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The feud is dragging us down

Tuesday, Mar 28, 2017

* The Bond Buyer writes about the ever escalating feud between Gov. Rauner and Mayor Emanuel in the wake of the governor’s recent veto of the Chicago pension bill and its impact on the state’s bond rating

“I just think the politics just over the last week have gotten so fractious it’s hard to imagine more bad things not happening to the city and state’s credit profile,” said Matt Fabian, partner at Municipal Market Analytics. “The level of chaos is rising and Chicago will be dragged into that and it undermines the city’s narrative” that it’s turned a fiscal corner.

A sweeping bipartisan Senate budget fix has stalled and Rauner’s feuding with Democrats has escalated of late with harsh words exchanged with Mayor Rahm Emanuel and state Comptroller Susanna Mendoza. […]

If the state’s budget impasse drags into a third fiscal year July 1 its investment grade rating is at risk and that would have a trickle down impact on the city, Fabian said.

* Meanwhile, this is from the publication’s Illinois reporter…

* And from yesterday

Mayor Rahm Emanuel hasn’t even said for sure that he’ll seek a third term in 2019, but Gov. Bruce Rauner predicted Monday the mayor won’t be around for a fourth.

The governor’s prognostication that “the current mayor is not going to be mayor in 2023” came at an event about the stalled effort to create a toll lane on the Stevenson Expressway, as Rauner talked about his veto last week of Emanuel’s proposed changes to the city’s pension funds for municipal workers and laborers. […]

“Who’s not going to be mayor in 2023?” Rauner said. “The current mayor is not going to be mayor in 2023. That’s why they did it. All this is, all this is a system to dump the problem into the next elected official, no change, no protection of taxpayers, no fundamental reform.” […]

“At the rate he’s going, Bruce Rauner should be more concerned with who’s governor in 2019 than he is with who’s mayor in 2023,” [Emanuel campaign] spokesman Pete Giangreco said.

Yep. Lots of progress.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - PublicServant - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:04 am:

    Bruce is fighting with Madigan, but that’s “Because Madigan”.

    Bruce is fighting with Rahm, but that’s “Because Rahm”.

    Bruce is fighting with Mendoza, but that’s “Because Mendoza”.

    Then there’s Kennedy, Biss, Pritzker, Manar …

    Rauner’s messaging is that all of these other people are the problem, and that list keeps growing,

    but it’s becoming more clear every day that the one commonality across all of these problems is


    just sayin.

  2. - @MisterJayEm - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:05 am:

    I originally misread Rich’s headline as “The Freud is dragging us down”…

    After reading the post, I ain’t so sure I was wrong.

    – MrJM

  3. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:11 am:

    An Emmanuel pension ramp, with escalating payments starting in 2023?

    Why hasn’t anyone ever thought of that instead of fixing the underlying problem through statewide pension reform?

  4. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:17 am:

    == through statewide pension reform?==

    They already did Tier II. That was a big reform. They are also free to add additional reforms for new employees if they want, including a 401k type plan. You’re not satisfied because they haven’t done anything with Tier I. The Supreme Court has settled that argument. Stop acting as if their is some miracle “reform” out there that’s going to wipe out the liability because it doesn’t exist. Pay what is due is the solution. Accept it. Figure out how to do it.

  5. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:22 am:

    Demoralized perhaps you missed it but the Democratic Senate President disagrees with you and the Supreme Court has not weighed in his proposals that could be passed tomorrow and signed by the Governor.

    A Republican signing a Democrat’s bill that attempts to solve the #1 problem in the state’s finances might be rarer that Haley’s comet but it it there today

  6. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:22 am:

    Rauner demands pension reform. Then he refuses to sign pension reform bills. Hmmm.

    He cries about jobs being lost because his plan to lease I-55 is stalled. This is after he stopped state funds for the pedestrian overpass on Lake Shore Drive, costing us jobs. Hmmm.

    An alarming lack of self-awareness if you ask me.

  7. - titan - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:24 am:

    +++ - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:11 am: An Emmanuel pension ramp, with escalating payments starting in 2023?
    Why hasn’t anyone ever thought of that instead of fixing the underlying problem through statewide pension reform? +++

    The problem isn’t the normal ongoing costs, it is paying back the amounts previously skipped (i.e. borrowed) during the “pension holidays”. Pension reform won’t fix that.

  8. - Illinois O'Malley - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:29 am:

    @Lucky, or the state can honor the contract with state workers and raise taxes to pay for the earned pensions because its apparent to all Rauner did not have a balanced budget in his left pocket.

  9. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:29 am:

    What pension reform bill did he refuse to sign?

  10. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:30 am:

    Rauner bets on anarchy and chaos and wishes us harm. He wants us to collapse. He isn’t lifting a finger to end this, because he believes that he wins when everyone else loses.

    Rauner doesn’t care who gets hurt. He doesn’t try to govern, compromise or resolve. Rauner is like the wealthy old leach, watching the young widow with the kids try to keep the farm, while pushing the county sheriff to foreclose, so she’ll marry him.

  11. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:30 am:


    That pension plan was part of the Grand Bargain. Remember that thing the Governor killed?

