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Rauner overridden on pension bill

Monday, May 30, 2016

[I somehow accidentally disabled comments on this post. Oops. Reopened. Sorry.]

* Rep. David Harris (R-Arlington Heights) switched from “Present” to “Yes” today and the House overrode Gov. Bruce Rauner’s veto of Mayor Emanuel’s police and fire pension bill with 72 votes. Background on that bill and the nasty fight between the governor and the mayor is here.

Rep. Harris said during debate that it was difficult to vote against his governor (who was adamantly opposed to the legislation) but he felt it was the right thing to do. He said stretching out pension payments, as this bill does, isn’t good policy, but it’s not an uncommon practice and is a “reasonable” action.

* This is the first time the House has overridden the governor since the heroin legislation. But the governor backed off his opposition to that bill under pressure from Republicans. This time, the governor did not back off.

…Adding… Rep. Harris wasn’t the only Republican to vote for the bill today. Rep. McSweeney switched to “Yes” and Rep. McAuliffe was a “Yes” last year and this year. Roll call is here.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

18 Comments
  1. - ILPundit - Monday, May 30, 16 @ 5:27 pm:

    McSweeney also flipped


  2. - Big Ern McCracken - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:18 am:

    There has been a backbone sighting in Springfield.


  3. - x ace - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:20 am:

    Cloonen - NO ?


  4. - Saluki - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:27 am:

    Finally. Now repeat that action about 3 times and we can all go home.


  5. - cdog - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:31 am:

    There seems to be no thoroughly correct answer with many of these legislative issues. There is, however, a need for progress. This is progress for Chicago.

    Progress away from default. I bet the Default King of Bankruptcy is having to adjust the long game today.

    Good for the people that exercised their Free Will. It’s a good day.


  6. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:35 am:

    The pension funds are less than 25% funded but not only did they stretch out the amortization schedule, they raised the benefit. Kicking the can is always popular which is why the state’s pension funds are over 100 billion dollars underfunded.


  7. - Dome Gnome - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:36 am:

    More, please!


  8. - PublicServant - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:39 am:

    ===Rep. McSweeney switched to “Yes”===

    Hey, whatever it takes. With McSweeney, however, I believe his motivation was rooted in his desire to see pensions eventually insolvent, so allowing Rahm to “kick the can” advances that goal. Not exactly a change of heart…mainly because he doesn’t have one, lol.


  9. - Keyrock - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:46 am:

    Saluki +1


  10. - Anonymous - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:48 am:

    I assumed McSweeney flipped so that he could be on the prevailing side, in case it mattered. But I didn’t see the timing.


  11. - RNUG - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:48 am:

    While this bill really doesn’t help the retirement funds in terms of their levels, it does start to address the immediate cash flow problems of Chicago. It shows an acknowledgment of the problem and a bit of willingness to start to address the issue. Nothing for the bond houses to cheer about, but at least they can stop jeering for a few minutes.

    The bigger picture is the House finally managed to override a veto with some R votes. So there is hope the House could move on other issues.


  12. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 7:56 am:

    It’s a huge deal that Rauner was overridden, given that 60+ times Rauner was not, but it’s only “huge” in that context.

    There’s nothing given here that this is the beginning of a “revolt” or anything close to GOP members making a statement they are leaving Rauner at all.

    Perspective? Yeah, Rauner was overridden. Yes, GOP votes made that happen. No, single instances do not mean a pattern is in the offing.

    Again, structured roll calls for a budget including significant revenue and agreed to slam dunk “refoms” and a clean signature will be the only way trust is shown by all, for all, and will allow the pain of choices no one wants to be spread to both parties as both parties claim victory too


  13. - Driveby - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 8:23 am:

    Why is labor applauding this? It underfunds the pensions. I thought they wanted them funded.


  14. - Andy S. - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 8:28 am:

    I find it ironic that the one time Rauner is right he is overridden, with Republican votes. But I am not surprised, because if his veto stood Chicago would have had to increase taxes, and we can’t have that. No tax increases - no matter how necessary - has been the Republican mantra since 1988, so we kick the can some more.


  15. - Harry - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 8:32 am:

    I would like to think this is a harbinger of things to come, but we’ll see.

    There was NO valid reason for Rauner to veto this bill–it has no effect on State finances, is irrelevant to his Turnaround Agenda, and his reasoning, as someone who wants others (CPS) to go bankrupt, is absurd. This bill just reschedules debt over a longer period, just like the first option in dealing with debt-holders in bankruptcy.

    The only purpose was to show that even the most innocent child can be held hostage and killed for the sake of “the cause.” One might say that the mask slipped and we saw the “real” Rauner for a moment, and it’s not pleasant or hopeful.. but, we’ll see.


  16. - Cassandra - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 8:34 am:

    Failure to override would presumably have meant another property tax increase for Chicago, on top of one (two?-what’s up with Mayor Rahm’s school tax?) this year already. And then comes the big end-of the calendar year income tax hike agreed to by both parties, perhaps. Even Chicago’s large stable of wealthy, liberal Democrats might blanch. And Mayor Rahm’s departure from the Chicago political scene, already somewhat likely, could move into the certain category.

    The present always seems to override the future here in Illinois. No long-term planners we.


  17. - Harry - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 8:34 am:

    My fear is that having lost once, Rauner will feel the need to dig in even harder to “hold the line” on any future defections. That would be in character.


  18. - cdog - Tuesday, May 31, 16 @ 8:41 am:

    Wouldn’t it be bittersweet if the rating agencies upgraded Rahm’s Chicago and downgraded Rauner’s Illinois (and continued to lay blame at Rauner’s intransigent feet), all on the same day…..


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