Government of Illinois

Government of Illinois

The state government of Illinois is modeled after the federal government with adaptations originating from traditions cultivated during the state's frontier era.Wikisource. .] The capital of Illinois is Springfield. Under the , there are three branches of government: executive, legislative and judicial. The executive branch is split into several statewide elected offices. Legislative functions are granted to the Illinois General Assembly, made of the 118-member Illinois State House of Representatives and the 59-member Illinois State Senate. The judiciary is composed of the state supreme court, Illinois Appellate Court and circuit courts.


The first capitol building was in Kaskaskia, Illinois. It was a two-story brick building that rented for $4 per day.

Vandalia became the second capital in 1820, and was the site of three capitol buildings. Vandalia's first capitol was a simple two-story structure, which was destroyed by fire. In 1824, Vandalia's second capitol was built to replace the burnt building for $15,000. Soon after the third capitol building was built, many Illinoisans began lobbying to move the capital to a more central location in the state. In 1833, the General Assembly responded by passing an act allowing Illinoisans to choose their capital city. This worried the people of Vandalia, who did not want to lose the capital. Therefore, in 1836, without authorization from the General Assembly, the city tore down the third capitol building and replaced it with the fourth, a brick state house, costing $16,000. In 1839, voters selected Springfield, Illinois as the new state capital city, a distinction it holds to this day.

Illinois' fifth capitol was built in Springfield in 1853 at a cost of $260,000. Construction on the sixth, and present capitol, was begun in 1868. The building took twenty years to complete at a cost of $4.5 million. []


The government of Illinois has numerous departments, including the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois Arts Council.


In the past, Illinois was a critical swing state leaning marginally towards to the Republican Party. This has changed and the state has supported Democratic presidential candidates since 1992. John Kerry easily won the state's 21 electoral votes in 2004 by a margin of 11 percentage points with 54.8% of the vote. Traditionally, Chicago, East Saint Louis, and the Illinois portion of the Quad Cities tend to vote heavily Democratic, along with the Central Illinois population centers of Peoria, Champaign-Urbana and Decatur. It should be noted, however, that in the 2004 presidential election, Kerry won Peoria County by only 94 votes.Fact|date=March 2007 Rural districts tend to vote more heavily Republican, and the southern half of the state has historically tended Republican since the 1920s. The Republican Party was strongest in southern Illinois during the sixties and seventies when Barry Goldwater, Richard Nixon, and Gerald Ford won all areas of southern Illinois, with the exception of East St. Louis, three to one.

tatewide Offices

Rod R. Blagojevich (Democrat) was elected Governor in 2002, replacing George H. Ryan. Blagojevich was re-elected in 2006, defeating Republican state treasurer Judy Baar Topinka.

As of 2007, all statewide offices are held by Democrats, making Illinois the only Midwestern state with this distinction. The Democrats also have a majority of Illinois congressional delegation and majorities in both houses of Illinois's state legislature.

Presidential election results

ee also

*2006 Election for statewide offices in the State of Illinois


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