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“Best team in America”

Tuesday, Jul 25, 2017 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Usually, the governor gets softball questions from TV types. But Jim Niedelman of the Quad Cities came prepared for his interview. Let’s start with his follow-up to Gov. Rauner talking about what Chicago Public Schools should and shouldn’t get in education funding reform

NIEDELMAN: So, if you allow [CPS] to have the… block grant would the pension then be included the way other pensions are funded across the state? Every other school district, the state picks up the pensions. Chicago’s separate from that. They want to be included in the rest of the state. You’re against that?

RAUNER: Well, so, here’s the issue, the bill needs to be on my desk so I can do the amendatory veto and you wouldn’t even have to ask the question, it would be clear how we’re gonna do it…

NIEDELMAN: Well, I’m asking the question now..

RAUNER: Yeah. Well, well, to, to talk about the detail when they haven’t even passed me the bill and I can’t fix it, we’re wasting our time…

It’s really worth a watch. Go to about the 6-minute mark to hear him dodge repeated questions about whether he was in favor of primarying Republicans who voted to override his budget vetoes. He also defends his own contributions to himself by saying he’s supported by “tens of thousands who’ve donated whatever they can afford.” All but a tiny handful of his dollars came either from him or a few buddies.

* And then he was asked about Brittany Carl, his new staffer who compared abortion to Nazi eugenics

RAUNER: Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard about her, I, you know, people have their own views. Uh, there’s many people I don’t agree with, it’s fine. I focus on my four things, and, uh, we, we focus on the agenda of fixing our state so it’s working for the people.

NIEDELMAN: Do you want her to stay on within your administration?

RAUNER: So, we’re, we have a lot of folks in the administration, we’re building the best team in America to turn the government around.

NIEDELMAN: Do you want her to be, to stay with your administration?

RAUNER: Best team in America…

NIEDELMAN: I’ll take that as a non-answer, Mr. Governor, but I appreciate your time.

It’s fine?

Also, sheesh, this guy is getting worse than Chris Kennedy. Up your game, governor.


  1. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:40 pm:

    ===we’re building the best team in America===

    So when do Bill Belichek and Tom Brady get to Springfield?

  2. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:41 pm:


  3. - Illinois O'Malley - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:42 pm:

    @Bruce Rauner, you can’t answer if the state should pay for every district’s pension? Ridiculous.

  4. - RNUG - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:43 pm:

    When a real reporter gets hold of Rauner, he just melts down in real-time.

  5. - Aldyth - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:44 pm:

    Rauner is a lousy tap dancer. That’s the sort of performance that gets out the large hook and pulls you off the stage at a vaudeville show.

  6. - Almost The Weekend - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:45 pm:

    About time downstate press is holding Rayner accountable. Excellent interview, I hope downstate media is taking note. It doesn’t matter that he visits your area because Pat Quinn and Rod didn’t. That’s not enough.

    47th it’s not possible he owns the Steelers.

  7. - Bruce Please - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:46 pm:

    Hard to watch that and not see echoes of Blago. I mean, just, wow.

  8. - Black Balled - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:46 pm:

    I get it. This is the destruction of the ILGOP. Which we deserve for letting them take control. Here is the distinction. It will take a decade to come back from the IPI effect. Basically because they are seen as fringe. The original Rauner Locusts had us on a a path to irrelevance for multiple decades. Real Republicans get this.

  9. - LizPhairTax - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:50 pm:

    Old body man took the hairbrush with him?

  10. - Oh no - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:53 pm:

    Seems like the comms team is firing on all cylinders.

  11. - Morty - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:54 pm:

    It’s like listening to Reverend Jim

  12. - Retired Educator - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:55 pm:

    I am a life long Republican who has been turned into an independent by this guy. Simply answering a question by changing it to one you want to answer, is not an answer. How gullible are the people who actually support this guys nonsense?

  13. - interim retiree - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 12:58 pm:

    Unfortunately (or fortunately depending upon your view) few will see the interview since Needleman is on the least viewed quad cities news station. Probably the last time Governor Rainer will agree to their interviews. Like him or not, that’s too bad for all of us.

  14. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:01 pm:

    Let’s break this down, shall we?

    These are Rauner grabs…

    ===Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard about her, I, you know, people have their own views===

    “Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard about her…”

    Rauner is talking about a person that will speak for, be the face of, and at times be the contact of his Administration.

    Rauner “heard about” her. Oh boy.

    “I, you know… ”

    Rauner searching for his answer. Searching… searching… searching. Rauner searching for an answer for a hire that is going to speak for him, that he’s heard of.

    “…people have their own views”

    … and there it is. Rauner found his answer.

