Topinka plan round-up - UPDATED x3
Thursday, Aug 24, 2006
This is the sort of thing that I like most about Topinka.
“Is it great? Probably not. Is it the very best in the world? Probably not,” Topinka said, describing her plan to the Sun-Times editorial board. “But it does the job. It’s practical.”
And this is the sort of thing that I like least about Gov. Blagojevich:
The Blagojevich campaign also immediately pointed out via an online ad that Topinka was flip-flopping on gambling, citing her previous comments that relying on more gambling to balance the state budget was a bad path to take.
Sen. Link makes a good point:
The plan does not contain new casinos, which allows Topinka to claim sheâ€™s not expanding gambling. But that absence also makes it tough to get the idea through the Senate.
And the Tribune editorial board lays down the gauntlet.
The initial response Wednesday from Team Blagojevich wasn’t encouraging. The governor’s campaign sharpshooters immediately issued pages of rhetoric intended to discredit this or that line item of Topinka’s four-year financial plan for resolving Illinois’ bleak plight.
UPDATE: Something I forgot to mention today was that Sen. Steve Rauschenberger is handling the detailed budget questions for the Topinka campaign, which may seem a little odd considering Rauschenberger’s harsh comments about Topinka last year.
I just talked to Steve and he has agreed to write a detailed response to Budget Director John Filan’s claim that the JBT proposal would produce a $5.7 billion annual deficit. Hopefully, I’ll be able to post it tomorrow morning. Director Filan will, of course, be offered the opportunity to respond. The resulting back and forth may bore some of you, but the idea is to move beyond the pimpy little digs and get to the heart of the matter.
UPDATE 2: Bill Brady
State Sen. Bill Brady, a conservative GOP member who ran against the moderate Topinka in the March primary, said he’s pleased that the proposal doesn’t raise taxes.
UPDATE 3: Missed this one.
Reaction among lawmakers who will have to vote for it if Topinka beats Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich in November was tepid.