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Pritzker uses old Rauner slam on Quinn to attack the governor on veterans’ home deaths

Thursday, Dec 21, 2017

* Pritzker campaign…

In the 2014 campaign, Bruce Rauner issued a searing indictment of his opponent, saying he was responsible for failings at a state agency, leading to tragic deaths on his opponent’s watch:

    “Yes,” Rauner said when asked by reporters if the deaths of 95 children with past contact with the Department of Children and Family Services from 2011-2013 were attributable to Quinn.

    “Pat Quinn is, in the end, responsible for the failings at the Department of Children and Family Services. If it was a one-year problem or a temporary problem you could say, ‘OK, maybe, there was, it’s not really his responsibility.’ But he’s been governor for six years. He’s had a revolving door of failure at Department of Children and Family Services for years and years,” Rauner said.

Fast forward to today, and Bruce Rauner has refused to take any responsibility for his own mismanagement of Veterans Affairs, leading to a Legionnaires crisis in Quincy that has taken the lives of 13 people.

“Bruce Rauner’s gross mismanagement and neglect led to 13 deaths at the Quincy Veterans’ Home, devastating countless Illinois families,” said Pritzker campaign spokeswoman Jordan Abudayyeh. “Like Rauner said in 2014, the governor needs to take responsibility for the state agencies he runs and the tragedy that has resulted from his mismanagement.”

…Adding… I told the Rauner campaign after their guy slammed Quinn on DCFS that Rauner would live to regret those words. The same thing will happen to Pritzker if he wins. A short-term hit that guarantees long-term pain.

…Adding… There’s a video now…


- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 2:49 pm:

    Skyhook.In.Reverse. (I think).

  2. - Huh? - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 2:51 pm:

    Be careful what you say, the words could be used against you.

  3. - Honeybadger - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 2:51 pm:

    As OW says… Governor’s own. Rauner owns this one.

  4. - WhoKnew - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 2:53 pm:

    But JB, that was then - this is now…

    Because Madigan!!!/s

  5. - wordslinger - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 2:54 pm:

    Just a little old-fashioned karma coming down.

  6. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 2:55 pm:

    ===the words could be used against you===

    As Pritzker will find out if he wins. Short term hit that guarantees long term pain.

  7. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 2:57 pm:


    “Skyhook… in reverse”.

    Short and to the point, still respectful to these tragedies, this is good work.

    Rauner ran a campaign in 2013-2014 that has quote after quote after quote… “Pat Quinn failed”… and framed Quinn as a failed governor, as all governors own, not allowing quarter to Quinn anywhere….

    … you hold a state hostage for 3 years, no budgets, agencies hemorrhaging… words come back to haunt… as Rauner fails.

  8. - Cantankerous Cal - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:02 pm:

    JB realizes he and Quinn will likely be on the ballot at the same time right?

  9. - A State Employee Guy - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:06 pm:

    I mean, does Pritzker’s communications team not realize they are putting a big, yuge target on his back if he wins? I’m no comms person, but it seems like this dig should have been workshopped and shot down since, as well all know, the next state agency disaster is likely already in the works.

  10. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:12 pm:

    I think it becomes a question of both accountability and heart.

    To that… Governors own their agencies and what happens or doesn’t happen within them.

    Being governor in of itself is a high bar of accountability.

    As with any tragedy and accountability in real time or after, the measure of one’s character is how they respond and how they take responsibility by making things better as quickly and professionally as possible.

  11. - DuPage Bard - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:14 pm:

    Smart play. OW has said Governor’s own. And Rauner played that up throughout his campaign.
    I’m guessing that’s why he said he wasn’t in charge to deflect from the narrative that it’s his fault.
    Should have not signed that HB40 bill until after filing then you, at least wouldn’t have a primary.

  12. - jade me not - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:17 pm:

    Point well taken. However, a spokesperson’s words versus those of the actual candidate are (when viewed in retrospect should Pritzker actually win) less potent.

  13. - Anon0091 - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:19 pm:

    The difference is that Rauner said it and JB didn’t.

  14. - Cool Papa Bell - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:22 pm:

    As to a next time with JB or anyone?

    Get out and respond the crisis, avoid what could look like a cover-up and take concrete actions to not let that specific thing happen again. You know – govern!

    Then you get to “own it”.

  15. - DuPage Dave - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:47 pm:

    I don’t think Rauner can be re-elected at this point. His approval ratings are in the dumper and his general “don’t blame me” attitude is unbecoming of a functioning adult. He has no success to point to, no claim to fame. He’s a one-note campaigner (Quinn failed) who can’t explain what he’s been up to since January 2015.

    Few people outside this blog pay close attention to state government, but the public can tell when a guy is not up to the task. Quinn was excused from his duties for that reason, and people were willing to roll the dice that Rauner would be a competent administrator. Sadly he failed his own test, i.e., don’t be a failure like Quinn.

