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Madigan: “We are significantly away from 60 today”

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

* House Speaker Michael Madigan talked to reporters after yesterday’s marathon meeting with House Democrats and Gov. Pat Quinn

Madigan said that Quinn worked hard to present his case, but he doesn’t know yet if any minds were changed. “I thought he did an excellent job of presenting his position, arguing for his position, taking questions. He took every question. He answered every question. He got very animated on a lot of his answers because, at times, he wasn’t hearing what he wanted to hear,” Madigan said.

“I think it’s significant that there was opposition expressed from all sectors of our caucus. I’m going to continue to work to find 60 Democrats to vote for the governor’s bill. We are significantly away from 60 today.” When asked how he would get the votes, Madigan said, “It’s going to take a great deal of persuasion.” He refused to answer questions about possible alternative revenue sources or what would happen with the budget if he cannot get the votes for the extension.

Opposition was, indeed, expressed from “all sectors” of the caucus. As I tweeted yesterday during the meeting…


Subscribers have more details.

* The governor tried to be more upbeat

“It was really enjoyable. Everybody had a good chance to speak their minds,” the governor said afterward.

Quinn declined to talk in specifics about how much support he thinks there is for the tax issue. […]

Quinn centered his presentation Monday on the state’s responsibility to fund education, even carrying a copy of the state Constitution into the meeting to emphasize that it says the state is primarily responsible for education.

So, it was an “up day”?

Sigh.

* But he did demonstrate that he understands the reality of his situation

“I think we need to make sure that we properly invest in our schools. Our state over relies right now on property tax to fund education. I think we have to do better. We have to use a tax based on ability to pay, the income tax, to properly fund our schools. I spoke about that quite a bit in the caucus,” Quinn said after he addressed the Democrats. […]

“You’re always building a majority on any issue; it’s a building of a majority to get to 60. I think we’re doing our very best to get that majority. I think my philosophy in life is hope for the best and work for it. So, we’re working real hard on getting those 60 votes in the House of Representatives. Obviously, we have to keep on working until we get there.”

* The reaction from Bruce Rauner was expected

Monday’s meeting between the governor and his erstwhile House Democratic allies came after he endured another withering day of being beaten up by Republican gubernatorial rival Bruce Rauner, who labeled Quinn a “tax-and-spend” politician and failed leader who can’t move Democratic supermajorities in the House and Senate to do his bidding.

“They’re playing political games and showing a lack of leadership and unfortunately in Springfield, that’s been the status quo,” Rauner said after a campaign event in Northbrook.

“Right now, they’re trying to portray themselves as just doing whatever the voters want. They’re saying voters like more spending so we’re gonna give them more spending. Voters don’t like taxes so we’re just not going to vote on taxes,” Rauner charged.

“That’s political gamesmanship. That’s playing political football with our financial health. It’s a huge mistake. It’s a failure of leadership. It’s a failure of the General Assembly and the governor down there,” Rauner said.

It’s not that I disagree, it’s just that I’d kinda like to see a plan from Rauner. It doesn’t have to be a 500-page line item appropriations bill. Just sketch something out on a napkin or something. Anything.

* More

If Madigan is “determined and he needs his 60 votes, he finds a way to get there,” [House GOP Leader Jim Durkin] said. “But he’s not going to get it with Republican participation.”

Madigan and Quinn both dismissed remarks from Durkin and Republican governor candidate Bruce Rauner, who was critical of Democrats for pushing a tax hike that he says is not needed. Rauner has contended the high taxes are causing businesses and people to leave Illinois.

Madigan shot back: “People are leaving because they’re looking at the prospect of Rauner as the governor.”

Nice pivot, but I kinda doubt that.

* Watch the raw video of both Quinn and Madigan via our good friends at BlueRoomStream.com

- Posted by Rich Miller        


77 Comments
  1. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:21 am:

    If it doesn’t pass the House, we can all expect to be inundated with the budget proposals of those in opposition.

    They’ve all been hiding their lights under a bushel for much too long.

    I guess they can start with the Quinn “not recommended” budget as a blueprint.


  2. - BMAN - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:21 am:

    What Madigan is really saying is that the issue is too sensitive to take up befor the November elections, so we’ll drag our feet so as not to impede our reelection.


  3. - Demoralized - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:24 am:

    So basically nobody has a plan. Democrats have no Plan B and the Republicans have no plan at all.


  4. - Wensicia - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:25 am:

    “It’s going to take a great deal of persuasion.”

    I wonder if Madigan is dedicated to this persuasion. I doubt it.


  5. - Concerned Voter - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:26 am:

    Madigan shot back: “People are leaving because they’re looking at the prospect of Rauner as the governor.”

