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Rauner, Quinn trade jabs on property taxes and homeownership program

Monday, Apr 14, 2014

* The Rauner campaign threw down the gauntlet today

Republican candidate Bruce Rauner said today that if he were governor, he would veto legislation lawmakers sent to Gov. Pat Quinn last week that would cut pension benefits for some city workers and allow aldermen to raise property taxes to shore up the retirement program.

A spokesman for Rauner said the Winnetka businessman believes the measure should include shifting workers to a 401(k)-style defined contribution plan and contends that “raising property taxes is not the way to go.”

“Unless Pat Quinn wants to raise property taxes, he should veto the legislation,” said Rauner spokesman Mike Schrimpf.

* Greg Hinz

But it looks to me like Mr. Rauner may have put himself on the griddle, too, because so far, other than a few bromides about cutting “waste,” he’s given absolutely no clue how he’d make up for tens of billions of dollars in unfunded liability in city and state pension funds. And it certainly belies any notion that Mr. Emanuel secretly backs Mr. Rauner for governor.

Today’s developments came when Mr. Quinn scheduled a news conference to talk about a plan to help lower-middle-class families buy their first homes, and the Rauner campaign sent out an advance statement accusing the Democratic incumbent of hypocrisy for not promising to veto the Emanuel bill.

“As Pat Quinn tours the state relaunching a ‘new’ home loan program, will he break his promises again and allow Chicago property taxes to rise?” the statement asked. “Will he or won’t he? Quinn won’t say if he will sign the property-tax bill.” […]

[Rauner’s] pressure on Mr. Quinn to veto the bill ought to erase any lingering notion in some political circles that Mr. Emanuel quietly backs Mr. Rauner for governor. Ain’t so. Moves like today’s by Mr. Rauner have the potential to rev up City Hall and Chicago Democrats to put aside any disagreements with Mr. Quinn and rally city voters for the Democratic incumbent.

But, keep in mind, Rauner is trying to up the GOP’s vote total in Chicago, and this ain’t a bad way to do it.

* Quinn said he was “studying” the pension bill, but also attacked Rauner

Quinn also used the opportunity to bash his Republican opponent for governor, Bruce Rauner, who earlier Monday released a statement criticizing Quinn’s home-owner relief program as recycled and not new.

“That’s certainly a bizarre opinion,” Quinn said.

The program, available through the Illinois Housing Development Authority, offers certain first-time home buyers and those who haven’t owned a home in three years a low fixed-rate mortgage and up to $7,500 in down payment assistance.

“We are here to help families who don’t have political action committees, who don’t have lobbyists, who don’t have millions of dollars to buy more than one home …,” Quinn said in a thinly veiled reference to his opponent.

* From the Quinn campaign…

Billionaire Bruce Rauner – who owns nine homes - today went out of his way to criticize a successful state program helping everyday people across Illinois afford their very first home. Welcome Home Illinois will give many people the opportunity to buy their first and only home - but it’s clear this billionaire with nine homes of his own can’t relate. Is achieving the American Dream only for the self-proclaimed .01 percent?

This attack on everyday people again shows that billionaire Bruce Rauner is out-of-touch and doesn’t care about the people of Illinois.

More than 24,000 people have shown interest in Welcome Home Illinois, which provides a 3.75 percent interest rate for a secure, 30-year fixed mortgage.

…Adding…. From the Rauner campaign…

From Spokesman Mike Schrimpf:

Once again Quinnocchio is not being truthful with the people of Illinois - Bruce supported the program in 2005 when it was called I-loan, in 2009 when it was called “Illinois Home Start,” and even in 2011 when it was called “Smart Move. The truth is that Pat Quinn’s job-killing income tax hike continues to make life harder for potential homeowners.

Thoughts?

- Posted by Rich Miller   13 Comments      


Reform and renewal

Monday, Apr 14, 2014

* Eric Zorn came up with a great analogy about Bruce Rauner’s proposed constitutional amendment for term limits, etc.

In one of the more memorable scenes in the 1971 comedy “Bananas,” Woody Allen’s character Fielding Mellish is perusing the magazine rack at a small store. He’s trying to sneak peeks at the erotic fare in a way that avoids the notice of a matronly woman at the nearby checkout counter (see YouTube clip below)

He settles on a plan. “I’ll get a copy of Time magazine,” he says, loud enough for the woman to hear, as he takes a copy off the rack. “I’ll take Commentary. And the Saturday Review. And, uh, let’s see, Newsweek, and just I’ll grab one of these…”

He slips one of the skin magazines into the small collection of periodicals he doesn’t really care about, then turns to the cashier. “I’ll take `em all,” he mumbles as the woman looks on from several feet away.

