The Prodigal President Returns

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Springfield, IL - Now in the twilight of his presidency, Barack Obama will return to Springfield and address the Illinois General Assembly on February 10th.

It seems to be no coincidence that the President would return to the same place on the same date that he announced his candidacy for the highest political office in the United States. It was on the steps of the Old State Capitol downtown Springfield in 2007 that Mr. Obama proclaimed that he would seek the office. Now he'll return to warmer temperatures than that day and try to cool tensions under the Capitol Dome.

In his speech to the Assembly the President is expected to talk about "What we can do together to build a better politics, one that reflects our better selves", according to the administration. He's also expected to speak about putting a stop to redistricting, or drawing district maps that are an advantage to one political party.

Governor Rauner also agrees with the president on redistricting and term limits that he mentioned in his recent State of the State address. The visit by Obama comes during a standoff over approving a budget for the state. Both Republicans and Democrats at least can agree on one thing. They both hope that the visit will encourage some compromise in the state budget negotiations.

Obama was elected to the Illinois Senate in 1996. He then captured a U.S. Senate seat in 2004 and was propelled to the White House in 2008. The last time he was in Springfield was August 23, 2008 and he was not yet the president. On that occasion he was in town to kick off a tour that ended in Denver with his party's nomination for President.

WAND TV will have continuing coverage on Wednesday February 10th as the prodigal President returns to the Land Of Lincoln in what might be his final arrival as President of The United States.

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