    So does that mean that he is packing his bags and putting his home up for sale?


  6. - archimedes - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:26 am:

    Rauner - Do as I say, not as I do.

    Madigan - Do as I say or you won’t be doin’ nothin.

    Quinn - Do as I say, sort of, until Mike says to do it his way.


  7. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:27 am:

    BMAN, if you’re correct, then he’s a pretty dumb politician, as he’s already stuck his neck out on the issue.

    Could it be that’s he’s not the All-Powerful Oz as some lazy pundits have made him out to be? You know, the in-the-know brainiacs who gave us year after year of the Great Lisa for Governor Conspiracy?


  8. - Jolly1 - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:28 am:

    I have a Plan and it will be exercised in the voting booth this November.


  9. - Bogart - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:28 am:

    So, it is now clear; the next constitutional amendment initiative by Rauner should be to end “lame duck” legislation.


  10. - Steve - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:32 am:

    Mike Madigan is usually very measured in what he says. But , this quote : ” People are leaving because they’re looking at the prospect of Rauner as the governor.” is beyond the pale. Madigan is responsible more than any single individual for the state’s bad financial condition. After all, he’s been there 30 years as Boss. Madigan is a rich man preying off the tax code. You don’t have to like Rauner to see that the comment is over the top. Actually, people and jobs have been leaving Illinois because of Mike Madigan and the hack empire he runs.


  11. - The Elderly Man You Used to Love - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:37 am:

    The optics of this whole thing are terrible. The governor standing in front of a microphone on May 19th giving something of a closed-door budget address? This isn’t the time for speechifying, it’s time to bring in individual members and start making deals, threats, etc. Heck, the deal making should have commenced long ago. This session should have been scripted from Day 1. Quinn deserves to lose in November if this is the best he can do in dealing with the Legislature.


  12. - Norseman - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:38 am:

    Perhaps Plan B will be to force his caucus to vote on a doomsday budget.


  13. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:39 am:

    “Rauner has contended the high taxes are causing businesses and people to leave Illinois.”

    We recently saw a Gallup poll showing that the number of Illinoisans who want to leave because of taxes is 8%, if I remember right.

    As a public employee, I support pension reform and paying more for health insurance in the new contract–two things that are supposed to our fiscal situation. If the politicians won’t help me and others out and want to cut us more, I’m sorry but we might have to slug it out (politically and rhetorically).

    There was some good news on revenue in the Twitters this morning. Illinois is the second best state in highest revenue after the recession, thanks to the income tax increase. Louisiana is said to have cut taxes during the recession and is now below pre-recession levels, while we are above them. Florida is also below pre-recession levels in revenue.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/revenues-still-not-pre-recession-204227579.html?soc_src=mediacontentstory

    I can’t blame the Democrats if we go draconian with the upcoming budget. Not all Democrats should have to carry the weight with their votes. Republicans are so staunchly against the income tax increase that none or very few of them will vote for it. More “no” from the GOParty of No.


  14. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:40 am:

    At times MJM will go all Coach Bill Parcells and not refer to someone by name, but while it’s snarky fun to “blame” Rauner for the “exodus”, the only thing that statement says is that Rauner is squarely on MJM’s radar.

    To the Post,

    Sometimes, when you ask to speak, or look for input, you get neither accolades or input, you get harsh realities.

    You have to believe if Madigan felt something was immediately able to be rectified to get 60 votes, there would be more optimism. Couple that with Quinn’s “Blago-Style Up Day” throwaway line, both the Governor and Speaker are scrambling.

    At some point, not being Quinn might not be “enough” for Rauner to “sell”. Quinn, the Unions, the HDems, they all are going to hammer away on the “running like a business” lacking a business plan to help govern Illinois. Seeming like an average “Joseph” does not explain a vision of Illinois. It will be up to those forces to take the Rauner Crew “there”, but you can’t drive a narrative that Rauner has no plan, while still in limbo with no governing plan or budget that can get through a Democratically-controlled General Assembly.

    Rauner loves the rhetoric, but if he wins the Big Chair at the table, he is going to find rhetorically sparring with MJM in the press, and not mending fences behind the scenes, makes you more like Blago than even Quinn sounded like yesterday with his. “Up Day” offshoot.

    When is the State Fair again?


  15. - Walker - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:40 am:

    There are a series of rational and practical reasons that this tax rate must be retained at the present level. There are no realistic alternatives that can get much support — certainly none have been offered besides the Governor’s “non-recommended” budget outline.

    It is a mistake to position this as primarily for and about education. That’s an important piece, but not close to the whole story. It’s a political gloss too often used to sell anything from lotteries to taxes.


