research and the ALS Association uses embryonic stem cells. Schools also have the option of donating to the John Paul II Medical Research Institute, an organization conducting similar research using only adult stem cells.
Chicago ALS Association development director Mary Ilene Blondell says a very small part of ALS Association funding goes to embryonic stem cell research.
The ALS Association said it's raised more than $53 million as participants take a bucket of ice water and drench themselves.
UNITED EXPRESS-EMERGENCY LANDING
United flight to Chicago makes emergency landing
PEORIA, Ill. (AP) - A United Express flight from St. Louis to Chicago made an emergency landing in Peoria after the cabin lost air pressure.
Gene Olson is the director of General Wayne A. Downing Peoria International Airport. He told the Journal Star that United Flight 3642 landed in Peoria, Illinois just before noon.
Olson didn't know what the problem was but said the landing was precautionary and without incident. No one was injured.
It wasn't clear how many passengers were on board the flight. Olson said a second plane was on the way to take them to Chicago. It was expected to depart around 3 p.m.
The flight was operated by GoJet Airlines of Bridgetown, Missouri for United. GoJet's website says it flies CRJ700 regional jets for United Express and Delta Connection.
8 gang members indicted on racketeering charges
CHICAGO (AP) - Federal prosecutors in Illinois and Indiana have announced the indictment on racketeering charges of eight members and associates of a street gang operating in the states.
U.S. Justice Department Chief of Organized Crime James Trusty says the indictment of members of the Two Six Nation street gang announced Friday details more than 40 alleged crimes, including a 2002 murder in East Chicago and a 1999 murder in Whiting, Indiana.
Northern District of Indiana U.S. Attorney David Capp and Northern District of Illinois U.S. Attorney Zach Fardon say the gang regularly moved hundreds of pounds of illicit drugs.
Those named in the indictment live in East Chicago, Gary and Portage, Indiana, and Verona, Pennsylvania.
Capp credited the work of the Chicago Police Department's gang intelligence unit as invaluable to the case.
Seahawks use big first half to rout Bears 34-6
SEATTLE (AP) - Russell Wilson threw for two touchdowns and ran for another score, helping the Seattle Seahawks rout the Chicago Bears 34-6 on Friday night.
Already with a defense expected to be among the best in the NFL again, Wilson and the Seahawks can only hope the offensive efficiency of the past two weeks continues into the regular season.
Seattle scored touchdowns on its first four possessions, and Steven Hauschka hit a 59-yard field goal - what would be a franchise record in the regular season - on the final play of the first half. It was the ninth straight possession Seattle had scored with Wilson on the field.
Jay Cutler played the first half for Chicago and was 12 of 20 for 157 yards and an interception.
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