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Mrs. Rauner won’t talk about her husband’s happiness

Tuesday, Jun 27, 2017 - Posted by Rich Miller

* As we briefly discussed yesterday, Diana Rauner spoke to the City Club. She didn’t say much that seemed particularly newsworthy…

* Tribune..

“Oh no, we’re going to be there until next summer,” Diana Rauner told Chicago Inc. on Monday, after giving a speech on early childhood development at the City Club of Chicago.

Long-overdue renovations to the 162-year-old governor’s mansion forced the couple to move this spring into the bungalow on the fairgrounds, where they have encountered a family of foxes, and now, Diana Rauner said Monday, a family of hedgehogs. […]

More serious topics of conversation, alas, were deemed out of bounds. The first lady declined to discuss her husband’s oft-repeated story, in which she informs the governor that she has not seen him happier in 20 years. Democrats this weekend seized on the governor’s latest recitation of the tale as evidence he was “out of touch” with ordinary people during the state’s ongoing budget crisis.

Diana Rauner told Inc. that “I’m not going to discuss that today.” She was whisked out of the building before she could be cornered by a gaggle of TV camera crews.


  1. - Dick Butka - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 8:50 am:

    Haven’t gotten an update on Dad’s Home State in a while, OW. This has got to be coming up on the season finale, no?

  2. - Pundent - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 8:54 am:

    Actually she did say that delays in payments have occurred over decades and in my view attempted to cast the current crisis as “business as usual.”

  3. - Ducky LaMoore - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 8:56 am:

    I think Dad’s Home State got cancelled because producers felt that going three years without a budget was too far out of the realm of reality.

  4. - Give Me A Break - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 8:56 am:

    With all respect Mrs. Rauner, you need to look in the mirror and ask yourself what happened to the caring advocate for children who once attended meetings of the DHS Human Services Advisory Council. I’m not sure where that person went.

  5. - Cassandra - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 8:59 am:

    Sounds to me like the long term solution will have to be financed more by private philanthropy. Even if our political masters are successful in implementing various tax increases, that won’t be enough. At the federal and state level entitlements, especially for seniors (think Medicaid for nursing home residents for ex.) and debt service will crowd out a lot of discretionary spending. On the other hand, there are many billionaires, victors of the tech and financial worlds, engaging in philanthropy these days or getting ready to. Like it or not, the Gates and the Buffetts and their ilk may be financing a lot of our social and cultural services in the future.

  6. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:03 am:

    ===Like it or not, the Gates and the Buffetts and their ilk may be financing a lot of our social and cultural services in the future===

    Not even they have enough cash to do that.

  7. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:04 am:

    Make NO mistake.

    Don’t be fooled, don’t believe the phoniness that is everything RaunerS…

    … Diana Rauner, personally, put her own reputation in social services and as a “Democrat” out for public scrutiny… and attaching HER own name just last October to $9 million dollars to keep Raunerites in office and gave Raunerites, you guessed it, beat Democrats…

    … are happy as can be, both, at the destruction and the funding of the continued destruction of Illinois.

    Diana Rauner just isn’t as “candid”, but is willing to be honest with Bruce… and Diana knows, her reputation and credibility is now under scrutiny.

    You don’t say in political ads how your spouse has no social agenda, and your “volunteer job” as head of a social service agency learns her husband’s administration owes that same agency million is

    Thank goodness for JB Pritzker, eh Dr. Rauner?

    Now, Diana Rauner, while enjoying that Bruce hasn’t been happier in years let’s other social service providers know, their actions against her husband’s administration are sterile business decisions. Social agendas make things messy… for Bruce of course… and his happiness.

    To be crystal clear;

    Diana Rauner has her OWN name towards millions to Republicans, while being paraded… as a prop… by Bruce as “that Democrat I can get along with”

    Further, the passive personal voice as a leader of a social service provider was ALWAYS going to problematic, and was Diana’s own free choice to stay on.

    So, before the “how can you” comments start to defend her, which is fine, be ready to recognize that taking in a different tact as Diana has, and Bruce continually inserting Diana in discussions are not decisions made by me, but made by the RaunerS… and personally putting your name to find the destruction of the alleged party you claim to support, that’s well within the bounds of an honest discussion.

    Reality? Had Bruce not inserted Diana as he has, or the monies, or the comments by Diana herself… it indeed would be quite different. So there’s that too.

  8. - slow down - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:07 am:

    Of course she was whisked away before she could be cornered by TV cameras. How does a person allegedly committed to the well being of children and their development, defend the decimation of social services for our state’s most vulnerable children?

  9. - Cassandra - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:07 am:

    I didn’t think so either until I read David Callahan’s book The Givers.

  10. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:08 am:

    “Dad’s Home State” seasons always start in January, the anniversary of Bruce’s swearing in.

    Right now, the production is on a “hiatus” during special session, until certain things may trigger the production to resume.

    Stay tuned!

  11. - hisgirlfriday - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:10 am:

    Why does the first lady need a full-time taxpayer-paid staffer with a six-figure salary if she cant take any qyestions from the media or even speak publicly about the governor?

  12. - ILGOV2018 - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:12 am:

    How about this for a Democratic ad critical of Rauner?

    Start off with a clip of Rauner talking about how Diana has never seen him happier and then cut to a shot of how many social service agencies have closed or cut staff and the number of people without the services.

    Then repeat the same clip of Rauner talking about how Diana has never seen him happier and then cut to a shot of newsclips of the state going without a budget for 2-3 years.

