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Madigan, Democrats react to Rauner TV blitz

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2015 - Posted by Rich Miller

* You can watch Speaker Madigan’s Tuesday press conference by clicking here.

From the Sun-Times

Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan, D-Chicago, on Tuesday called Gov. Bruce Rauner’s new TV ad blitz “extreme” and said a budget deal would come only “if everybody’s reasonable.”

Still, Madigan said he believed the Legislature was making “progress” toward breaking a budget impasse, despite entering the third week after adjournment without a balanced plan.

“That TV ad takes us to the extreme. It takes away from moderation. It’s just like the other non-budget issues,” Madigan told reporters in a Capitol news conference.

“I think we’re making progress,” Madigan added. “I’m working seven days a week on this.” […]

“In the House, we’re attempting to be responsive to the governor’s interests. That’s why number one, we passed a worker’s compensation bill. We provided four opportunities for Republicans to pass legislation that would freeze property taxes.”

* Illinois Review

According to our count, during the 20 minute press conference, the Speaker used the term “moderation” 11 times, the term “reasonable” 10 times, “extreme” to describe the governor 16 times, and “non-budget issues” 13 times.

In referring to the House’s legislative session which has not yet adjourned and will meet every Tuesday until the budget is agreed upon, Madigan used the term “continuous session” 11 times.

He is being reasonable and moderate, the Governor is being extreme.

When a reporter asked why Rauner’s television ads would be considered extreme while Madigan-funded mailers attacking Republicans in their home districts were not problematic, the Speaker said the mailers the Democrats sent out “were not extreme, they were factual.”

* SJ-R

Madigan said mailers critical of Republicans sent into Republican legislative districts by the Illinois Democratic Party he controls are different from the ads.

“We wouldn’t consider the mailers extreme,” Madigan said. “They are factual. They weren’t inflammatory. We’re not going to do any TV ads, I can tell you that.” […]

Senate President John Cullerton, D-Chicago, who is not mentioned in the ads, “is encouraging the governor to pull back from campaigning and lean into governing,” said spokeswoman Rikeesha Phelon.

Sen. Andy Manar, D-Bunker Hill, said discussion of the ads among Democrats was “almost non-existent.”

“I don’t wake up every day and worry about what the governor is going to do when it comes to political rhetoric,” Manar said. “It’s clear to me that we have priorities that we need to fund in the state budget, and we need to find solutions to break the budget impasse. Unfortunately, I don’t think this commercial that the governor is airing is going to get us closer to breaking that impasse.”

* Illinois Public Radio

“We’re not campaigning,” Cullerton said. “The election’s next year. This is the year we should be governing and reaching compromise. So that’s what I would urge the governor to do. To come back to the table and stop the ads, and let’s just see if we can get together.”

* QC Times

Cullerton, who wasn’t named in the governor’s ad but has taken his own lumps in Rauner’s remarks to media, also continued to pitch the “let’s talk” angle.

“It’s not the best way to start a conversation when you’re trying to reach an agreement,” Cullerton said about Rauner’s ad. “I think he (Rauner) is still in campaign mode, and we’d like him to get out of the campaign mode and start governing.”

“Let’s work together,” the Senate president said. “That’s what we’re willing to do.”

* AP

“We need to be focusing on actually getting a budget put in place,” said Sen. Heather Steans, a Chicago Democrat. “We need to provide fiscal stability and security.”

But there were few hints of progress on the budget Tuesday as lawmakers gathered for the lackluster session. Attendance was visibly down from regular session, with several lawmakers wearing Blackhawks jerseys to celebrate the team’s Stanley Cup win the evening before. And Madigan, who called a solo news conference while his session was still meeting, said he couldn’t recall the last time he spoke to Rauner about the budget.

* This quote is gonna wind up in a TV ad

(S)tate Rep. Frank Mautino, D-Spring Valley, isn’t shying away from Madigan, the longtime House speaker and chairman of the state Democratic party.

“I support him as the head of my party. He believes in the same things I believe in,” Mautino, the House’s deputy majority leader, said in a phone interview Tuesday. […]

“I believe the Turnaround Agenda is wrong for Illinois,” said Mautino, who represents the majority of La Salle County, including Ottawa and Streator. “Even the Republicans will not vote for the governor’s right-to-work initiatives.” […]

“The governor needs to stop pointing his finger at bogeymen and quit running for election,” Mautino said. “What I would hope is that he would come to the table and negotiate. The governor’s budget was short $3.5 billion. The Democrats were $4 billion short. The cuts the governor has proposed are hurtful and designed to make a point rather than save money.”

