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Rutherford sides with unions, cites state Constitution

Monday, Dec 2, 2013

* From a press release issued by Treasurer Dan Rutherford…

“I have taken due consideration over the long Thanksgiving weekend to evaluate the proposal for State Public Pension Reform. Having examined the information available, I do not support the current legislation. I do not believe it will withstand judicial review should it pass the Illinois General Assembly,” said State Treasurer Dan Rutherford.

“Strong beliefs are held in this debate, but fundamental to our rule of law is our Constitution. Our government’s obligation can be changed through a process involving adequate consideration to the employees. In my opinion, the legislation before us fails to address this relationship and offer adequate consideration in exchange for altering the pension benefits.”

“I look forward to working with the General Assembly and interested parties for a fair, Constitutional resolution to the biggest financial issue facing our state”, concluded Treasurer Rutherford.

Looks like Dillard may get a run for his money.

* Meanwhile, credit where credit is due. As we’ve already discussed, the richest man in Illinois Ken Griffin staunchly opposes the pension reform bill. Mr. Griffin is a major Bruce Rauner supporter.

Griffin’s independently wealthy wife Ann, however, is the force behind Reboot Illinois, and that site editorialized today for the pension bill

What would you say about a state that increases its income tax intake by 92 percent over a five-year span, yet spends less on education during that same time?

Or a state that spends nearly 25 cents of every tax dollar it collects on pensions for its current and future retirees? The same state will send 30 cents of each tax dollar to its pension systems in five years.

A state that now owns the worst credit rating in the nation thanks to a pension system that has become a $100 billion long-term liability and, in the immediate term, becomes a bigger budget-devouring problem with each passing year.

We say it’s a state with a serious problem in both its basic finances and its priorities.

It’s Illinois, and this week Illinois lawmakers have the chance – after years of false starts – to reorder state government’s priorities while also ensuring that pension systems for teachers and other public employees don’t go broke in a few decades’ time.

What we’ve seen so far of the pension bill expected to be offered lawmakers on Tuesday looks like the surest bet to stopping the out-of-control pension debt that has grown to monstrous proportions in recent years.

The anticipated bill lives up to the prediction we’ve been making since rebootillinois.com first went live a little more than a year ago: Nobody is going to be happy with it.

That must’ve been an interesting Thanksgiving dinner.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


78 Comments
  1. - RNUG - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:28 am:

    I’ve been saying the Rutherford is the adult in the Gov race.


  2. - Liberty First - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:30 am:

    Rutherford is one of the few Republicans who believe in contract law.


  3. - hisgirlfriday - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:30 am:

    Makes sense for him to position himself there.

    What will Dillard do with having to take an actual vote and his running mate on the pension committee that put this together?


  4. - Mark Glennon - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:37 am:

    New name: Reboot the Can Down the Road


  5. - Pension reform - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:39 am:

    Rutherford words are here… Hurry up and send it to the courts more accurately describes the Treasurer’s thoughts on pension reform.

    http://preaprez.wordpress.com/2011/04/20/deadbeat-dan-rutherford-and-pension-questions/


  6. - too obvious - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:41 am:

    Sheesh why even have a Republican Party in this state?


  7. - 4 percent - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:45 am:

    The height of fiscal irresponsibility. Dan has been Treasurer for three years and a state legislator for 20. Where is HIS PLAN??? I’m tired of politicians shirking their fiduciary responsibility and using simple platitudes.

    Dan Rutherford, Kirk Dillard and Bruce Rauner have now LOST my vote. I never thought I’d say it, but I’m with Bill Brady.

    Mark Kirk - you’re off the list as well.


  8. - Algonquin J. Calhoun - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:46 am:

    Liberty First -

    Not quite; I’m sure lots of Republicans (Rauner, et. al.) believe quite firmly in contract law - when they’re a party to the contract (compensation contracts including stock options, deferred salary, tax avoidance, etc). When it impedes their philosophical/political/class greed goals, well, not so much . . .


