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*** UPDATED x2 - Pritzker responds to cancellation *** Rauner slammed over AHCA silence

Monday, Jun 19, 2017

*** UPDATE 1 ***  The governor has canceled his appearance tonight

Gov. Bruce Rauner had been set to be there and, in fact, was billed as the star of the evening. But he’s now canceled. Rauner’s office says it’s because of the special legislative session on the budget that begins the day after tomorrow, but perhaps he also doesn’t want to be too closely associated with some of the health care and other votes coming down in Washington.

*** UPDATE 2 *** Pritzker campaign…

Just hours before a GOP fundraiser, Bruce Rauner abruptly canceled his appearance. Rauner was billed as a “special guest” for the event and his attendance was announced weeks earlier.

Rauner’s team cited the special legislative session as the reason behind his withdrawal from the event, but the special legislative session was scheduled last week and conveniently doesn’t start until Wednesday.

It seems that Rauner was scared off by the backlash of a failed governor attending a high-dollar cocktail fundraiser 719 days into a budget crisis of his own making, and days before important health care votes in Congress. With the planned protest outside and the fact that Rauner refuses to take a stand on the GOP health care bill that many attendees support, it is not exactly a recipe for a great evening for Rauner.

“The Illinois GOP is getting a taste of what working families across the state have been dealing with for years. When it comes to following through on commitments, Bruce Rauner will be a no show every time,” said Pritzker campaign spokeswoman Jordan Abudayyeh. “Bruce Rauner is in it for himself and when the going gets tough, Rauner gets going in the other direction. Throw in some cowardice, special interest politics, and failed leadership and you get a Rauner cocktail of destruction and devastation in Illinois.”

[ *** End Of Updates *** ]

* SEIU Healthcare…

While the healthcare and livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of Illinois citizens remain at great risk due to Republican policies, Governor Rauner and the entire Illinois Republican Congressional Delegation will gather for a fundraiser in Rosemont dubbed “Cocktails with the Congressmen.”

Illinois already is in a state of crisis after more than 700 days without a budget, but the American Health Care Act (AHCA) threatens to take the chaos to a new level, chiefly via a $40 billion cut in federal support to Illinois via Medicaid.

In May, Congressmen Roskam, Davis, Shimkus, Bost, Kinzinger, LaHood, and Hultgren all voted for the AHCA and against the interests of the health of the people of Illinois. Governor Rauner - whether it’s because he stands to gain a tax windfall of $6.6 million or he doesn’t care about damage to the Illinois budget and the 700,000 Illinoisans who will lose coverage - has remained silent. The U.S. Senate could vote on the AHCA at any moment.

Citizens from over a dozen local organizations will gather on the sidewalk outside the fundraiser to demand Governor Rauner and Illinois Congressional Republicans do their jobs and save healthcare.

* DGA…

Tonight, Governor Rauner’s reelection campaign gets a boost from a fundraiser with Illinois’ Congressional Republicans. Some would avoid the optics of fundraising with the people who brought us Trumpcare, but not Bruce Rauner. Despite repeated opportunities, Rauner never stood up in opposition to Trumpcare and never caused trouble for Congressional Republicans.

The effects for Illinois of the House Republicans health care overhaul are well known – a devastating $40 billion budget blow, 700,000 kicked off their insurance, and the threat of higher rates for people with pre-existing conditions.

Now the Senate is deep in negotiations on their own bill, but have so far refused to release details to the public. In response, a bipartisan group of governors, including three republicans, released a letter in opposition to the current health care overhaul bill. Conspicuously absent from the letter is Bruce Rauner.

With Rauner unwilling to stand up to his own party, Illinois Congressional Republicans find it easier to support Trumpcare.

For Rauner, this is politics before people.

“Bruce Rauner played a silent partner with Trumpcare supporters, and now he’s being rewarded with a reelection fundraiser,” said DGA Illinois Communications Director Sam Salustro. “While Congressional Republicans debate and debated the fate of our health care system, Bruce Rauner stayed silent, a stunning failure of leadership on his part. Illinoisans face devastating consequences from Trumpcare, but Governor Rauner chose to play the politics and sit on the sideline instead of fight for Illinois families.”