* Tribune

“I suppose it could have been worse, but worse doesn’t mean that this was a good idea,” said Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie, a Chicago Democrat and Madigan’s top deputy. “I do think that personal attacks are not helpful if we’re trying to set a table, a table around which we hope to negotiate. So I think this was not the best strategy, if one really wants to solve the budget problem.” […]

“Why are we here? To listen to testimony?” asked Rep. David Harris of Arlington Heights in a speech that drew applause from fellow Republicans. “Do you want to be here? Do you think it’s advantageous for us … to come from the north, the south, the east and the west, all over the state, to come down here just to listen to testimony from the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity? I don’t believe that’s the best use of our time.”

Rep. Jack Franks, D-Marengo, who chaired the hearing, had a pointed response.

“We hear all the time how the easiest way to raise revenue is to create more jobs, and most, if many of us, don’t want to raise taxes,” Franks said.

“Heck, I even saw a TV ad today about economic development put out by someone who might know,” he said in reference to Rauner’s ad. “So, (the governor’s) talking about economic development and I think that we all ought to be talking about economic development, and I believe that’s why we’re here today.”

* Hizzoner

“Speaker Madigan believes firmly in his principles and believes firmly in fighting for those principles. I don’t think there should be any attack on character,” the mayor said.

“In politics, dialogue and trust are essential. Any time you break that up, you make coming to terms harder.” […]

“How do you create a context for people to make compromises so that people see there’s enough victory? Nobody is going to sign on to something where they lose and you win. And you’re not gonna sign onto something where I win and you lose,” Emanuel said.

“All of us have a role to play in creating a context where everybody has enough wins where they think that agreement is something that they are for because they see enough progress for the things that they care about.” […]

“Everybody should just lower the temperature and keep the conversation and the dialogue and the space for that conversation and dialogue, then create an ability for people to make the necessary compromises for people to reach an agreement that advances the city and the state’s interests,” the mayor said.

       

44 Comments
  1. - Frenchie Mendoza - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:12 am:

    MRE makes good points. The idea is always “enough victory” — or “sufficient victory” — for all sides.

    I wish Rauner would understand this.


  2. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:13 am:

    ===“It’s not the best way to start a conversation when you’re trying to reach an agreement,” Cullerton said about Rauner’s ad. “I think he (Rauner) is still in campaign mode, and we’d like him to get out of the campaign mode and start governing.”===

    This.

    This.


  3. - Roamin' Numeral - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:13 am:

    From Jim Muschinske in COGFA’s latest monthly briefing:

    “With only one month remaining in the fiscal year, overall receipts are down $356 million through May. The falloff would have been significantly larger if not for the $1.236 billion in year to date fund sweeps conducted over the last two months.”

    We need that revenue. Even the governor’s proposal was unbalanced. Put the personal and corporate income tax rates where they were on December 31st, and we’ll have a balanced budget. Then, we can stop with these commercials and all the other ridiculous nonsense.


  4. - A guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:19 am:

    I just spent a lot of time reading…nothing.


  5. - Langhorne - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:22 am:

    This sadly says it all:

    Madigan, who called a solo news conference while his session was still meeting, said he couldn’t recall the last time he spoke to Rauner about the budget.


  6. - In a Minute - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:23 am:

    Whenever I hear Madigan talk I am reminded of that SNL Super Fans st with George Wendt. Great stuff.


  7. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:24 am:

    Rauner said that he had no plans to do a TV campaign and then does it. “ck”, says that they won’t lock out State Employees and she will be the first one licking the door on July 1st.


  8. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:25 am:

    Locking the door


  9. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:25 am:

    What the new governor was to do during his first six months in office, was publically establish an ability to deal with the political reality he found within Springfield. He was to demonstrate an ability to be bipartisan. An ability to compromise. An ability to cut a deal. An ability to move his agenda in some tangible way. An ability to show Illinoisans that there are new ideas that could be discussed constructively within the governing sphere that exists.

    He has done none of that. The Democrats in control over the Illinois government have been waiting for the new governor to sit down and govern. Sure - they could control a lot of the mechanisms, but they ARE in the majority, right? We all knew that as a solo elected GOP statewide official of the minority party, the new governor would find himself surrounded by skeptics, (JBT’s replacement isn’t elected.)