  9. - facts are stubborn things - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:47 am:

    Thank you Mr. Rutherford. A man that simply wants to follow the rule of law. Wow, imagine the concept of meeting your contractual obligations. So many legal things can be done to meet our pension problems. If the senate has any guts they will vote down this “leader supported” illegal pension scheem. How do you vote down SB 1 and then support this lates bill? I will say that they did take freezes out of this bill for retirees, but man did they stick it to those with pensions above the baseline ($1000 times years of service) pension amount. It is almost like this was written to seem like a thoughtful fair bill that they know will get overturned. Everybody gets to vote the way they want and then the SC can overide it giving political cover for the GA to do the right thing and pass SB2404. If the SC overturns this lates agreement (assuming it can pass) I am not sure the unions will still put SB 2404 on the table? I would pull the offer and tell the state to pay what they owe…you had your chance.


  10. - Calhoun Native - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:48 am:

    Good for Rutherford.


  11. - facts are stubborn things - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:51 am:

    @4 percent - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:45 am:

    =The height of fiscal irresponsibility. Dan has been Treasurer for three years and a state legislator for 20. Where is HIS PLAN??? I’m tired of politicians shirking their fiduciary responsibility and using simple platitudes.=

    Perhaps his basic plan is to pay the benifits that have been legaly earned. I beleive that is a plan. The idea that a plan has to include cuts to constitutionaly protected benfits is a “straw man” that needs to be knocked down. I agree it would be good for him to come out and explain what changes if any he might want to make to the payment ramp etc. but he seems to have preety much laid out the basic plan that you pay benefits that have been earned.


  12. - circularfiringsquad - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:51 am:

    Wonder why the ReBooters split? And why Mr. ReBoot got to spew with the Tribbie Op-Ed and Ms/Mrs ReBoot got the website.

    What happens if the Tribbies say vote “yes”
    When we hear from Billboards “30 Votes” Cross?
    That will really decided the issue.

    BTW how can CommandoMakeItUp Kirk say the bill is being rushed AND it is based on accounting gimmicks…Ya can only pick one Comando


  13. - Wensicia - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:52 am:

    Good move by Rutherford.


  14. - Soon to be ripped off again - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:53 am:

    Rutherford has ethics and morals. How unusual but refreshing. Rare in politics.


  15. - PublicServant - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 11:57 am:

    Exactly. Rutherford is positioning himself to get the union vote that will not vote for Squeezy, the Quinn…ever. It has nothing to do with his belief in contract law, or the state constitution.


  16. - Wowser - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:02 pm:

    I would argue it has more to do with wanting union money than their votes at this point, though their votes would be a bonus.


  17. - Knome Sane - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:06 pm:

    After this bill passes the legislature, I assume a challenge is filed immediately in Sangamon County. Once the lower court rules one way or the other, it then goes immediately to the Illinois Supreme Court. Can the Illinois Supreme Court deny cert, meaning can they decline to hear the case if the lower court upholds it? Or do they have to hear and rule?


  18. - Anon. - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:07 pm:

    ==What would you say about a state that increases its income tax intake by 92 percent over a five-year span, yet spends less on education during that same time?

    Or a state that spends nearly 25 cents of every tax dollar it collects on pensions for its current and future retirees?==

    Most of that 25 cents goes to TRS, so it’s either paying a current education expense or paying a debt for prior education services. They did count that in determining how much the state is spending on education, right?


  19. - Cassiopeia - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:09 pm:

    Rutherford has positioned himself quite well on this issue, especially if he is the GOP nominee.

    Plus he has done the morally correct thing.


  20. - nikki - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:10 pm:

    rutherford is a good man.


  21. - Formerly Known As... - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:15 pm:

    A voice of sanity appears amid the chaos.

    Good for Rutherford.


  22. - Springfield - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:18 pm:

    Employees of the two biggest employers in Illinois now have a candidate. Democratic state employees in Springfield were already talking about voting for Rutherford in the GOP primary to make sure Quinn losses to someone tolerable. Rutherford just made himself the frontrunner for Governor.


