Hannah Meisel

Hannah covers state government and politics for NPR Illinois and Illinois Public Radio. Hannah previously covered the statehouse for The Daily Line and Law360, and also worked a temporary stint at political blog Capitol Fax in 2018.

She has also worked as a reporter for Illinois Public Media in Urbana, and served as NPR Illinois' statehouse intern in 2014 while working toward a master's degree in public affairs reporting from the University of Illinois at Springfield. 

Hannah also holds a journalism degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she was a reporter and managing editor at The Daily Illini.

In 2020, the Washington Post named Hannah as one of the best political reporters in Illinois.

The Illinois Department of Public Health on Friday afternoon launched a COVID-19 vaccine hotline — something advocates have been asking Gov. JB Pritzker’s administration to do for months.

Former Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan’s vacated 22nd District House seat has a new occupant — the second replacement in four days — after Madigan asked his first choice to step down this week in an embarrassment to the normally fastidious Democratic boss.

Former Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan has resigned the seat he’s held for the last 50 years effective Thursday.

Embattled House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago) stunned Illinois’ political sphere on Monday morning, announcing he would suspended his campaign for a historic 19th term as leader of the Illinois House after falling short on the support he needs in a first round vote Sunday night.

  Illinois House Republicans say they’re still waiting on Gov. JB Pritzker to propose specific spending cuts to the state’s current year state budget, which is $4 billion out of balance.

  

GOP lawmakers are again demanding answers from Gov. JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Employment Securities over the state’s processing of unemployment benefits. 

The November COVID-19 outbreak at the LaSalle Veterans’ home has killed a 34th resident, the facility reported Friday — just as attorneys for four families of dead residents announced forthcoming lawsuits against the state.

A longtime confidante of House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago) was charged along with two other former Commonwealth Edison lobbyists and the CEO of ComEd’s parent company in a nine-count indictment Wednesday, alleging the four conspired on a wide-ranging bribery scheme all designed to influence the powerful House Speaker.

Citing a sharp uptick in Coronavirus cases and hospitalizations across Illinois, Democratic leaders of the Illinois General Assembly canceled their planned two weeks of Veto Session late Tuesday afternoon, just hours after Gov. JB Pritzker said scrapping session while the state is in dire fiscal straits “would be disappointing.”

Seven months after Congress passed a $2 trillion stimulus package in the early days of the Coronavirus pandemic, local governments in Illinois are still fighting Gov. JB Pritzker’s administration over approximately $150 million meant for municipalities. 

The Illinois Municipal League, which lobbies on behalf of cities and towns in Illinois, already won a fight with Pritzker’s administration this summer over whether municipalities would be able to spend their share of CARES Act money on small grants for businesses in their communities. 

Clean energy advocates are crying foul after Ameren Illinois ended its solar credit program for new solar customers earlier this month, even after state regulators urged the company to hold off.

The libertarian-leaning Illinois Policy Institute on Monday filed suit in an effort to derail Gov. JB Pritzker’s signature policy proposal — changing Illinois’ constitution to allow for a graduated income tax — by forcing the state to issue “corrective notices” about the intent of the tax change, or declaring the vote on the amendment “void.”

A Lake County power couple has allegedly been breaking state campaign finance laws for years, allowing the pair — who sit on the Lake County Board and Lake Forest City Council — to take in more campaign contributions than legally allowed, including from Republican mega donors Dick and Liz Uihlein.

Illinois House Democrats on Monday accused State Rep. Amy Grant (R-Wheaton) of making racist and homophobic statements during a phone call with a purported GOP donor.

The phone call, which was recorded, included instances of Grant mentioning her opponent Ken Mejia-Beal's race and sexuality. Mejia Beal, of Lisle, is Black and openly gay. 

Campus communities in the state feel the consequences of drastic higher education cuts. 

Ilesanmi Adesida
University of Illinois

On the first day of the University of Illinois' fall semester, Urbana campus Provost Ilesanmi Adesida announced he's stepping down. His departure follows the abrupt resignation of Chancellor Phyllis Wise.

  The Illinois Senate has passed a plan to overhaul the way schools are funded. But the proposal has a long way to go before becoming law.

After months of negotiations and with just four days left on the General Assembly's spring calendar, the measure was deemed "ready for primetime." The plan would direct state funding to more impoverished schools and divert funding from schools in wealthier areas.