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Rauner suggests doing a capital bill before fixing the budget

Wednesday, Apr 26, 2017

* Gov. Rauner spoke to some business groups today. Bernie reports that Rauner is still claiming that the Senate is working on a grand bargain, even though Senate President Cullerton said it’s not. The governor also said this…


So much to unpack here.

1) A “big” capital plan would require lots of borrowing while we’re simultaneously racking up gigantic operating deficits. Not exactly responsible.

2) And if we’re gonna have a big capital plan, then the money ain’t gonna just magically grow on trees. How’s he gonna pay for it? More new taxes while universities crumble and social service agencies starve? As he rightly notes above, it’s gotta come from somewhere.

3) And I’m thinking maybe the bond rating agencies will show “some resistance” if Illinois tries to borrow billions of dollars without a real budget in place.

Bottom line: Walk before you can run and, please, stop projecting.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

58 Comments
  1. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 12:53 pm:

    Bernie with the abbreviation that might be a Freudian slip?


  2. - spidad60 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 12:54 pm:

    if this doesn’t show how totally out of touch, or in over his head he is, God help us


  3. - Anon221 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 12:54 pm:

    Note to Bernie- watch your abbreviations:)

    Rauner is once again looping. What happened to his “FOCUS” points? It’s downright amazing how many goalposts he keeps planting on his “field”.


  4. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 12:58 pm:

    To the Post,

    This 100% sounds like someone who has never governed, does not understand fundamental budgeting within governing, a person that is naive to 60 and 30 in passing things that can bring about financial controversy, and a governor completed in a hyperbolic campaign mode, so much so that responsible abc sensible thought is being removed from quotes that this governor thinks can win the news cycle “day”

    Amateur responses to professional/governmental concerns that need real thoughts.


  5. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:04 pm:

    Did we just add another pre-condition?

    I’m pretty sure any capital bill should be part of the overall budget.


  6. - Juice - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:06 pm:

    “Spending like money grows on trees.”

    Paging whoever requested that $71 million transfer from GRF.


  7. - The Captain - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:07 pm:

    He also said this right before he proposed doing a capital plan first:

    Gov: most changes in grand bargain are small; maybe better to do ‘5 or 4 that are major’

    This guy has no idea what he wants or what he’s doing. His primary goal changed multiple times in the course of the same speech. Somehow without us really noticing he gradually turned into Pat Quinn.


  8. - badabum - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:08 pm:

    “‘The’ve been spending like money grows on trees’ and don’t care where it comes from”

    WHAT???? I’m pretty sure it’s the Governor, not the General Assembly, who has agreed to court order after court order that spends money without a budget.

    Why does the media let him get away with saying these kinds of things? Will anyone call him out?


  9. - Red Rider - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:09 pm:

    We can do that little old budget thing any time. All is good.lets go to my pond I found behind the house and fish.


  10. - Cubs in '16 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:10 pm:

    Everyone has blamed Madigan and Dems in general for the lack of fiscal discipline when it’s been this General ASS fella all along!


  11. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:12 pm:

    The roads in Wilmette must be in need of repair.


  12. - Bored Chairman - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:14 pm:

    Major new investment in transportation can happen - if there’s new revenue. Rauner didn’t say he’d oppose new user fees.


  13. - ArchPundit - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:16 pm:

    ===Somehow without us really noticing he gradually turned into Pat Quinn.

    Post it Notes!


  14. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:19 pm:

    If he’s done a capitol bill at the beginning, he’d be in better shape now. But now it’s probably too late.


  15. - Arthur Andersen - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:19 pm:

    Is that the Governor’s nickname for Mr. Speaker?


  16. - RNUG - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:19 pm:

    If you pass a capital project before a budget, you’ll NEVER get a budget.


  17. - Cubs in '16 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:24 pm:

    ===If you pass a capital project before a budget, you’ll NEVER get a budget.===

    Bingo!


  18. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:26 pm:

    What a swell negotiatin’ partner. He’s harder to nail down than jello. Is this now a precondition to the GB or just more spaghetti against the wall?


  19. - TKMH - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:27 pm:

    Governor Rauner is clearly in over his head, wildly pitching ideas and stuck in reiterating his tired, banal talking points. I don’t know whether he’s taking his pointers from POTUS or vice versa.


  20. - Yeah - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:28 pm:

    Sounds like the cash flow projections through October 2018 are abysmal. Vendors, prepare yourself for even longer payment waits.


  21. - RNUG - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:29 pm:

    I always thought Rauner was playing with less than a full deck. These days I think all he has is 2 or 3 cards out of the deck … and one of them is a joker!


  22. - illinoised - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:29 pm:

    This governor has no interest in a balanced budget.


