December 7, 2008: State Sen. William Cullerton of Chicago

December 8, 2008 9:51:11 AM PST
State Sen. William Cullerton of Chicago is the incoming Senate president, succeeding Emil Jones, who is retiring from the Senate. Sen. Cullerton says he'll try to get Governor Blagojevich and Speaker Madigan to tone down their feud, so the state can enact needed programs such as infrastructure repair. If Illinois doesn't pass such a program, it stands to loss federal matching grants.

He knows Madigan well, having served in the House for 12 years. He has been in the Senate for 16 years. And the governor resides in Cullerton's Senate district; in fact, they live near each other.

Sen. Cullerton also says the state faces a $3 billion budget deficit.