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Edgar implies that Rauner is incompetent

Friday, May 5, 2017 - Posted by Rich Miller

* From the Southern Illinoisan

Former Gov. Jim Edgar, speaking on the Southern Illinois Carbondale campus Thursday evening, said that House Speaker Michael Madigan is not the villain he’s often made out to be in the media and by his political opponents.

He should be “maligned a little bit” but the long serving speaker from Chicago has been “overly maligned,” Edgar said.

“He is not the problem,” said the former Republican governor who held Illinois’ highest office from 1991 to 1999, all but two years of which Madigan served as speaker. “He might be a little bit of the problem, but he is not the big problem.”

Edgar needs to spend more time in Springfield before he says that again. Speaker Madigan is no longer a very tough but fair negotiator like he was back in Edgar’s day. He never used to be such a staunch public employee union ally (the man fought Jim Thompson repeatedly to get some oversight of the governor’s AFSCME contract negotiations, and he passed Tier 2 and Tier 1 pension reform, for crying out loud). He was always a bigtime trial lawyer ally, but he also passed medical malpractice reform. Madigan is, in other words, a different person that he was back then.

* More

Edgar went on to say that it’s a myth that Madigan is the most powerful person in Illinois government. “Even a weak governor has far more power than the speaker does,” Edgar said, altering his words mid-sentence. “Not weak — there is no weak governor. Illinois is a strong governor state. Even a somewhat incompetent governor has more power than Mike Madigan.”

As Edgar paused momentarily — and then settled on the word “incompetent” -— there was a brief yet boisterous eruption of applause and laughter among the crowd. Edgar provided this critique of the ongoing budget stalemate in response to a question from Jak Tichenor, the policy institute’s interim director, following Edgar’s prepared remarks.

The strongest governor can’t force the House Speaker to allow a bill to pass without the Speaker’s permission. But a good governor can, which is more to Edgar’s competency point.

       

97 Comments
  1. - Ok - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:03 am:

    Rich

    Have you spent more time working with Mafigan in Springfield than Edgar? Are you saying that Rauner is competent and Madigan is the problem?


  2. - don the legend - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:04 am:

    Cue LP and Ron in 3..2..1- “But Madigan and Edgar”


  3. - tobor - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:05 am:

    And Rauner is no Edgar. The Edgar who knew the meaning of compromise.


  4. - Red Dig - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:07 am:

    Madigan believes in moderation. Since Edgar governed to the middle, Madigan moved to the middle. Since Rauner moved to the right after getting elected, Madigan moved to the left to care for his base. Had Rauner governed from the middle, this wouldn’t have happened. Rauner’s policy people believe they are the smartest people ever to govern, until they realize it about compromise, they will never succeed.


  5. - Anonymous - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:09 am:

    Any chance Edgar comes out of retirement? I know we’ve done the Jim Edgar rain dance many times, but he sounds increasingly alarmed about what’s happening to “his” state.


  6. - Greatplainser - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:09 am:

    I guess strong governors negotiate pension ramps and deals that set up really bad governors to crash and burn the whole system. That plan really showed competence…


  7. - Chicagonk - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:11 am:

    I do not disagree with Edgar that Rauner doesn’t seem to be a very effective governor, but fawning over Madigan isn’t a good look. The difference between Edgar and Madigan is Edgar knew when it was time to hang up the boots.


  8. - Richard Afflis - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:11 am:

    I think we all wish things would work like they did when Edgar was in office. Springfield is a completely different place now.
    It would be nice if Governor Edgar would use some of the energy he has to say stuff like this to actually do something to bring about the change he would like to see.


  9. - Northsider - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:13 am:

    === Are you saying that Rauner is competent and Madigan is the problem? ===

    Ok, how the Hell do you read that into Rich’s commentary?

    Madigan is part of the problem, a big part even, but he is not THE problem. Right now, and by that I mean since 2014, THE problem is Bruce Rauner and his “My way or the highway!” attitude.


  10. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:14 am:

    GHR…

    ===“The governor is the top guy. He is the leader. House Speaker Mike Madigan is not. The governor has to make things happen. If he doesn’t get everything he wants, he’s got to figure out how much he can get. To get something done. He’s got to take the wheel. He’s got to have a plan. It’s like everything in life.”