  23. - Matt Dietrich - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:19 pm:

    I want to reiterate something I’ve stated here and elsewhere many times: The editorial content of Reboot Illinois comes from me as editor and Madeleine Doubek as chief operating officer. Anne Griffin is the founding investor of Reboot Illinois but does not dictate, approve or reject editorial content. She did not see the piece in question in advance of its posting today, as is the practice with everything we post. Her husband has no affiliation with Reboot Illinois.

    I expressed much of what was in today’s editorial regarding the guarantee in this blog post on Friday: http://www.rebootillinois.com/?opinion=9129

    We were strong supporters of SB 1 back in the spring and, before that, we were fully behind the Nekritz/Biss bill a year ago.

    The political reality in Illinois today is (a) we need to fix this system and (b) that will not happen with a bill that leaves the door open to a repeat of the legislature’s bad behavior of the past.


  24. - Samurai - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:21 pm:

    == Can the Illinois Supreme Court deny cert, meaning can they decline to hear the case if the lower court upholds it? Or do they have to hear and rule?==

    Appeals to the Supreme Court are heard as a matter of right where a statute has been held invalid.


  25. - PublicServant - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:22 pm:

    Thanks for the laugh Matt..


  26. - too obvious - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:27 pm:

    Anyone understand this latest doubletalk?:

    “The political reality in Illinois today is (a) we need to fix this system and (b) that will not happen with a bill that leaves the door open to a repeat of the legislature’s bad behavior of the past.”


  27. - Knome Sane - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:28 pm:

    @Samurai

    Thank you for responding.


  28. - WhatItIs - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:28 pm:

    Will the other Senator from Illinois please stand up and be acknowledged on pension reform?


  29. - AFSCME Steward - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:32 pm:

    What about the legal reality, the bills you advocate are unconstitutional.

    “The political reality in Illinois today is (a) we need to fix this system and (b) that will not happen with a bill that leaves the door open to a repeat of the legislature’s bad behavior of the past.”


  30. - AFSCME Steward - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:41 pm:

    4 percent

    The height of fiscal irresponsibility is the Dems spending money the state didn’t have. To pay for the unaffordable programs they welched on the pension payments they were supposed to make. That is why we are in this mess. My position was & is that Rutherford, Dillard, Rauner, Brady, Madigan, Quinn or any other leader does not have the authority to strip money already earned from employees. Cullerton made an effort to negotiate with the affected parties. Madigan was disingenuous in all of his interaction with Henry Bayer & the rest of the We are One coilition. Rutherford sides with the rule of law. While I hope he comes out with a position that allows the affected parties to be a part of the solution, his insistence that we follow the constitution is refreshing. The rest of the candidates on both sides and nearly all of the legislators seem to have forgotten that Illinois has a constitution & that it specifically protects pensions.

    “The height of fiscal irresponsibility. Dan has been Treasurer for three years and a state legislator for 20. Where is HIS PLAN??? I’m tired of politicians shirking their fiduciary responsibility and using simple platitudes.

    Dan Rutherford, Kirk Dillard and Bruce Rauner have now LOST my vote. I never thought I’d say it, but I’m with Bill Brady.

    Mark Kirk - you’re off the list as well.”


  31. - Sue - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:43 pm:

    Hey Dan- I am sure the Supreme Court will greatly appreciate your contribution to the constitutional question but I guess your newly stated position has more to do with pandering for your own contribution(s)


  32. - OneMan - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:43 pm:

    Not a attorney nor play on on TV, but is seems to me that a reduction in the COLA is a reduction in benefits. Not sure arguing that we want to spend money on other stuff and we can’t because of the pension system is a legitimate argument.

    Since the courts have rules that full school funding (like a balanced budget is whatever the leg says it is) not sure how this bill passes muster.

    It might make everyone feel good, but I don’t know if I would plan the future on it passing the court test.


  33. - Be squire - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:57 pm:

    Adequate consideration for Rutherford would be for retirees to have to give up their health insurance to get the Cola.


  34. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:58 pm:

    ===Where is HIS PLAN???===

    Maybe his plan is to make the contributions required by current law, aka the law as it stands right now, today.


