Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. It’s about a 5-minute read that will brief you on today’s biggest stories.
This afternoon will be mostly cloudy with a chance of showers and thunderstorms and a high near 89 degrees. Tonight will be partly cloudy with a low around 72. Buckle up for tomorrow, when it will be sunny and blazing hot with a high near 97 and heat indexes pushing well into the triple digits.
Former President Donald Trump wields a powerful spell over Illinois Republicans with a majority declaring him as their top choice for the White House in 2024 and even more believing legally he should still be there.
More than two-thirds of the state’s GOP voters believe Trump actually won the 2020 election. And nearly nine out of ten still like the combative former president.
Those are some of the conclusions of a new Chicago Sun-Times/WBEZ Poll that takes the political pulse of a state GOP eagerly trying to regain its political footing in Springfield but facing a split between its rising Trump-allegiant wing and its longtime establishment wing seeking to avoid being clipped.
Trump lost Illinois by 17 percentage points in 2020. But Republicans here aren’t bailing on him, despite that reelection drubbing, his double impeachment or bipartisan congressional hearings aimed at highlighting his bellicose role in the fatal Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection.
Those undeniable and historic stains on Trump’s record seem virtually unnoticed by some of the Republicans polled by the Sun-Times and WBEZ.
In fact, it’s almost like none of it happened — or matters. Large numbers of Illinois Republicans still put Trump on a pedestal alongside arguably the party’s most revered president of the 20th Century, Ronald Reagan, a product of downstate Tampico.
“One of the big stories from this poll is it really shows Trump’s continued hold on Republican primary voters,” said Jim Williams, a polling analyst with Public Policy Polling, the North Carolina-based pollster that conducted the Sun-Times/WBEZ survey on June 6 and 7.
Nationally, Trump’s grip on the Republican Party has come under question, particularly after he whiffed in his high-profile primary endorsements in Georgia, Nebraska, Idaho and North Carolina, where he failed to secure reelection for controversial Rep. Madison Cawthorn.
But the Land of Lincoln is solid Trump turf for Illinois Republicans, the Sun-Times/WBEZ Poll suggests.
More news you need
- A Chicago police officer was run over by a naked woman who stole his squad car this morning, authorities say. The officer had stopped to ask the woman why she was lying naked in the street, CPD leader David Brown said.
- Early voting for the June 28 primary is now open acrossall of the city’s 50 wards. Voters can submit a ballot at any site, regardless of where they live in the city, according to the Chicago Board of Elections.
- Oak Park has long kicked around the idea of “capping” the Eisenhower Expressway with landscaped decks, and our David Roeder reports there could finally be federal money to help it get started. The project could add beauty to the local landscape while uniting neighborhoods torn up by the original construction.
- Two months before his close friend Robin Metz died from pancreatic cancer, local writer Donald Evans promised Metz he’d finish the project his pal and fellow writer had started. The book, “Wherever I’m At: An Anthology of Chicago Poetry,” was released today.
A bright one
Burim Baraku stood outside the Gold Coast building where he’s the doorman and imagined the hairstyles, hats and horses he’d see if he could go back in time maybe 150 years.
It wasn’t a random daydream. He was staring at the wood paver blocks unearthed as city work crews tore up the surface of Banks Street just west of DuSable Lake Shore Drive to repave the road.
“People have been coming all week and taking home bits of wood as souvenirs,” Baraku, 58, said.
Portions of the wood along Banks Street are rotten and chipping away. Other sections are in much better shape and resemble brick until, upon closer inspection, the wood grain patterns on the surface become visible.
“They’re kind of all over the place,” said John Russick, senior vice president of the Chicago History Museum.
“Wood was cheap, and Chicagoans wanted to get out of the mud, so it became the paving system for the city that was used and maintained before the Great Chicago Fire and even into the 20th century,” Russick said.
From the press box
- What else can go wrong for White Sox? The injuries and blunders keep piling up for a club that was supposed to compete for a championship this season.
- The Blackhawks’ new amateur scouting director Mike Doneghey laid out his vision for how the club will approach the upcoming draft with our Ben Pope.
- With Julie Allemand in the fold now after the end of her season in France, the Sky have their full roster assembled and a chance to build even more chemistry, Annie Costabile wrote after the Sky’s 88-86 win over the Liberty yesterday.
Your daily question☕
What’s your favorite way to stay cool on an especially hot summer day?
Send us an email at email@example.com and we might feature your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.
On Friday, we asked you: What is your favorite summertime Chicago festival? Tell us why. Here’s what some of you said...
“Blues Fest. Nothing more Chicago then that.” — Walter A Neimantas
“Blues Fest because it is good live music. I saw good acts there for free such as Koko Taylor Bo Diddley and Buddy Guy they were great.” — Erin Eileen
“I really miss the Real Taste of Chicago, when we had the ferris wheel. But as of now, it’s the Silver Room Block Party.” — Nicole Johnson
“Westside Music fest because they always have a great musical line up, engaging host, it’s in August so the weather is always perfect, it’s held in Ogden Park so there’s a good amount of parking, and most important it’s free!” — Geo Pardi
“Blues Fest is the best! And the Sky rally really rocked!” —Jill Twery
Thanks for reading the Chicago Sun-Times Afternoon Edition. Got a story you think we missed? Email us here.