Flooding on the Edens Expressway Thursday morning forces lane closure. (Sun-Times photo by Jon Seidel)
Good morning. Thunderstorms, high today 72 [Forecast]
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle fly to Boston for a bomb blast memorial, "Healing Our City: An Interfaith Service" at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.[Boston Globe] The 10 a.m. Chicago time service will be carried live on multiple platforms.
Parts of the Ike, Stevenson expressways shut down by heavy rains, flooding. Metra, CTA, O'Hare and Midway Airports reporting delays and cancellations. Flash flood warnings. For the latest and updates [Sun-Times]
Sex, drugs, no rock n'roll
Going to pot... The Illinois House voted to legalize medical marijuana and mandate abstinence in sex education classes for grades 6-12. [Sun-Times][Crain's Chicago Business]
Both bills now move to the state Senate. Lawmakers taking a break from the heavy lifting...as in pension reform.
Gun-control measures fail
Obama called the defeat "shameful" [Sun-Times]
The underlying gun bill--with the anti-traffickling provision named after the slain Chicago teen, Hadiya Pendleton-- is expected to be sidelined today. [Sweet, Sun-Times]
Major takeaway: Obama slapped with big loss on legacy issue. With the Senate shutdown, unlikely the House will act on gun bills.
Weather forces Rahm to delay Washington trip
Mayor Rahm Emanuel was supposed to be in Washington today and Friday; he was grounded in Chicago because of the weather. He was the headliner for an immigration forum hosted by The Atlantic. Tomorrow, Emanuel joins former President Bill Clinton to launch an "Infrastructure Financing for Cities Task Force."
Emanuel was going to conduct rounds in the White House and huddle with Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.)
Boston bomb suspect
Videos of the Boston Marathon finish line blast site yielded the faces of suspects. Now authorities have to find them.[Boston Globe
Ricin suspect arrested
A Mississippi man was arrested in connection with the mailing of letters containing poison to Obama and Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.). Since the anthrax attacks of 2001, all White House and congressional mail is screened. [Sweet, Sun-Times] [Washington Post]
The suspect is an Elvis impersonator [CBS/DC]
*White House Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett on Time Magazine's new list out this morning of 100 most influential people in the world.
*Obama dined last night with a group of Democratic senators at a hotel near the White House. This follows two dinners with GOP senators. A White House official said they discussed immigration, guns and the Boston bomb blasts. Durbin was there along with...according to the official ...Dem Senators Michael Bennet, Chris Coons, Dianne Feinstein, Mary Landrieu, Patty Murray, Jack Reed, Jeanne Shaheen, Debbie Stabenow, Mark Warner, Sheldon Whitehouse and Ron Wyden.
*Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) on Wednesday received the 2013 Good Jobs, Green Jobs Champion Award from the BlueGreen Alliance Foundation. Context: Rush is on the Energy and Commerce Committee.
*Hello, Illinois.... Mike Schrimpf former Republican Governors Association communications director, is new communications chief for Bruce Rauner's gubernatorial exploratory drive. [Politico]
*DLA Piper Chicago office associate Katie Jahnke Dale working with DC colleagues on a new partnership between DLA's New Perimeter global pro bono affiliate and the State Department to combat human trafficking across the globe.
Pressers....House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) at 10:30 a.m. Chicago time; House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) at 9:45 a.m. Chicago time, both in the Capitol.
VA Secretary Eric Shinseki, Secretary of State John Kerry, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta and FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg at various Senate committees testifying on fy2014 budget requests
In Springfield, Governor Pat Quinn delivers remarks at the 5th Annual Muslim Action Day breakfast at the Mansion; later, a speech in the State Capitol in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Meetings.... Illinois Riverboat Gaming Board, Video Gaming Board.
DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin headlines the City Club of Chicago lunch.
Nobel Laureate Gary S. Becker delivers the 3rd annual CME Group Lecture on Global Financial Markets, "Will American Retain its Economic Leadership?
Author Thomas Dyja discusses his book, "The Third Coast: When Chicago Built the American Dream" at the Harold Washington Library.
Chef and Bravo host Curtis Stone discusses his cookbook "What's for Dinner?" at the Barnes & Noble in Skokie's Old Orchard shopping center.
Cubs owners prey on your hopes by promising titles with Wrigley repairs. [Morrissey, Sun-Times]
Bulls clinch a playoff berth; will play Nets on Saturday in first round. [Sun-Times]
Cubs play the Texas Rangers at Wrigley Field this afternoon; White Sox away at the Toronto Blue Jays tonight.