Mike Smith Mike Smith is the graduate Public Affairs Reporting intern for the spring 2020 legisltive session. Lawmaker Wants Harsher Punishments For Harming Domesticated Animals By Mike Smith • Feb 25, 2020 An Illinois lawmaker wants people who injure or kill domesticated animals to face a harsher punishment. Former Watchdog Says Lawmakers 'Squashed' Report Of 'Serious Wrongdoing' By Mike Smith • Feb 8, 2020 As Illinois lawmakers consider whether to change ethics laws after recent scandals, former legislative inspector general Julie Porter is urging them to start with themselves. Supreme Court FOID Decision Could Have National Influence: Lawyer By Mike Smith • Jan 29, 2020 The Illinois Supreme Court says a woman convicted of domestic violence should be able to get a Firearm Owners’ Identification card. New Law Gives Students Hall Pass To Vote By Mike Smith • Jan 27, 2020 Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a law Wednesday aimed at bringing more young people into the civic conversation. Museum Taking Another Look At (Fake?) Lincoln Hat By Mike Smith • Jan 16, 2020 Officials at Springfield’s Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, known as the ALPLM, are once again trying to verify the authenticity of a hat once thought to belong to Lincoln.