  35. - A guy... - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 12:58 pm:

    Just my opinion after reading ALL of the stuff provided, thanks Rich, RNUG, and sincere commenters, but I sense that the COLA is the split a hair with a laser legal basis. It’s variable based upon economic realities now. It would seem that there will come an argument that it’s not subject to the Constitutional Diminishment language. Don’t shoot the messenger here, it’s just that’s what I’m surmising in the language I’m reading.


  36. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:06 pm:

    If the COLA is based on less than the full amount of the pension payment for which you made all the contributions required for the number of years you worked in order to earn your monthly payment(less than one of half of my monthly amount under the formula) how is that not a diminishment?


  37. - Tim Snopes - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:18 pm:

    I can see the TV ad now…Rutherford sitting and giggling at dinner table, having tea with a group of retired citizens.
    A woman’s voice is heard in the background, above the giggles:
    “Dan Rutherford,” sigh. “He’s on our side”
    More giggles and grins.
    Paid for by Citizens for Rutherford.


  38. - Former Merit Comp Slave - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:19 pm:

    No doubt how I’m voting now


  39. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:22 pm:

    I worked for the State for 30 years and did not retire until age 66 last year. Does anyone have a suggestion as to where I can get a job to make up the difference of what I paid for and what I will get if this becomes law and does not get struck down?


  40. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:38 pm:

    I’ve never pulled a GOP primary ballot, but if Rutherford keeps this up, I’ll be sorely tempted to do so.


  41. - walkinfool - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:46 pm:

    The status quo is not a plan.


  42. - cod - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:52 pm:

    I think I too will vote for Rutherford over Quinn after hearing his position on upholding the rule of law and the State Constitution.

    I expect the same will happen with the educators who are the victims of the outrageous pension bill being pushed by democratic leaders and the Governor,


  43. - Johnny Q. Suburban - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:53 pm:

    You can always count on common sense with Treasurer Rutherford, which is precisely the reason why I believe he is the right choice to be the next Gov. Who cares if a plan is good or bad if it is also impossible? The legality of the plan is, at the very least, suspect, yet that fact has been seemingly ignored by the screaming from the far right.

    To those asking Rutherford what his plan is, I say this in response: If this plan is unconstitutional, it’s not a plan either! If it’s illegal it is just as reasonable as Rauner’s fantasy of all 401k all the time.

    Thank you, Treasurer Rutherford, for being able to survey the whole field.


  44. - Marty - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:56 pm:

    Dear Mr Rutherford,
    Thanks for clarifying your position regarding the constitutionality of the most recent pension proposal. Keep up the good work. Enclosed please find a check in support of your campaign. Votes to follow on primary election day.
    Sincerely,

    Concerned State retiree
    cc: All Illinois public employees and retirees and their families


  45. - walkinfool - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:56 pm:

    Thanks Matt and Madeline for the clarification. That your statement is true is obvious from the content of the editorial.


  46. - What It Is! - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 1:57 pm:

    Just to be clear: there is no cap on pensionable earnings for Tier I people in TRS. One of the misconceptions is that everything is capped at $109k. Still, a diminishment nonetheless.


  47. - Demoralized - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 2:00 pm:

    ==The height of fiscal irresponsibility is the Dems spending money the state didn’t have.==

    I think there were a few Republicans who had something to do with that as well. This mess didn’t happen just over the last 10 years.


  48. - Cook County Commoner - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 2:02 pm:

    For there to be “adequate consideration” to support constitutional pension reform, then the supposed “reform” cannot violate the constitution’s pension anti-impairment, anti-diminishment language. Since the present round of pension reform seeks to lower pension payouts (and not eg., mix and match different features to perhaps change contribution dates but leave pensioners whole, isn’t the present reform unconstitutional by definition?


  49. - anonymouse - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 2:08 pm:

    No can do Squeezy, Brady, Dullard, Rauner but could vote for someone who will uphold the Illinois Constitution, contract law and infer he intends to pay lawful obligations of a quasi-fraudulent state.