    Now here’s where it gets good. Her views consist of examples being used that include WWII Germany. Here’s where panic begins, and repeating things he knows are non-answers to… rescue himself… from her… someone he’s heard of… who will be speaking, at times maybe even for him…

    ===So, we’re, we have a lot of folks in the administration, we’re building the best team in America to turn the government around.===

    “So, we’re, we have a lot of folks in the administration…”

    This is Rauner, right… “There”… right there walking even farther away, realizing that whole “people have their own views”

    “…we’re building the best team in America…”

    This is the “look, a kitty” kinda deflection to other superstars Rauner would like to highlight to get away from her… continuing…

    “…to turn the government around.”

    … and there it is. Agenda. It’s about the messaging of the focus on the Agenda.

    Now, let’s go back to this, to tie the end… this is where Rauner had hoped the reporter found his answer “enough” to her, and the end tied… except for those pesky follow ups…

    ===Uh, there’s many people I don’t agree with, it’s fine. I focus on my four things, and, uh, we, we focus on the agenda of fixing our state so it’s working for the people===

    “Uh, there’s many people I don’t agree with, it’s fine.”

    Now, I’ll get to the “it’s fine” in a second, but it’s Rauner trying to have “I don’t agree with her, but” be the answer that can skip by, undetected. It didn’t. So? Then Rauner reassures “it’s fine”.

    Here is the first panic moment that Rauner had hoped he saved but didn’t. “It’s fine” put Rauner in a camp he did t want to put himself in. So…

    “I focus on my four things, and, uh, we, we focus on the agenda of fixing our state…”

    Rauner is so panicked so, that he lists a number for validity, but doesn’t tick off the four. Rauner hoped beyond hope this could stop the following up. Of course, it didn’t stop the follow up.

    “…so it’s working for the people.”

    An action verb, and making sure that action is for the people.

    Alas, as I began, the follow ups did come, and the panic came back, and Ms. Carl seems to be an issue Rauner sees only panic, but luckily, Rauner has only “heard of” her.

  15. - Jocko - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:02 pm:

    ==we’re building the best team in America to turn the government around.==

    It’s a shame “Justice League” is already taken.

  16. - illini - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:03 pm:

    We all knew that BVR had mastered the “pivot”. Never answer a direct, pointed question - always get back to the talking points regardless of how lame they may be.

    He still refuses to take any responsibility or be accountable for any of his actions these past 21/2 years.

    Unfortunately, 95% of the media would not have had the fortitude or the knowledge to ask the appropriate follow up questions. And the local media loyally simply repeat his talking points as the “news” worth reporting.

    We have gone from “Super Stars” to the “Best team in America” and we still have to listen to the same stale drivel.

    Thanks for posting the entire link. Sometimes pictures and unedited video are worth more than the written word.

  17. - Roman - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:03 pm:

    How refreshing — a television reporter who understands the issues and isn’t afraid to ask an actual follow-up question. Would be nice if the third largest media market in America had a few “journalists” who would do the same.

    Rauner’s original comms staff was pretty good at making sure he avoided interviews like this. Time for another purge of the “messaging” department?

  18. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:04 pm:

    He’s always been bad when pushed off script.

    It’s not just nerves.

    Like Blago, he’s surprisingly ignorant on the nitty-gritty of his job. That’s a choice.

  19. - Fixer - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:06 pm:

    Anyone that’s watched him with tough questions should be accustomed to seeing this kind of behavior. He doesn’t do off script well. At all.

  20. - WhoKnew - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:06 pm:

    “they haven’t even passed me the bill and I can’t fix it.”
    Is that fix like, I fixed the coping machine or like I got my dog fixed? /s

  21. - Give Me A Break - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:06 pm:

    Well that reporter can forget about sending their resume in to become an agency spokesperson.

  22. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:09 pm:

    – best team in America–

    Yeah, he was searching far and wide for talent when he was secretly criss-crossing the nation lining up those hundreds of corporations ready to relocate to Illinois once there’s term limits, or something.

    What were the odds that the best team in America could be found spinning “force de jour” policy in the IPI offices?

    And not one of them with a lick of experience outside of dorm-room debate club.

  23. - Norseman - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:09 pm:

    === Simply answering a question by changing it to one you want to answer, is not an answer. ===

    True, but it’s a tactic used by all politicians. They hope the questioner doesn’t follow-up. Niedleman did his job and pushed. Rauner can’t handle reporters that take him out of his rhetorical comfort zone.

  24. - EVanstonian - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:09 pm:

    OW always makes points about how Madigan won’t be on the ballot all over the state.

    Pretty clear the Governor’s team believes that’s a feature and not a bug.

    I guess they feel they can get all the benefits of going negative during a campaign without getting blamed by the public for being petty, which is the usual limit when you attack an opponent for the same office.

    Pretty good at this politics thing, for all of his governing flaws, this is pretty genius.

