* My Crain’s Chicago Business column…
A southern Illinois state senator pointed out something the other day that sounds obvious, but really isn’t.
Sen. Andy Manar, D-Bunker Hill, said we can’t address challenges until leaders agree what those challenges actually are. He was referring to the excruciatingly long state government gridlock, but that’s just one example of a broader problem.
As we all know by now, Gov. Bruce Rauner won’t even talk about crafting a state budget until his nonbudget demands are met. He breezed past the very real hardships created by the lack of a budget on Dec. 1, telling reporters. “We’ll take short-term pain for big long-term gain.”
OK, well, tell that to rape victims who can’t get counseling. Explain that to homeless kids or pregnant women or infants with high-risk medical conditions who can’t get services because of the budget deadlock.
On the other hand, Rauner’s right that we need to do something about local property taxes and the workers’ compensation insurance program, which is too expensive for employers.
Yet neither side can agree on what the real issues are or on what the top priorities should be. The Democrats refuse to see the damage they’ve done to this economy with their decidedly not pro-business laws. On the other hand, how can Rauner sleep at night after all but saying rape victims won’t get help until redistricting reform is passed?
Look at the Syrian refugee issue.
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