  16. - east central - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:43 am:

    The Democrats need the tax extension to be a done deal before the election. Otherwise Republicans will campaign on stopping a tax increase which will give them the governor’s office and a few new GA members.

    I expect a plan with a transition to a lower permanent rate. For example, they might use the pension stay to justify 3 years near the current 5% rate (maybe just slightly lower so that it looks like a tax cut) before transition to a lower rate closer to 4%. Then in 3 years when the ISC throws out the pension changes, …


  17. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:45 am:

    - Steve -,

    You forgot the “It’s to make Lisa governor” line, and the “Madiganistan” reference so we know where you were talking about.

    John Kass is smiling somewhere …


  18. - CircularFiringSquad - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:47 am:

    Should one ask ShakeyMitt Rauner and/or Mr Shrimp to untangle that line of gibberish? We expect better. We know about ShakeyMitt plan will be a series of lies, but Mitt “nobody’s perfect” so at least roll out a few ideas we can digest. Maybe gaming lobo Dorgan can spawn some ideas.
    Run down your list of 400 investments. Find one that did not kill anyone or lead to a fraud conviction and saved money and blurt it out
    Fire,Aim, Ready!


  19. - Befuddled - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:51 am:

    At least Madigan admitted people are leaving Illinois, even if he got the reason wrong.


  20. - Skeptic - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 9:55 am:

    “even if he got the reason wrong.” Clearly, people are not flocking *to* Illinois at the prospect of Gov. Rauner.

    I’m with Rich. Yeah, they’re playing political games. But you know what? The Pope is Catholic too. Tell us something useful.


  21. - Arizona Bob - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:08 am:

    @GRandson
    =There was some good news on revenue in the Twitters this morning. Illinois is the second best state in highest revenue after the recession, thanks to the income tax increase.=

    That’s “good news”? Only in a public parasite’s eyes, grandson. We have the third worst unemployment rate in the nation, which is actually substantially higher than reported because of massive numbers of people simply giving up on finding a decent job.

    That study to which you referred also stated, IIRC, the the majority of those leaving Illinois left for lack of economic opportunity as compared to where they’re going. The Obama/Quinn/ Madigan depression in Illinois has irrefutably been linked to the tax increase, as well as a drop off in certain sectors for which our tax and regulatory environment has greatly hindered job replacement by more robust industries.

    The high wage earners are being driven out, and those coming in have far lower income.

    Apparently Quinn, the Dems and those who elect them are happy with following the Detroit model of corruption, overtaxation and unsustainable public employee giveaways.

    Sadly, those who otherwise would come here and create jobs see this the same way.


  22. - Chicago Cynic - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:19 am:

    Complete failure of leadership all around. I said this before the first tax increase and it’s even more true now. You don’t ask for tax increases until you paint the world as it will be with none. In other words, as Madigan and Cullerton advised, people needed to hear about the pain…over and over and over and over all over the state. Only then would they be ok with the tax increase.

    And btw, for the gov to admit that he always knew the tax increase needed to be permanent is just unbelievably stupid politically. Yes, we all knew it would need to be permanent, but politically it’s amazingly bad. Did he think he was in a room of friends who would keep his confidence? Did he not notice all the members busy texting Rich and others with their “I can’t believe this guy” messages from the inside? Sheesh!


  23. - ZC - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:27 am:

    The Republicans have a plan.

    It’s “claim credit for everything if the state economy unexpectedly turns around from 2015-2018, and blame Quinn and the Democrats for everything and insist again and again, ‘We inherited our problems, we can’t fix it in four years’ if the economy doesn’t independently save us or it gets worse.”

    It’s the same “plan” Romney and the nationwide GOP were running on in 2012.


  24. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:30 am:

    There will be 60 votes for extending the tax hike, regardless of Quinn’s floundering yesterday. Do you want to know why the tax rate will remain at 5%? Because math.

    After all the wringing of hands and gnashing of teeth, House Democrats will come to only one sobering conclusion: we must have that money to fund current obligations. Less money means big cuts and if the court tosses the pension law out, then we’ll need even more money.

    The Black Caucus knows this. The Latino Caucus knows this. The Downstate Caucus knows this. Jack Franks knows this. Everybody knows this.

    And there are plenty of House Republicans saying quiet prayers that the Democrats keep the tax at 5% because they know what will happen if the rate is allowed to drop to 3.75%. And it terrifies them.

    Everything else is theater.


  25. - Precinct Captain - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:34 am:

    There’s gotta be some capital money to throw around at legislators who are hesitant to vote for the tax increase.


