November 12, 2010

Award-winning journalist to offer election insights

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Award-winning journalist Rick Pearson, the political writer for the Chicago Tribune, will offer his insights into the Nov. 2 general elections next week at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Pearson will provide his election analysis at 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 17, in the lobby of the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute. The event is free and open to the public, but advance registration is required. To register, contact Institute project coordinator Christina Rich at 618/453-4078 or by email at by noon, Wednesday, Nov. 17. The event is part of the Institute’s informal “Pizza and Politics” series.

“This was an election that had important ramifications for this University and this community,” said David Yepsen, Institute director, also noting the upcoming veto session in the Illinois state legislature and the General Assembly’s upcoming regular session in January.

“Rick is a seasoned observer of it all and can help us understand what’s going to happen as a result,” Yepsen said.

Pearson said he plans to speak about “how, in what was heralded as a ‘change’ election, change stopped at the front steps of the Illinois Capitol.” He will review results, the “why’s” behind the numbers, and also look ahead at what is in store at the state and federal levels, he said.

“Given the closeness of the results in some races, I hope to emphasize how important it is for people to be well-informed about the candidates and cast a vote,” Pearson said.

Pearson has more than two decades experience reporting on Illinois government and politics, and was part of the newspaper’s presidential election coverage team, according to his biography on the newspaper’s website. That includes eight years as the newspaper’s Statehouse correspondent in Springfield.

Pearson covered President George W. Bush’s campaigns in 2000 and 2004, and the 2004 Democratic presidential primary campaigns of Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., and former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean. Pearson was lead reporter covering the Iowa caucuses in the 2008 presidential campaign, and then traveled with candidates in both political parties. He has covered six Democratic and Republican national conventions.

Prior to joining the Chicago Tribune as a suburban reporter in September 1988, he was the Illinois political reporter for United Press International in Springfield and political editor for the Rockford Register-Star.

For more information on this program, contact the Institute at 618/453-4009 or visit