    So we are seeing the majority party trying to figure out how the GOP’s CEO wants to govern, and it seems all he is able to do is to continue his campaign against them. Rauner’s behavior is no longer humorous. The moment he stop telling us that he wanted to help small business, and began telling us that he meant that he had a list of Illinoisans who didn’t deserve what they had - he has gone off track. If he has a staff trying to get him to be a governor, either they are ineffective, or their man is completely uncontrollable.

    Rauner’s TV campaign is not enlightening anyone. It isn’t helping him either. Mr. Speaker want to deal, but Mr. Rauner seems to be more interested in taking selfies and being some kind of political brand. Governor Rauner, please try to do the job you were elected to do.


  10. - Cassiopeia - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:28 am:

    Madigan is like an aging athlete who has played one season too long. All things end eventually and no one is certain how and when his reign will end but its not likely to be pretty.


  11. - Anon2U - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:29 am:

    If this ad is extreme to Madigan I can only imagine what he will be calling the flamitory ads that will be running in August when we still have no budget. He ain’t seen nothin’ yet and he will be wearing the collar for it all. The only thing extreme in Illinois is the extremely bad way Madigan has run our state. You can try and pin it on the new Governor but everyone knows, or will know, who’s been controlling this state for decades.


  12. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:32 am:

    Gee I wonder if Madigan playing his committee of the whole BS had anything to do with this ad campaign. I know Madigan can do no wrong here at Cap Fax but he is just as much to blame actually more so since he has been in charge for so long.


  13. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:34 am:

    Wow. Two victims heard from in a row. Grow up


  14. - slow down - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:35 am:

    Cassiopeia, do you really believe that? How people can still underestimate Madigan after all these years is beyond me.


  15. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:35 am:

    Governors own budgets.

    Rauner, himself, ran against Quinn’s “failures” in governing.

    Rauner will own this. This is the disconnect, and why Rauner is feverishly trying to blame MJM, because even Rauner knows; Governors own.


  16. - slow down - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:37 am:

    Anon2U, the Governor always takes the heat for cuts. Maybe Rauner will run enough ads to have Madigan share some blame but by and large, it will fall on Rauner’s shoulders.


  17. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:38 am:

    - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:32 am:

    You have no clue. Where are your facts?

    Capitol Fax has had no love for Madigan. You must be a drive by, Raunerite or Rauner yourself.


  18. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:39 am:

    - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:34 am:

    Wow. Two victims heard from in a row. Grow up

    Thanks, you said my thoughts.


  19. - walker - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:44 am:

    What is Governor Rauner actually doing with his time, while Madigan is “working seven days a week” on the budget?

    Making speeches around the state on term limits, “right to work”, and “shaking up Springfield.”

    It’s obvious that they are just not working on the same issues, or in the same time frames.

    Rauner wants to get his “turnaround” items passed, and he will sacrifice anything, including a balanced budget agreement, to get progress there over the long term.

    Madigan wants to get a bipartisan budget, and establish a working government to the extent possible in the short term, while avoiding most of the turnaround items.


  20. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:46 am:

    You can try and pin it on the new Governor but everyone knows, or will know, who’s been controlling this state for decades.

    It is like reading how the Fire Marshall is refusing to fight the fire because he didn’t start it.


  21. - RNUG - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:46 am:

    Translating Madiganspeak:

    == said a budget deal would come only “if everybody’s reasonable.” ==

    There’s a deal to be had on the budget if you want it without poison pills.

    == It takes away from moderation. It’s just like the other non-budget issues,” ==

    There’s been and still can be deals on the table if you want your turnaround agenda without the poison pills.

    == said he couldn’t recall the last time he spoke to Rauner about the budget ==

    Leaders of the House and Senate are co-equal to Governors. You need a budget; we don’t so much. You need to take a short walk.


  22. - A guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:47 am:

    ====Demoralized - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:34 am:

    Wow. Two victims heard from in a row. Grow up===

    To be fair, Demo, I’d have to say the Speaker was playing the victim pretty dramatically yesterday i.e. “your ads aren’t helpful, but mine are the truth, so I get to”. Really?

    I’m not sure I ever remember him acting or reacting quite like that before. Help me if you can remember.

    Until this gets resolved, there will be no shortage of victims anywhere.