  26. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:36 am:

    “The Obama/Quinn/ Madigan depression in Illinois has irrefutably been linked to the tax increase”

    BS. Our employment numbers have been improving. We had a half-point drop in unemployment in April. Since December 2013, Illinois dramatically beat the rest of the country. Our unemployment rate dropped a whole point, while the national rate dropped by .4%.

    Obama hurt Illinois but didn’t help other states with better unemployment rates? You can’t have it both ways.

    States with higher income taxes and unionization rates are doing better than us with unemployment numbers. You cherry-pick states that fit your political opinions but ignore those that don’t.

    You’re apparently angry and hurting because we are collecting revenue and our fiscal situation is improving, as is our jobs situation. You seem to hate good news, because it blows holes in your positions.

    We “public parasites” ain’t going anywhere. If you no likey that, feel free to ignore this state.


  27. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:52 am:

    The majority party in Illinois, whose leadership dates back decades, which has a dominant majority of votes in both houses of the General Assembly, which constitutes a majority of voters in Illinois, which have been in control over the state for over a decade - have no idea how to fix the problems they have seen grow worse during their rule.

    They cannot find a solution which will be supported by enough of their own elected to be forced upon the state. The reason for their inability is because their solution is a bad one. Their inability is due to the fact that not only have their policies failed, they are now demanding that their elected officials renege on a promise they made to their supporters. Their solution is so distasteful, their Speaker has to twist the arms of the very people who elected him speaker.

    This situation should be studied in university political science and government courses in how not to run a government. We have a complete clusterfark of a state government because we have had the worse government leaders in our state history.


  28. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:58 am:

    - 47th Ward - is On It.

    I stand by my belief that that 60 votes will somehow be “found” as well, but yesterday’s snapshot of where MJM, the HDem Caucus, and Pat Quinn all stand reminds us all that this is a heavy lift, not a slam dunk, and the maneuvering to get these 60 votes puts into perspective that governing… is hard.


  29. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 10:59 am:

    Don’t worry VanillaMan, it’ll pass so you probably won’t be laid off from your state job.


  30. - Responsa - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:06 am:

    I don’t think the “Squeezy” PR campaign worked very well to convince regular Illinoisans that we need more taxes to avert a crisis. If the caucus members were hearing from their constituents that they wanted the bill to be passed there’d be 60 votes.


  31. - PublicServant - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:09 am:

    Ahh that sacrosanct promise that the relatively low (Incomparison to surrounding states) 5% tax rate would be temporary has the right wingers up in arms, but the pension promise…not so much, I guess.


  32. - Responsa - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:15 am:

    Public Servant–Quinn’s meeting yesterday was with the House Democratic caucus –not with “right wingers”. Why do you think the 60 votes are not there?


  33. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:15 am:

    “People are leaving because they’re looking at the prospect of Rauner as the governor.”

    After Ryan, Blagojevich and now Quinn, Rauner doesn’t scare anyone Mr. Speaker.

    Bruce Rauner only needs to demonstrate that he is more honest than either Ryan or Blagojevich, and more competent than Quinn without any Brady extremism on social issues.

    That is not a tall order, Mr. Speaker.


  34. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:19 am:

    Don’t worry VanillaMan

    Thank you for your kind assurance, but our postings are not about me, nor you. Lets keep it that way so we don’t turn CapFax into an ugly place, OK?


  35. - Wensicia - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:22 am:

    ==Bruce Rauner only needs to demonstrate that he is more honest than either Ryan or Blagojevich, and more competent than Quinn without any Brady extremism on social issues.==

    How’s he gonna do that if he continues to refuse to submit a plan?
    BTW — He’s already flunked the “honesty” portion of his résumé.


  36. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:26 am:

    Thanks VM, you’re right, this isn’t about you or me and I agree we don’t want to turn this into an ugly place.

    But you really need to bring more to the debate than “it’s all the fault of the Democrats.” It’s tiring and lame. You can do better. Raise your game.


  37. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:30 am:

    People have been leaving Illinois since NAFTA.

    That is a fact. Maybe one that no one wants to re-litigate, but still true.

    47th Ward: I am not betting for or against sobriety by May 31 either way. If Quinn had stronger poll numbers, Democrats would be much more inclined.

    Partisans are not inclined to stick their neck out to fix the budget for Bruce Rauner. I can’t blame them.


  38. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:31 am:

    ===People have been leaving Illinois since NAFTA.===

    You must’ve missed the 1970s and 1980s.


  39. - Norseman - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:34 am:

    === I don’t think the “Squeezy” PR campaign worked very well to convince regular Illinoisans that we need more taxes to avert a crisis. If the caucus members were hearing from their constituents that they wanted the bill to be passed there’d be 60 votes. ===

    Squeezy was the mascot for the pension reduction campaign. Based on how well Quinn’s doing on the extension issue, I believe the new mascot is Squishy, the lovable budgetary bear.


