Illinois State Senate

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Illinois State Senate

Seal of Illinois.png
General Information
Type:   Upper house
Term limits:   None
2015 session start:   January 12, 2011
Website:   Official Senate Page
Senate President:   John Cullerton, (D)
Majority Leader:   James Clayborne, (D)
Minority Leader:   Christine Radogno, (R)
Members:  59
   Democratic Party (35)
Republican Party (24)
Length of term:   4 years
Authority:   Art IV, Illinois Constitution
Salary:   $67,836/year + per diem
Last Election:  November 2, 2010 (21 seats)
Next election:  November 6, 2012 (59 seats)
Redistricting:  Illinois General Assembly
Meeting place:
Illinois State Senate Chamber.jpg
The Illlinois State Senate is the upper house of the Illinois General Assembly, the legislative branch of the government of the state of Illinois. The body was created by the first state constitution adopted in 1818. The Illinois Senate is made up of 59 senators elected from individual legislative districts determined by population. Under the Illinois Constitution of 1970, senators are divided into three groups, each group having a two-year term at a different part of the decade between censuses, with the rest of the decade being taken up by two four-year terms.[1] Depending on the election year, roughly ⅓, ⅔, or all of the senate seats may have terms ending. In contrast, the Illinois House of Representatives is made of 118 members with its entire membership elected to two-year terms. House districts are formed by dividing each Senate district in half. The Senate meets at the State Capitol in Springfield Each member represents an average of 217,468 residents, as of the 2010 Census.[2] After the 2000 Census, each member represented 210,496 residents.[3]

In 2010, the Senate was in regular session from January 13th to May 7th.[4]


Article IV of the Illinois Constitution establishes when the Illinois General Assembly, of which the Senate is a part, is to be in session. Section 5 of Article IV states that the General Assembly will convene its regular session on the second Wednesday of January.

Section 5 also creates rules for the convening of special sessions. The section allows the Governor of Illinois to convene the General Assembly or the Senate alone. When the Governor calls a special session, the General Assembly can generally only deal with matters related to the purpose of the session, as stated by the Governor's proclamation of the session, but they can also deal with impeachments or confirmation of appointments. Section 5 also allows the presiding officers of both houses of the General Assembly to convene a special session through joint proclamation.


See also: Dates of 2011 state legislative sessions

In 2011, the Senate was in session from January 12-June 1. A special session has been called by Governor Pat Quinn to settle disputes regarding Illinois construction projects. The session is slated to begin June 22, 2011.[5]


See also: Dates of 2010 state legislative sessions

In 2010, the Senate was in regular session from January 13th to May 7th.



See also: Illinois State Senate elections, 2010

Elections for the office of Illinois State Senator were held in Illinois on November 2, 2010. Seats in every third district (1, 4, 7...) and also district 51 are up for election in 2010, for a total of 21 of 59 districts.

The signature-filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in these elections was November 2, 2009, and the primary election day was February 2, 2010.

In 2010, the total amount of contributions raised in state senate campaigns was $19,051,437. The top 10 donors were: [6]

Donor Amount
Illinois Senate Democratic Fund $3,849,507
Republican State Senate Campaign Cmte of Illinois $1,493,465
Illinois Democratic Party $1,454,869
Illinois Republican Party $1,016,221
Illinois Health Care Association $459,144
Illinois Education Association $395,908
Illinois State Medical Society $315,142
Associated Beer Distributors of Illinois $282,582
AT&T $282,495
Illinois Laborers $261,618


Article IV of the Illinois Constitution states: To be eligible to serve as a member of the General Assembly, a person must be a United States citizen, at least 21 years old, and for the two years preceding his election or appointment a resident of the district which he is to represent.


See also: How vacancies are filled in state legislatures
How Vacancies are filled in State Legislatures
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Whenever there is a vacancy in the Illinois State Senate, the Illinois Constitution mandates that the seat must be filled by appointment when allowed by law. The appointment must be made within 30 days after the vacancy. If a vacancy by a member of the Illinois Senate has more than twenty-eight months remaining in the term, the appointment is interim until the next general election and in this case, a special election must be held to fill the balance of the unserved term. All other Senate vacancies and vacancies in the House of Representatives should be made by appointment with the person appointed being a member of the same political party that last held the seat[7].

The vacancy must be filled by the respective party organizations covering the legislative district[8]. This must be voted on by the respective committeemen and committeewomen representing the legislative district[9]



See also: Comparison of state legislative salaries

As of 2010, members of the Illinois Senate are paid $67,836/year. Additionally, legislators receive $139/day per diem.[10]

The $67,836/year that Idaho Senators are paid as of 2010 is an increase over the $57,619/year they were paid during legislative sessions in 2007. Per diem has increased from $125/day in 2007 to $139/day in 2010. [11]

When sworn in

See also: When state legislators assume office after a general election

Illinois legislators assume office the second Wednesday in January.