    “It seems to me what you’ve got today are two guys very set in their ways and have programs that they just won’t give up on. Gov. Bruce Rauner wants to destroy the unions, and it’s Madigan’s lifeblood. Madigan has to save the unions; otherwise, he doesn’t survive. And it’s just as simple as that.===

    Madigan needs his groups, and sees Rauner as the impending threat to both.

    Like Rich says, “different Madigan”, and the rules to still get things done haven’t change, so there’s some friction never seen before.

    Edgar, in the past…

    ===”He (Rauner) comes from a different background than I do. But I just think it’s very important for a governor, you’ve got to have a good budget and you need it in place,” Edgar told reporters. “You can try to compromise on some issues — and I think there are certain things (Democrats in the Legislature) might give him — but some of the things he’s asking for, they’re not going to give him. They’re just not going to give him.”===

    I’ve said, if Rauner is admittedly inept at budgets, cuts, and revenue, I’m cool with that, then Dems can try to help the state.

    Just admit Rauner is inept…


  11. - Ok - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:16 am:

    Northsider - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:13 am:

    === Are you saying that Rauner is competent and Madigan is the problem? ===

    Ok, how the Hell do you read that into Rich’s commentary?
    ……

    By reading with proper understanding and being a competent person.


  12. - Grandson of Man - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:16 am:

    A good governor would learn to accept immediate political reality and work within it. There was workers comp reform and property tax relief legislation available with which Rauner wanted nothing to do. It was insufficient to him.

    A good governor would accept that there are legislative sessions every year, annual budgets and elections every two years. She or he would go one year at a time, instead of demanding stuff that can’t be obtained and allowing the state to get so much worse. You want more change? Push for it in the next GA session and election. Don’t be complicit in the state crashing like this.

    By these metrics, Rauner is a terrible governor and possibly the worst in state history.


  13. - Ginhouse Tommy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:16 am:

    Rauner is all show and no go. He doesn’t want to govern. He just wants to rule. As far as Edgar knows what compromise is, well he had to learn. I remember one budget impasse where he wouldn’t budge. He went into the hospital for heart surgery and that left Lt Gov. Kuester in charge. a budget deal was struck in a week with Edgar out of the way. Wheeling and dealing and trade offs were done or both sides compromised as we say now a days.


  14. - Michael Westen - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:17 am:

    “I guess strong governors negotiate pension ramps and deals that set up really bad governors to crash and burn the whole system” Well, yes. Nothing strong governors could possibly do could negate the actions of future “really bad governors.” Are you suggesting they could?


  15. - MOON - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:18 am:

    It is obvious that the State needs a budget which includes new revenue. Anybody who disagrees with the obvious is ignorant or is not willing to deal with reality.

    Having said that, can anyone including Rauner QUANTIFY IN REAL DOLLARS the benefits his turn around agenda will have. I admit some of the Rauner agenda has merit, but currently without a budget this stalemate is doing irreparable harm to our State.

    It is time for Rauner to recognize the reality of the situation and negotiate a budget.


  16. - Henry Francis - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:18 am:

    Any folks still think Edgar will be campaigning for or publicly supporting Rauner in 18?

    Heck, would Rauner even let him after the past year of critiques, culminating with last night’s “incompetent”?


  17. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:19 am:

    When will this goof just go away. Edgar is one of the main reasons Illinois is insolvent.


  18. - Free Set of Steak Knives - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:19 am:

    Just because you are a “fair” negotiator does not mean that everything is on the table and subject to compromise.

    Madigan will not be remembered as the Lord Chamberlain of the Democratic Party, seeking compromise for compromise sake.

    Negotiation is a means, not an end.


  19. - Michael Westen - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:23 am:

    “When will this goof just go away. Edgar is one of the main reasons Illinois is insolvent.”

    Right. Eight straight balanced budgets is one of the main reasons Illinois is isolvent. How dare Edgar have eight straight balanced budgets? What in the world is wrong with him?


