Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  David Kenney  

Pen Name: None

Genre:

Born: January 8, 1949 in Cicero, Illinois

Sites:


Illinois Connection

Resides in Illinois.

Biographical and Professional Information

David served in the cabinet of Illinos Governor James Thompson and is professor emeritus of political science at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He has also served as the funding director of the Illinois State Historic Preservation Agency.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

A Political Passage: The Career of Stratton of Illinois
ISBN: 0809315491

Southern Illinois University Press. 1990

This first biography of William C. Stratton covers Illinois politics and the Stratton family from the 1920s through the 1950s.

Born into a political family and immersed in Republican politics throughout his youth, Stratton never seriously considered a career other than the one that led him to be a member of congress, state treasurer, and two-term governor of Illinois from 1953 to 1961.

Shortly after Stratton lost the 1960 Illinois gubernatorial race by a wide margin, federal agents began to check his financial records for possible income tax evasion. The IRS accused him of spending political contributions for personal use without paying taxes on them. Stratton was acquitted, but his political career was virtually finished, even though he did run again for governor in 1968.

Basing his work on original sources—including interviews with Stratton—David Kenney focuses on how and why Stratton became involved in politics. He examines Stratton’s goals and the methods he used to achieve them. His discussion of factionalism and the continuing conflicts within the Republican party from the 1920s through the 1950s provides a closeup portrait of Illinois party politics on all levels.

Basic Illinois Government, Third Edition: A Systematic Explanation
ISBN: 0809318229

Southern Illinois University Press. 1993

This latest revision of a classic text presents a comprehensive view of government in Illinois.



David Kenney and Barbara L. Brown begin by describing the role of states in the federal system and the basic nature of Illinois as a governmental entity. Next they offer a thorough description of the policy-making process in government. They discuss the three political regions of Illinois— Chicago, Cook County and the collar counties, and downstate— and they outline recent trends in Illinois voter turnout, ticket splitting, party organization, the election schedule, voter qualifications, and the regulation of campaign finance.



The problems created by the decennial redrawing of district lines, including the redistricting of 1991, are covered in Kenney and Brown’ s treatment of the legislative branch of the government. Special emphasis is given to the question of who goes to the General Assembly and who its leaders are, along with a full description of the legislative procedure.



Turning to the executive branch, Kenney and Brown first focus on the office of governor. Considerable attention is given to the multiple terms of James R. Thompson, Illinois’ longest serving governor, and the election in 1991 of James Edgar. The authors conclude the chapter with a description of the administrative structure of the executive branch.



The Illinois court system and the jurisdictions of its three levels are presented as Kenney and Brown turn to the judicial branch of government. They provide biographical information on each of the current justices of the Illinois Supreme Court with particular emphasis on their partisanship. The judgeship selection process is carefully considered and Operation Greylord, which revealed pervasive corruption in the Cook County courts, is discussed. As is the case in each of the chapters on the branches of government, Kenney and Brown offer detailed descriptions of current public officials.



Basic Illinois Government
also includes chapters on local government, state and local finance, and policy-making issues in education, corrections, welfare, and transportation. In the local government section Kenney and Brown make clear the powers and functions of counties, townships, special districts, and municipal corporations, giving special attention to Chicago and Cook County. They compare the taxing and spending policies of Illinois to those of the rest of the United States and review in detail the controversial income tax increase of 1983 and 1989 with its extension in 1991.

ROLL CALL (Interp Culture New Millennium)
ISBN: 0252005244

University of Illinois Press. 1975

An Uncertain Tradition: U.S. Senators From Illinois 1818-2003
ISBN: 0809325497

Southern Illinois University Press. 2003

This sweeping survey constitutes the first comprehensive treatment of the forty-seven individuals—forty-six white males and one African American female—who have been chosen to represent Illinois in the United States Senate from 1818 to 2003. David Kenney and Robert E. Hartley underscore nearly two centuries of Illinois history with these biographical and political portraits, compiling an incomparably rich resource for students, scholars, teachers, journalists, historians, politicians, and any Illinoisan interested in the state’s heritage.

An Uncertain Tradition: U. S. Senators from Illinois, 1818–2003 is a fresh and careful study of the shifting set of political issues occurring over time and illuminated by the lives of participants in the politics of choice and service in the Senate. Kenney and Hartley plot the course of the state’s varied senatorial leadership, from the state’s founding and the appearance of political parties, through the Civil War and its aftermath, and into the diverse political climate of the twenty-first century. From the notorious to the heroic, the popular to the pioneering, the senatorial roster includes such luminaries as “The Little Giant” Stephen A. Douglas

Lyman Trumbull, who served three terms in the Civil War era

“Uncle Dick” and “Black Jack,” also known as Richard Oglesby and John A. Logan

the “Wizard of Ooze” Everett Dirksen

and modern leaders such as Adlai Stevenson III, Paul Simon, and Carol Moseley-Braun.

Kenney and Hartley offer incisive commentary on the quality of senate service in each case, as well as timeline graphs relating to the succession of individuals in each of the two sequences of service, the geographical distribution of senators within the state, and the variations in party voting for senate candidates. Rigorously documented and supremely readable, this convenient reference volume is enhanced by portraits of many of the senators.


Awards

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