  50. - Misterwhipple - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 2:19 pm:

    Skipping for a moment the desire of our legislators to avoid a very tough vote while pandering to the public, I cast a skeptical eye to legislators who are hiding behind the constitutionality issue. Dan Rutherford, Kirk Dillard and the others hiding behind this issue are not experts on the Illinois constitution. We didn’t hire them to serve on the bench at any level. We hired them to propose and approve solutions to problems.

    What is before us is a solution. Maybe it’s a good solution, maybe it’s dreadful. But legislators are being paid to legislate, not judge. Make a decision on the validity of the legislation, not on your interpretation of the Illinois constitution.

    We have seven Supreme Court justices in Illinois. We don’t need 177 more.


  51. - Retired and Fed Up - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 2:37 pm:

    Legislators and executive officers take an oath to uphold the Constitution so they should be familiar with it or get an opinion from an attorney who is so as not to violate their oaths of office. They do need to know in order to fulfill their lawful obligations.


  52. - AFSCME Steward - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 2:38 pm:

    Misterwhipple

    Isn’t part of the decision making of any bill to determine whether or not it passes constitutional muster. All of the legislators took an oath to uphold the Constitution, so did the Governor.

    “What is before us is a solution. Maybe it’s a good solution, maybe it’s dreadful. But legislators are being paid to legislate, not judge. Make a decision on the validity of the legislation, not on your interpretation of the Illinois constitution.”


  53. - Carl Nyberg - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 2:42 pm:

    Rutherford might have been able to beat Quinn in the Democratic Party primary.


  54. - catrike - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 3:03 pm:

    “It’s variable based upon economic realities now. ”

    It is not “variable based on economic realities”. It is a guaranteed 3% pay increase for life totally disconnected from the cost of living, unlike that received by those on Social Security and most state pensions. It is unfair to state taxpayers and unsustainable. It must go.


  55. - Tri-dean - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 3:17 pm:

    Methinks Matt doth protest too much…


  56. - AFSCME Steward - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 3:20 pm:

    catrike

    Was it also unfair to state taxpayers to skip pension payment to pay for unaffordable programs ? By the way, retirees & public sector emp,loyees are also taxpayers.

    “It is not “variable based on economic realities”. It is a guaranteed 3% pay increase for life totally disconnected from the cost of living, unlike that received by those on Social Security and most state pensions. It is unfair to state taxpayers and unsustainable. It must go.”


  57. - UIC guy - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 3:36 pm:

    @ catrike

    The legislature did not have to build in a 3% annual increase. But they did. They offered a certain level of compensation—salary plus pension rights—to employees. Now they want to reduce the level of compensation for work that has already been done.

    The time to protest against the 3% annual increase was when it was first legislated (or you could have lobbied at any time that it should not apply to those hired after that time). But once a contract is in place (as it is with retirees and with current employees) it’s a bit late to start saying that it’s terms are too favorable and we’re not going to honor them. Keep your promises!


  58. - Formerly Known As... - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 3:54 pm:

    As we discussed here: http://capitolfax.com/2013/06/27/live-pension-reform-conference-committee-coverage/

    Did Lisa Madigan’s office ever join in the discussions of the pension working group, either formally or informally?


  59. - catrike - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 3:56 pm:

    In my view a COLA protection is an essential element of any pension system to protect pensioners from the ravages of inflation. This is the reason Social Security recipients will receive a 1.5% increase this January based on the consumer price index. A similar protection should be afforded state pensioners to protect the purchasing power of their hard earned pensions. But it is hard to argue that a pay increase double the rate of inflation for those no longer working is justified.


  60. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 4:04 pm:

    Pat Brady: “Desperate Rutherford campaign throws perfect panderball announcing no pension reform because of his “constitutional concerns”

    lol Some are speculating that Messrs. Kirk and Rauner are being just as “tactical” and, I suppose, one could say that Mr. Brady is “obviously” seeking attention, as well.

    Is Mr. Brady rooting for Mr. Brady?


  61. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 4:15 pm:

    Good to see @DaSpeaker is back with us, too.


