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Rauner files “emergency appeal”

Thursday, Aug 21, 2014

* From a press release

Today the Committee for Legislative Reform and Term Limits, chaired by Bruce Rauner, filed an emergency petition for leave to appeal to the Illinois Supreme Court. The Illinois Supreme Court will ultimately decide if the people have the right to vote on the Term Limits and Reform binding constitutional amendment on November 4th.

“I urge the Illinois Supreme Court to listen to the people of Illinois; the Court needs to take our appeal and rule on this case. We believe our Term Limits and Reform amendment is not only constitutional but is exactly what the framers of the 1970 Illinois Constitution intended when they provided for a direct initiative by the voters to make structural and procedural changes to the Legislature. The Legislature will never vote to term limit themselves because of their self-interest in maintaining the status quo in Springfield - it has to be the people,” Bruce Rauner said.

The Committee filed nearly 600,000 signatures with the State Board of Elections in April, almost double the number required by law, in order to place the amendment on the November ballot. The State Board of Elections has certified that enough valid signatures were submitted for the amendment to appear on the ballot.

“This amendment was crafted to follow the requirements as set forth by the Illinois Constitution and previous rulings of the Illinois Supreme Court that have addressed what is needed to have a valid initiative,” Rauner concluded.

Look, if you spend enough money and do it right, you can get 600,000 signatures on just about anything. 600,000 signatures has nothing to do with constitutionality.

…Adding… In my haste to post this development, I forgot I had something ready to go on this topic. Here’s our frequent commenter “walker” on Bruce Rauner’s attempt to amend the Constitution with term limits

It was doomed from the start, and should have been known to be so. It was obvious on first reading of the petition itself.

Quite an abusive and fraudulent campaign tactic. Cynically build up the hopes and dreams of well-meaning citizens, just to look good, only to have their efforts fail by design, and to then blame those “insiders” in Springfield.

Of all the things this Rauner team has done, this was the most cynical and destructive — regardless of where you are on term limits. And it will probably work well for Rauner at the polls, which is of course their only ethical standard.

* Also, Wordslinger

Now it’s just a Rauner-as-victim thing that he can use to burnish his outsider credentials and stoke up anger.

* Meanwhile, the Tribune rewrites history

a redistricting reform proposal that died after Mikva’s ruling because its supporters didn’t have the money to fight another round.

Yeah, that’s why they dropped it. Right. And if they really were facing financial ruin, it’s because donors finally figured out that they had screwed up their petitions and their amendment.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


37 Comments
  1. - Anonymous - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:46 am:

    Maybe he’ll send the court a horse head, then they can send him two dead catfish wrapped in his amendment.


  2. - Nonplussed - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:46 am:

    You’re wrong Rich. What if the 600K signatures came with a guarantee that they were validated by a bunch of armed thugs?


  3. - Norseman - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:47 am:

    Rich, say it ain’t so. Money can buy everything, can’t it?


  4. - 47th Ward - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:48 am:

    ===I urge the Illinois Supreme Court to listen to the people of Illinois.===

    Umm, that’s not the job of the courts in our system. Courts should “listen” only to the law and the constitution. Popular sentiment should never be considered when deciding constitutional questions before the court. I’m pretty sure they taught us this stuff in junior high civics class.

    Shouldn’t Rauner have at least a partial grasp of government and constitutional law before, you know, running for governor?


  5. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:50 am:

    “No, no…’We’ strenuously appeal”

    ===600,000 signatures has nothing to do with constitutionality.===

    “But the people…”

    According to @tonyjarnold tweet:

    @tonyjarnold: Rauner says he voted against constitutional convention in 2008, and term limits wasn’t a big part of that effort…

    It’s like Bruce Rauner’s “Seinfeld Bizzaro World” has the constitution having no relevance, the will of the people supersedes the written law, and a Con Con would change what he wants.

    It’s just breathtaking.


  6. - lake county democrat - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:51 am:

    And if you’re an honest public servant, you work to put this on the ballot in view of the overwhelming support term limits and 600,000 people did sign the petition regardless of how much money was behind the petition drive. Especially in light of the questions you *do* put on the ballot without any signatures.


  7. - walker - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:52 am:

    ===”This amendment was crafted to follow the requirements set forth by the Illinois Constitution and previous rulings of the Illinois Supreme Court…”

    Rauner cannot actually believe this statement, at this point. It is possible he once thought so, but that is a stretch. The findings by Mikva and the Appeals Court were clear and overwhelming.