    I don’t care if the Senate President disagrees with me. I care about the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court has said no diminishment. Period. The plan currently out there provides two choices and each choice involves a diminishment. No matter what “choice” you make your retirement payments will be reduced.

    You can keep bellyaching about pensions all you want but it doesn’t change the realities of the situation.

    Also, as 47th said, pension bills have passed. The Governor vetoed them.

  12. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:33 am:

    ===What pension reform bill did he refuse to sign?===

    - Lucky Pierre -


  13. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:37 am:

    ===What pension reform bill did he refuse to sign?===

    I was being polite. I meant the one he vetoed. It’s in the story Rich linked to. Oh right, you can’t read. I forgot.


  14. - jimk849 - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:43 am:

    Make that Bruised Rauner. Could he have the biggest ego in the USA?

  15. - DuPage - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:43 am:

    One of the few accomplishments of the Rauner administration has been to increase the interest rates on bonds that have to be paid by taxpayers. State, Chicago, and CPS have all seen their ratings downgraded and their interest rates go up. One blatant example was Rauner going on TV and saying “CPS is goin’ to go bankrupt” right before a CPS bond sale. This drove up the cost to CPS by tens of millions. So it is no surprise that Rauner is doing all he can to try to drive up the Chicago rates by vetoing the pension legislation. Very transparent.

  16. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 11:48 am:

    The bill the Governor veto did not reform pensions 47th ward

    How is just having the state pay the extra contribution for CPS pensions that CPS did not budget for correctly reform anything?

    what if every school district in the state asked for similar “reform”?

    The Senate President Cullerton’s pension reform bill is the only one I am familiar with and it can be passed as a standalone bill and signed tomorrow

  17. - walker - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 12:01 pm:

    LP: Any part of the Senate President’s pension “reform” proposal that passes legal muster, will not come close to “solving” the pension problem. Tweaking, at best, on the numbers. Of course both sides might claim they did “something” which might suffice politically, if not fiscally.

  18. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 12:06 pm:

    ===The Senate President Cullerton’s pension reform bill is the only one I am familiar with and it can be passed as a standalone bill and signed tomorrow===

    The governor made clear with his veto of the $215 million for CPS, the deal was too slow. That being said, that part of the deal Rauner blew up is past.

    You see why Rauner purposely hurting Chicago students, emotionally, has such a huge effect behind CPS

    Rauner appears to be someone whose word isn’t something to count on(?)

  19. - Cornerfield - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 12:17 pm:

    “The level of chaos is rising…”

    Reminds me of:

    “Everything is proceeding as I have forseen “

  20. - Juice - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 12:17 pm:


    The bill that the governor vetoed that this post is about created a new tier 3 for city of chicago employees, created a consideration approach for some existing employees, and created a funding schedule which does not currently exist for these funds.

    It has nothing to do with CPS, and if that doesn’t meet your definition of reform, then so be it, that’s just like your opinion man.

  21. - don the legend - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 12:46 pm:

    According to Lucky, if somebody owes him money (like the state owes the pension funds) but it’s just very unpleasant for them to pay him what he is owed, Lucky should be eager and willing to accept much less, or better yet, no repayment at all. Sounds good to me!

  22. - Mix-It-Up - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 1:15 pm:

    The beatings will continue until moral improves!

  23. - A guy - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 1:22 pm:

    I think you mean morale…but moral works too.

  24. - In a Minute - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 2:58 pm:

    It is nice to see stories from the Bond Buyer cited here.
    Illinois politicians and the folks who follow them on an obsessive level can get their heads up their own behinds too much. Outside publications and the perspective they provide on how the world views the bizarro world of Illinois politics.
    It would be interesting to see a panel discussion/case study moderated by a knowledgeable financial reporter that included liberal and conservative commentators, policy wonks, and legislators from states other than Illinois discuss how they would solve Illinois problems without regard for the politics, personalities, and agendas of the usual gang of suspects in the Land of Lincoln.

  25. - whetstone - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 3:51 pm:

    ==It would be interesting to see a panel discussion/case study moderated by a knowledgeable financial reporter==

    This kind of thing is everywhere. Wonks have been throwing thoughtful ideas at the problem for years. The bizarro world of Illinois politics, in this case, *is* the roadblock.

  26. - Chicago 20 - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 4:20 pm:

    I have a question.
    As the credit ratings fall the bonds rates increase.

    The Losers : The State and the taxpayers pay millions more in interest.

    The Winners : Who is gaining from this disruption?

  27. - PENSIONS ARE OFF LIMITS - Tuesday, Mar 28, 17 @ 5:10 pm:

    “Bruce is fighting with Madigan, but that’s “Because Madigan”.

    Bruce is fighting with Rahm, but that’s “Because Rahm”.

    Bruce is fighting with Mendoza, but that’s “Because Mendoza”.

    Then there’s Kennedy, Biss, Pritzker, Manar …

    Rauner’s messaging is that all of these other people are the problem, and that list keeps growing,

    but it’s becoming more clear every day that the one commonality across all of these problems is”

    -If you run into an a-hole in the morning, you ran into an a-hole. If you run into a-holes everywhere you go, chances are…..

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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