  62. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 4:19 pm:

    I believe the official term for the automatic 3% increase in a state pension (in my case a TRS Pension) is called an A.A.I. and is the benefit that I contracted with from the state for my 36 year teaching career. What a brilliant plan this number is to allow retirees to keep up with inflation, which is what its intention is. If you compare a teacher’s pension with the CPI over the last 30 years their increased values basically parallel each other. Why would politicians want to change something that has worked almost perfectly from its original intention?


  63. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 4:28 pm:

    Well of course he is, Mr. Andersen. How can one not see and comment on how blessed ILGOP is to have so many strong leaders…always, it seems, posturing and pandering “in different directions.”

    I’m thinking about developing a new software program that will predict based on who is working for whom and what the issue is, what the responses of our “leaders” will be.


  64. - Former State Employee - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 4:40 pm:

    I’m now officially a Dan Fan.


  65. - RNUG - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 5:21 pm:

    A guy… @ 12:58 pm:

    That’s a misunderstanding that people have. It is NOT a variable COLA; in fact, it is not a COLA at all. It is an automatic annual increase (AAI) intended to serve the same function as a COLA. However, it was DELIBERATELY set up as an fixed rate AAI so the politicians could not play games with it by changing the formula every year, exactly the scenario the GA is trying to pull here.


  66. - RNUG - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 5:25 pm:

    catrike @ 3:03 pm:

    The fact is the CPI since the feds started measuring it and the CPI over the past 40+ years (my working career) has been 2.9% and 3.1%. As such, the 3% AAI almost exactly mirrors past performance of the CPI.


  67. - Norseman - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 5:44 pm:

    Well, now the Unions have somebody they can give money to.


  68. - Six Degrees of Separation - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 6:00 pm:

    If this were 1982, I doubt we would be having a heated conversation about the “exhorbitant” 3% AAI.


  69. - cod - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 6:25 pm:

    Lets not forget another politician who still believes in the rule of law, Republican attorney general candidate Paul Schimpf, who said:

    “I do think a pension is a promise that needs to be kept. It is a contract under contract law.”


  70. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 6:40 pm:

    =Is Mr. Brady rooting for Mr. Brady? =

    Willy, just to stir things up a bit. How ironic would you find it if Brady one by a landslide because voters assumed they were voting for your idol, Pat Brady?

    Could happen. I’ve seen either evidence of people confusing the two over the past few months, or someone’s testing the waters.


  71. - Anonymous - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 6:42 pm:

    Sorry…that obviously should have been “if Brady WON by a landslide because voters asssume they were voting for your idol, Pat Brady?”


  72. - Sweet Dreams - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 7:28 pm:

    Go figure a politician saying what he thinks will get him the most votes. Me thinks he’s speaks with forked tongue.


  73. - Sweet Dreams - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 7:40 pm:

    Will flip flop for endorsements …2011 quote from Danny llinois should create a second, lower-cost retirement plan for government employees, even if it triggers a legal battle, state Treasurer Dan Rutherford said Tuesday.
    The Republican said current employees should have a choice between the existing plan, which guarantees certain retirement benefits, and a new 401(k)-style investment plan. He said offering a new option would not run afoul of the state constitution, which bars cutting retiree benefits.
    “It should be litigated. For years and years, we’ve been, ‘Oh, it’s unconstitutional.’ Litigate it,” Rutherford said at a news conference.


  74. - Just The Way It Is One - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 8:02 pm:

    Well he’s right about ONE thing: “judicial review” there will BE–indeed! But where it goes after that is ANYbody’s guess…!?


  75. - iThink - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 8:15 pm:

    ==Just to be clear: there is no cap on pensionable earnings for Tier I people in TRS. One of the misconceptions is that everything is capped at $109k. ==

    ???Eh? My reading of the bill certainly see a cap in place.


  76. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 9:07 pm:

    Pat Brady is as relevant as my left sock. His celebrity is based on his irony. If people are going to vote for Bill Brady on the lack of knowledge of the Bradys, they are one election short.

    I do hope “Fire Madigan” gets new life. I like the insanity I know versus the insanity I don’t know.

    I think Commander Queeg, after being relieved, was sent somewhere to say and do whatever he wanted without hurting anyone. Just Saying….