    Doubt the statement was written or even read by him.


  8. - Very Fed Up - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:53 am:

    It seems pointless with Madigan leading the charge against.


  9. - lake county democrat - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:53 am:

    I was against a constitutional convention too - those can be hijacked. Remember how popular gay marriage bans were back then?


  10. - Percival - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:53 am:

    That Appellate opinion was sound, and the panel members were distinguished. It is hard to see how this will work unless the Supreme Court is first prepared to change long-standing principles on one issue, then on the other issue substantially limit a case precedent the court issued only a few years ago. It will not surprise me at all if the Court declines to even hear the case.


  11. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:56 am:

    ===It seems pointless with Madigan leading the charge against. ===

    Another victim.

    The settled case law is crystal clear here. A law school dropout could’ve won this one.


  12. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:57 am:

    ===I was against a constitutional convention too - those can be hijacked.===

    Meh.

    I was for a convention and the main reason I was for a convention was remap reform. We’ll probably never get it otherwise.


  13. - too obvious - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:05 pm:

    Rauner cares so much about democracy he’s funding armed goons via the State GOP to keep competing candidates off the ballot. What a joke.


  14. - Larry the Cable Guy - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:14 pm:

    Rauner has spoken: It doesn’t matter what the law says, it’s “Because I said so.”
    Now that there’s funny.


  15. - Macbeth - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:20 pm:

    Man, if the ISC even *budges* on this, I’ll be deeply disappointed.

    Rauner needs to understand that just because he says so doesn’t make it so — especially when he’s essentially a rich nobody.

    Karen Lewis is right — arrogance and ignorance plus wealth is a nightmare.


  16. - Manley - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:23 pm:

    Um, isn’t John Fogarty paid out of this committee too? That guy’s everywhere.


  17. - Black Ivy - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:28 pm:

    I find Rauner’s term limit initative strategic, purposeful, and warranted. Even if the legal challenges fail, the court of public opinion is very much in session. Win or lose before the Illinois Supremes, folks I know are hungry to limit the terms of many in elected leadership.


  18. - Sir Reel - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:38 pm:

    Since when does 600,000 = the “people of Illinois? ”

    Last time I checked, there’s another 12 million people in the state.

    Mr. Salesman is fast and loose with the facts again.


  19. - McHenry Mike - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:43 pm:

    “Amendments shall be LIMITED TO structural and procedural subjects contained in Article IV” (emphasis supplied). Illinois Constitution, 1970, Article XVI, Section 3.

    Which part of “limited to” is not understood?

    Which part of stare decisis are we going to ignore (CBA II: term limits are not “structural and procedural subjects”?

    Unless the Supreme Court is doing to throw out all of the precedents, this is pure political hype.


  20. - lake county democrat - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:48 pm:

    Sir Reel - nonpartisan polling has shown overwhelming support for term limits (along the lines of 60-65% favor to 15-20% oppose and the rest no opinion) and again the question is whether to put it on the ballot and let the people vote - the Constitution bars citizen initiative but the citizen’s representatives could do it if they wanted to.


  21. - West Side the Best Side - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:57 pm:

    Circuit and Appellate courts have to follow previous Supreme Court decisions. The Supreme Court can - and sometimes does - change its mind about earlier rulings. But when they do it is not because they listen to anything other than agruments presented to them in court.


  22. - Ahoy! - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:13 pm:

    I’m not necessarily for term limits in the Constitution and truth be told, I’m not sure how I would have voted if it was on the ballot. That being said, it sure is hard for the electorate to do anything in this state. The maps are rigged (the data clearly shows this from previous posts), legislators pass laws to make it extremely difficult for independent candidates and third parties to gain ballot access and if you want to let voters change the system to fix what is wrong, the legislature (the system) has to propose it.

    In the end I favor institutional controls that make it harder for whimsical opinions to make structural changes to our systems. However, when you take all our laws for ballot access, our political map making procedure and our court cases that protect the political establishment, it adds up in aggregate of being pretty undemocratic and more institutional control.

    Was the term limits a political stunt? Sure it was, but that doesn’t mean our current system is right.


  23. - Macbeth - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:20 pm:


    Sure it was, but that doesn’t mean our current system is right.