* Pritzker campaign…

On Friday, a bipartisan group of governors criticized the House GOP’s health care bill. Republican Governors John Kasich of Ohio, Charles Baker of Massachusetts, and Brian Sandoval of Nevada all signed on to a pointed letter to the Senate Majority and Minority leaders.

Absent from this bipartisan effort by governors to represent the best interests of their states? Bruce Rauner.

Rauner’s silence follows a familiar trend of the failed governor ducking and dodging the Republican health care bill, which would have a disastrous impact on Illinois.

If the House health care bill were to pass, Illinois could lose 46,000 jobs by 2026. State premiums could spike by $1,242 by 2018. Older Illinoisans would be completely devastated by the law. A 64-year-old Illinois resident with an income of $26,500 could see premiums skyrocket by over $14,000 by 2026.

This may explain why, despite celebrating the law when it first passed, even Donald Trump called the legislation “mean” last week. Given the impact this bill would have on Illinois and the governor’s continued silence, it must be asked, does Bruce Ruaner support the bill?

“Bipartisan governors are speaking out against the Republican health care bill, but Bruce Rauner is nowhere to be found,” said JB Pritzker. “This legislation is a direct attack on Illinois working families and seniors and would be devastating to a state economy already on the brink of collapse. Bruce Rauner’s silence is a stunning abdication of his responsibility to represent all Illinois families. This is cowardice and it is the most vulnerable Illinoisans that will once again have to pay the price for their failed governor.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Galena Guy - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 12:28 pm:

    One thing - you can always count on Rauner to make things worse. Jeez…..

  2. - ste_with_av_en - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 12:29 pm:

    I get that is an attack line and whatnot, but would Rauner coming out for or against the bill do anything? Congress seems to do what it wants. Do the GOP Congressmen takes ques from Rauner? Plus if him saying anything is all damage with no policy affect, why would he say anything besides “focus on Illinois”?

  3. - wordslinger - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 12:29 pm:

    Even Trumps against the House bill now. Rauner can’t step up?

  4. - Name Withheld - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 12:34 pm:

    ==One thing - you can always count on Rauner to make things worse.==

    And it’s done it by doing nothing. Go figure.

  5. - Anon221 - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 12:46 pm:

    Granted this FOCUS was on the abortion funding bill, but I’m sure it would apply to the AHCA if Rauner ever deigned to speak on that subject…

    “Expanding taxpayer funding is a very divisive issue. It’s a very controversial issue. What we need to do is focus in Illinois. We need to protect existing Illinois law but we need to focus on jobs. We need to focus on reducing property taxes. We need to focus on education funding. We need to focus on getting term limits on elected officials. These are difficult issues. We need to focus,” (Rauner) said.

    The bumper sticker for Team Rauner:

    Focus, people! FOCUS! (But not on the man behind the curtain.)

  6. - Try-4-Truth - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 12:47 pm:

    ===- ste_with_av_en - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 12:29 pm:

    I get that is an attack line and whatnot, but would Rauner coming out for or against the bill do anything? Congress seems to do what it wants. Do the GOP Congressmen takes ques from Rauner? Plus if him saying anything is all damage with no policy affect, why would he say anything besides “focus on Illinois”?====

    I could be wrong, but this is about politics. Do Illinoisans hate Trump/Rauner more than they hate Madigan? That’s the question this line of attack is pushing. Tie Rauner (already unpopular by his own right) to Trump, and voila, 1 term governor.

    Again, I could be wrong, but that seems to be the play.

  7. - Huh? - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:09 pm:

    1.4% won’t say anything until he can figure out how to blame the Speaker for any problems created by the AHCA.

  8. - @MisterJayEm - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:17 pm:

    “would Rauner coming out for or against the bill do anything?”

    • 700,000 Illinoisans will lose coverage under AHCA.

