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“All it did was do more devastation”

Wednesday, Sep 27, 2017

* Tom Kacich interviewed retiring state Rep. Reggie Phillips, a very conservative Republican who voted for the tax hike and the veto override

Phillips came into the Legislature as a disciple of Gov. Bruce Rauner’s so-called turnaround agenda. He said he still believes in it, but it’s obvious in both his words and actions that Phillips didn’t buy into all of Rauner’s political strategies and methods. Phillips voted both for the income tax increase and the budget deal that Rauner outwardly opposed.

“The theme was to make Illinois better, shake up Springfield. I understood it. I’m in. I’m for it,” Phillips said. “But the direction it took, it took off on its own. It was like being on a whitewater raft with a professional helping you, and then all of sudden, you don’t have paddles. […]

Phillips, whose district includes Eastern Illinois University, community colleges, hospitals, prisons and other institutions affected by the two-year-long budget impasse, said he couldn’t watch it continue.

“And all it did was do more devastation at that point, in my opinion,” the two-term lawmaker and builder-developer said. “I was looking at my crystal ball, and my crystal ball said, wait a minute. You don’t want to see your university close on your watch. You don’t want to see the community colleges in your area devastated with less students going. You don’t want to see dentists leaving your district. You don’t want to see everything else that could happen.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Honeybadger - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:36 am:

    Well, Rep Phillips, I guess the Turnaround agenda does not work then, right?

  2. - Michelle Flaherty - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:38 am:

    Two years and $10 billion wasted just to learn this lesson. It all could have, and should have been avoided. Sad. Will anyone learn?

  3. - Moe Berg - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:38 am:

    Alternative title: “The Education of Reggie Phillips.” But, credit to him as he showed himself capable of learning and willing to change his mind based on the facts.

  4. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:44 am:

    ===You don’t want to see your university close on your watch. You don’t want to see the community colleges in your area devastated with less students going===

    … and yet, Rep. Phillips you waited until the very end, after some destruction really seeped in… at EIU… at your community colleges… then, thankfully, you did the right and just thing.

    I thank you, most sincerely, for saving Illinois from the likes of Ms. Wheeler, but… you can’t be this reflective and think I’ve forgotten the other “stuff” you and a Ms. Wheeler did with harmful and destructive votes.

    Now, I’m pleased you’re not like Ms. Wheeler, who is sad she didn’t get to destroy Illinois more, but both of you leaving, I’ll thank you for your last votes this time, Rep. Phillips and leave it there.

    Thank you, Rep. Phillips. Thank you for your courageous votes.

  5. - Simple Simon - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:50 am:

    I appreciate the change of heart of Rep. Phillips and the rest of the brave, but you can’t separate it from the fact that it came 2 years late and after so much clear pain.

  6. - Last Bull Moose - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:51 am:

    One sad thing about Rauner is that his tactics made his goals unattainable. I thought he would be better.

  7. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:02 am:

    I surely credit Rep. Phillips for wising up and rising up against Rauner’s destructive sabotage. I must ask, however, if he would have voted for these bills if it was someone else’s district’s schools that were being ravaged.

    I have seen some of the Republican persuasion avail themselves to government benefits, but when it comes to others, they’re moochers who should be cut or completely cut off. Gov. Rauner is this way with public employee pensions. The collective pot is sweet for him, but others are collectivists who have wrecked the state and country.

  8. - the old man - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:04 am:

    Thanks Reggie for your service and for your honesty, maybe your honest assessment will help future GOP legislators remember to thank for themselves rather than follow Rauner’s minions

  9. - Blue dog dem - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:14 am:

    Silly people. You all know the only thing that ever works is raising taxes. But have no fear ,Amazon is near. If we can reel them in, taxes gotta go down…. i think.

  10. - walker - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:17 am:

    “”his tactics made his goals unattainable”"

    Absolutely true. Either a tragic case, or one where his stated goals were incomplete.

  11. - zatocihi - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:26 am:

    How much of his crystal ball experience came from Coles County businesses/landlords during private 1 to 1 meetings? Or did he simply see a serious drop in signed rentals for his Unique Homes properties.

  12. - IllinoisBoi - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 11:59 am:

    I would respect Rep. Reggie Phillips far more if he stayed on to fight Rauner and his destructive agenda, not just slink away to peer into his broken crystal ball.

  13. - We'll See - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 12:13 pm:

    “I was looking at my crystal ball, and my crystal ball said, wait a minute.”

    His crystal ball talks to him? Must be an upgraded model as most crystal balls can only be read.

  14. - Phil King - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 12:45 pm:

    “a very conservative Republican who voted for the tax hike”

    Contradiction much?

  15. - Iggy - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 1:39 pm:

    Reggie Phillips Might have been one of the hardest guys to work with but also one of the nicest. I’m gonna miss Reg. I didnt support his votes and I think that he could have easily won more elections if he wanted to stay in that seat. But at the end of the day being a rep. was just a fun side project for him. I wish him the best of luck in his return to private sector life.

  16. - BuckinIrish - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 1:42 pm:

    ==I surely credit Rep. Phillips for wising up and rising up against Rauner’s destructive sabotage. I must ask, however, if he would have voted for these bills if it was someone else’s district’s schools that were being ravaged.==

    I think this sums up the worst of the Republican party. They see things in the abstract “for the good of the city state country etc.” Hard on drugs till opioids comes to their town. Anti-gay till a relative of theirs comes out. Hates government assistance till they need it themselves. When you try and show them the effects of their policies they close their eyes and plug their ears.

  17. - Cubs in '16 - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 1:48 pm:

    ===His crystal ball talks to him? Must be an upgraded model as most crystal balls can only be read.===

    Crystal ball messages are written in cursive and since no one will be able to read them the crystal ball manufacturers had to evolve…

  18. - G'Kar - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 2:02 pm:

    I think yinz are confusing a crystal ball with a magic 8 ball and a palantir.

  19. - walker - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 8:36 pm:

    A very Conservative Republican who voted to pay his overdue bills and honor his signed contracts. Perfectly consistent.

  20. - fred lam starting from zero pdf - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:05 pm:

    So all of it turns into cake stroll for you.

  21. - one click upsell shopify - Wednesday, Sep 27, 17 @ 10:11 pm:

    Bear in mind the thought of integrity.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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