    Then repeat the same clip of Rauner talking about how Diana has never seen him happier and then cut to a shot of him saying how he wants to shut down the government if need be and show real people who have lost their jobs, or maybe a clip of him talking about how Diana cries because her kids live out of state and she doesn’t get to see them. Then a clip of real people crying because they lost their jobs and can’t provide for their kids.
    Finally, have a group of laid off workers or kids who have been affected by not having a budget, telling Diana, “So glad you have never seen Bruce so happy, but we’re not-we have lost services and jobs because of Bruce’s happiness”

    Fade to black “Say NO to Governor Rauner!”

  13. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:13 am:

    ===I think Dad’s Home State got cancelled because producers felt that going three years without a budget was too far out of the realm of reality.===

    In the episode pitch meetings, we can’t come up with the lunacy of things, like the years without a budget.

    We as a production spend hours trying to convince HBO there’s reality here. They can’t believe the storylines.

    We send the news clips, then we can film.

    When Bruce gave the speech in the Old State Capitol, the HBO exec left the set, mumbling “no one will believe this”. We had to get a production assistant to show the exec it’s a real happening!

    It’s been a real challenge.

  14. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:28 am:

    It’s okay. The statements are already out there.

    Sure Rauner is beaming with happiness. He owns a political party and actual legislators. He more than tripled his income, thanks to public employee pensions and the types of people he says wrecked Illinois. He’s fully engaged in the trench warfare he started against the people he hates–the same types of people who enrich him. Backdoor cuts are proceeding nicely–the squeezin’ of the beast…

  15. - James the Intolerant - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:29 am:

    There is a Q&A at the end of the speech, were there any tough questions or all softballs?

  16. - Mr. K. - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:29 am:

    There is something vaguely psychotic about Rauner’s being happiest now than he’s been in 20 years.

    Of all people, Rauner has no reason — zero — to be happy. I mean, the race is now a “tossup” from “lean right”. That make you happy, Bruce?

    Oh wait. Yeah. You don’t read the news.

  17. - Ducky LaMoore - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:30 am:


    Don’t leave me hanging like HBO did with Carnivale. That was a great show!

  18. - @MisterJayEm - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:32 am:

    “she’s ‘hopeful’ for a long term solution.”

    I’ll bet Diana’s other hand fills up first.

    – MrJM

  19. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:36 am:

    - Ducky LaMoore -

    We were trying to keep things under wraps, but…

    … The 100th episode is just around the corner and I wouldn’t be surprised if all your favorite characters come back, including Diana’s first State Employee, a governor from Hawaii’ and many more surprises.

    To bring it bank to the Post,

    The mocking here, with “Dad’s Home State” only works because of the obvious phoniness.

    You can’t become a caricature unless you let yourself become one.

  20. - illinoised - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 9:47 am:

    Alas, happiness is a fleeting thing.

  21. - Huh? - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 10:00 am:

    “Oh no, we’re going to be there until next summer,” Is this an omen for the budget talks lasting until next summer?

  22. - atbat - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 10:30 am:

    There are no wild hedgehogs in Illinois or in the rest of North America, for that matter. They live in Europe and other parts of the world.

  23. - JPC - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 10:32 am:


    There are different types of private philanthropy.

    Here’s one:

    In my Michigan hometown, some local gazziolaires decided in 2005 anonymously to pay for public college in Michigan for any kid who completed k-12 in the city limits. Now this includes college in any town in Michigan.

    Here’s another:

    Millionaire donates money to already wealthy private university where mostly rich people go. Puts name on building.

  24. - Streator Curmudgeon - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 10:34 am:

    Loyalty to one’s spouse vs. personal ethics is a tough choice to make.

    I have to give Mrs. Rauner the benefit of the doubt, but surely she is objective enough to see that the budget impasse is wrecking the lives of millions of Illinoisans and that her husband shares the blame for it.

    No wonder she ducked out on the hard questions.

  25. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 11:00 am:

    I am opposed to demonizing a governor’s wife for political benefit. It was wrong to drag Diana into his political ambition, and it is wrong to use her to score points against him.

    She is not a candidate.

  26. - Flynn's Mom - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 11:13 am:

    Either Bruce and Diana just don’t get it or they just don’t care. My vote is for the latter.

  27. - Cassandra - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 11:17 am:

    Yes, it is undeniable that private philanthropists do a lot of good. But they get to pick the beneficiaries of their immense wealth, much of which is untaxed of course.

  28. - DeseDemDose - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 11:21 am:

    Diana’s $100,000 per year assistant is paid for by Illinois taxpayers. Governor Happy clouted his kid into a premiere Chicago Publiic School bouncing out some kid who earned their way in against all odds. He doesn’t even care or work anymore. He is laughing at us all while the neediest people in Illinois suffer.

  29. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 11:45 am:

    Groundhog…Hedgehog…MoneyHog…what’s the difference?

  30. - say what - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 1:11 pm:

    To words to Diana : complicit, Ofrauner…

  31. - Oh, please... - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 3:29 pm:

    Thank you @hisgirlfriday! What, I wonder, does the $100,000 staffer do?

  32. - FirstTimer - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 4:46 pm:

    Have we forgot how Rauner strutted around while campaigning and telling his rich buddies how he would shut it down and cause a crisis in Illinois if he had to? This is what he has done all of his adult life, taken advantage of crisis. He loves the game and doesn’t really care about those that lose or what they lose. Now he gets to play the game with our tax dollars instead of his money so you know that has to make him happier. Remember what he said, for him crisis creates opportunity and boy are we in a crisis mode!! His financials from the last year shows he is taking advantage of an opportunity.

  33. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jun 27, 17 @ 6:14 pm:

    Ms. Rauner’s speech was very nice and compassionate, and described the environmental problems that babies can face. But at 15:16 she said described such children as products of “the lucky gene pool”. It was as if she forgot her focus on environment and was suddenly possessed by a Stephen Jay Gould demon. And then she went back to normal. Very strange.

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