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Dealing with the “Rauner question”

Wednesday, Sep 28, 2016

* We talked yesterday about how House Democratic legislators and candidates are attempting to fend off questions about Speaker Madigan. Today’s Sun-Times has a story about Rep. Michael McAuliffe (R-Chicago) denying that he’s close to Gov. Bruce Rauner

The bulk of McAuliffe’s campaign fund comes from Rauner. The GOP legislator said he knew he’d need big checks to fund the hefty pricetag of television campaign ads, which began airing in August. A second TV ad, which sought to link Marwig to Madigan by insinuating they were part of an “inside game” of lowering property taxes, began airing in September.

But McAuliffe insists he hasn’t spoken to Rauner about his campaign and that the contributions don’t tie him to the governor. A mailer sent out by SEIU featured an image of McAuliffe and Rauner and questioned whether they share the same priorities.

“I don’t feel like I have any ties to the governor except we’re both in the Republican Party. My district comes first. There are a number of bills that I’ve supported and he’s been against, where I’ve been the sole Republican. Or maybe had some other colleagues join me. So I think I just do what I feel is right for my voters,” McAuliffe said. […]

There’s no way to talk about the hotly contested race in the 20th District without talking about just how expensive it’s gotten. More than 80 percent of McAuliffe’s campaign fund has come from contributions from Rauner. The governor’s donations now total $1.2 million. That money is being channeled through the House Republican Organization.

In total, McAuliffe has more than $1.5 million in his campaign fund with just weeks to go before the election.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Keyrock - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:04 am:

    “Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!”

  2. - walker - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:13 am:

    The question on both sides is: Does campaign money buy loyalty?

    The public believes it does, but the reality is not so simple.

    It depends on the individual’s character, on the issue, and on the district. It also depends on whether the funder is even asking for it broadly. Blanket loyalty is often more necessary among a minority caucus.

  3. - Anon221 - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:14 am:

    If you have no ties, tear up the check. Easy, right??? I’ll wait “off air” for the Representative’s reply. /s

  4. - AC - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:15 am:

    The Governor said he’s “not involved” but he didn’t say was that his millions came with “no strings attached”.

  5. - Huh? - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:18 am:

    “… knew he’d need big checks to fund the hefty pricetag … the contributions don’t tie him to the governor. … we’re both in the Republican Party.“

    Dear Representative McAuliffe,

    Just a short note to let you know that my money bought your seat. Your vote is mine. You don’t belong to the Republican party, you belong to the raunerite party.

    Love and kisses,

    Governor 1.4%

  6. - sideline watcher - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:18 am:

    I just don’t understand how people can’t see the blatant hypocrisy.

    ““I don’t feel like I have any ties to the governor except we’re both in the Republican Party. My district comes first.”

    But $1.2 million in donations are from Rauner.

    Meanwhile, any amount of money you take from Madigan means you are part of the politicians that Madigan controls. Republicans can just be about their districts but every Democrat in the House is corrupt because Madigan is.

    Ok. I understand. It’s only ok if you’re a Republican.

  7. - don the legend - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:21 am:

    “Now that we’ve determined what you are, it’s just a matter of price”.

  8. - Amalia - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:24 am:

    who is she? other than the daughter of a guy who ran for state rep and state senate elsewhere in Illinois, and she moved into the district a couple years ago?

  9. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:24 am:

    You don’t know my brother Fredo, do you Johnny?

  10. - Anon2 - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:25 am:

    Do you want a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rauner or Madigan? That is the question for voters in contested House districts.

  11. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:26 am:

    –“I don’t feel like I have any ties to the governor except we’re both in the Republican Party.” –

    At $1.2 million and counting, I imagine the governor’s crew has a different point of view.

  12. - Joe M - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:37 am:

    Republicans who don’t vote with Rauner need look no further than what happened to Senator McCann. Rauner spent A LOT of money against McCann in the Republican primary. That has got to be in the front or at least the back of Republican legislators’ minds.

  13. - walker - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:44 am:

    I tend to believe McAuliffe in this case. Just because Team Rauner thinks they’re buying, doesn’t mean the Rep is selling. His commitment is to be a Republican, not a full-jacket Raunerite.

  14. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 11:53 am:

    ===who is she?===

    Airport noise activist. Popular issue in that area.

  15. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 12:17 pm:

    Neither Rauner or Madigan are on the ballot (Madigan is in one district he’ll win handily).

    In a year with two candidates with high negatives in the presidential race, I question whether there’s enough oxygen in the room for antipathy to Rauner or Madigan to move the needle one way or the other in legislative races.

  16. - amalia - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 12:28 pm:

    O’Hare airport expansion legislation. think that was chief sponsored by Currie.

  17. - @MisterJayEm - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 12:34 pm:

    “I don’t feel like I have any ties to Edgar Bergen except we’re both in the entertainment business.” — Charlie McCarthy (attributed)

    – MrJM

  18. - Deft Wing - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 12:38 pm:

    McAuliffe has far more plausible deniability than any House Democrat. Because everyone paying attention knows that if a House Dem gets money and campaign workers from Madigan, that the House member pledged their support to vote for Madigan as Speaker and for his House Rules. Period.

    Madigan’s been re-elected Speaker via 100% Dem vote for years.

    Nothing else really matters.

  19. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 12:46 pm:

    ===House member pledged their support to vote for Madigan as Speaker and for his House Rules. Period.===

    The “Lee Daniels’ Rules”, now used by Madigan?


  20. - Huh? - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 12:53 pm:

    “Just because Team Rauner thinks they’re buying, doesn’t mean the Rep is selling.”

    I would agree is the donation was $1,200. But it isn’t it is $1.2 million. There are orders of magnitude in the expectations between the $1,200 and the $1.2 million.

    The smaller number is good luck with your campaign. The larger number is “you’ve been bought. You vote the way I want”.

  21. - Deft Wing - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 1:04 pm:

    –The “Lee Daniels’ Rules”, now used by Madigan?
    Hmm. —

    Lol! Moral equivalence attempts from a two year stint back in 1995-97? Madigan’s taken longer naps. #NotDeftOW #WeakComparison

  22. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 1:10 pm:

    Deft Wing:

    I’m pretty sure that some sort of “pledges” take place in order to get some cash from Rauner. To try and make one situation out to be different than the other is laughable.

  23. - Not It - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 1:18 pm:

    Perfectly fair question. And McAuliffe does have a record of voting against his caucus.

    It’s insider baseball, but the House Republicans have also proved time and time again that they can force the Governor to back down or concede. I don’t remember anyone ever forcing Madigan to comply with anything, especially his own caucus.

  24. - LeadingInDecatur - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 1:27 pm:

    Maintain the Balande of Power in Illinois…
    Dump Rauner 2018

  25. - LeadingInDecatur - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 1:27 pm:


  26. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 1:28 pm:

    - Deft Wing -

    No. The Rules now are based in the changes Lee Danieks made. The existing rules are framed by the changes Republican Speaker Daniels made.

    It’s just true.

    Please, keep up.

  27. - Jake Brigance - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 1:34 pm:

    ==Madigan’s been re-elected Speaker via 100% Dem vote for years.==

    Untrue. In the years in which members voted by acclimation - you know, when 100% of Republicans voted for Madigan for Speaker - Madigan voted for the Republican leader. So, Madigan has not always received 100% of House Democrats. But I guess that’s something the people on the deft like to forget.

  28. - walker - Wednesday, Sep 28, 16 @ 2:06 pm:

    Madigan will change his personal position occasionally, if enough of his members oppose him in caucus meetings. Of course you will never see that acknowledged publicly.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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