* Gov. Bruce Rauner’s campaign reset speech was ready-made for editorial board meetings. Here he is with the Pantagraph…
He admitted, however, he might have pursued “smaller wins” rather than push so hard that the state went more than two years without a budget — and said he’s now better equipped to handle Madigan, a Chicago Democrat.
“What’s different is two things. One, I’ve learned to work with him and also around him. That’s how we got a lot of things done in the last year, 18 months,” said Rauner. “Two, he’s weaker in his strength in the General Assembly than at any time I’m aware of. … There are now so many more legislators who will stand up and say, ‘I’m doing this because it’s right.’”
Rauner said that approach will help grow businesses and address the state’s budget problems. He said that’s a better approach than a graduated income tax, which makes the wealthy pay more — a proposal Pritzker has made central to his campaign but Rauner opposes.
“We can all have our dreams, but we’ve got to deal with reality,” said Rauner. “More taxes are not going to give us a better future.”
As we clearly saw during the impasse, less taxes won’t balance the budget.
Also, what did he get done in the past 18 months by going around Madigan? I can’t think of anything offhand. Just the other way around, in fact. Also, those Democratic legislators who are standing up to say they’re doing something “because it’s right” are mainly liberals who have few policy agreements with the governor.
He also talked extensively about “right to work” and even claimed that the Toyota plant we lost to Mississippi will be staffed by union workers. I seriously doubt that. He claimed, as well, that factory workers in Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin make more than factory workers in Illinois. Not true.
* Anyway, speaking of editorial boards and Madigan, the Kankakee Daily Journal’s editorial board pressed former Rep. Lisa Dugan (D-Bradley) about whether she’d be voting for Madigan for House Speaker. Dugan is trying to regain her former seat after her 2013 retirement. She’s running against freshman Rep. Lindsay Parkhurst (R-Kankakee)..
Asked whether she would vote for Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, to remain as speaker, Dugan made no commitment. She noted that much of the GOP’s advertising ties her to Madigan. And she acknowledged she voted for Madigan four times during her nearly decade as a lawmaker.
“I worked with Michael Madigan for nine-and-a-half years and fought with him for nine-and-a-half years,” Dugan said.
As an example, she said she worked against Madigan’s transit bill because it took money away from the local transit district.
“What you have to do in Springfield is work with 117 other legislators and one of them is Michael Madigan. You have to work with leadership on the Democratic and Republican sides,” Dugan said.
Parkhurst, however, said her first vote in Springfield was against Madigan. She said Dugan voted for Madigan’s proposed tax increase and pension holidays, meaning the state delayed payments into the pension systems.
“(Dugan) will vote for Mike Madigan. Don’t let her fool you,” Parkhurst said.
Dugan was no shrinking violet when she was in the House. But she was also very popular with her colleagues on both sides of the aisle. The Republicans claim the Madigan stuff is damaging this year, though. We’ll see.
Also, the process is the two caucuses privately choose their candidates for House Speaker and then there’s a formal public election between a Democrat and a Republican. I’m not sure the Daily Journal gets that.