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Rauner again making noises about governor’s race

Monday, Aug 8, 2011

* Venture capitalist Bruce Rauner made some noises about running for governor in 2010. The Sun-Times apparently believes he is more serious about the next governor’s election, which is more than three years away

Bruce Rauner, the venture capitalist who helped make Mayor Rahm Emanuel a millionaire, is edging toward a run for governor of Illinois as a Republican, prominent Illinois Republicans tell the Sun-Times.

Rauner, 55, is senior principal and chairman of Chicago-based GTCR Golder Rauner LLC, a Chicago-based private equity firm.

He recently garnered attention as a prime mover of the education reform legislation that passed Springfield, smashing teachers’ right to strike and paving the way for longer school days in Chicago.

Rauner has been testing the waters and telling other Republicans he is gearing up to run, senior elected Republicans and Republican campaign veterans told the Sun-Times. Rauner did not return a call seeking comment.

Other Republicans looking at the 2014 race are Sens. Bill Brady and Kirk Dillard, Treasurer Dan Rutherford and possibly even Congressman Aaron Schock.

* Rauner has contributed over a million dollars to state and local campaign funds over the years. The biggest recipient of his largesse was Forrest Claypool, who received three big contributions totaling $250,000 in 2001, 2005 and 2006. Former Mayor Daley received $200,000. The Illinois Republican Party and the House Republicans were also major beneficiaries. George Ryan got a check in 1998.

* Last year, Rauner floated an idea to raise a pile of money to lease vacant public school buildings for charter schools. Rauner has his own charter school. He was also heavily involved in Stand for Children Illinois’ major push into Illinois politics last year. His name was floated as a possible Chicago schools CEO and Rauner said he “cried both times” he saw the movie “Waiting for Superman.”

His firm does a lot of work with the outsourcing industry, which could prove to be a valuable mining opportunity for opponents.

* Related…

* Illinois Treasurer Fears Credit Downgrade could Affect State

* Maximum property tax hike sought for Chicago public schools

* No layoff details yet in CPS budget cuts

* CPS seeks higher taxes in nearly $6 billion budget

* Editorial: Emanuel’s ‘no-tax’ pledge doesn’t add up

- Posted by Rich Miller        

20 Comments
  1. - JP - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 7:27 am:

    If the worst thing you can say about Rauner is that he “does a lot of work with the outsourcing industry”, we should recall Quinn this afternoon and install Bruce Rauner tomorrow morning.


  2. - Ghost - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 8:32 am:

    Dillard needs to start campaining and raising money now :)


  3. - High Five - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 8:40 am:

    Let me see, Rauner has brains, backbone, and more money then anyone in SFLD could imagine. It may take him a week or two to learn some of the behind the scenes ways, but then look out, he would want to get things done.


  4. - Shore - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 8:44 am:

    One of the major problems the chicago media has had of late in their political coverage with the exception of the daily herald is understanding the tea party and it’s impact on the gop and we see that in the pallasch piece. In the piece pallasch notes rauners ties to madigam and rahm emanuel-things that are major major red flags to the new tea party dominated republican party. There are no lines in the story which there should be like “while rauner maybe courting establishment gop support what’s uncertain is how he will play with tea party activists.” While I recognize pallasch is a city reporter, if he wants to do his job well he needs to factor these things in, regardless of whether or not his paper cares for the tea party or if its not something they have much of in downtown chicago.


  5. - Cincinnatus - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 9:11 am:

    Ghost,

    Are you sure he isn”t?


  6. - reformer - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 9:37 am:

    Just what the GOP needs: Someone who donates big bucks to Democrats Daley, Claypool and Emanuel. That should qualify him for the Republican nomination.


  7. - Cheryl44 - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 10:03 am:

    I hope the IL GOP gets its act together and nominates someone good this time. Not that I’ll vote that way, but I’m guessing our next governor will come from them.


  8. - Bring Back Boone's - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 10:26 am:

    The thing I take issue with in Abdon Pallasch’s piece about Rauner is where he ends the article with this :

    ===If Quinn were to decide not to seek re-election in 2014, Attorney General Lisa Madigan would be likely to seek the Democratic nomination with strong support from her father, House Speaker Mike Madigan, the Illinois Democratic Party’s chairman.===

    Didn’t the last election cycle disprove this theory- or at least nullify it as an aforementioned thought? I wish the Chicago MSM would stop ending every sentence about Gov with this.