  23. - RNUG - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:48 am:

    == Governors own budgets. ==

    And cuts … and any other actions.

    Headlines in the paper today all said Rauner this and Rauner that …


  24. - A guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:49 am:

    === Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:38 am:

    - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:32 am:

    You have no clue. Where are your facts?===

    Jeez dudes, would one of you kooks pick a name. It appears like you’re arguing with yourself.


  25. - A guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:52 am:

    ===Leaders of the House and Senate are co-equal to Governors===

    Respectfully RNUG, no they aren’t. THe entire GA is co-equal to the executive branch.


  26. - RNUG - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:56 am:

    ==Respectfully RNUG, no they aren’t. THe entire GA is co-equal to the executive branch. ==

    A guy … yes, I obviously overdid the comparison.


  27. - Percival - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:57 am:

    The insincerity just drips from this stuff. For the past twelve years, there were no compromises, the GOP leadership rarely got a phone call, and they only times the Democrats wanted Republican participation was when passing an unpleasant item so the Republicans could share the blame. But now it’s “We want to compromise and you can see our good intents by how we wrote up phony bills on your agenda just so we could vote them down.” Give Rauner some due: the Democratic leadership is now only partially arrogant, down from overwhelmingly arrogant.

    I will give Madigan and Cullerton credit for one thing: they were plain in putting forth a grossly irresponsible budget, rather than Rauner’s partially irresponsible budget coated in Shake & Bake crumbs to look balanced. The latter was a mistake.

    This state is changing beneath our feet, and not for the better. We can either face that or maintain a fantasy that the past times o’ plenty are still around to finance all the pensions, social projects and such. Or we can go the way of the Greeks by continuing to spend ourselves into an enormous hole in an act of Generational Theft, then cry when anyone wants to make us face the reality and impact of our own actions. Either way, the Gravy Train has derailed.

    I haven’t seen the ads yet, but if they are attack more than educational, it will be a wasted opportunity because the voters of this state need to hear facts, not rhetoric. But one man’s “attack” is another man’s “benign” so each will have to form their own opinion on that one.


  28. - A guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 11:00 am:

    I know what you meant. And your point is well taken, as it always is.


  29. - zonz - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 11:15 am:

    thank you, A guy
    _____________
    - A guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:49 am:

    === Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:38 am:

    - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 10:32 am:

    You have no clue. Where are your facts?===

    Jeez dudes, would one of you kooks pick a name. It appears like you’re arguing with yourself.


  30. - Mama - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 11:20 am:

    ++Rauner wants to get his “turnaround” items passed, and he will sacrifice anything, including a balanced budget agreement, to get progress there over the long term.

    Madigan wants to get a bipartisan budget, and establish a working government to the extent possible in the short term, while avoiding most of the turnaround items.++
    Good points Walker.


  31. - lake county democrat - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 11:26 am:

    A Guy often fights the good fight here. Yesterday Eric Zorn, not exactly a Rauner supporter, wrote an analysis of the ads and discussed how they might be effective - even the possibility of that seems inconceivable to some of the commenters here.

    What exactly does Rauner have to lose by trying this Scott Walker imitation? If he forces Madigan to use his supermajority, then Madigan owns the budget, not him (and as I’ve been writing, I get the sense from the email my Dem reps send me that they don’t want that). The guy is filthy rich - if the whole thing implodes and even the state GOP turns against him, he’ll throw up his hands and say he tried to do what was necessary and go off to live his $1000 (or was it $10,000)/bottle of wine life.


  32. - Thoughts Matter - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 11:44 am:

    Actually, Rep. Harris, we do expect you to come from all over the state to our Capitol to hear testimony on this and many other matters. It’s the job you wanted when you ran for election.

    I actually like what Madigan is doing with these sessions. He’s presenting subject matter regarding the Governors’ stated priorities, and then calling for a vote. That’s his job. If Rauner can’t rustle up the votes, then accept that and move on. I see nothing wrong with the process just because the outcome doesn’t meet Rauners’ desire.


  33. - Rod - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 11:45 am:

    So I watched the Speaker’s press conference that Rich linked for us. The idea that the Speaker can beat the Governor by positioning himself in the middle and placing the Governor on the extreme in my opinion will not work.

    Here is why, Governor Rauner while a candidate continually argued for extreme business positions and what he believes are pro-growth positions. He is doing exactly now what he said he would do. The Speaker is not exposing him in the least.

