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News Around Illinois – April 23, 2020

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Illinois Reports Highest Number Of New COVID-19 Cases In One Day

CHICAGO — The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) reported 2,049 new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday. That’s the highest number of positive cases of COVID-19 the state has seen in one day. Gov. J.B. Pritzker says the high case numbers could be a result of more tests being conducted. More than 164,000 tests have been performed in Illinois so far, according to IDPH. The new cases bring the total number of positive COVID-19 cases statewide to 35,108. An additional 98 deaths were reported, bringing the total up to 1,565. – Lecia Bushak, Illinois Newsroom

More Testing Finds More COVID-19 Cases At Decatur Nursing Home

DECATUR – The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases linked to Fair Havens Senior Living nearly doubled Wednesday, with the report of 33 additional cases from the Decatur nursing home, plus five more cases elsewhere in Macon County. Authorities say the surge is due to additional testing performed this week that covers all residents and staff at Fair Havens. Previously, testing had only been done in one part of the nursing facility. The Illinois Department of Public Health, which regulates nursing homes, sent over more test kits at the request of local officials. Macon County now reports 72 COVID-19 cases at Fair Havens and other congregate facilities, plus 14 total cases elsewhere in the county. Eleven Macon County residents have died, ten of them at Fair Havens.  – Jim Meadows, Illinois Newsroom

Pritzker Offers Tepid Response To GOP Re-opening Proposal

SPRINGFIELD — Illinois House Republicans are suggesting ways for slowly reopening businesses and relaxing restrictions on public interaction as the threat from COVID-19 potentially recedes. With Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s stay-at-home order scheduled to expire April 30, GOP lawmakers offered plans for re-opening businesses such as car dealerships, salons and state parks and allowing hospitals to resume regular screening procedures. It came just a day after Pritzker announced that the rising number of cases won’t hit its peak until mid-May, weeks later than projected, raising questions about a stay-at-home extension. – Associated Press

Chicago City Council Signs Off On New Police Superintendent

CHICAGO — The Chicago City Council has approved the appointment of former Dallas Police Chief David Brown as the city’s police superintendent. The council voted unanimously in favor of Brown on Wednesday. The vote comes a little more than two weeks after Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced her selection of Brown to head the police force in the nation’s third largest city. Lightfoot fired Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson in December, saying he lied to her about what happened one night before he was found asleep at the wheel of his vehicle. Brown will take over from Interim Police Superintendent Charlie Beck. – Associated Press

Michelle Obama’s Star Power Could Help Biden Unite Democrats

WASHINGTON — As Joe Biden looks to unite Democrats, the person with the most influence may be Michelle Obama. The former first lady is a unique figure in a deeply polarizing political environment. Her across-the-board appeal and the energy she brings could be critical for Biden as he tries to build momentum for his campaign during the coronavirus pandemic. Michelle Obama could help Biden present a clear contrast with President Donald Trump and rebuild the multiracial, multi-generational coalition that twice put her husband, Barack Obama, in the White House. Aides say she supports Biden, though an endorsement does not appear imminent. – Associated Press

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