  40. - Demoralized - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:36 am:

    ==You must’ve missed the 1970s and 1980s.==

    I remember my dad being out of work for more than a year in the 80’s under the booming economies of Ronald Reagan and Jim Thompson (that last snark about Reagan and Thompson was for Arizona Bob and his oh so brilliant analysis of the economic situation and the blame he likes to place on people).


  41. - Formerly Known As... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:37 am:

    == “People are leaving because they’re looking at the prospect of Rauner as the governor.” ==

    This comment is completely disconnected from reality. A nice attempt at deflection, though.

    It would be interesting to hear his explanation for departures taking place prior to March 2014.


  42. - Responsa - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:46 am:

    ==How’s he gonna do that if he continues to refuse to submit a plan?==

    Wensicia–I think it’s reasonable for people to ask what is Rauner’s plan. I’d like to know more myself.

    But I’d also like to know what was Quinn’s plan when he ran for governor 4 years ago. I don’t recall there being one. Do you? And if there was one it certainly has not been implemented during his time in office. What I do remember is his soft “you know me” campaign close that was warm and cuddly and engaging but devoid of policy matters. Kind of exactly like Rauner’s ads have been so far.


  43. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 11:56 am:

    But you really need to bring more to the debate than “it’s all the fault of the Democrats.” It’s tiring and lame. You can do better. Raise your game.

    Not only did I not say that quote, I didn’t mention party once.

    What I wrote would be true regardless of party loyalties.


  44. - PublicServant - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:05 pm:

    Responsa, I know who he was meeting with yesterday. Are you saying that if he met with the Republican Caucus he’d find a few votes, lol?


  45. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:05 pm:

    ===
    The majority party in Illinois, whose leadership dates back decades, which has a dominant majority of votes in both houses of the General Assembly, which constitutes a majority of voters in Illinois, which have been in control over the state for over a decade - have no idea how to fix the problems they have seen grow worse during their rule.===

    Let me guess - VanillaMan -, the Whigs?


  46. - A guy... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:12 pm:

    I do think he’ll get to 60 by hook or by crook by the end of session. What good is a super majority if it doesn’t work for you? Answer: no good.

    Abraham is on his way to the mountain with a couple of Isaacs. Script is nearly complete. Casting starts in November. Some parts will be given before then.


  47. - Norseman - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:18 pm:

    === But I’d also like to know what was Quinn’s plan when he ran for governor 4 years ago. I don’t recall there being one. Do you? And if there was one it certainly has not been implemented during his time in office. ===

    Seriously, the guy had been in office and put out a budget plan. He’d presented a record, not a good one, but he had a record.

    Rauner hasn’t provided anything to judge him except rhetoric. A plan may give some a basis for voting for him. I’m not voting for him based upon Rauner’s record of obfuscation and scapegoating. However, Quinn has set forth a record of incompetence, that’s why I’m voting for Oswego Willy based upon his record of comments. Go Willy.


  48. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:33 pm:

    ===Seriously, the guy had been in office and put out a budget plan. He’d presented a record, not a good one, but he had a record.===

    Very well said. Policy and leadership is seen in budgetary decisions, and how monies are spent to make a statement. You can criticize the “statement”, but you can’t deny the statement(s) made.

    - Norseman -, you are the “drumbeat”!

    What a very telling statement you had in those very kind words; you know more about how my “Administration” may govern through Comments, than what you know about a “Governor Rauner” and how they would govern in that Administration, less their rhetorical statements.

    Not a throwaway sentence, pretty powerful in its truth(?)

    We have a campaign meeting after Memorial Day…


  49. - Wensicia - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 12:47 pm:

    Quinn was hardly an unknown or novice the last time he ran and he was up front about wanting to raise taxes. He didn’t follow through on many promises and betrayed the union voters that voted for him.

    Rauner makes promises and hurls accusations, then switches 180 degrees depending on the audience. He apparent opinion is that voters are stupid, and there’s no need to explain what he’ll do if he wins the office. I’m far more disturbed by his possible reign as governor than any failings by Quinn.


