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Illinois House of Representatives

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Illinois House of Representatives
Illinois General Assembly
Coat of arms or logo
Term limits
New session started
January 13, 2021
Chris Welch (D)
since January 13, 2021
Speaker pro tempore
Jehan Gordon-Booth (D)
since January 21, 2021
Greg Harris (D)
since January 10, 2019
Minority Leader
Jim Durkin (R)
since August 29, 2013
Current makeup of the Illinois House of Representatives September 2019.svg
Political groups
  •   Democratic (73)


Length of term
2 years
AuthorityArticle IV, Illinois Constitution
Salary$67,836/year + per diem
Last election
November 3, 2020
Next election
November 8, 2022
RedistrictingLegislative Control
Meeting place
Illinois House of Representatives.jpg
House of Representatives Chamber
Illinois State Capitol
Springfield, Illinois
Illinois House of Representatives

The Illinois House of Representatives is the lower house of the Illinois General Assembly. The body was created by the first Illinois Constitution adopted in 1818. The House under the current constitution as amended in 1980 consists of 118 representatives elected from individual legislative districts for two-year terms with no limits; redistricted every 10 years, based on the 2010 U.S. census each representative represents approximately 108,734 people.[1]

The house has the power to pass bills and impeach Illinois officeholders. Lawmakers must be at least 21 years of age and a resident of the district in which they serve for at least two years.

President Abraham Lincoln began his career in politics in the Illinois House of Representatives.


The Illinois General Assembly was created by the first Illinois Constitution adopted in 1818. The candidates for office split into political parties in the 1830s, initially as the Democratic and Whig parties, until the Whig candidates reorganized as Republicans in the 1850s.

Abraham Lincoln began his political career in the Illinois House of Representatives as a member of the Whig party in 1834.[2] He served there until 1842. Although Republicans held the majority of seats in the Illinois House after 1860, in the next election it returned to the Democrats.[3] The Democratic Party-led legislature worked to frame a new state constitution that was ultimately rejected by voters[3] After the 1862 election, the Democratic-led Illinois House of Representatives passed resolutions denouncing the federal government's conduct of the war and urging an immediate armistice and peace convention, leading the Republican governor to suspend the legislature for the first time in the state's history.[3] In 1864, Republicans swept the state legislature and at the time of Lincoln's assassination at Ford's Theater, Illinois stood as a solidly Republican state.[3]

Cutback Amendment of 1980

From 1870 to 1980, Illinois's lower house had several unique features:

  • The House comprised 177 members. The state was divided into 59 legislative districts, each of which elected three members.
  • Elections were conducted using cumulative voting; each individual voter was given three votes to cast for House seats, and they could distribute them to three candidates (one vote each), one candidate (receiving three votes—this was called a bullet vote) or two candidates (each receiving 1½ votes).
  • Though not constitutionally mandated, the two parties had an informal agreement that they would only run two candidates per district. Thus, in most districts, only four candidates were running for three seats. This not only all but guaranteed that the district's minority party would win a seat (particularly outside Chicago), but usually assured that each party would have significant representation—a minimum of one-third of the seats (59 out of 177)—in the House.

The Cutback Amendment was proposed to abolish this system. Since its passage in 1980, representatives have been elected from 118 single-member districts formed by dividing the 59 Senate districts in half, a method known as nesting. Each senator is "associated" with two representatives.

Since the adoption of the Cutback Amendment, there have been proposals by some major political figures in Illinois to bring back multi-member districts. A task force led by former governor Jim Edgar and former federal judge Abner Mikva issued a report in 2001 calling for the revival of cumulative voting,[4] in part because it appears that such a system increases the representation of racial minorities in elected office.[5] The Chicago Tribune editorialized in 1995 that the multi-member districts elected with cumulative voting produced better legislators.[6] Others have argued that the now-abandoned system provided for greater stability in the lower house.[7]

The Democratic Party won a majority of House seats in 1982. Except for a brief two-year period of Republican control from 1995 to 1997, the Democrats have held the majority since then.