  20. - My New Handle - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:25 am:

    Pate Philip was also the Senate President during much of Edgar’s terms. Madigan had to navigate the relationship between those two as well. I don’t think Madigan is all that different now than then, but the dynamics of political relationships sure have changed. And when Blagojevich was governor, Madigan made allies of the Repubs to get things done in and around Emil Jones. No one survives as long as Madigan without adapting.


  21. - Illinois O'Malley - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:25 am:

    @Ron, quote a stretch to blame Edgar for Rauner’s inability to present a balanced budget the last 3 years but go ahead and keep living in Rauner’s LaLa Land.


  22. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:27 am:

    Illinois O’Malley, Illinois has not had a balanced budget in decades.


  23. - RNUG - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:27 am:

    == I guess strong governors negotiate pension ramps and deals that set up really bad governors to crash and burn the whole system. ==

    Politics is the art of the doable. Edgar did what he could; his major achievement was actually getting regular pension payments on the table, even if they were inadequate.

    After Edgar, George Ryan managed to make the scheduled payments.

    Then Blago came along, played games with the ramp, including resetting it, and borrowed to put money in (but not the full amount borrowed), and saddled the pension funds with repaying the loan instead of GRF (which effectively shorted the money going into the funds for the period of the bonds, reducing potential earnings).

    Quinn got the State back to making the scheduled payments but was still saddled with repaying the Blago borrowing (as is Rauner).

    Yes, the Governors following Edgar should have cut their budgets some. Quinn, for all his faults, actually did do some cutting. And national economic events (recession after 9/11, 2007 - 2009 Great Recession, slow recovery afterwards) all contributed to higher State expenses and lower State revenue.

    Bottom line: the Edgar Ramp had flaws, but there have been other factors in its’ partial “failure”. Plus, we are only partway through the plan.


  24. - Biscuit Head - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:28 am:

    To be a truth telling Republican these days you must be unconcerned about Rauner withholding his checkbook (or actually spending money against you).

    Wish we had more of these Republicans.
    Jim Edgar and Sam McCann are apparently the only ones not bought and paid for by this incompetent Governor.


  25. - wordslinger - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:32 am:

    Rauner is competent enough to achieve some of his objectives, such as greatly reducing the role of the state in core responsibilities of social services and higher ed.

    He’s just dishonest about it, and his social Darwinist method is misanthropic, harming hundreds of thousands of citizens.


  26. - 47th Ward - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:34 am:

    Everybody needs to remember that Governor Rauner chose to link a balanced budget with his so-called turnaround agenda. No one forced him to do it this way, this is his choice. He knew two years ago that he didn’t have the votes to get his turnaround agenda passed, and he didn’t win enough seats in 2016 to change that.

    This is an intentional course the Governor has chosen. He is prepared to live with “short term pain.” How much longer are the rest of us supposed to tolerate it?

    To paraphrase our proprietor, Governor Rauner needs to choose another way.


  27. - Annonin' - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:41 am:

    An engaged governor can get just about anything they want done without a bill so anyone in the legislature is way less powerful …for instance DopeyDuct tried to humor downstaters by bein’for the fair foundation….we are closin’ in on Dpey’s 3rd fair and nothin’ has been raised and no work done/ ‘Splain that one.


  28. - Grandson of Man - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:41 am:

    “When will this goof just go away. Edgar is one of the main reasons Illinois is insolvent.”

    Like Rauner is innocent. He gorged himself on some TRS pension business and reportedly wanted it so badly that he himself went to get it after his firm failed to obtain it the first time.


  29. - Concerned Mom - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:41 am:

    Thanks, Rich, for showing some balance here. Easy for a former politician to cast stones and forget his infamous ‘pension ramp’ that is largely responsible for the highest unfunded public pension liability in the country while pension obligations eat up a quarter of the state budget…and still not nearly enough. We’ve also seen the 32yr-Speaker in action…if he wants something done - he controls the lawmaking branch of state government - it gets done, as you aptly pointed out with the Tier 2 pension reform in 2011, or the temporary income tax increase, passed right before the new GA was sworn in. When you get on the airplane, you better be rooting for the success of the pilot. Gov. Rauner might not be the perfect pilot but we all need to help, not hinder, for the sake of our great state. Madigan would rather we fail, than meet the Governor half way on anything. So sad for our sorry state because we’re going down, and people are jumping off right and left!