    The Democrats have to explain through numerous methods why they are opposed to the turn around agenda. The Speaker touched on it, but his focus is in painting the turnaround agenda as a non-budget issue.

    The other problem is we have a Democrat leader who openly supported the privatization of a full state agency (DCEO) along with the elimination of public sector workers (about 360 even under the Rauner budget) who is trying to paint a Republican as extreme. Apparently the only difference is a sun set provision, which will be meaningless once all the employees are cut.


  34. - Wordslinger - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 12:26 pm:

    “Why are we here?…” asked noted existentialist David Harris, a riddle for the GOP for many years now.

    For years, the GOP in the GA have taken the paychecks and perks without taking a tough vote.

    Now, they still don’t take tough votes, buy tney get Rauner money to boot for not doing so.

    Life is good.


  35. - Frenchie Mendoza - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 12:32 pm:

    Didn’t Rauner during the campaign promise to take on Madigan? Didn’t Rauner claim he could deal with Madigan?

    If so — I’m not seeing it. I’m seeing television ads. Which by the way do nothing to move someone suddenly left without the state assistance that they’d been getting.

    You can move your rich, white, old guy base all you want — but when people are hurt by cuts, they’re not going to say, “Well, yeah, he cut my heating assistance so he’s definitely turning around Illinois. Thanks, Governor. Here’s my vote!”


  36. - Cheryl44 - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 12:50 pm:

    At least buying tv ads is good for the economy.


  37. - Precinct Captain - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 1:05 pm:

    ==- lake county democrat - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 11:26 am:==

    The Democratic budget plans didn’t pass with a supermajority. What makes you think people will magically flip?


  38. - Anon2U - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 1:46 pm:

    Demoralized @ 10:34,
    I’m no victim, I’m a resident of Illinois who has had enough of Madigan and his extreme ways of failure. You like the man? Fine. But he will most assuredly go down and the man who destroyed a once great state with his petulant, self serving, megalomaniac ways. We are where we are because of him. He owns it.


  39. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 2:02 pm:

    - Anon2U -,

    Rauner owns whatever happens in his watch. All governors do. Please learn this, it will help you understand why Rauner fears this.


  40. - Wordslinger - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 3:45 pm:

    –Governor Rauner while a candidate continually argued for extreme business positions and what he believes are pro-growth positions. He is doing exactly what he said he would do.–

    That is utter nonsense. He said virtually nothing about anything during the campaign.

    It was always “working on comprehensive detailed plans” that never materialized.

    When he got called on his old anti-union rhetoric during the campaign, he ran backwards. “Not a priority.”

    He didnt run on the agenda that he is pushing now. If he had, I’m certain he would have lost. I’m guessing he thought so, too.

    Show me I’m wrong.


  41. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 4:09 pm:

    two problems at this moment:

    Illinois government taxes like a Red State and spends like a Blue State,

    and, the Governor has no idea how to govern, but since he was successful at campaigning he is continuing to do that now.

    Very sad and very shallow. When one party is in charge, they never want to address revenues so that they get all the blame. Having a governor or one party and a legislature of the other is the perfect opportunity for addressing revenues, as Illinois badly needs.

    So govern already!!!


  42. - A guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 4:28 pm:

    === Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 4:09 pm:

    two problems at this moment:

    Illinois government taxes like a Red State===

    Only when it comes to ‘income tax’. And in that case it’s more purple than red.

    In most other taxing ways, we tax like a blue state…because that’s what we’ve been.


  43. - walker - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 5:15 pm:

    Rod: You continue to make smart observations.

    One of note is that Madigan himself has been supportive of a privatized or hybrid replacement for the current DCEO. That’s not to say he agrees fully with Rauner’s version.

    The real learning here is that Madigan does not always agree with the majority of his caucus, and to assume that he will break with his usual practice and try to force votes his way, is risky.


  44. - markg8 - Wednesday, Jun 17, 15 @ 5:24 pm:

    What we need to do is tax ourselves like a red state.

    Like Georgia with a top marginal income tax rate of 6% and a low of 1%. Or Idaho with a tmr of 7.4% and a low of 1.6%. Or Iowa with a tmr of 8.9% and a low of .36%. Or Wisconsin with a tmr of 7.65% and a low of 4.4%.

    What we need like all these red states (there’s many more) is a graduated income tax where those with higher incomes pay a higher rate and those with lower incomes pay a lower rate.


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