* I could hear them from the gallery yesterday, but couldn’t make out what they were saying. Here’s the SJ-R…
Protests and rallies at the Statehouse are usual during legislative sessions, and a big gathering in the rotunda Wednesday included hundreds of people chanting things like “budget first” even as Gov. BRUCE RAUNER delivered his State of the State address in the House chamber.
At least in the House gallery, some of the chants — muffled by the chamber’s closed doors — could be heard as the governor spoke.
Why that tactic?
“I think it was necessary so the governor understands and all the lawmakers understand that families and communities need a budget right now, and they need one that chooses revenue over cuts to veterans, seniors, those with disabilities,” said NEAL WALTMIRE, spokesman for the Responsible Budget Coalition.
The coalition includes about 250 groups, from statewide teacher unions to Land of Lincoln Goodwill Industries and the Hope Institute for Children and Families.
“We were respectful of the instructions,” Waltmire said. “We just wanted to make sure that the governor heard our concerns. It was hard to ignore us.”
“I think it was necessary so the governor understands and all the lawmakers understand that families and communities need a budget right now, and they need one that chooses revenue over cuts to veterans, seniors, those with disabilities.”
It’s not a question of understanding the need, it’s a question of caring.
Protesters, there is a primary coming up as well as a general election, so remember to get out and vote for those who share your values and not the Governor’s values.
- There is power in a union... - Thursday, Jan 28, 16 @ 12:52 pm:
Dear protesters, Dunkin wanted to join you but he was too busy at target looking for sleeping bags. In the meantime, he says to feel free to use madigans shower.
- crazybleedingheart - Thursday, Jan 28, 16 @ 12:57 pm:
Don’t worry, Elo, after a year of trying to make the “responsible business” case to play nice with the new governor and speak his language, protesters are increasingly happy to shift their focus to the GOP Caucus members who have willingly climbed inside his Carhartt jacket.
It’s not that GOP legislators are powerless, it’s that they don’t care.
If it had been ambiguous previously, Radogno did a great job of getting the point across yesterday.
It may seem like a good thing that Carhartt is so well-insulated. But it hasn’t gotten hot yet.
Radogno’s comments on social services from her interview with Jak on Illinois Legislators following the SOTS. Transcript starts at 12:39 in:
Jak- “Is the cost of pushing this agenda worth it in the long run?”
Radogno- “ Well, I believe it is, because the fact of the matter is we were on a path to many of those agencies to have to make cutbacks and closures anyway, and if we simply capitulate to what the Democrats want, and that is no change in the status quo, just raise taxes to fund it, we’ll be right back where we were. And, I want to point out that many of these are small agencies that have closed, many of those services have been absorbed by stronger and healthier agencies. That can’t go on forever, and that’s a consideration that I would truly urge our Democratic friends to engage in a discussion to get funding going again.”
- Former Hoosier - Thursday, Jan 28, 16 @ 1:30 pm:
Did Radogno happen to mention the names of the “stronger and healthier agencies” ?
I’ll say this again: How about we fail to fund the company that invests public pension money in Illinois. That way, the “weaker” companies can go out of business and be absorbed by the the stronger ones.
I think it’s easy for some people to be generous with other people’s suffering.
When you have groups like LSSI, homeless shelters, rape crisis centers saying we can’t withstand these cuts and you’re answer is akin to “Crisis brings opportunity ” that’s just tone-deaf and cruel. That tells me that you don’t understand what it’s like not to be able to pay your heat bill or to miss the Friday meals on wheels delivery and make your food stretch until the next one comes. You don’t understand the kinds of sacrifices people and their families make in order to WORK in these organizations because if you did you’d know that they can’t wait another minute for their money. They’ve already got duct tape holding together the tables.
workerbee- While the Lt. Guv has visited all 102 counties on her Grand Tour last year. Rauner only made it to 35 (I think). Maybe if he goes out “campaignin’” this year, he could do some work with the “stronger and healthier” (Radogno) service providers that are left. Instead of twittering about horseshoes, he could actually help deliver some meals to the elderly. Might open his mind up juuuusst a little, we could hope.
- Former Hoosier - Thursday, Jan 28, 16 @ 2:36 pm:
crazybleedingheart- I watched the video of the CSU students blocking the Dan Ryan…yikes! I’m glad nobody got hurt. I understand their frustration. Their futures are on the line and the governor does.not.care.
workerbee- You are right and it’s pretty hard to see any light at the end of the tunnel when the governor looks those in need merely as paws in his chess game.
Radogno has gotten blasted for saying that some of those agencies were going to have to close anyway, but she is, unfortunately, right. At some point, who knows when, the state is going to pass a budget, and that budget is going to have to contain both massive cuts, meaning some agencies will have to close, and massive revenue increases. You can’t just keep doing this. It’s just unfortunate that it’s playing out this way, where the weakest, which doesn’t necessarily mean the least deserving, die first.
She didn’t say it very well, but that’s the way it is. And if she wants to know why, she and her colleagues on both sides of the aisle should get their mirrors out.
Locked Up- these social service agencies have contracts with the State and instead of honoring those contracts, Rauner decided to see who could survive the longest without “bread or water”. Economic survival of the… Ones with the best private donors, deepest pockets, most politically connected !?! This is not the way to decide who gets to stay in business and who doesn’t . Cuts will have to be made in other areas of the budget, too. Do you want this to turn into an Illinois version of the Hunger Games? And, most importantly, those Illinoisans who will STILL be needing social services.., what do you propose for them???