  30. - Biscuit Head - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    Raunerites, aren’t you getting tired of the blame-game?
    Do you have any intention of ever productively governing in the real world?

    I’m getting really tired of “the other guy screwed it up a long time ago”. Once he was elected you have to start governing. If you and your ilk can’t get anything done, please get out of the way (next election) and let someone else try. Don’t just stick around so you can kill universities, charities, etc. and make things worse.


  31. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    ===Madigan believes in moderation… Madigan moved to the left to care for his base===

    Those are two diametrically opposed ideas.


  32. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:43 am:

    ===forget his infamous ‘pension ramp’ that is largely responsible for the highest unfunded public pension liability in the country===

    Ugh. That’s so clueless.


  33. - NeverPoliticallyCorrect - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:45 am:

    Wow, the rushing to the defense of Mr. Madigan is stunning. Of course he’s not really the problem. Everything went to hell when Rauner came into office. there wasn’t a state debt problem, there wasn’t a problem with underspending in social services, there wasn’t a problem with real budgets for our state. All of those who want the good old days back when Dems run everything may very well get what you want and then God help us because if Chicago is a foreshadowing of what’s to come it’s not a pretty picture.


  34. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:46 am:

    ===Madigan would rather we fail, than meet the Governor half way on anything.===

    Reality?

    If Rauner had 60 and 30 to force Madigan and Cullerton to move some things, you’d have a much stronger case.

    Rauner outright refuses to engage in 60 and 30, more inclined to veto and block overrides.

    Edgar’s premise also includes being engaged. Rauner’s engagement many times has been obstructionist too.

    Otherwise, explain Ken Dunkin.


  35. - blue dog dem - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:47 am:

    And I used to walk three miles to sschool every day. Barefoot and uphill both ways.

    Get into the 21st century of hyper-partison politics Mr. Edgar.


  36. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:47 am:

    - NeverPoliticallyCorrect -

    Who are you arguing with?

    Your comment is a rant, not addressing anything anyone has said or anybody’s made.

    I know you feel better, but you aren’t addressing anything being discussed.


  37. - wordslinger - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:51 am:

    Accusing Rauner of incompetence is giving him the benefit of the doubt that he does not deserve.

    He chose to bleed social services and higher ed. He’s not standing on some principle; he moves heaven and earth to ensure that IT pinstripe patronage types get paid. He brokered the deal that gouged Exelon consumers for $235 million a year with nothing in return.

    Rauner has his priorities as to who gets paid, and it’s all in the open.


  38. - blue dog dem - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:53 am:

    Word. Spot on. This is not incompetency. This is political calculation.


  39. - Illinois O'Malley - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:54 am:

    @Ron, stop deflecting, where is Rauner’s proposed balanced budget?


  40. - AnonymousOne - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:56 am:

    I guess Governor is the word that you’d be forced to apply to Rauner. But he has no leadership, let alone compromise capability. He is the “boss” of our state. He bears the top responsibility. Our state is in the worst, disastrous place it’s ever been. How is there anything positive, constructive to be said?


  41. - AnonymousOne - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:58 am:

    Is there one thing—-anything someone can point to that has happened under this governor that puts ILlinois in a better place?


  42. - blue dog dem - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:03 am:

    Its almost scary that this Distinguished Fellow, (somebody help me with his salary,$177k?) Can’t see that Gov Rauner has a game plan.


  43. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:05 am:

    Illinois, not deflecting, but this insolvent state has not had a balanced budget in decades. Our corrupt pols promised the moon to the public employee unions yet never funded it.

    The piper has arrived.


  44. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:07 am:

    AnonymousOne, Rauner is forcing people to realize that Illinois is insolvent, while having one of the highest tax burdens in the nation. We have horrible job growth, again, without Chicago, the state would be losing jobs. People are fleeing the outrageous taxes that get us nothing but a smug public workforce.