    • Illinois will lose $40 billion in federal Medicaid support.

    • Illinois hospitals and health systems employ more than a quarter of a million people, generating nearly 450,000 direct and indirect jobs and a total economic impact of $83.4 billion a year.

    • One out of every 10 jobs in Illinois is in health care.

    For or against, AHCA sure seems like something in which a Governor of Illinois should express an interest and make a serious effort.

    – MrJM

  9. - Responsa - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:28 pm:

    Quite frankly, Rauner, the Dem candidates and our the state have enough to do and worry about without politicking on AHCA. Many insurance companies across the country have already left the exchanges in a lurch and many middle class families who do not qualify for gov’t subsidies and do not have their insurance subsidized by an employer are dropping out because they cannot afford the sky high premiums. They are worse off than before Obamacare. The system cannot go on much longer as it is and most sentient people in Washington know it and understand that tweaks and improvements must be made to keep it afloat. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have said so. Let Congress do its work while the officeholders and hopeful officeholders of Illinois do their work.

  10. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:35 pm:

    Oh - Responsa -, LOL!

    I want every gubernatorial candidate, and thus sitting governor, to tell me about where they stand on this.

    It does effect Illinois, and all can walk and chew gum.

    If Rauner supports Trump’s plan, or the Congressional Republican plan, or however they are describing it, I want to know, unfiltered, from Rauner to Daiber.

    Why hide how they feel? It will effect the state.

  11. - blue dog dem - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:46 pm:

    Its sort of ironic that a state in economic shambles would want to adopt a health care plan that is also in economic shambles.

    Birds of a feather.

  12. - Anon221 - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:47 pm:

    “Let Congress do its work while the officeholders and hopeful officeholders of Illinois do their work.”

    Sorry Responsa, I’m not a mushroom and this ain’t 1984. Rauner’s silence speaks volumes. He has a myopic vision of Illinois, and this is not the first subject where he wants to hide under a rock and pretend what happens in DC doesn’t affect Illinois. It may not affect him or his family, but he wasn’t elected to look out only for them.

  13. - Responsa - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:52 pm:

    Oh the feels. Nobody knows what’ll be in the dang bill right now just like nobody knew what was actually in the dang bill when it was narrowly passed in 2010 with details to follow. As Rich likes to remind, it’s just a bill.

  14. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:57 pm:

    ===Nobody knows what’ll be in the dang bill right now just like nobody knew what was actually in the dang bill when it was narrowly passed in 2010 with details to follow===

    So…. No one should give an opinion as to what is already known that passed the US House of Representatives?

    That’s fun, LOL

    “No, don’t take a position Governor, gubernatorial wanna-bes, say nothing!”

    That’s embarrassingly hysterical.

    Arguably, Gov. Kasich is one of the wonkiest governors out there, he has a take… Is Kasich wrong to have an opinion?

  15. - Anon221 - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 1:58 pm:

    Responsa… he is being asked questions by the Illinois delegation. His silence is deafening.

  16. - wordslinger - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 2:10 pm:

    Responsa, BDD, the specific consequences for Illiinois on the House bill were outlined accurately by Mr. JM. $4B loss a year in federal funding (we’re already at a huge deficit in regards to tax dollars back from DC), 700K lose health insurance.

    I guess if you don’t see it on your cable news channel, it ain’t so.

  17. - Anonymous - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 2:13 pm:

    SEIU, DGA, and a Democrat candidate say bad things about Rainer? This is truly groundbreaking news! “Democrat partisans and liberal lobbyist groups say Rauner is bad”…this will surely be his undoing!

  18. - Anon221 - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 2:15 pm:

    From Crain’s Editorial Board:

    “…despite the fact that more than half his proposed 2018 budget—fully 57 percent—goes to health care-related spending, Gov. Bruce Rauner has been very nearly mum on the pros and cons of the insurance reform wrangling that’s dominated headlines for months.