  77. - Soldier of Fortune - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 10:07 pm:

    We are a nation of laws and not of men and women. To my fellow Democrats the only way Rutherford makes it to the big dance is for us to request a Republican ballot in March 2014 and help him get there.


  78. - RNUG - Monday, Dec 2, 13 @ 10:37 pm:

    I was pulling a GOP ballot in the spring anyway to help out a friend in his primary race. Right now it looks like I’ll also be checking off Rutherford’s name at the top on the ballot.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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* Yesterday's blog posts

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        * Ventura not pleased call at first base stands
        * White Sox 2, Red Sox 1: A win for the pitchers
        * Big chill: Alexei motors home on walk-off error


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        * Addiction experts: Cuts could hurt drug treatment..
        * Quinn Leads Rauner in Campaign Cash..
        * Metra files reveal years of political patronage..
        * Quinn with nearly $9 million as Rauner reloads..
        * Governor Quinn Releases First-Ever Illinois Bik.....
        * Latest casino expansion proposal aims for Quinn.....
        * Addiction experts: Illinois budget cuts could h.....
        * Biker's Paradise: Illinois Unveils Transportati.....
        * Quinn, Rauner File Campaign Reports..


        * Topinka reports $125,000 in Illinois income
        * Inmate charged in Rockford lawyer's 2008 death
        * Dress codes: Where should schools set limits?
        * 4th Mexican cartel associate charged in Chicago
        * Addiction experts: Cuts could hurt drug treatment
        * Illinois strip club tax brings in less revenue
        * House fire kills man, infant son in Quincy
        * Kirk will campaign for Oberweis in Senate race
        * Legislative hearing on Chicago casino underway
        * Metra files reveal years of political patronage

        * Lawmakers vote down 'conversion therapy' ban
        * Addiction experts: Illinois budget cuts could hurt drug treatment
        * In new ad, Rauner's wife says no 'social agenda'
        * Legislative hearing on Chicago casino begins
        * Voter rights, crime victim rights amendments set for fall ballot so far
        * 2015 tax rates still far from settled
        * Illinois House Speaker Madigan cleared in transit probe
        * House bill urges schools to make digital emergency plans
        * House panel plans gambling expansion hearing in Chicago
        * Chicago-only casino option to face opposition

        * Photos: Toyota Camry gets a top-to-bottom makeover
        * U.S. Sen. Kirk will campaign for Jim Oberweis in Senate race
        * Metra files reveal years of political patronage
        * Cosi leaving Chicago area for Boston
        * Are leggings acceptable at school?


        * D'Amico leaves one public job — and heads into another
        * Feds: Rep. Derrick Smith admits to FBI he screwed up over bribe
        * Metra clout cards include who’s who of pols as job references
        * CTA narrows possible routes for proposed CTA Red Line expansion
        * CTA narrows possible routes for proposed Red Line expansion
        * Aldermen searching everywhere for alternatives to property tax hike
        * Judge Harris spends $1M for appeals court bid — 5 times the salary
        * Convicted ex-cop Mandell to judge: I ‘never ever bothered anyone’
        * Man who molested, photographed 11 kids gets 50 years in prison
        * Priest reinstated after inquiry finds abuse claim unfounded


        * Cops: Suspicious package spurs closure of portion of Northbound LSD
        * Sandburg HS put on lockdown during police search
        * Latest casino expansion proposal aims for Quinn backing
        * Latest casino expansion proposal aims for Quinn backing
        * Sinaloa cartel associate brought to Chicago to face charges
        * Quinn with nearly $9 million as Rauner reloads
        * Quinn with nearly $9 million as Rauner reloads
        * Judge backs jailing of Amber Creek suspect
        * Chicago TV anchor appears on 'Person of Interest'
        * Cops: Cameras help track down suspect in Lakeview sexual assault


        * The Vanishing Millionaire Tax
        * City Approves More Video Gaming Despite Upcoming Ordinance
        * Rutherford: Dismiss Sexual Harassment Lawsuit
        * Durbin Calls For A Return of 'Earmarks'
        * Quinn, Rauner At IEA Conference - Full Audio
        * FBI agents say indicted state rep took them to get bribe cash
        * McCarthy dismissive of crime research
        * Gas Station Owners Warn Against Fuel Tax Increase
        * Raising Gax Tax "Unwise," Says Quinn, But Offers No Other Ideas
        * Woman alleges housing voucher discrimination in pricey Chicago buildings