  45. - Franklin Delano Bluth - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:10 am:

    ==He should be “maligned a little bit” but the long serving speaker from Chicago has been “overly maligned,” Edgar said.==

    Probably the most honest quote we’ll get in Illinois Politics this year


  46. - Lucky Pierre - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:14 am:

    I think Governor Edgar is suffering from Stockholm Syndrome

    He has gone from the Speaker is so difficult he caused me to have heart attack to he is a great guy.

    Because of the bad decisions Governor Edgar and Speaker Madigan made twenty years ago, Illinois has piled up record debt

    A little humility and a mea culpa would be appropriate, instead we hear him bragging about “budget surplus” from his administration because he pushed he pension payments down the road.

    President Obama’s comment about mopping up the mess from the Bush years and having the Republicans telling him how to hold the mop applies here too


  47. - Norseman - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:15 am:

    === Accusing Rauner of incompetence is giving him the benefit of the doubt that he does not deserve. ===

    Word, I have to agree with you. I suspect Edgar does too, but is using the term “incompetent” to be politically polite.


  48. - James Knell - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:18 am:

    Somebody should give Edgar a few billion dollars so he can have as much free speech as Rauner.


  49. - Illinois O'Malley - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:19 am:

    @Ron, you talk about these outrageous taxes. What states are they fleeing too? As discussed here many times before, all surrounding states have higher income tax (except Indiana but has a county income tax). And services are taxes along with retirement income. Property taxes in IL vary drastically by school district boundaries so averaging in Naperville with Pekin and Rio is not an accurate measure. again, I don’t need Rauner to tell me we have a bill backlog, I need Rauner to present a balanced budget. If he can’t he should resign.


  50. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:20 am:

    ===Word, I have to agree with you. I suspect Edgar does too, but is using the term “incompetent” to be politically polite.===

    You both are correct.

    I address the Edgar words as someone who knows the job, and someone trying to show where the governing IS, and if you understand that, then other things “reveal” themselves.

    Edgar isn’t fooled.


  51. - Angry Republican - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:21 am:

    OK Mr Edgar, since you are SO smart when will you be filing papers to run for governor again? I triple dog dare you.


  52. - Scamp640 - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:28 am:

    @ Ron. Thanks for calling me smug. I have worked for 21 years as a faculty person at a state university. I work hard and really care for my students. I was in the office “last night” until 1:00am this morning preparing for class today. What were you doing at 1:00am this morning? How dare you call me smug. You have no basis to insult people, most of whom work really, really hard. Given your attitude, I bet they work harder than you.


  53. - Loop Lady - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:32 am:

    Shall we absolve Edgar for his sins now that he has no skin in the game?

    I don’t need him to tell me Rauner is the most ineffective Gov In IL history…

    Please go away now quietly…


  54. - Gruntled University Employee - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:33 am:

    Hey Ron, jealous much?


  55. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:33 am:

    Angry, why? So Edgar can just cave to the unions and not pay for anything?


  56. - JS Mill - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:34 am:

    =Illinois has not had a balanced budget in decades. =

    Even if that was true, and it isn’t, that makes it ok for Rauner to fail to present a balanced budget?

    That is just a moral relativist dodge to avoid your patent hypocrisy.

    He hasn’t and his ‘bots need to own it.

    Just like his fancy costumes and affectations.


  57. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:35 am:

    Gruntled, get your head out of the sand. I personally will be ok. The state of Illinois is an economic basket case. I can leave, like the over 100,000 people who did last year.


  58. - Gruntled University Employee - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:38 am:

    Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.


  59. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:38 am:

    Don’t feed the Troll… Ugh.


  60. - sonny chiss - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:39 am:

    One of the seasoned veterans here help me out (OW?). Is it really that Madigan is a different person or is it the different political landscape?


  61. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:40 am:

    Gruntled, having good taxpaying citizens flee is not going to help.


  62. - Gruntled University Employee - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:42 am:

    I’m taking Willy’s advice. Before Rick bans me.


  63. - Norseman - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:42 am:

    === I don’t need him to tell me Rauner is the most ineffective Gov In IL history…

    Please go away now quietly… ===

    Edgar’s observations may be unnecessary for you, a close student of IL govt., but it can help educate folks in the public.


  64. - Gruntled University Employee - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:43 am:

    Rich not Rick, I don’t know where that came from.


