* Bruce Rauner had some harsh words for Congressman Aaron Schock when he talked to Bernie Schoenburg recently. “I do not think he’s the right person or qualified to be governor — not even close,” Rauner said.
Schock fired back…
“I find that interesting,” Schock told me this week, “coming from someone who four years ago met with me and encouraged me to run for governor … and said that he and his friends would raise me all the money I ever needed.”
Schock said Rauner had “asked to meet with me” back then.
* Schock also had this to say about the upcoming primary…
“I think I can make the case to my primary voters that maybe we need to be thinking about who can actually win the general election,” he said. “Because at the end of the day, being the nominee isn’t worth anything if you can’t win the general election.”
* More from Rauner…
Rauner told me that creating wealth in Illinois and improving schools are among his passions. He said Indiana Gov. MITCH DANIELS is “sort of my hero.”
“It’s amazing that the worst-run state in the country (Illinois) is right next door to the best one,” he said. “They’re cleaning our clock, taking our jobs.” He also said their schools are “much better than ours.”
He described himself as a “free-market, conservative Republican,” but also said his wife, DIANA MENDLEY RAUNER, is a Democrat.
“Nobody’s perfect,” he said. “I love her anyway.”
* Meanwhile, Rauner recently penned an op-ed in support of allowing Illinois counties to impose their own so-called “right to work” laws…
A worker shouldn’t be under a union boss’ thumb any more than under a business boss’ thumb. Increasingly, employers are relocating to these pro-employment freedom states, and are only looking at those states when considering job expansion decisions.
These labor issues, along with high taxes, restrictive regulations and high litigation costs have pushed more and more employers out of Illinois for years. We used to lead the nation in manufacturing employment; now, we’ve declined to merely the national average. As employers and jobs leave, our tax burden is spread over fewer taxpayers, increasing the costs for all of us who choose to remain in Illinois.
The result is a long-term death spiral that can only be reversed by becoming much more attractive to businesses and their investors and much more pro-job creation for workers.
Illinois need not adopt the exact reforms found in Wisconsin, Indiana, or Michigan. But we sure need to move in that direction if we are going to compete for jobs.
One creative solution is available to us that has not been tried elsewhere. Under federal labor law, states may authorize their local communities to decide for themselves whether to embrace right-to-work.
Why not empower Sangamon County, or Effingham County, or any of our other local governments, to decide for themselves if they would like to compete for the jobs that come with new manufacturing plants or transportation facilities built by the many hundreds of companies that will only consider expanding in flexible work areas?
* The Illinois AFL-CIO President was not amused…
A 2011 study conducted by the Economic Policy Institute found that workers in states with right-to-work laws earned, on average, $1,500 less annually than workers in closed-shop states.
The wage discrepancy is even higher for women and minorities. The rate of employer-sponsored health insurance and pensions is also lower in right-to-work states. It is not a coincidence that eight of the top 10 poorest states are so called right-to-work.
While out-of-state corporations and venture capitalists would benefit by paying significantly lower wages and virtually no benefits, the very fabric keeping our communities together today would unravel. The “race to the bottom” would hasten the decline and harm working families who are investing their time and efforts to make their communities better places to live. Responsible job creation for all throughout Illinois is the key to rebuilding our economy, not selling out working families.
* Jim Dey: Beleaguered GOP looks to avoid family fight