Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers
Thursday, Jul 24, 2014 at 2:05 PM
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By Erin Carlson

Willis Siblings Advance on "America's Got Talent"

Willis Siblings Advance on

The Willis Clan advanced to the next round on NBC's "America's Got Talent" Wednesday after mixed reviews from the judges' panel. Read »

Monday, Jul 7, 2014 at 11:28 AM
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By Erin Carlson

Surviving Willis Sibling Envisions 'Cordial Conversation' With George Ryan

Surviving Willis Sibling Envisions 'Cordial Conversation' With George Ryan

Toby Willis, who lost six siblings in the tragic 1994 car accident that spurred a corruption case indicting George Ryan, says his family has yet to hear from the former Illinois governor. "If we did, we'd be... Read »

Wednesday, Jul 2, 2014 at 4:03 PM
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By Erin Carlson

Blago Could Get Out of Prison Early Pending Appeals Ruling

Blago Could Get Out of Prison Early Pending Appeals Ruling

Disgraced ex-Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich could be released early from his 14-year federal prison sentence for acts of felony corruption that included an attempt to sell Barack Obama's vacant U.S. Senate... Read »

Wednesday, Jul 2, 2014 at 1:55 PM
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By Erin Carlson

George Ryan Unfiltered: Former Illinois Governor Talks Prison and Praying for the Willis Children

George Ryan Unfiltered: Former Illinois Governor Talks Prison and Praying for the Willis Children

George Ryan, now officially free after his probation expired Wednesday morning, tells the Chicago Sun-Times he prays for the Willis children daily but feels no responsibility for their deaths. Read »

Sunday, Dec 15, 2013 at 5:38 PM
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By Ward Room Staff

Ex-Gov. Ryan Attends Service for Mandela

Ex-Gov. Ryan Attends Service for Mandela

Ryan met Mandela on a trip to South Africa in 2000 while he was governor. Read »

Wednesday, Jul 3, 2013 at 8:18 PM
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By Michelle Relerford, Phil Rogers

George Ryan Released From Federal Custody

Former Illinois Gov. George Ryan heads home a day earlier than expected. Read »

Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 10:06 AM
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By Ward Room Staff

George Ryan Writing Tell-All Memoir: Report

Former Gov. George Ryan may spill long-buried Springfield secrets in a tell-all book. Sun-Times columnist Michael Sneed reports the once-imprisoned governor is writing his memoir, and Ryan's son calls it a... Read »

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 3:12 PM
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By Edward McClelland

Opinion: Ryan Should Mentor Future Governors

Opinion: Ryan Should Mentor Future Governors

Now that he's out of prison, George Ryan needs to get a job. Helping other governors stay out of trouble would be a good fit. Read »

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 3:36 PM
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By Phil Rogers

George Ryan Skips Halfway House, Returns Home

George Ryan Skips Halfway House, Returns Home

George Ryan could sleep in his own bed tonight. Efforts are underway to release Ryan from the Chicago halfway house he entered this morning and he could be allowed to go home to his longtime residence in... Read »

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 8:21 AM
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By Lisa Balde

George Ryan 'Paid A Severe Price'

Six years after he was convicted of corruption and sent to prison in Indiana, former Gov. George Ryan was released from prison and installed in a halfway house in Chicago. Ryan left the prison at 1 a.m. and his... Read »

About Ward Room
NBC Chicago's award winning politics blog takes a critical look at Illinois' top influence-peddlers, using a mix of news and commentary designed to keep this state's notoriously corruptible politicians honest and accountable.
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Who We're Covering
Rahm Emanuel

Rahm Emanuel

Foul mouthed, iron-fisted and arrogant. Say hello to Mayor Emanuel.

Scott Walker

Scott Walker

Scott Walker, the governor of Wisconsin, made a name for himself by taking on the unions in Wisconsin, eliminating their collective bargaining power, and then surviving a recall election that sprang from that...

Bruce Rauner

Bruce Rauner

Bruce Rauner, a multi-millionaire venture capitalist from Winnetka and a Republican, took over the Illinois governor's mansion in 2015 and immediately asked the residents of the state to prepare for some pain.

Michael Madigan

Michael Madigan

Master of the Illinois political universe, behind-the-scenes strong arm, and speaker of the house.

Ed Burke

Ed Burke

Ed Burke has played the stoic counterpart to Mayor Daley's outspoken boss hog since the Mayor took office.

Barack Obama

Barack Obama

He's nearing the end of his presidency and considering his next moves. Will Chicago have a play?

See more Who We're Covering
Authors
Phil Rogers Emmy Award-winning reporter with trenchant insight into Chicago's political machinations.
Mary Ann Ahern WMAQ's Political Reporter since 2006, not afraid of a challenge. Read full bio .