  16. - Skyfall in fast forward - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:53 pm:

    There’s lots more where that came from…

  17. - Sugar Corn - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 3:59 pm:

    So, are the deaths of all children with past contact with DCFS from 2015-2017 attributable to Rauner?

    By his standard they are.

    The IDVA failures are another layer of terrible for the Rauner administration.

  18. - Sugar Corn - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 4:01 pm:

    Quinn looks better every day compared to Rauner.

  19. - truthbetold - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 4:06 pm:

    ===the next state agency disaster is likely already in the works.===
    Maybe JB will surprise us and take responsibility for that next disaster, when it comes. He’d be a real leader, unlike Rauner, the guy claiming to lead and at the same time, dodging any responsibility.

  20. - Moe Berg - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 4:24 pm:

    I dunno, if JB is governor and something bad happens, he could display the character that Rauner lacks and acknowledge he owns it. And then tell us what steps are being taken to fix it and make sure it doesn’t happen again.

    What people are having trouble with here is that Rauner cannot even acknowledge a mistake or that, ultimately, as the chief executive, it is his responsibility. That goes with the job.

    Good hit on Rauner and political malpractice not to use it.

  21. - don the legend - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 4:33 pm:

    Of course you hit Rauner hard with this.

    If JB says nothing and gets elected and a disaster occurs on his watch he will get blamed just as if he says something anyway.

    So fire away.

  22. - Henry Francis - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 4:47 pm:

    It all seems a bit much for just some health challenges and exposure to bacteria.

  23. - Anonymous - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 5:23 pm:

    What a couple others have said, get out in front of problems, take responsibility, and make it clear to your subordinates that you expect solutions.

    Real leaders understand this.

  24. - JS Mill - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 5:41 pm:

    Rich is correct- if elected JB has set himself (or his shop which is the same thing) up for the same hit when it happens in the future.

    For me the difference, as some others here have already stated, is how the next governor handles it. A real leader does some along the lines of “as governor this is my responsibility, it shouldn’t have happened and we are going to do better” and then he and his people get out and fix it.

    We all know that the governor isn’t usually personally at fault when something goes down. It is how he and his team handle it when it happens.

    Governor Not in Charge and his team either act like it didn’t happen or blame someone else. That is a loser every time.

    Hopefully the new governor learns from Rauner’s Uge failures.

  25. - Sigh - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 5:53 pm:

    =It all seems a bit much for just some health challenges and exposure to bacteria.=

    Exposure to bacteria, which ultimately took the lives of the individuals who in good faith thought they were in a safe facility. One individual even complained that he didn’t feel well and they just gave him Tylenol. If your loved one passed away from exposure to bacteria that was out of his/her control, I don’t think you would dissmis the Pritzker campaign statement “as a bit much for just some health challenges and exposure to bacteria.”

  26. - wordslinger - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 6:20 pm:

    If you want some real weirdness, in the Trib story where Rauner blames Quinn for DCFS deaths, he absolves himself from deaths in his nursing homes because he was Sgt. Schultz-hands-off and bled them into bankruptcy, anyway.

    He says he lost money in bankruptcy. Guys like him don’t lose money in bankruptcy. Bust-out is the point of the exercise.

  27. - My New Handle - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 7:09 pm:

    The Trib article does a good job bringing the nursing home issue into the story. But admitting moral responsibility means accepting any responsibility in some manner. Thus far, he has proven incapable of that as the top executive in Illinois state government. Thing is, if he had accepted the responsibility two years ago, he really might have something to list as an accomplishment.

  28. - Henry Francis - Thursday, Dec 21, 17 @ 8:32 pm:

    Sigh - Guv’s words, not mine. Thought the snark would have been obvious.

  29. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 12:25 am:

    Let ‘em rip.

    Governors own because governor should own.

    The worst case scenerio is this:

    The next governor thinks twice before following the advice of some communications strategist who tells him to sit on news of an outbreak for six days while they come up with a communications plan.

    The next governor thinks twice before cutting DCFS or some other social safety net provider to the bone.

    The next governor thinks twice about slashing funding for drug treatment programs, or rape kit testing, or bridge repairs.

    When DCFS was strugging under Edgar, or next door in Indiana, Republicans flooded those programs with resources. Rauner brought in hacks and paid them tens of millions to tell him how to do more with less.

    Pro-tip: You do less with less, although sometimes you learn how to do less more efficiently. It is still less though.


  30. - Lynn S. - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 2:32 am:

    @ Henry Francis:

    Not trying to be witchy or start a fight, but next time, perhaps use quotation marks or the /S symbol?

    I was taken aback by your first post; you hadn’t seemed to have that type of attitude in the past. Appreciate you clarifying just who you were channeling.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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