  65. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:43 am:

    - sonny chiss -

    I think I’ll defer to the Geo. Ryan quote and Rich’s own observations.

    The landscape AND Madigan have changed, the debate is did MJM allow it to evolve or engage as he has preemptively?

    That’s the crux of finding where Madigan hurts and/or evolved after.


  66. - walker - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:50 am:

    == Illinois has not had a balanced budget in decades==

    Interesting, entirely false, political meme that has spread widely since Rauner failed for the second time to even try to propose a balanced budget. It’d be interesting to know which political staff or group came up with it.

    By any standard legal or accounting definitions of “balanced” and “budget,” as required by the constitution, most of the state budgets passed in the past three decades have been balanced. Some have actually produced operating surpluses that paid down debt and past due payables. Others have clearly been not, and have caused significant fiscal problems.

    Of course political memes and commentary are meant solely to influence opinion, and often have different standards.


  67. - Shake - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 11:52 am:

    Ron, Have A Nice Smug Day..


  68. - Jimmy H - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:15 pm:

    - wordslinger - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 10:51 am:
    “Accusing Rauner of incompetence is giving him the benefit of the doubt that he does not deserve.”

    I agree 100%. Rauner is causing willful destruction. There’s nothing accidental about it. Rauner is not concerned with being a good Governor for the people of Illinois, he is an elitist. Rauner’s emphasis is on doing what is good for the “job creator” elite.

    Sugarcoating Rauner by referring to him as incompetent is not helpful. It plays right into the harmless, Carhartt wearing, “good ol’ boy” image he hides behind. Rauner is willfully hurting people and destroying Illinois!


  69. - Scamp640 - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:19 pm:

    @ Ron. Do you know what else won’t help? Having low-paid, under incentivized employees working for the state. Illinois has (had?) one of the best public university systems in the country. Do you know what colleges and universities do? They train the next generation of business leaders, scientists, innovators, doctors, teachers, engineers, farmers, and the rest of the workforce — which is the foundation for economic growth. And you think punishing the “smug” public employees is the way to turn the state around. Sad.


  70. - Fixer - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:21 pm:

    Guys and gals, friendly piece of advice: when someone quotes stuff directly from IPI pieces, odds are you won’t get anything from a facts argument with them other than a headache.

    Edgar is pointing out an uncomfortable truth for Raunerites. He has failed to govern competently. By every measure, the state is worse now than in 2014. Was it sliding before that? Yeah. Rauner decided to have his “This is Sparta!” moment and kick us down a very large, very deep hole.

    If we get out of this, it won’t be under his “leadership”. Someone else will have to pick up the pieces after he’s broken his latest toy.


  71. - Lucky Pierre - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:27 pm:

    Walker please tell us more about all of the “balanced budgets” that have left us with 130 billion dollars in unfunded pensions and even more in unfunded retiree health care costs

    Shorting pensions and smoke and mirrors budgets were not balanced

    Duct tape solutions are also not balanced


  72. - lake county democrat - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:28 pm:

    Governor Edgar: the median income family has an income of $60,0000 a year. Why wont you demand on their behalf of the speaker that if that family is asked to come up with an extra $500-$750 in taxes, that they can’t get some basic, overwhelmingly popular political reforms which won’t cost a single penny, back as part of the deal, and then attack Rauner if he doesn’t give up more of his TA in return. Answer that and I’ll overlook your false attacks on Dawn Clark Netsch and how you let Pate Philip’s racism go unchecked (let alone unprotested).


  73. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:30 pm:

    ===please tell us more about all of the “balanced budgets” that have left us with 130 billion dollars in unfunded pensions and even more in unfunded retiree health care costs===

    Rauner has proposed 3 grossly unbalance, phony, sham budgets.

    You don’t get the “unbalanced budget” bit when Rauner continues the Status Quo he claimed he wanted stopped.

    This is the first time today you are being reminded of Rauner’s 3 phony, sham, grossly unbalanced budgets.


  74. - JS Mill - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:53 pm:

    =Duct tape solutions are also not balanced=

    That is clever, did you come up with that on your own?