The first two African-American legislators in Illinois were John W. E. Thomas, first elected in 1876, and George French Ecton, elected in 1886.[8] In 1922, Lottie Holman O'Neill became the first woman elected to the Illinois House of Representatives.[9] In 1958, Floy Clements became the first African American woman to serve as state Representative.[10] In 1982, Joseph Berrios became the first Hispanic American state representative.[11] Theresa Mah became the first Asian American to serve in the Illinois House when she was sworn into office January 10, 2017.[12]


The Illinois House of Representatives meets at the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois. It is required to convene on the second Wednesday of January each year. Along with the Illinois Senate and governor, it is vested with the power to make laws, come up with a state budget, act on federal constitutional amendments, and propose constitutional amendments to the state constitution.[13] The Illinois House of Representatives also holds the power to impeach executive and judicial officials.[13]


A person must be a U.S. citizen and two-year resident of an electoral district of at least 21 years of age to serve in the Illinois House of Representatives.[13] Members of the House cannot hold other public offices or receive appointments by the governor while in office.[13]

Composition of the House

Current partisan composition:   Democratic representative   Republican representative
Current partisan composition:
  Democratic representative
  Republican representative
Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Democratic Republican Vacant
End of previous legislature 67 51 118 0
2019-2021 74 44 118 0
January 13, 2021 73 45 118 0
February 18, 2021[14] 72 117 1
February 21, 2021[15] 73 118 0
February 24, 2021[16] 72 117 1
Latest voting share 61.54% 38.46%


The current Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives is Emanuel Chris Welch (D-Hillside), who represents the 7th district. The Democratic Party of Illinois currently holds a majority of seats in the House. Under the Constitution of Illinois, the office of minority leader is recognized for the purpose of making certain appointments. Jim Durkin (R-Western Springs), representing the 82nd district, currently holds the post. On January 25, 2021, Speaker Welch announced the Democratic leadership team for the 102nd General Assembly.[17] Minority Leader Durkin did likewise.[18]


  • Clerk of the House: John W. Hollman
  • Chief Doorkeeper: Lee A. Crawford
  • Parliamentarian: Justin Cox
  • Assistant Clerk of the House: Bradley S. Bolin


As of January 3, 2022, the 102nd General Assembly of the Illinois House of Representatives consists of the following members:[19]