Partisan composition

See also: Partisan composition of state senates
Party As of May 2015
     Democratic Party 39
     Republican Party 20
Total 59


Current leadership

Leadership of the 97th General Assembly:[12]

Office Representative Party
President of the Senate John Cullerton Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Majority Leader James Clayborne Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Assistant Majority Leader Antonio Munoz Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Assistant Majority Leader Maggie Crotty Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly Lightford Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Assistant Majority Leader Jeffrey Schoenberg Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Assistant Majority Leader John Sullivan Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Majority Caucus Leader Donne Trotter Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate President Pro Tempore Don Harmon Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Majority Whip Susan Garrett Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Majority Whip Ira Silverstein Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Majority Whip Mattie Hunter Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Majority Whip Terry Link Electiondot.png Democratic
State Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno Ends.png Republican
State Senate Deputy Minority Leader Dale Righter Ends.png Republican
State Senate Assistant Minority Leader Dave Syverson Ends.png Republican
State Senate Assistant Minority Leader John Jones Ends.png Republican
State Senate Assistant Minority Leader David Luechtefeld Ends.png Republican
State Senate Assistant Minority Leader Bill Brady Ends.png Republican
State Senate Minority Caucus Leader Matt Murphy Ends.png Republican
State Senate Minority Whip Pamela Althoff Ends.png Republican

List of current members

District Representative Party Residence Term ends
1 Antonio Munoz Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2015
2 William Delgado Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
3 Mattie Hunter Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
4 Kimberly Lightford Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2015
5 Rickey Hendon Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
6 John Cullerton Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
7 Heather Steans Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2015
8 Ira Silverstein Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
9 Jeffrey Schoenberg Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
10 John G. Mulroe Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2015
11 Steve Landek Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
12 Martin Sandoval Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
13 Kwame Raoul Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2015
14 Emil Jones Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
15 Rev. James Meeks Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
16 Jacqueline Collins Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2015
17 Donne Trotter Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2015
18 Edward Maloney Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
19 Maggie Crotty Electiondot.png Democratic Oak Forest 2015
20 Iris Martinez Electiondot.png Democratic Chicago 2013
21 Ron Sandack Ends.png Republican Downers Grove 2013
22 Michael Noland Electiondot.png Democratic Elgin 2015
23 Carole Pankau Ends.png Republican Bloomingdale 2013
24 Kirk Dillard Ends.png Republican Hinsdale 2013
25 Chris Lauzen Ends.png Republican Aurora 2015
26 Dan Duffy Ends.png Republican Buffalo Grove 2013
27 Matt Murphy Ends.png Republican Palatine 2013
28 John Millner Ends.png Republican St. Charles 2015
29 Susan Garrett Electiondot.png Democratic Highwood 2013
30 Terry Link Electiondot.png Democratic Vernon Hills 2013
31 Suzi Schmidt Ends.png Republican Lake Villa 2015
32 Pamela Althoff Ends.png Republican Crystal Lake 2013
33 Dan Kotowski Electiondot.png Democratic Park Ridge 2013
34 Dave Syverson Ends.png Republican Rockford 2015
35 Christine Johnson Ends.png Republican 2013
36 Mike Jacobs Electiondot.png Democratic East Moline 2013
37 Darin LaHood Ends.png Republican 2013
38 Sue Rezin Ends.png Republican 2013
39 Don Harmon Electiondot.png Democratic Oak Park 2015
40 Toi Hutchinson Electiondot.png Democratic Crete 2015
41 Christine Radogno Ends.png Republican Lemont 2013
42 Linda Holmes Electiondot.png Democratic Aurora 2013
43 Arthur Wilhelmi Electiondot.png Democratic Joliet 2015
44 Bill Brady Ends.png Republican Bloomington 2012
45 Tim Bivins Ends.png Republican Dixon 2012
46 David Koehler Electiondot.png Democratic Pekin 2015
47 John Sullivan Electiondot.png Democratic Rushville 2013
48 Tom Johnson Ends.png Republican West Chicago 2013
49 William "Sam" McCann Ends.png Republican Carlinville 2015
50 Larry Bomke Ends.png Republican Springfield 2013
51 Kyle McCarter Ends.png Republican Greenville 2015
52 Mike Frerichs Electiondot.png Democratic Gifford 2015
53 Shane Cultra Ends.png Republican 2013
54 John Jones Ends.png Republican Mount Vernon 2013
55 Dale Righter Ends.png Republican Mattoon 2015
56 William Haine Electiondot.png Democratic Alton 2013
57 James Clayborne Electiondot.png Democratic Belleville 2013
58 David Luechtefeld Ends.png Republican Okawville 2015
59 Gary Forby Electiondot.png Democratic Benton 2013

Standing Senate Committees

The Illinois Senate has 27 standing committees:[13]

External links


Note: Parts of this article were taken from this article on Wikipedia under its GNU license.