  23. - Skeptic - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:29 pm:

    Cue Lucky Pierre to somehow blame this on the Democrats in 3…2…1…


  24. - ArchPundit - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:32 pm:

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Rauner supposed to be a finance genius? How does he propose selling bonds without a budget? Or are we in the Michael Milken junk bond stage of this hostile takeover?


  25. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:38 pm:

    It’s not about getting a capital budget. It’s about declaring support for one. Just give him what he wants and then (and only then) everybody else can get something. In the meantime, it’s someone else’s fault we can’t have it now.


  26. - RNUG - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:41 pm:

    == Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Rauner supposed to be a finance genius? ==

    Seems all he knows how to do is rack up debt, sell off whatever assets are valuable, and then declare bankruptcy. He’s a one trick pony …


  27. - Sir Reel - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:41 pm:

    But, but, the Governor is workin’ hard, workin’ night and day, on a budget. How will he find the time for a big capital bill? He must be Superman.


  28. - Hyperbolic Chamber - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:46 pm:

    Do you think the construction unions would want this Gov. to have a capital bill to spend? I doubt any of them who think a second about it would.


  29. - btowntruth from forgottonia - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:48 pm:

    Where is Lucky to defend this?


  30. - illini - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:02 pm:

    This charade gets better every day - what new plan will tomorrow bring?

    Maybe Lucky can clue us in!


  31. - Chicago Cynic - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:09 pm:

    “- PublicServant - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 1:12 pm:

    The roads in Wilmette must be in need of repair.”

    He lives in Winnetka.

    To the post, Rauner’s ability to say such wildly contradictory things in rapid succession is POSITIVELY TRUMPIAN in its grandeur. I know we’re deep in debt, but can we chip in to buy this guy a clue????


  32. - DuPage - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:10 pm:

    His proposal about a new capital bill is not going to work. What contractor is going to build a bridge or highway when they are not sure when or if they will ever get paid?


  33. - RNUG - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:11 pm:

    == Where is Lucky to defend this? ==

    Since it sounds like Rauner went off script , LP probably hasn’t gotten his new talking points yet.


  34. - Nick Name - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:14 pm:

    ‘we have to stop this deficit spending’

    If only there was a constitutionally permissible method to stop deficit spending…


  35. - blue dog dem - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:22 pm:

    The capitol plan is part of his divide and conquer campaign stategy. Remember the 2 in 5 number. Trump has secured him the coal miners and steel workers and Rauner is nailing down the operators and laborers.


  36. - blue dog dem - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:22 pm:

    The capitol plan is part of his divide and conquer campaign stategy. Remember the 2 in 5 number. Trump has secured him the coal miners and steel workers and Rauner is nailing down the operators and laborers.


  37. - Anon221 - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:27 pm:

    Audio and video is up now-

    https://www.illinois.gov/cms/agency/media/radio/SitePages/Radio.aspx


  38. - Michelle Flaherty - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:29 pm:

    In less than 20 minutes the governor goes from criticizing deficit spending to suggesting massive deficit spending.
    But hey, at least he’s “consistent on the issues.”

    At this time of year, when something spins that fast you usually seek shelter in a basement.


  39. - ArchPundit - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:39 pm:

    —Trump has secured him the coal miner

    Oooh…all 80,000 of them? Seriously, coal miners aren’t what they used to be.

    And 150,000 steel workers?


  40. - JTF - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:41 pm:

    Get that capital bill, pay for your ERP system and IT vendors. Problem solved s/


  41. - phocion - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:46 pm:

    Seems very politically astute of Rauner. Let Madigan say no to the trades on this one. They’re going to tell their members they’re going to wait three more construction seasons with no IDOT or CDB work?


  42. - walker - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:54 pm:

    Capital plans are always easier to sell politically, than either cuts or taxes.

    An tried and true song and dance, with operating engineers and big construction companies as the key partners. Who cares what the numbers say?


  43. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:57 pm:

    Oh - phocion -

    This is Rauner we’re talking about, he’ll blow it up, saying “I can’t justify prevailing wage being part of these projects” or “Labor needs to realize, I can do more without the cost of workers being so high”

    If the Decatur PowerPoint taught me one thing, it taught me that Rauner isn’t keen on paying Labor scales, and anytime he can point that out to get people to turn on organized labor, Rauner jumps at that chance.

    Otherwise, the support for RTW zones, the fight “in Lincolnshire”, would be hollow if Rauner doesn’t at least “hint” at labor costs for any Capital Plan.


  44. - Flynn's mom - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 2:58 pm:

    This is comical. Where on earth do his nutty ideas come from? Where would this money come from? Will he get a new carpenter or bricklayer costume to try and sell this nonsense?