    I mean, a fella as sharp as you are wouldn’t mindlessly parrot something he heard on the TeeVee. Am I righT?


  75. - Scamp640 - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:55 pm:

    @ Lake County Democrat: I’m curious, which of the Turn Around Agenda items won’t cost a penny if implemented? Rauner has made all sorts assertions that his TA Agenda items will save money and spur economic growth. But I have yet to see any robust research supporting his arguments. Consider “Right to Work” laws. In the short term, RTW laws seem like a cost-savings policy. But with fewer dollars in their pockets, workers will spend less. So savings on the front end can possibly be more than offset by losses on the back end as consumption drops and sales tax revenues drop. I would like to see an economic impact analysis completed by an impartial third party showing me that RTW laws generate net benefits to all residents of Illinois. Not just a few manufacturers.


  76. - Need A Real Gov. IL - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:56 pm:

    I miss Gov. Edgar.
    The current Gov. has no idea what mess he will leave. No second term — can’t wait to vote.
    We need a Budget Bad!!!


  77. - Juice - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 12:56 pm:

    Lucky, each budget Governor Rauner has introduced has reduced the pension contributions. Those reductions have been based on changing the schedule to further backload the payments even more than under current law as opposed to changes in benefits.

    In addition, his Unbalanced Budget Response Act would allow him to reduce the pension contributions by an amount that is even greater than what he has already proposed in firm numbers.

    (And the retiree health care liability will always be paid on a pay-as-you-go basis. So bring it up if you’d like, but not a whole lot is going to change in paying off the OPEB liabilities.)


  78. - Flip357 - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:02 pm:

    I was at this event. The article covers the most salacious parts of the talk. But I think it’s important to highlight some of the other parts.

    It’s clear that Gov. Edgar has a great respect Madigan, which stems from their mutual belief in the value of compromise. One nugget that did not get reported, and I believe is the most important piece of advice, “Do not let him think you lied to him.” Edgar then cited how this breakdown led to problems between Madigan and Blagojevich, Quinn, and now Rauner.

    One of the overlooked parts of the night was the Governor’s pleas for both sides to stop with personal attacks. “It’s not a campaign, there’s campaigning and then there’s governing.”


  79. - The Dude Abides - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:06 pm:

    To the earlier comment “Rauner might not be the perfect pilot” Now that is the understatement of the week right there.
    Rauner and Blago are the two worst Governors we’ve had here as far as the damage the state has incurred because of decisions they made. Rauner is on course to be worse than Blago given the damage he’s done to the state in just a little over two years.


  80. - Gruntled University Employee - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:10 pm:

    Scamp640,

    Another myth about RTW is if the Contractors are paying their employees less, then they are passing the savings on the the State. In a former life I was a Union Masonry Contractor. With benefits included my rate of pay was close to double that of the local non-union contractors. Yet, anytime I bid against them on private commercial work, when I lost it was never by more than 10%. The non-union contractors couldn’t compete at all with us on Prevailing Rate work because by the time they paid their employees that much more money they couldn’t make the profit margin that they were accustomed to.


  81. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:21 pm:

    Lol at the continuation of people claiming that Illinois has had a balanced budget in recent memory. The goof Edgar didn’t have surplus budgets, he kicked the can down the road.

    That is voodoo economics.


  82. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:21 pm:

    Edgar is the worst, than Blags.


  83. - Louis G. Atsaves - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:29 pm:

    “Madigan is, in other words, a different person that he was back then.”

    Then to throw out a question everyone is avoiding, why bother with the Madigan comparisons to other Governors in the past?


  84. - CapnCrunch - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:37 pm:

    “By any standard legal or accounting definitions of “balanced” and “budget,” as required by the constitution, most of the state budgets passed in the past three decades have been balanced…”

    Is the pension debt excluded from the definition of a balanced budget? It appears not to be included. Prior to the arrival of the current governor this debt had increased every year but two over the previous 13 years (FY 2004 when the State dumped $7.3 billion from the sale of POB into the funds and FY 2011 when exceptionally high investment returns reduced the debt). The debt had grown from $35 billion in FY2002 to $104.6 billion in FY2014 while the State was making the statutory required payments. This State is obligated to pay this debt so shouldn’t it be part of a balanced budget definition?