        * Addiction experts: Illinois budget cuts could hurt drug treatment
        * Legislative hearing on Chicago casino begins
        * Their view: Remembrance in the cruelest month
        * 2015 tax rates still far from settled
        * House bill urges schools to make digital emergency plans
        * Chicago-only casino option to face opposition
        * Rutherford's lawyers ask judge to dismiss sexual-harassment lawsuit
        * GOP's Rauner raised $9M in first quarter of 2014
        * Illinois House orders audit of anti-violence funds
        * Poll: Illinois residents least trusting of state government


        * Illinois trooper charged for roadside strip search
        * BND wants to talk college safety with students, parents
        * ISP director: Agency concerned by arrest of trooper for strip search
        * Shopping Spree!
        * Survey says: Local economy looking up
        * Kansas State rewards Weber
        * BND wants to talk to college students, parents of students
        * Watch out for the wind this afternoon
        * Street closures listing
        * Dress codes: Where should schools set limits?


        * The 10th District money race
        * Aurora Democrat calls out IHSA
        * Lawyers: Ill. hazing law vague, unconstitutional
        * Ill. House OKs lower-cost hunting bill for seniors
        * Quinn’s running mate takes new consulting job

        * The Affordable Care Act's Successful First...
        * Rep. Jan Schakowsky: The Affordable Care A...
        * Rep. Jan Schakowsky: The Republican Ryan B...
        * "Is The New GM Responsible?": Barra Fields...
        * Schakowsky in Tokyo for Aspen Institute co...
        * Rep. Jan Schakowsky Statement on Shootings...
        * Schakowsky on pre-Passover Kansas Jewish C...
        * On Equal Pay Day, Rep. Schakowsky Calls fo...
        * Statement by Rep. Jan Schakowsky on Suprem...
        * Northwestern unionization leaders turn eff...

        * Loading Koch Industries Website Too Many T......
        * Maryland and DC among worst for food aller......
        * Cleveland State University to reestablish ......
        * Convicted political boss Al Sanchez runnin......
        * Candidates make last filings for local, st......

        * Illinois Lt. Gov. Simon opposes pension le......
        * Dillard Odd Man Out on Pension Deal Reaction...
        * Sen. Mark Kirk sides with Rauner on pensio......
        * Governor's race infighting threatens pensi......
        * SCHOONERS - Home of Everyone's Favorite Be......

        * Budget cuts
        * Obama To Announce $600 Million U.S. Job-Training Initiative
        * Sheila Simon and husband report $208,000 in income, net worth of $675,000
        * Aurora Planned Parenthood Draws Good Friday 'Way of the Cross' Observance
        * Illinois Social Service Providers Brace For A 'Tough' Budgetary Year
        * Analysis: 64,000 Illinoisans Still Without Work
        * Chicago Teachers Union: Improving failed schools full of black kids is RACIST
        * The Illinois roots of the socialist May Day celebration
        * 86M full-time, private-sector workers now sustaining 108M benefit takers
        * Morning Minute: Getting Boomerang buyers back in homes of their own again


        * Governor Quinn Releases First-Ever Illinois Bike Transportation Plan - Plan Formally Makes Bicycles Part of Illinois’ Long-Range Transportation Vision
        * Governor Quinn Honors Jackie Robinson - Barrier-Breaking Baseball Player Was American Icon
        * Governor Quinn Urges Homebuyers to Act Fast and Take Advantage of Welcome Home Illinois Program - Program Offers First-Time Homebuyers Down-Payment Assistance and a 3.75 Percent Interest Rate on a 30-Year Fixed Mortgage
        * Extending Federal Unemployment Would Help 64,000 Illinois Workers - 86 Percent Still Without Work One Month Later; Veterans and Older Workers Hardest Hit
        * Governor Quinn Statement on Passover




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