    Fine. Then amend it. Constitutionally.

    The constitution protects the electorate. That’s why it’s there — and that’s why it’s not going away. And that’s why it’s important a rich nobody like Rauner isn’t allowed to trounce it and pretend like it means nothing.

    The subtext for all of this is especially insidious: Rauner is essentially advocating that the Illinois Constitution is less important than the whims of some dumb rich guy and his daily opinions on what’s “insider” and what’s “outsider”.

    If Rauner had no money, we wouldn’t even be arguing all this in the first place. Wealth is the only reason — the only reason — this attempt is where it is today. No other reason. Just some dude’s money. That’s it.


  24. - Sir Reel - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:34 pm:

    Lake County Democrat, I know a lot or a majority of people support term limits but I would rather Rauner say just that. I don’t like politicians including me in their windy pontifications.


  25. - Ahoy! - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:54 pm:

    Macbeth,

    –Fine. Then amend it. Constitutionally.–

    Did you not read my post above post? It’s virtually impossible for the electorate to amend outside of the political establishment. Also, the electorate, no matter what, has to vote by super majority to amend the Constitution, so we can protect ourselves, we just can’t change the system. Please read a full post before taking my comment and using it for an irrelevant rant.


  26. - foster brooks - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 2:22 pm:

    I’m successful at everything I do. Lol


  27. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 2:22 pm:

    Keep it alive until Election Day.


  28. - Macbeth - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 2:51 pm:


    Please read a full post before taking my comment and using it for an irrelevant rant.

    It’s not an irrelevant rant. It’s how it is. You want to amend it? Do it right. It’s possible. It’s been done. Do it right, and we won’t be where we are now. Listening to some rich guy complain about how elections aren’t working — so we need to do it some other way? That’s money talking. That’s not any kind of majority opinion. If it were, we wouldn’t be fretting about term limits.

    The only people worried about term limits are the people losing elections.


  29. - Precinct Captain - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 3:13 pm:

    ==- 47th Ward - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:48 am:==

    “Shouldn’t Rauner have at least a partial grasp of government and constitutional law before, you know, running for governor?”

    Something like that, or even junior high civics knowledge, would make him an insider!


  30. - wordslinger - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 3:37 pm:

    Walker’s been on it from the get-go. As always, he just makes too much sense.

    My words, not his, Rauner’s efforts were all a profoundly cynical scam to build a grassroot database on the fly and position himself as a populist victim.

    The amendment was meant to fail. Just watch him keep running on it, wailing how the man’s keeping him down.

    This from a guy who is front-and-center in the team picture of bankrollers of the Illinois status quo.

    The dude has the means to lawyer up as good as anyone on Planet Earth. Yet he produces a measure that was obviously unconstitutional on its face to the average layman? You buy that stuff?

    It’s bad faith, brother, and revealing. Once again, he demonstrates Blago-like contempt for the citizenry.


  31. - Streator Curmudgeon - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:27 pm:

    Whew! When I read the headline for this article, I thought Rauner was suing to stop Caption Contests about him on Capitol Fax!


  32. - Big Muddy - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 5:11 pm:

    I support term limits and especially support a fair map. I also will be voting for BVC because I want a leader with a spine. Any spine will do. But this whole court thing is bordering on goofy.


  33. - walker - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 7:22 pm:

    Wordslinger and Rich: Thank you both. To be pointed out by you is quite humbling.

    (I’m not kidding anyone — it’s egofantastical!)


  34. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 7:34 pm:

    - walker -,

    It is well, well deserved. You have been on this since Jump Street. Kudos very well deserved.

    - wordslinger -, always setting the bar out of reach, and when the award for commenter is named after you, that’s really all that needs to be said.

    To the Post,

    ===a redistricting reform proposal that died after Mikva’s ruling because its supporters didn’t have the money to fight another round.===

    Man, either someone isn’t paying attention, or is in the tank and blinded to reality…

    Or both.

    Rich is On It.


  35. - walker - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 7:52 pm:

    O’Willy: Sometimes you confuse, sometimes intrigue, often hit the nail squarely, always worth reading. Thank you much.


  36. - Anonymous - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 11:25 pm:

    if rauner is unable to deliver to the people now, what`s he going to do as govenor?


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    My brother recommended I would possibly like this
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