All four Republican candidates for Illinois governor said fixing the state’s economic woes would be among their top priorities if they win — an issue they’ll be trying to distinguish themselves on in a state that’s home to one of the nation’s highest unemployment rates and a multibillion-dollar backlog of overdue bills.
In response to a campaign questionnaire from The Associated Press, the four contenders — state Sens. Bill Brady and Kirk Dillard, state Treasurer Dan Rutherford and Winnetka businessman Bruce Rauner — cited the need to cut spending, lower taxes, get people back to work by creating a more business-friendly climate — and “all of the above.” While offering only a few specifics, the four will no doubt be pressed on the issue in a series of upcoming debates leading up to the March 18 primary.
“Jobs. Jobs. And Jobs,” wrote Rutherford, of Chenoa, a former vice president for ServiceMaster Co., in response to an AP question asking for each candidate’s top three priorities if elected. “Illinois government finances are dire and our state is universally considered unfriendly to business. Building an environment that job creators are seeking and putting people back to work will help solve a lot of Illinois’ financial and social ailments.”
* I usually don’t ask our questions this early in the day, but I want y’all to put some thought into this one. I think we ought to send the gubernatorial candidates our own questionnaire. But I don’t think we ought to ask generic questions like the one above.
What I’m looking for here are questions that aren’t often asked, but that will likely be answered, so “gotcha” questions are out of the equation. Don’t bother.
* Here’s one I came up with to get the ball rolling…
What approximate percentage of blame do you believe that longtime Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan deserves for this state’s current fiscal and economic conditions?
That could be fun.
A few more possibles…
Do you support any additional restrictions above and beyond the current Illinois concealed carry law, and/or do you favor rolling back any of the current state restrictions? Please list your proposals.
Now that gay marriage is the law of the land, do you support any further legislation to clarify, restrict or expand the new law, or do you favor total repeal? Please list your proposals, if any.
Would you favor any further pension reforms for the state, above and beyond those which have already been signed into law? Please list your proposals.
* The Question: Your questions for the gubernatorial candidates? And remember, no “gotcha” stuff and no snark. Take it seriously, please. Thanks.
…Adding… I know I asked you to take this seriously, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have any fun with your questions. Most answers so far have been super-serious. You can feel free try to lighten it up a little and add some snap without snark. Thanks.