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From staunch allies, to bitter enemies, then back again

Wednesday, Jun 27, 2018

* From September of last year

Gov. Bruce Rauner suffered new fallout Friday from his shocking decision to sign a controversial abortion bill — scratched as the featured speaker at a suburban Republican picnic to avoid creating a “distraction.”

The backlash even hit a personal note from one of Rauner’s closest political allies, John Tillman, the CEO of the conservative Illinois Policy Institute.

The think tank leader labeled the governor “Benedict Rauner” for disregarding his previous claims that he wouldn’t sign the controversial House Bill 40, which expands public funding of abortion and protects it in case the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe V. Wade.

“Benedict Rauner going back on his word and signing HB40,” Tillman wrote in a Facebook post Friday morning. “Whether you are pro life or pro choice, a politician loses when he gives his word to many people and goes back on it, including to Cardinal [Blase] Cupich.

“Further, if you care only about economic issues, he has put that entire agenda at risk by betraying those to whom he gave his word. My personal views here only, of course,” Tillman wrote.

* Then, back in February, Gov. Rauner was asked to react to a Sun-Times/Pro Publica investigation into the Illinois Policy Institute and its top dog John Tillman

Well, I can tell you I would absolutely not give them another nickel, I can say that. I’ve been a longtime funder of efforts to bring free market principles to Illinois and to America. They used to be an advocate there. But I’m very troubled, very troubled by what I’ve learned. And I certainly would not give them any more money.

* The governor’s comment provoked a sharp response

Tillman fired back almost instantly, posting on Twitter that he was “assuming that’s because Diana won’t allow him to donate to us” — a reference to Illinois’ first lady, who is a professed Democrat but has donated to both Democratic and Republican causes.

“Regardless, we wouldn’t accept his donation,” Tillman continued. “Our members believe in balanced budgets, responsible gov’t and reducing taxes on Illinois’ middle class — all of which @GovRauner has failed to achieve since taking office.”

* Also in February, the Liberty Justice Center, which is closely affiliated with Tillman’s Illinois Policy Institute, sent Rauner what looked like a cease and desist letter about the Janus case

As you know, the Liberty Justice Center is representing an Illinois state worker in the Supreme Court case Janus v. AFSCME. I am writing to request that you immediately stop misrepresenting the case and your role in it in public appearances and in the media. […]

The plaintiff in this case has been represented throughout the litigation by my organization, the Liberty Justice Center, and our partners at the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation. The federal district court dismissed you from the case in 2015, and since then you have played no role in it.

Ironically, there was an official role for you to play in the lawsuit. Elected officials from Michigan, Alabama, Indiana, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Nevada and other states all submitted amicus briefs in support of the lawsuit. You could have filed an amicus brief or joined theirs, but you did not.

* Today, however, Tillman was singing a different tune

Workers’ rights were restored today because of two people: Mark Janus and Bruce Rauner.

First, I’d like to thank Gov. Bruce Rauner for having the vision, the leadership and the courage to initiate this case in 2015. He took tremendous risk and criticism for advancing the simple idea that workers should be free to define their relationship with a government union.

* And the two appeared together at a DC press conference. Radical Candor gets the last word…



- Posted by Rich Miller        

16 Comments
  1. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:22 pm:

    If there’s one thing that’s worse than killing the unborn for certain right wingers, it’s union rights.


  2. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:22 pm:

    Governor Rauner wore a tie. I think you can tell what he thinks of his events by his wardrobe choices.


  3. - allknowingmasterofracoondom - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:24 pm:

    Tillman is the biggest weenie in Illinois, period.


  4. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:28 pm:

    Truth?

    Rauner had no standing in Janus so Bruce needed an ally that for “one shining moment” they both got what they wanted, but most importantly for Rauner, a mythological legacy based on a wet sand base of nothing.

    I wonder if Diana Rickert was there… isn’t she with the Criminally Justy thingy run by Tillman?


  5. - Texas Red - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:32 pm:

    Setting aside differences and working together for the greater good. Whats not to like ?


  6. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:46 pm:

    Quite a change in tune from February to today. Wha’ happen? Both positions can’t be true. Did principal trumps principles, again?

    “Regardless, we wouldn’t accept his (Rauner) donation,” Tillman continued.

    Really? How many times has IPI refused to accept money, I wonder?

    That’s comedy gold. If you reeled a dollar bill on a hook-and-line across the Ike at rush hour, Tillman would send one of his minions after it.


  7. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:52 pm:

    –Setting aside differences and working together for the greater good.–

    LOL, were you at the meeting?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yUpbOliTHJY


  8. - Flynn's Mom - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 12:52 pm:

    Does the governor have a suit that fits?


  9. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 1:00 pm:

    Rich told me I was wearing a tinfoil when I suggested that the rift between Rauner and Tillman was a ruse.
    I still think it was a ruse.
    Perfidy

    And yes I admit that I wear my special hat a lot
    But I also might not be wrong


  10. - BlueDogDem - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 1:01 pm:

    I go crazy when I hear this guy babble about ‘free market priciples’. There is nothing. I mean nothing. About free market principles within Intersect Illinois. How an Ivy League educated human being can look himself in the mirror after such a statement is beyond my imagination.


  11. - Amalia - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 1:09 pm:

    Bruce and his shirts/g dropping, Trump and his I’m a regular person line. how can people be so thick to think that they do anything but work for big money?


  12. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 1:27 pm:

    You have to give conservatives credit. They have outfoxed progressives in the use of political rhetoric to achieve public policy goals.

    Their use of the phrase “right to work” and framing the Janus case as protecting “workers’ free speech rights” to undermine union power has worked very well. This is a sad day for the American middle class.


  13. - Honeybadger - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 1:37 pm:

    - Amalia - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 1:09 pm:

    Bruce and his shirts/g dropping, Trump and his I’m a regular person line. how can people be so thick to think that they do anything but work for big money?
    Cuz they are dumb?


  14. - Board Watcher - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 2:29 pm:

    The rift was never a ruse as Rich said. But this ruling today will bring Uhlien,Zell,Griffin and Tilman closer to Rauner then its been for the last 10 Months.


  15. - 47Chief - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 8:23 pm:

    Must be a special day for Governor Rauner. He is wearing a tie AND lace up shoes.


  16. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Jun 27, 18 @ 11:44 pm:

    –Why does Goldberg hate everyone so much now?–

    Goldberg is on the Likud payroll.

    No worries, they’ve got that whole Israel/Palestine thing figured out.

    It’s so simple, as everything is in that neck of the woods. Everyone will get on board, once they come to their senses.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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