  50. - Anonymous - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:36 pm:

    Grandson of Man–

    “BS. Our employment numbers have been improving. We had a half-point drop in unemployment in April. Since December 2013, Illinois dramatically beat the rest of the country. Our unemployment rate dropped a whole point, while the national rate dropped by .4%”

    Are we supposed to be cheering the fact that we have the 3rd worst unemployment in the nation. There is absolutely nothing to be optimistic about accept the possibility of new leadership. You want to know the reason we dropped 1 point while the rest of the country dropped .4%? When your unemployment rate is so bad it makes the increase in jobs that much more dramatic relative to the rest of the country that is doing a lot better and has been doing a lot better for longer than Illinois. You are the one cherry picking numbers. You can make numbers say whatever you want them to especially when talking about jobs numbers for specific periods of time comparing two totally different things (a state vs the US). You have to look at the peak of unemployment during recession (which wasn’t same time for everyone)and look at recovery numbers since. Places like Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan, which are culturally, economically, and geographically similar had just as bad of a recession (or worse in Michigan) yet they have all come back way faster and stronger. Why is that Grandson of Man? I’d like to hear your theory as to why that is.


  51. - J. Nolan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:37 pm:

    Anon at 1:36 pm was me…sorry.


  52. - Demoralized - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:47 pm:

    @J Nolan:

    So we can’t be optimistic about the numbers improving? Some of you will never be satisfied. I would never argue things are great in terms of unemployment but they are getting better. That should make us a little happy.


  53. - Joe M - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 1:49 pm:

    I think Madigan is going about this all wrong. As I mentioned in a post in another topic - put the doomsday budget to a vote - and call out the Republicans, and those Democrats who don’t support the tax extension. Let them put their vote where their rhetoric is.


  54. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:40 pm:

    OW - you are politicizing the facts, then belittling me for pointing them out with another one of your silly comments.

    It doesn’t matter the party. What we have here is massive government malfunction. Considering the situation we are in - this is not a political problem in search of a political solution.

    Don’t politicize it.

    Perhaps we are seeing a limit to single party rule. Perhaps we may be discovering a need for bipartisan sharing of power in order to find a compromise and realistic solution to our malfunctioning government.

    Voters seem to trust one party regarding taxes, and the other party regarding their societal needs and assistance to the needy. Perhaps the problem is that there is no longer a political balance in Illinois so we can fix our dilemma.


  55. - Anon - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:42 pm:

    == Quinn’s lack of leadership ==

    This from a guy who won’t disclose his plan.


  56. - A guy... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:50 pm:

    What if, what if, what if, you see a Rauner plan after the Quinn/Madigan/Cullerton plan gets locked in? I’m presenting this as a notion that could possibly occur. Is it unreasonable to think that there have been economists and policy people working on this the entire time, unrestricted by any interference of any special interest group? It could happen. We’ll see.


  57. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 2:56 pm:

    ===It doesn’t matter the party.===

    Then why call out one party? lol

    ===The majority party in Illinois, whose leadership dates back decades, which has a dominant majority of votes in both houses of the General Assembly, which constitutes a majority of voters in Illinois, which have been in control over the state for over a decade - have no idea how to fix the problems they have seen grow worse during their rule.===

    Single party rule has really shown itself having issues, but are those issues… political too… in the prism how one party is running government?

    I don’t have to politicize it. It is politicized already.


  58. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 3:04 pm:

    ===Don’t politicize it.===

    Do you even read your own comments? Like I said, it’s tiring and lame. Maybe also hypocritical.


  59. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 3:14 pm:

    “Places like Wisconsin, Indiana, and Michigan, which are culturally, economically, and geographically similar had just as bad of a recession (or worse in Michigan) yet they have all come back way faster and stronger. Why is that Grandson of Man? I’d like to hear your theory as to why that is.”

    First of all, learn how to use the space bar. Also pick a screen name.

    We’re improving in Illinois. We just lost a whole point in unemployment from December 2013-April 2014. Let’s take a moment also to be happy that we are improving while acknowledging that we have to get even better.

    One reason our unemployment rate is so high is the loss of public sector jobs. Don’t you anti-tax people like that, the shrinking of government? That costs the economy jobs. You can’t have it both ways.

    Michigan’s unemployment rate is 7.4%, so it has not come back “way faster and stronger.”

    Wisconsin has a better unemployment rate than Illinois, but it’s not as good as a state that raised the income tax AND the minimum wage: Minnesota. Why? They’re neighbors also.

    Indiana also has a lower unemployment rate, but the Chicagoland area alone is kicking its butt in corporate investment deals. Indiana is seen as a place of low-wage investment, and it’s ranked 38th while we’re ranked 15th in per capita income.

    Again, people cherry pick the data they like but disregard other data. Illinois is better in some ways but worse in others.

    We have a lot of work to do to improve here, but we’re improving. This is not the message you want, to support your anti-tax, anti-union, anti-public-employee positions.


  60. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 3:37 pm:

    VMan, stop embarrassing yourself.