    The statement he released after the AHCA passed the House went about as far as he’s been willing to go in public: The measure “did not address fundamental concerns about the bill’s impact on the 650,000 individuals that are part of our Medicaid expansion population, nor . . . (ease) the concerns of the 350,000 people in the individual market who are dealing with skyrocketing premiums and fewer choices.”

  19. - Norseman - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 2:20 pm:

    Governing requires attention and action where appropriate to Federal legislation that affects IL. Especially, legislation that so adversely impacts the state. But then again, when has Rauner decided to govern.

  20. - Nick Name - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 2:26 pm:

    “Trump who?” — official statement from Gov. Gaslight.

  21. - Anon221 - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 2:39 pm:

    Nick Name- It’s turning into “Rauner who?”, too!

  22. - Nick Name - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 3:10 pm:

    Anon221: Ha!

  23. - Blue dog dem - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 3:22 pm:

    Word. Typical progressive attitude. I view my country first. State second. County third. Keep spending. Its only make believe money.

  24. - DuPage Bard - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 3:43 pm:

    It’s Madigan’s fault!

  25. - wordslinger - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 3:48 pm:

    BDD, be sure to wrap yourself in the flag when making that word salad.

    And define “progressive.” Like Teddy Roosevelt? Altgeld? LaFollette? Jane Addams?

    What’s it mean, why is it a negative?

    Or is that just a word the ladies on Fox say all day, and you repeat it?

  26. - Land-O-Linkin - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 3:58 pm:

    JB should probably pay his full property taxes and not disable his toilets, and avoid angling to be appointed to a position in the Blagojevich administration while the FBI is listening. He’s not a solution, he’s part of the problem.

  27. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 3:59 pm:

    To the Pritzker update…

    It covers all the bases, it does the job throughly, but here’s the rub…

    … the Pritzker Crew needs to analyze how pithy they were when running against Quinn.

    We, the audience, don’t need the fully wrapped story, setup and payoff. We, the audience, need to know…

    “Rauner is avoiding this reception, just as Rauner avoids the AHCA and Rauner is avoiding his own 700 plus days as Rauner fails Illinois daily.”

    I don’t need all the verses in the song today, that’ll come, today I need the reprise, I need the chorus.

    Keep rolling.


  28. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 4:00 pm:

    “they were” - Rauner’s Crew

  29. - CrazyHorse - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 4:10 pm:

    ==If the House health care bill were to pass, Illinois could lose 46,000 jobs by 2026. State premiums could spike by $1,242 by 2018. Older Illinoisans would be completely devastated by the law. A 64-year-old Illinois resident with an income of $26,500 could see premiums skyrocket by over $14,000 by 2026.==

    Totally disingenuous. Where are the numbers for where everyone will be in 2026 if nothing is done and ObamaCare remains in place? Let’s put those numbers side by side and then we can have a better assessment of the numbers.

    Throughout the campaign last year Dems and Repubs alike slammed ObamaCare and said it needed to be replaced or at the very minimum undergo major structural changes. If the Dems are really interested in making the future bill more palatable for everyone then get to the table instead of simply trying to block Trump at every turn. We keep hearing about how many people will suffer and/or die if AHCA passes. If the Dems really believed it was that dire then why the heck don’t they put politics aside and at least try and work with the Trump administration? What proposals have they offered?

  30. - illini - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 4:22 pm:

    @CrazyHorse - your point is a reasonable one that does make sense except for one important point.

    A small handful of Republican Senators are rewriting the bill behind closed doors and even keeping members of their own party in the dark about what is going to be submitted to their colleagues for a vote.

    Granted, there may have been some unknowns when the original bill was passed, but there were close to 200 open hearings before the final bill was voted on and signed.

    My question - how can Dems work with the Trump Admin as well as the House and Senate when they are not even allowed in the room.

    This is not even a serious critique.

  31. - wordslinger - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 4:41 pm:

    –Tsipras,Stalin,Maduro would be much more representative, than say, harry truman,jfk, or teddy.–

    I think you need a tone-it-down nap.

    Just what American leader is supposed to be like Stalin in your estimation?

