Presented by Jasculca Terman

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel has said the U.S. is looking to reassure its European allies. | Susan Walsh/AP file

U.S. weighs military exercises in Eastern Europe

The United States is considering deploying about 150 soldiers for military exercises to begin in Poland and Estonia in the next few weeks, a Western official said Saturday. The exercises would follow Russia’s buildup of forces near its border with Ukraine and its annexation last month of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula.

First lady Michelle Obama will appear on a May 7 episode of "Nashville." | Carolyn Kaster/AP file

Michelle Obama to appear on 'Nashville'

The office of first lady Michelle Obama says she’ll appear on the May 7 episode of the ABC country music drama “Nashville," in an episode titled “All Or Nothing With Me” set at Fort Campbell, Ky.
 

 

Why police recover more guns in Chicago than any other city

It’s not news that Chicago has a gun problem. But that doesn’t make it any more palatable for Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, a firm believer in systems management and improved gun laws as he works to reduce crime in the city.

John Thomas is shown leaving court Friday. The former federal informant is accused of stealing $370,000 from the village of Riverdale that was meant for the development of Riverdale Marina. | Richard A. Chapman/Sun-Times

Informant in Rezko, Carothers cases accused of stealing TIF money

Federal authorities gave long-time government mole John Thomas a Good Friday surprise, arresting him at his home early Friday morning.

Pop Culture and Politics with Alan Sepinwall

Chicago Sun-Times Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Jim Kirk talks pop culture and political themes in television with TV critic and author of "The Revolution Was Televised," Alan Sepinwall.

Congresswomen upbraid Army, say hairstyle rules are unfair

Some members of the Congressional Black Caucus are asking the Army to reconsider new regulations on hairstyles that they see as unfair to women of color. The updated rules banning braids, dreadlocks and twists show "a lack of cultural sensitivity conducive to creating a tolerant environment for minorities," according to a letter signed by 16 congresswomen and sent to Secretary of Defense Charles Hagel.

Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., recently said he will now campaign for Republican Senate candidate Jim Oberweis. | Michael Schmidt/Sun-Times

Mark Kirk’s conundrum in Durbin-Oberweis race

After U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., suffered a major stroke in early 2012, a whispering campaign quickly followed.

Reporters queried. Political operatives impatiently pushed.

Would he come back? Could he come back? Shouldn’t he resign if he couldn’t return yet?

Throughout the year that Kirk was recovering and not in office, a prominent politician emerged as one of his biggest defenders, frequently commenting that Kirk deserved the public’s patience and time to recover.

That wasn’t a Republican. It was U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, our state’s senior senator.

Rep. Aaron Schock in Japan, China, South Korea

 Rep. Aaron Schock R-Ill. departed Friday on an official trip running through April 27  to Japan, South Korea and China traveling with, among others, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor R-Va. and Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan R-Wisc., Mitt Romney's 2012 vice presidential running mate.

Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, visited children suffering from schistosomiasis during their Feb. 15, 2007, trip to Nasarawa North, Nigeria. The Carters traveled to the community to bring national attention to the country's need to make disease prevention methods and treatments with the medicine praziquantel more accessible in its rural and impoverished communities. Photo courtesy of The Carter Center

Jimmy Carter talks gender equality

Human trafficking, unequal pay, sexual assault. We have “a long way to go” in solving these issues, according to former President Jimmy Carter, who hopes his new book, “A Call to Action: Women, Religion, Violence, and Power,” will prompt societal change in the way we approach these problems.

Bruce Rauner spent $15.2 million from the time he launched his bid in 2013 to the end of March. That was more than any of his rivals for the GOP nomination, which he won with 327,289 votes — meaning he spent about $46 per vote. | Associated Press

Rauner wins again, this time in money spent per vote

Sometimes, money can buy you love. 

In the contest for the Republican governor primary nomination, Bruce Rauner spent a staggering $15.2 million from the time he launched his bid in 2013 to the end of March. The spending eclipsed any of his rivals, paving the way for the Winnetka venture capitalist to not only clinch the GOP nomination in March, but walk away with more primary votes than even Gov. Pat Quinn. 

On March 18, the number of votes cast for Rauner: 327,289. 

Broken down, that’s $46 per vote — more than any other candidate running for governor — Republican or Democrat.