    If you can’t keep up with your own comments, much less anyone else’s, or don’t understand what the words mean, maybe you should just take a nap.

    I doubt if anyone would notice.


  61. - steve schnorf - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:22 pm:

    I have a theory, based on my observations of and participation in Illinois state government over the past 40-some years. Before midnite on the 31st there will be 60 votes for a plan, and there will be a plan for which there will be 60 votes.


  62. - A guy... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:24 pm:

    Slinger, I disagree. His point about not having balance in the legislature or state government in general is precisely right. Policy making is going on somewhere near the center of one caucus. The state isn’t composed that way, but that’s where we are. All of the crazy schemes put together with remapping among others have put us all here. I’ll take all the criticism in the world for the GOP being hapless for much of the time. We have been. We never recovered from George Ryan. It’s time to put that behind us and win a few at a time until we’re at least relevant. In the meantime, the public is the last line of defense in bad policy. It’s tough to get their attention and get them fully engaged. I think we’re closer on that than we have been for a long time. Let go of the insults. You’re too intelligent for that. (and you know I don’t say that to everyone! lol)


  63. - A guy... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:26 pm:

    ===steve schnorf - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:22 pm:

    I have a theory, based on my observations of and participation in Illinois state government over the past 40-some years. Before midnite on the 31st there will be 60 votes for a plan, and there will be a plan for which there will be 60 votes.===

    Illinois Session, a mirror image of the NBA, clock delays and all.


  64. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:34 pm:

    - A Guy … -,

    You and - VanillaMan -; it’s like you guys don’t read, and extract these false Comments to agree or disagree with to your own haplessness.

    - wordslinger - is Spot On that - VanillaMan -, is not keeping up his end here in regards to reading and making sense even his own Comments of what they are saying.

    To - steve schnorf -,

    You said it as simple as could be and this is pure gold;

    ===…and there will be a plan for which there will be 60 votes.===

    That will be the “tell”. Thanks.


  65. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:36 pm:

    A guy, you’re still relatively new here. VMan has been posting over the top rants for years. They all have the same theme, Democrats have ruined Illinois.

    We had divided government prior to 2003, and look at how that worked out: the pension mess started back then. Our divided government ate dinner in the 1990s and the bill didn’t get here until the Democrats took over. To VMan, that means it must be the fault of one party rule.

    That’s a 3rd grader’s logic.


  66. - Bill White - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:47 pm:

    For real drama, maybe someone will unplug the clock on the evening of Saturday May 31st.


  67. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:48 pm:

    ===For real drama, maybe someone will unplug the clock on the evening of Saturday May 31st.===

    And THAT…is how we got U.S. Cellular.


  68. - A guy... - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:58 pm:

    ++++- 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 4:36 pm:

    A guy, you’re still relatively new here.++++ Not exactly sure how long you’ve got to be here to not be new or relatively new, but it’s been a while now. If I knew it was important I would have established an anniversary date 3 or 4 years ago. My bad.

    +++ VMan has been posting over the top rants for years. They all have the same theme, Democrats have ruined Illinois.++++

    While I believe it’s been a team effort trying to kill our state, the past administrations of Quinn and Blago have been especially hard. The voters held our side accountable for George Ryan, swiftly, severely and for a good long time in the penalty box. We made it worse with some poor choices on our side. But one party rule has not helped at all. Heck, even Madigan would agree I’d bet dollars to donuts. He got more done with George than anyone else.

    +++We had divided government prior to 2003, and look at how that worked out: the pension mess started back then.++++

    Started before then. It was really flawed from the outset and abused continually along the way.

    +++ Our divided government ate dinner in the 1990s and the bill didn’t get here until the Democrats took over. To VMan, that means it must be the fault of one party rule.

    That’s a 3rd grader’s logic.++++

    He’s a smart guy a lot of you don’t agree with. He takes your comments in good stride. The “approved” Bite me, just sayin’, meh, dope, it’s all a little passe to me. I enjoy the back and forth, even when we don’t agree. If you’re keeping score, one thing’s for sure to me, VMan hasn’t been shut out. And he’s scored plenty of goals. Keep it hot if you want, but civil is important to me…as is funny.


  69. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 5:26 pm:

    ===but it’s been a while now.===

    Yes, you’ve been around about as long as Rauner’s campaign. We’ll miss you if he loses A Guy. Well Willy won’t, but I’m sure some of us will.


  70. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 5:28 pm:

    - 47th Ward -, you tried. I applaud you.

    To Rauner supporting those who vote “No”, Democrat or Republican, how will that be helping Leader Durkin, or the SGOP?

    Remember, that RaunerPAC is out there, and RoboCalls are starting, so will both Dems and Repubs reap that reward this Cycle?