  32. - CrazyHorse - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 4:47 pm:

    ==Granted, there may have been some unknowns when the original bill was passed, but there were close to 200 open hearings before the final bill was voted on and signed.==

    What were the Dem proposals at these hearings? All I remember hearing from the Dems was a celebration when the bill wasn’t called for a vote the first time around. They thought it more important to hand Trump a defeat than to help craft a bill that would pass. I’d agree with you if the Dem stance wasn’t merely to defend the failing ObamaCare and to stop Trump from passing anything.

    I do agree on the ridiculousness of how the Repubs are working as well. The right hand never knows what the left hand is doing.

    The undeniable truth is that ObamaCare was a failed bill and it needs fixing. TrumpCare may end up being better or worse depending on your vantage point but acting like standing pat was a viable option is disingenuous.

  33. - Mama - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 4:48 pm:

    I can understand why Rauner does not want to comment on AHCA. Think about this, the AHCA bill gives the rich a big tax break. (P.S. Rauner will benefit from AHCA.)

  34. - Mama - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 4:59 pm:

    I don’t know if this is true or not, but I read somewhere that AHCA will negatively affect employer sponsored insurance. If true, it could be bad news for state workers & private business employees too.

  35. - cdog - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 5:06 pm:

    As a self-employed couple in our mid 50s, our premiums for a bronze plan were quoted at $1500/mo with a $7k deductible, this past cycle. Our only anticipated need is one prescription of a 40 yr old blood pressure medicine.

    I had to get creative and dropped our private BCBSIL plan because we could not afford to pay $18,000 a year for nothing. I’d rather go to Ecuador or Thailand and explore all the decent medical tourism options.

    Until Americans realize that politicians are protecting and enabling the insurance racket, we will all lose.

    If Rauner truly is a free-market type, where’s the push for price transparency and dismantling of network rackets? Who buys anything without knowing the price before the decision to purchase is made?

    This would help everyone, especially taxpayers who are responsible for the health of millions.

  36. - @MisterJayEm - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 5:06 pm:

    “Granted, there may have been some unknowns when the original bill was passed, but there were close to 200 open hearings before the final bill was voted on and signed.”

    This quote quite obviously — “and signed” — refers to the ACA/Obamacare legislation.

    – MrJM

  37. - illini - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 5:09 pm:

    @CrazyHorse - please review your recent history. The first Repub bill in thye House did not have the votes, even from its own caucus to pass. The Dems were never allowed to have any input. Were they having a “celebration”? - I doubt it because they knew it was coming back.

    Bottom line - the Repubs can do most anything they want to do in DC if they have the votes, but that is obviously easier said than done.

    You characterize the current bill as a “failure” - by what standard? Many Dems would probably consider it “imperfect and needing more work” but the immediate financial impact on the state, our health care providers and the public are without question. The only question is how devastating will its repeal actually be.

  38. - illini - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 5:11 pm:

    @MrJM - quite correct. My mistake for not making that clear.

  39. - CrazyHorse - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 5:31 pm:

    ==The Dems were never allowed to have any input.==

    They weren’t? I remember Schumer and other prominent Dems saying they would only work with Republicans if REPEAL was taken off the table. They made that clear. That sounds an awful lot like Rauner saying no budget without reforms.

  40. - JPC - Monday, Jun 19, 17 @ 9:18 pm:


    “Throughout the campaign last year Dems and Repubs alike slammed ObamaCare and said it needed to be replaced or at the very minimum undergo major structural changes.”

    This and other remarks you’ve made about the ACA are more controversial than you allow. There was no broad agreement that it failed and needed to be replaced. Maybe on Fox. Besides, fewer people than ever are uninsured, among assorted benefits. FWIW it’s now more popular than ever.

    Finally, the version of the AHCA scored by the CBO has much worse outcomes for everyone (excepting the tax cuts–good luck with those).

  41. - JPC - Tuesday, Jun 20, 17 @ 7:44 am:

    To follow up, here’s a Politifact analysis of the claim that “Obamacare has failed:”

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