  45. - phocion - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:05 pm:

    Willy, everyone knows that there’s no way prevailing wages are going to be repealed. There’s also something called the Davis Bacon Act, which sets prevailing wages on all IDOT work. And that isn’t going away either. So, what else have ya got? Rauner scored at Madigan’s expense on this one. When will Madigan get behind funding for infrastructure to get union labor to work???


  46. - Not It - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:09 pm:

    Jim Reilly said that creating a capital plan, with a revenue source to fund it, could be combined with creating a real budget as to build the politocal support for tax increases (among other reasons) so this isn’t that crazy of an idea.


  47. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:10 pm:

    ==Rauner scored at Madigan’s expense on this one.==

    C’mon. A one-off comment in the middle of a speech isn’t even going to make the 6 o’clock news. If he actually puts together a bill, it’ll be a different thing. But he’s been musing about this his entire term, and never gotten serious about it.

    ==Do you think the construction unions would want this Gov. to have a capital bill to spend?==

    Not now, but had he made it part of his initial agenda, they would have jumped on it and left AFSCME to rot. But Rauner went for “Right to work zones” first, so here we are.


  48. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:12 pm:

    ===everyone knows===

    … except Bruce Rauner and his PowerPoint? Why go to Decatur then? Hmm.

    Ok, continuing…

    ===that there’s no way prevailing wages are going to be repealed. There’s also something called the Davis Bacon Act, which sets prevailing wages on all IDOT work. And that isn’t going away either===

    Then why is Rauner continually trying to end prevailing wage wherever and whenever he can.

    Property taxes, local taxes… There’s that lil bit, about either the collective bargaining or… Hmm.

    ===Rauner scored at Madigan’s expense on this one.===

    Really? If I’m the governor’s crew, I wanted this to be about scoring, I’d have teamsters, brick layers, operating engineers, all behind the Governor as he announces a Capitial Plan that the Speaker and Dems can’t ignore.

    Hyperbole. Nothing more.

    ===When will Madigan get behind funding for infrastructure to get union labor to work???===

    … when Rauner decides… where, how much, how to pay… that’s just for openers.

    What else do I got? The governor ham-handed a Capital Plan based on nothing but a sentence.


  49. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:15 pm:

    Team Rauner is going with a plumbers costume. It will allow him to show off what an rear end he is.


  50. - phocion - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:20 pm:

    ==Do you think the construction unions would want this Gov. to have a capital bill to spend?==

    Not now, but had he made it part of his initial agenda, they would have jumped on it and left AFSCME to rot. But Rauner went for “Right to work zones” first, so here we are.

    Arsenal - close. It may not be too late for Rauner with the private trades if he gets real about a capital program. Don’t disagree with you or Willy about that. This may be a trial balloon. Let’s see.


  51. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 3:32 pm:

    - phocion -

    The give to private sector labor would be huge.

    Dunno if Rauner has it in him.


  52. - zatoichi - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:00 pm:

    Does Rauner ever listen to what he actually says or is it just schtick to keep talking?


  53. - Arsenal - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:07 pm:

    ==This may be a trial balloon.==

    Or it may be Lucy holding out the football for you. This isn’t the first time he’s mused about a capital bill. Until there’s at least a white paper, this is nothing.


  54. - Annonin' - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:10 pm:

    This must be one of those Loopey-Doopey moves he is so famous for.
    BTW roadbuilders told him all they did need is a 15 cent hike in gas take.
    Let’s let someone else report his answer


  55. - Hyperbolic Chamber - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 4:42 pm:

    If Rauner mentioning a capital program is a trial balloon it is made of a cold, gray, dense metal. There is NO way the construction unions would ever get behind this governor. And they would never abandon Madigan. They didn’t do it when Blago wanted a capital bill & it won’t happen with this guy, of all people.


  56. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 5:50 pm:

    –What a swell negotiatin’ partner.–

    He’s not negotiating. Some of his primary objectives are being accomplished.

    All the hair-on-fire babblin’ is just pre-planned obfuscation and distraction from the deeds.

    Given the unprecedented backlog of bills and the strain on GRF, a capital plan will require a significant dedicated revenue source.

    Like a no-funny-business dedicated revenue source: multiple times coverage, no possible transfers, irrevocable continuing approp., plus the GO as backup.


  57. - peon - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 5:59 pm:

    The magic 8-ball is a harsh mistress. Some days you just have to stand up and say the first thing that comes into your head.


  58. - RNUG - Wednesday, Apr 26, 17 @ 8:58 pm:

    Props to Amanda for asking the hard questions, even if she didn’t manage to get much in the way of answers. At least she got more than most reporters do.

    The whole series of responses by Rauner were nothing more than good sounding word jumble for the uninformed citizen who gets his political news in 30 second sound bites.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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