  71. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 5:38 pm:

    - 47th Ward -,

    I would miss - A Guy… -. I am sure you can relate to “arguing” the case, then sharing the dinner and beer afterwards. He defends “His Guy”, that I respect. It’s some of the rationalization that confuses me.

    You can’t be a part of this business and take the business aspect as who they or who you are. I am sure you have seen more people share a beverage or a meal with that disagreed that day, then those who agree with each other ALL the time.

    Heck, I’d share a cigar and beer with Bruce…

    It’s the game. You can even miss the players you disagree with too.


  72. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 5:51 pm:

    – His point about not having balance in the legislature or state government in general is precisely right–

    A Guy, because of the voters, there are 19 GOP senators in the 59 seat Illinois Senate.

    That should be shocking to everyone.

    Among those 19, I doubt they could agree to a lunch menu, much less a strategy of governance.

    It was never that way in the recent past. It’s crazy, it’s sad, and it ain’t no one’s fault but their own.


  73. - wordslinger - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 6:04 pm:

    –He’s a smart guy a lot of you don’t agree with. He takes your comments in good stride.–

    He isn’t, you’re right, but he doesn’t.

    I’ve tried to lay off over the years, with varying success, but a willfully ignorant, sanctimonious crank whiling away the day, day after day, on the taxpayer dime complaining about gubmint and food stamps gets my Viking up.


  74. - J. Nolan - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 6:10 pm:

    –First of all, learn how to use the space bar. Also pick a screen name.–

    You belong in a Yahoo News article comment section. Why be a class A jerk? I have one screen name and forgot to use the space once in a large paragraph. Perhaps you meant the enter button?

    Also, Thanks for the feeble, ducking, and unsuccessful answer. It proved my point.

    P.S. You are totally right, Michigan having an UE number 2 or 3 points worse than Illinois during recession and currently having one 1% less totally doesn’t classify as coming back “way faster and stronger”. Totally..


  75. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, May 20, 14 @ 7:08 pm:

    “You belong in a Yahoo News article comment section. Why be a class A jerk? I have one screen name and forgot to use the space once in a large paragraph. Perhaps you meant the enter button?”

    Okay, I apologize about the space bar comment and any other comments that would even remotely compare me with the garbage that’s posted in Yahoo. By the way, much of the garbage posted in Yahoo is right wing stuff.

    What bothers me about your comment and those of others is that you won’t credit Illinois for what’s good about this state. You and others pick states like Texas, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin, while ignoring other states that could make similar points about taxes and economic growth, states whose policies probably don’t fit your ideological mold. Why is that?

    Why also aren’t you praising Illinois for a dramatic decrease in the unemployment rate over the last four months? What about our high per capita income for the region, since you compare us with other regional states? Why do you omit praising us for that?

    “There is absolutely nothing to be optimistic about accept the possibility of new leadership.”

    This statement says it all for me and shows that you are purposely ignoring the good in Illinois to advance your political slant. If you base your comment on Rauner, what has he shown that definitively makes him better than what’s there now? Just being the other guy doesn’t cut it. If that’s the case, let’s elect Wood Chip. Wood Chip never slammed public unions while raking in profits from their pensions, and Wood Chip never called people corrupt after his businesses were sued and had judgments that exceed two billion dollars. Wood Chip never allegedly tried to do any “bust out” moves.


  76. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, May 21, 14 @ 7:52 am:

    Madigan: “We are significantly away from 60 today”

    Good. It is good to know there are enough legislators willing to stand up to a cynical old man who will do anything to keep his apple basket full at anyone’s expense.

    These people are doing the right thing. They are restoring government credibility by honoring a commitment to see a bad tax die and willing to discuss how to replace the money lost by letting it die.

    The legislators who will stand up to Mr. Speaker and do the right thing will have more credibility and will have more constituent support when they speak on future Illinois issues.

    We cannot fix Illinois with cynics insulting citizens who are questioning bad government decisions.


  77. - A guy... - Wednesday, May 21, 14 @ 10:52 am:

    47, I’ve been around a lot longer than Rauner’s time here. Ask your moderator. In fact, I started out with a different horse in the race. Rauner won my support. Doesn’t matter to me one way or the other if anyone here likes/dislikes/doesn’t care about that. We all have choices. I chose him over the others. Humbly (and I mean that) my choice matters more than most because of the work that I’m willing to do on a candidates behalf. For me, being a Precinct Captain, is a hugely important role. Once I’ve decided I’m all in, but it takes whatever time it takes to decide. I was here before Rauner, I’ll be here after. I’d be delighted for you to check.


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