  25. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:10 pm:

    Team America: Tax Police

  26. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:12 pm:

    Does this mean that IPI can rename their offices “Team America”

    ‘Cause if it does, that’s awesome.

  27. - OM - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:15 pm:

    I hope Jim Niedelman enjoyed his last interview with Gov. Rauner. Bravo to him for being prepared and asking the questions when he had a chance to. Bruce will need to go back to the Chicago media for the softball questions with no follow up.

  28. - nadia - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:17 pm:

    Willy, that last comment just made my day, thank you.

  29. - BigLou - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:28 pm:

    Is it possible the gov is doing this to CPS because the refrain of being against Chicago and not helping the City in any way plays well everywhere outside of Chicago where most voters are?

  30. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:31 pm:

    BigLou, keep up, man

  31. - Texas Red - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:33 pm:

    Lets put the full quote out there for context…
    “Certainly nothing matches the atrocity of the Holocaust, but it’s undeniable that abortion is being used to rid the world of disabled and other ‘unwanted’ persons — a fact the Left and their pro-abortion allies don’t want discussed,” Carl wrote”

  32. - walker - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:39 pm:

    IPI staff are the “best team in America?”

    What exactly have they accomplished for Illinois, with their big staff, big funding and access to power?

    Getting big-paying inside jobs for themselves doesn’t count.

  33. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:56 pm:

    You don’t have to wait for the bill to hit your desk to know what’s in it. Go to the GA website (something I’m sure the Best Team in America can do). You’ll know what’s in the bill and what you want to “fix”. I get it, he’s a politician and knows what he wants to do, but just doesn’t want to tell anyone to spoil the surprise.

  34. - West Side the Best Side - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:57 pm:

    1:56 Anonymous was me. Didn’t have the best team to check my tablet.

  35. - RoyBoy - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 1:59 pm:

    Cultural Marxists who demand everyone they disagree with lose their job are so funny to watch when they don’t get their way.

  36. - Anon414 - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 2:00 pm:

    That’s a solid interview by a well informed reporter, but I wouldn’t call it tough. This is merely Journalism 101.

    The fact that It’s topic of discussion is proof of how fetal — to borrow a term from Rahm — Illinois’ press corps has been when dealing with Rauner.

  37. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 2:11 pm:

    –Cultural Marxists –

    You kids are having quite a time in the sandbox with your Nazi and Marxist action figures.

    For those of you keeping score at home, “cultural Marxist” is a half-baked catch-phrase among the likes of the Daily Stormer and other can’t-cope-losers who have delusions of being at the vanguard of the Master Race.

  38. - Anon E. Moose - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 2:13 pm:

    Here’s another full quote:

    “Attempting to rid the world of people with Down syndrome simply because they are different constitutes the dangerous and morally reprehensible practice of eugenics not entirely unlike what was practiced in…Nazi Germany.”

    So in Ms. Carl’s world, a woman making a choice of what to do with her body is “not entirely unlike what was practiced in…Nazi Germany.” Y’know because the Nazis were all about choice. /snark

  39. - Steve Rogers - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 2:18 pm:

    RoyBoy, puh-lease. Her comparison of Nazism with abortion is not the point of the post–it’s Rauner’s idiotic responses to it. Or did you just need a reason to throw in right-wing-victim jargon?

  40. - EVanstonian - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 2:24 pm:

    Is being a “Cultural Marxist” like being spiritual but not religious? Asking for a friend.

  41. - Skeptic - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 2:29 pm:

    I want to hear how Lucky Pierre can blame this on Madigan.

  42. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 2:29 pm:

    –”Attempting to rid the world of people with Down syndrome simply because they are different constitutes the dangerous and morally reprehensible practice of eugenics not entirely unlike what was practiced in…Nazi Germany.”–

    Happily, that is not happening in the United States, as the number of those born with Down Syndrome is actually increasing.

    Despicable strawman for a ludicrous analogy.

    An individual woman making a choice for a Constitutionally legal abortion is hardly the same as a Fascist dictatorship committing genocide in the name of “racial purity.”

  43. - Rabid - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 5:15 pm:

    The best team in America has munger as house mother at the sorority. A remake of Charlie’s Angeles protecting the govenor

  44. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jul 25, 17 @ 7:53 pm:

    It’s all in the body language. He thinks he’s winning most of the time but watch his eyes for the fastballs. On some level he knows he’s already lost

    Peace all

  45. - Das Opinionator - Wednesday, Jul 26, 17 @ 9:22 am:

    @Skeptic, he’ll probably say that Madigan used his property tax law firm’s computer (better known as the Chicago Machine) to hack into her word processor and type it, helped out by illiterate CPS teachers. But if we had term limits and lower workers’ comp, none of it would have happened.

  46. - Generic Drone - Wednesday, Jul 26, 17 @ 9:23 am:

    “Best team in America”. Bought for Rauner with taxpayer money.

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