  85. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:51 pm:

    Capn, there you go, using reason and logic.


  86. - Anonymous - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:53 pm:

    We need Tier 3, no pensions, a 401k with no match and Social Security.

    We can consider matching once the Consitution is amended to eliminate the state’s inability to change benefits as needed.


  87. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:55 pm:

    ===Then to throw out a question everyone is avoiding, why bother with the Madigan comparisons to other Governors in the past?===

    If Madigan is such a notorious creature of habit and routine, after “decades” of such habitual behavior, what could’ve caused such a person of routine and “redundancy” be so out of character?

    24/7/365 campaign ads, websites, blame, and overall personal attacks the go against any chance of working collaboratively?

    “I’ll hang up and listen for my answer… “


  88. - MOON - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 1:57 pm:

    LOUIS

    Madigan is a different person because he is dealing with an unreasonable party.

    In the past he was dealing with reasonable people and did not need to be a different person

    In other words one must adapt to the circumstances and person you are dealing with.

    Rauner should consider who he is dealing with and adapt accordingly. In other words when Rauner has 60 and 30 no need to adapt…until then he should learn he is in a loosing position.


  89. - Former hillrod - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 2:10 pm:

    Correct me if I’m wrong here but by mynrecollection, previous governors have made serious attempts at proposing a balanced budget to the general assembly to consider. Yes, some of those budgets were not truly balanced and used dubious accounting schemes. However, the current governor hasn’t even made an honest attempt at proposing a balanced budget, ever. How does pointing fingers at past sins absolve the current governor from failing to do what the constitution requires? Can Ron, LP, Arock or even Mr Atsaves explain how wailing about the past excuses the current governor from fulfilling this most basic gubernatorial job requirement?


  90. - Ron - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 2:19 pm:

    Former, the state needs a full revamp. Rauner needs to stick to his guns. He isn’t pushing hard enough is my problem with him.

    I don’t get why after literally decades of unbalanced budgets, why you are sooooo concerned that we don’t have one for a few extra years.


  91. - Demoralized - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 2:32 pm:

    ==why you are sooooo concerned that we don’t have one for a few extra years==

    Oh, I don’t know. The decimation of social services. University being left in shambles. Business not being paid for services rendered. You know, things like that.

    Just because you say that no budget isn’t having any effect doesn’t make it true.


  92. - RNUG - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 2:37 pm:

    == We need Tier 3, no pensions, a 401k with no match and Social Security. ==

    For those employees, like teachers, that currently do NOT participate in Social Security, please explain how having to start paying the employer portion of SS is cheaper than the zero dollars that Tier 2 costs the employer.


  93. - Honeybear - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 3:09 pm:

    Ron having no budget directly hurts me personally financially but also (my kids orthodontist hasn’t been paid by the state and I get daily collection calls for the states portion. I’m sure my credit is ruined). But it also effects my agency DHS ability to help our most vulnerable, the people I personally see face to face every day, the disabled, the elderly and the poor. Why would you not want to help me help them? Our fellow citizens need my good care. I give incredible care to them. I use my ministry skills every day. They are directly harmed because ALL, no exaggeration, of the private social service providers are gone here. Put out of business because they had contracts with the state that Rauner is not honoring because of

    No budget
    Fellow Illinoisan Ron
    Rauner chose to do this to me and them
    All to create leverage to destroy labor
    The suffering is real
    It’s not fake


  94. - kimocat - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 3:10 pm:

    Thanks RNUG, for speaking truth to ignorance.


  95. - JS Mill - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 3:46 pm:

    =please explain=

    With respect RNUG, do not hold your breath waiting for that explanation. You are too important to the blog to loose you like that!


  96. - don the legend - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 3:59 pm:

    When Ron plays poker he says a pair of sixes beats a pair of sevens. Rules are for suckers. Rauner doesn’t need 60 and 30 he just …”needs to stick to his guns”.


  97. - RNUG - Friday, May 5, 17 @ 4:37 pm:

    == With respect RNUG, do not hold your breath waiting for that explanation. ==

    I’m not …


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