District Representative Party Took
1 Aaron Ortiz Democratic January 9, 2019 Chicago
2 Theresa Mah Democratic January 11, 2017 Chicago
3 Eva-Dina Delgado Ɨ Democratic November 15, 2019 Chicago
4 Delia Ramirez ƗƗ Democratic December 21, 2018 Chicago
5 Lamont Robinson ƗƗ Democratic January 2, 2019 Chicago
6 Sonya Harper Ɨ Democratic October 20, 2015 Chicago
7 Emanuel Chris Welch Democratic January 9, 2013 Hillside
8 La Shawn Ford Democratic January 10, 2007 Chicago
9 Lakesia Collins Ɨ Democratic July 24, 2020 Chicago
10 Jawaharial Williams Ɨ Democratic May 1, 2019 Chicago
11 Ann Williams Democratic January 12, 2011 Chicago
12 Margaret Croke ƗƗ Democratic January 2, 2021 Chicago
13 Greg Harris ƗƗ Democratic December 1, 2006 Chicago
14 Kelly Cassidy Ɨ Democratic April 12, 2011 Chicago
15 Michael Kelly Ɨ Democratic November 23, 2021 Chicago
16 Denyse Wang Stoneback Democratic January 13, 2021 Chicago
17 Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz ƗƗ Democratic December 21, 2018 Glenview
18 Robyn Gabel Ɨ Democratic April 19, 2010 Evanston
19 Lindsey LaPointe Ɨ Democratic July 24, 2019 Chicago
20 Bradley Stephens Ɨ Republican June 29, 2019 Rosemont
21 Edgar González Jr. Ɨ Democratic January 10, 2020 Chicago
22 Angelica Guerrero-Cuellar Ɨ Democratic February 25, 2021 Chicago
23 Michael J. Zalewski ƗƗ Democratic December 6, 2008 Riverside
24 Elizabeth Hernandez Democratic January 10, 2007 Cicero
25 Curtis Tarver Democratic January 9, 2019 Chicago
26 Kam Buckner Ɨ Democratic January 18, 2019 Chicago
27 Justin Slaughter Ɨ Democratic January 5, 2017 Chicago
28 Robert Rita Democratic January 8, 2003 Blue Island
29 Thaddeus Jones Democratic January 12, 2011 Calumet City
30 Will Davis Democratic January 8, 2003 Homewood
31 Mary E. Flowers Democratic January 8, 1985 Chicago
32 Cyril Nichols Ɨ Democratic April 8, 2021 Chicago
33 Marcus C. Evans Jr. Ɨ Democratic April 13, 2012 Chicago
34 Nicholas Smith Ɨ Democratic February 4, 2018 Chicago
35 Frances Ann Hurley Democratic January 9, 2013 Chicago
36 Kelly M. Burke Democratic January 12, 2011 Evergreen Park
37 Tim Ozinga ƗƗ Republican January 5, 2021 Mokena
38 Debbie Meyers-Martin Democratic January 9, 2019 Olympia Fields
39 Will Guzzardi Democratic January 14, 2015 Chicago
40 Jaime Andrade Jr. Ɨ Democratic August 12, 2013 Chicago
41 Janet Yang Rohr Democratic January 13, 2021 Naperville
42 Amy Grant Republican January 9, 2019 Wheaton
43 Anna Moeller Ɨ Democratic March 30, 2014 Elgin
44 Fred Crespo Democratic January 10, 2007 Hoffman Estates
45 Seth Lewis Republican January 13, 2021 Bartlett
46 Deb Conroy Democratic January 9, 2013 Villa Park
47 Deanne Mazzochi Ɨ Republican July 14, 2018 Elmhurst
48 Terra Costa Howard Democratic January 9, 2019 Glen Ellyn
49 Maura Hirschauer Democratic January 13, 2021 Batavia
50 Keith R. Wheeler Republican January 14, 2015 Oswego
51 Chris Bos Republican January 13, 2021 Lake Zurich
52 Martin McLaughlin Republican January 13, 2021 Barrington Hills
53 Mark L. Walker Democratic January 9, 2019 Arlington Heights
54 Tom Morrison Republican January 12, 2011 Palatine
55 Marty Moylan Democratic January 9, 2013 Des Plaines
56 Michelle Mussman Democratic January 12, 2011 Schaumburg
57 Jonathan Carroll Ɨ Democratic October 3, 2017 Northbrook
58 Bob Morgan Democratic January 9, 2019 Deerfield
59 Daniel Didech Democratic January 9, 2019 Buffalo Grove
60 Rita Mayfield Ɨ Democratic July 6, 2010 Waukegan
61 Joyce Mason Democratic January 9, 2019 Gurnee
62 Sam Yingling Democratic January 9, 2013 Grayslake
63 Steve Reick Republican January 11, 2017 Woodstock
64 Tom Weber Republican January 9, 2019 Lake Villa
65 Dan Ugaste Republican January 9, 2019 Geneva
66 Suzanne Ness Democratic January 13, 2021 Crystal Lake
67 Maurice West Democratic January 9, 2019 Rockford
68 Dave Vella Democratic January 13, 2021 Rockford
69 Joe Sosnowski Republican January 12, 2011 Rockford
70 Jeff Keicher Ɨ Republican July 5, 2018 DeKalb
71 Tony McCombie Republican January 11, 2017 Savanna
72 Michael Halpin Democratic January 11, 2017 Milan
73 Ryan Spain Republican January 11, 2017 Peoria
74 Daniel Swanson Republican January 11, 2017 Woodhull
75 David Welter Ɨ Republican July 9, 2016 Morris
76 Lance Yednock Democratic January 9, 2019 Ottawa
77 Kathleen Willis Democratic January 9, 2013 Addison
78 Camille Lilly Ɨ Democratic April 27, 2010 Chicago
79 Jackie Haas ƗƗ Republican December 8, 2020 Bourbonnais
80 Anthony DeLuca Ɨ Democratic March 6, 2009 Chicago Heights
81 Anne Stava-Murray Democratic January 9, 2019 Downers Grove
82 Jim Durkin Ɨ Republican January 6, 2006 Western Springs
83 Barbara Hernandez Ɨ Democratic March 7, 2019 Aurora
84 Stephanie Kifowit Democratic January 9, 2013 Oswego
85 Dagmara Avelar Democratic January 13, 2021 Bolingbrook
86 Lawrence M. Walsh Jr. Ɨ Democratic April 30, 2012 Elwood
87 Tim Butler Ɨ Republican March 3, 2015 Springfield
88 Keith P. Sommer Republican January 13, 1999 Morton
89 Andrew Chesney ƗƗ Republican December 6, 2018 Freeport
90 Tom Demmer Republican January 9, 2013 Dixon
91 Mark Luft Republican January 13, 2021 Pekin
92 Jehan Gordon-Booth Democratic January 14, 2009 Peoria
93 Norine Hammond Ɨ Republican December 14, 2010 Macomb
94 Randy Frese Republican January 14, 2015 Paloma
95 Avery Bourne Ɨ Republican February 14, 2015 Pawnee
96 Sue Scherer Democratic January 9, 2013 Decatur
97 Mark Batinick Republican January 14, 2015 Plainfield
98 Natalie Manley Democratic January 9, 2013 Joliet
99 Sandy Hamilton Ɨ Republican January 1, 2022[20] Springfield
100 C. D. Davidsmeyer Ɨ Republican December 12, 2012 Jacksonville
101 Dan Caulkins Republican January 9, 2019 Decatur
102 Brad Halbrook Republican January 11, 2017 Shelbyville
103 Carol Ammons Democratic January 14, 2015 Urbana
104 Michael Marron Ɨ Republican September 7, 2018 Fithian
105 Dan Brady Republican January 10, 2001 Bloomington
106 Thomas M. Bennett Republican January 14, 2015 Gibson City
107 Blaine Wilhour Republican January 9, 2019 Beecher City
108 Charles Meier Republican January 9, 2013 Okawville
109 Adam Niemerg Republican January 13, 2021 Dieterich
110 Chris Miller Republican January 9, 2019 Charleston
111 Amy Elik Republican January 13, 2021 Fosterburg
112 Katie Stuart Democratic January 11, 2017 Edwardsville
113 Jay Hoffman Democratic January 9, 2013 Swansea
114 LaToya Greenwood Democratic January 11, 2017 East St. Louis
115 Paul Jacobs Republican January 13, 2021 Pomona
116 David Friess Republican January 13, 2021 Red Bud
117 Dave Severin Republican January 11, 2017 Benton
118 Patrick Windhorst Republican January 9, 2019 Metropolis
  • Ɨ Legislator was appointed to the Illinois House of Representatives during session.
  • ƗƗ Legislator was appointed to the Illinois House of Representatives after being elected, but prior to inauguration day of the General Assembly to which they were elected.