It’s a nice try at misdirection.

Zorn’s premise is that Rauner is attempting to get around the state Constitution’s limit of popular amendments to only “structural and procedural” changes in the the General Assembly’s Article by proposing a change in the number of House and Senate members and an increase in the number of votes to override a gubernatorial veto

So think of the term limits proposal as the equivalent of the pornographic publication in “Bananas” — the illicit yet true object of desire.

And think of the other two elements on the Committee for Legislative Reform and Term Limits petition as the equivalent of Saturday Review and Newsweek — conventional, but, really, beside the point.

Both are clearly constititutional.

* Meanwhile, the Tribune editorialized again in favor of a different constitutional amendment for redistricting reform

Next comes the inevitable lawsuit, challenging the constitutionality or the language of the amendment, or both. It would fall to the Illinois Supreme Court, whose members were elected with party support, to decide whether the measure stays on the ballot.

Then there’s the big disinformation campaign, on which millions will be spent to convince voters that the amendment is bad for them. Already, the state’s top Democrats are voicing disingenuous concerns that the measure could reduce minority representation.

Um, I wonder who’s gonna spend “millions” to fight this? The unions will be spending all they can to defeat Rauner. The House and Senate Democrats will be spending cash on their own races, along with the state party.

Is there a pro-status quo millionaire out there who will step in and throw big money away attempting to defeat a proposal which has overwhelming popular support? I kinda doubt it.

* And Paul Green, writing in the Daily Herald, gets the last word again

Reform is a many splendored thing. You want to be a reformer? It’s easy; simply call yourself one, e.g., every Chicago mayor since 1837 has labeled himself or herself — a reformer. As we meander into the Illinois General Assembly’s closing weeks of session and ponder the upcoming November general elections, once again its “Reform Time — Illinois Style”.

Some “reformers” want to change how Illinois legislative maps are drawn. Other “reformers” want to initiate term limits for state legislators, while almost everyone claiming reform DNA — constantly use the terms “transparency” and accountability” like those words have some biblical meaning to frame their intentions.

Statewide reform goals and philosophy aside, the main target for all this activity is Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan. Reformers lament and criticize “The Speaker’s” power, influence and durability, especially in his control of the Illinois House.

Alas, what is seldom if ever mentioned, is that Speaker Madigan was created — you guessed it — by reformers. Yes, my friends, over 30 years ago, a youngish reformer (who now happens to be Illinois governor) led a constitutional crusade to end cumulative voting for electing Illinois House members.

It was called the “Cut-back” Amendment” — it created single member districts, reduced House membership from 177 to 118 members and obliterated independent Republicans from Chicago and independent Democrats from suburban Cook and the Collars. And it gave a shrewd and workaholic Mike Madigan the opportunity to create a power base that would have been impossible pre-Cut-back.

Ergo, beware of reform promises. Or, said another way, if folks are promising a New Deal, make sure you cut the cards.

* Related…

* ADDED: House votes to make secret government severance deals public

* AARP backs changes to redistricting process

* Baar-Topinka tells broadcasters term limits are stupid

- Posted by Rich Miller   25 Comments      


Rate the new Rauner ad

Friday, Apr 11, 2014

* From Diana Rauner…

Hi.

The response to the TV ad we released last week has been great. The ad was a lot of fun for Bruce and me to make.

But I wanted to share a little more about why I think Bruce will make an excellent governor for every Illinoisan.

Watch here: bit.ly/1eot4vD

I hope you enjoy our new ad.

And if you’re interested in volunteering for the campaign please click here.

Thank you for all that you’re doing to bring back Illinois.

Diana

* Rate it

…Adding… I forgot to include the cable buy stats. I don’t have the network buy info as of yet…

Citizens for Rauner
Republican candidate for Governor of Illinois
Agency: Access Media, Los Angeles
Total schedule: $82,256
Flight Dates: 4/11/14 - 4/17/14
Networks: BRVO, FOOD, HGTV, TVL, USA
Dayparts: 9A-4P, 4-7P, 7P-Midnight
Syscodes / zones / $ by zone
5170 / Chicago Interconnect / $68, 880
9804 / DirecTV / $7,917
9810 / DISH / $5,459

- Posted by Rich Miller   90 Comments      


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