  9. - just sayin' - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 10:34 am:

    Rauner is head and shoulders above Brady, Dillard, and Rutherford. It’s not even close in terms of competence, accomplishment, smarts, and effectiveness.

    It’s Major League Baseball vs. t-ball.

    If Brady, Dillard, and Rutherford were honest they would say “yeah we pretty much suck compared to this guy.”


  10. - K3_Spfld_Chi - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 11:11 am:

    It would be interesting if we had a primary of Rauner v Citadel x-CEO Ken Griffin. It would be interesting but not good for the party. WEould you vote for the guy worth a billion or hundreds of millions????

    Dillard can’t play with Ruaner, correct in the MLB vs t-ball. Rutherford wouldn’t. Brady can’t play with Rutherford or Dillard as that mistake won’t be made again. Adam Andsagdfa will run again and he will be added to the list of worthless candidates.


  11. - Conservative Veteran - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 11:28 am:

    Too many Illinois Republicans ran statewide, lost, and ran another statewide campaign, thinking that the first campaign would help them win the second race. However, they were usually incorrect. Jim Oberweis ran statewide three times, and he lost, every time. These people ran statewide, twice each, and lost, every time: Al Salvi, Joe Birkett, Steve Rauschenberger, and Bill Brady. Treasurer Rutherford and Comptroller Topinka are exceptions, since they lost, statewide, in 2006, and won, statewide, in ‘10. If Senators Brady and Dillard runs, statewide, in 2014, they’ll probably lose.

    The last two republican governors (George Ryan and Jim Edgar) held statewide offices. If Treasurer Rutherford runs for governor, he’ll probably win the primary, at least. I hope that Brady will run against Congressman Johnson and that Adam Andrzejewski will run against Dillard.


  12. - Demoralized - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 12:17 pm:

    ==It may take him a week or two to learn some of the behind the scenes ways, but then look out, he would want to get things done.==

    That’s the danger with people being elected to office who do not understand government. As long as he can accept working within the system then I would have no problem with him. But, business people need to understand that they cannot simply snap their fingers and get things done. Government does not run like a business. You have to follow certain processes.


  13. - Gregor - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 12:48 pm:

    Conservative Vet: those people on your list that ran and lost all sold out to the far right fringes of their party and scared away centrists. Tea Party support is not all it is cracked up to be: they don’t seem to be able to influence a general, only barely in primaries. Which yields you a repub candidate too damaged, scary, and weak to win a general, IMO.


  14. - Ghost of John Brown - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 1:32 pm:

    Just one question:

    Can anyone name a single big-money, well financed candidate with no political experience that has ever won anything in this state?

    I can’t. He might be a great guy, but without any knowledge of how to run or any experience at running, he’s just setting himself up to be milked by campaign consultants.


  15. - Team Sleep - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 1:32 pm:

    And what would that be, Demoralized?! Taking forever to do anything and then rushing at the last minute to pass meaningful legislation and a budget for 13 million people? Or sitting on your hands? A governor can hire whomever he or she wants to work for him or her. If Mr. Rauner were to run for governor and win, he may not feel the need to hire political lackies and friends of friends. He may want to bring in young businesspersons and hire people based on ability and not just politics. That is part of the reason we are such a sorry state (not Illinois but politics and government in general).

    I think Schock wants to run for Senate. That is just my guess, but he has one of the most prolific leadership PACs in D.C., which could be used for anything at the federal level (i.e. buying influence with other senators and high-level Congresspersons). He also boasts $1.5 million in the bank and is again looking at token opposition. If he ramps up fundraising in the next two years, I would lean towards a Congressional run.


  16. - Anonymous - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 1:43 pm:

    =Government does not run like a business. You have to follow certain processes. =

    What good is understanding a process if you can no longer follow it because it takes a backseat to “all things political”?


  17. - Cincinnatus - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 1:53 pm:

    Once can buy the expertise to operate in the governors office. One cannot buy the judgement, temperament and experience needed to effectively govern.


  18. - Bill - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 3:41 pm:

    If this Rauner guy is so smart how come he wants to be governor?…and spend his own money, no less~!


  19. - JBilla - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 4:55 pm:

    I’d hear him out. Venture Capitalist, School builder. These aren’t issues. I would need to hear his plan for keeping business in Illinois AND making sure those businesses post their profits here AND make sure they pay at least some taxes here.


  20. - wordslinger - Monday, Aug 8, 11 @ 8:40 pm:

    Lifetime away. I’m not even sure what the purpose is of these trial balloons.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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