Past composition of the House of Representatives


  1. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on October 7, 2012. Retrieved January 11, 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ White Jr., Ronald C. (2009). A. Lincoln: A Biography. Random House, Inc. ISBN 978-1-4000-6499-1, p. 59.
  3. ^ a b c d VandeCreek, Drew E. Politics in Illinois and the Union During the Civil War Archived June 25, 2012, at the Wayback Machine (accessed May 28, 2013)
  4. ^ "FairVote - Illinois' Drive to Revive Cumulative Voting". Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  5. ^ "FairVote - Black Representation Under Cumulative Voting in Illinois". Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  6. ^ "Cumulative Voting - Illinois | The New Rules Project". January 12, 2005. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  7. ^ "HeinOnline". HeinOnline. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
  8. ^ Joens, David A. From Slave to State Legislator: John WE Thomas, Illinois' First African American Lawmaker. SIU Press, 2012.
  9. ^ "Illinois Women in Congress and General Assembly" (PDF). Springfield, Illinois: Illinois General Assembly Legislative Research Unit. February 11, 2016. Retrieved August 21, 2017.
  10. ^ Bone, Jan, ed. (June 1974). "Commission on the Status of Women. Report and Recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly" (PDF). Springfield, Illinois: Illinois Commission on the Status of Women. p. 26. Retrieved August 21, 2017.
  11. ^ Fremon, David K. (December 1991). "How first Hispanic congressional district remaps Chicago politics". Illinois Issues. Springfield, Illinois: Sangamon State University. pp. 22–24. Retrieved August 21, 2017.
  12. ^ Miller, Rich (April 29, 2016). "How the South Side elected the state's first Asian-American lawmaker". Crain's Chicago Business. Retrieved November 8, 2016.
  13. ^ a b c d Constitution of the State of Illinois, Article IV, The Legislature (accessed May 28, 2013)
  14. ^ Democrat and former Speaker Michael Madigan (District 22) resigned.
  15. ^ Democrat Edward Guerra Kodatt selected to succeed Madigan. [1]
  16. ^ Democrat Edward Guerra Kodatt (District 22) resigned. [2]
  17. ^ Nardulli, Jessica (January 25, 2021). "New Leadership in the Illinois House" (PDF). ICCTA Government Relations and Public Policy Report. Illinois Community College Trustees Association. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  18. ^ Miller, Rich (January 25, 2021). "Durkin's new leadership team". Capitol Fax. Retrieved January 25, 2021.
  19. ^ Barlow, Sarah E. (ed.). "Biographies of New House Members" (PDF). First Reading. 34 (1): 2–7. Retrieved January 5, 2020.
  20. ^ Spearie, Steven (January 1, 2022). "'Why not do this?': Sandy Hamilton is Sangamon County GOP's pick to replace Murphy". The State Journal-Register. Retrieved January 3, 2022.

External links

This page was last edited on 1 July 2022, at 19:33
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