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Reform roundup

Thursday, Dec 5, 2019

* Background is here if you need it. Mark Maxwell

Brady, the Republican Senate leader from Bloomington, spent significant time over the last two days making phone calls to his members to reassure them he has a grasp on the reins of the caucus, and that Plummer’s broadside is only a contained episode. Most of the senators, who described their conversations with Brady on a condition of anonymity, say he sounded frustrated, but not rattled by Plummer’s public statements.

Other than Plummer, most Senate Republicans are opting to lay low and wish to avoid criticizing Brady publicly, but privately, many share concerns that their leader may be more enamored with Governor J.B. Pritzker, a progressive Democrat, and they wonder if he has the stomach to fight Pritzker on issues important to Republicans.

Brady did voice public opposition to Pritzker’s proposals to expand abortion rights, raise the minimum wage, and institute a progressive income tax. The Republican explained his mild-mannered approach in his closing speech on the floor of the Senate in early June.

“Let those watching know that Senate Republicans came to the table,” Brady said. “We did not seek to turn it over.”

Some folks simply want to watch things burn.

But some of the criticism is more nuanced than that. The House Republicans and some members of Leader Brady’s own caucus were unhappy with Brady during the final week or so of spring session. House Republican Leader Jim Durkin was trying to pressure the Democrats into agreeing to his business reforms and some felt that Brady wasn’t backing him up. Durkin eventually got everything he demanded, but only after making a huge dealio about it.

* Meanwhile, in other reform-related news

Five GOP lawmakers are calling on Governor Pritzker to call a special session before Christmas to deal with ethics reform.

The call comes after Democrats pushed through the establishment of an ethics reform commission in November to make recommendations by the end of March. However, Republicans say that is too long of a period to wait when taxpayers want reform now.

The lawmakers calling for the special session are State Representatives Dan Caulkins of Decatur, Brad Halbrook of Shelbyville, Blaine Wilhour of Beecher City, Chris Miller of Oakdale and Allen Skillicorn of Crystal Lake. […]

WAND requested a comment from the governor’s office on the call for a special session. The office sent us a 40-minute video clip from a news conference in Chicago not related to the call for a special session.

They should’ve watched that video because Pritzker answered questions on this topic

Pritzker said at an unrelated bill-signing ceremony in Chicago that the idea of “a quickie special session … doesn’t make a lot of sense.”

“That ethics commission, deliberately created with Republicans and Democrats, is designed to look at each of the issues that, in fact, those same state representatives would like to have reviewed and make sure that they’re done in the right way,” Pritzker said.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

9 Comments
  1. - {Sigh} - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 11:53 am:

    =They should’ve watched that video because Pritzker answered questions on this topic…=

    Is there cable/internet service in the Eastern Boc? It’s easier to grandstand when one is ill informed on the issues.

    Can these legislators tell the us how much a special session would cost? {Sigh}


  2. - Annonin - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 11:55 am:

    Perhaps Skilly and the EasternBlocHeads could go ask Durkie for the PAWS Goes to IDOC file so we can better understand handlin’ harassment in the GOPie caucus?


  3. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 11:56 am:

    Only 5 of the Hateful Eight.

    Nothing magnificent about not knowing things are asked and answered… unless you’re pandering to the “Red Dawn” scaredy-cat folks looking for that 51st State answer.

    Are there still “town halls” touting that 51st state going on… with legislators as speakers, cause that’s video that doesn’t get old.


  4. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 12:07 pm:

    To the post,

    “This”

    ===… most Senate Republicans are opting to lay low and wish to avoid criticizing Brady publicly, but privately, many share concerns that their leader may be more enamored with Governor J.B. Pritzker, a progressive Democrat, and they wonder if he has the stomach to fight Pritzker on issues important to Republicans.===

    Here’s the sitch…

    Y’all are at 19. You’re not at 20 for cripes sake. The goal in the exercise is to get *more* seats, and being the “no” caucus 24/7 when big pieces of legislation, a capital bill (albeit now under somewhat of a “cloud” thanks to Sandoval) there needs to be some sort of feel that work, even by the minority, is getting done. I can totally, and not dismissively, understand Leader Durkin’s frustration, and as leader Durkin made the noise and the moves to get his wants.

    The silence, and here’s the sitch part, is also there because… they all know… “we’re only 19” too. Ya wanna go after the Leader, discuss “lapses” or “too cozy” or however is justified (or not) because of the real story… y’all are but 19… then as a caucus, keep it in-house, keep it pointed, keep it honest, but be overly direct.

    The break until January might do *all* 19 good.

    If Plummer wants to push, then push. Push, but don’t “miss”.


  5. - The Captain - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 12:08 pm:

    In 2003, Blagojevich’s first year, the House Republicans under Tom Cross tried to play ball and negotiated what they felt were improvements to measures the Democrats were likely to pass anyway while the Senate Republicans under Frank Watson were less compromising and branded themselves the real Republicans, in contrast to the House. If memory serves both Cross and Watson were new leaders at that time.

    Over time Cross moved to the right for a number of reasons. There seem to be some parallels between Cross’ experience and the current situation facing Brady.


  6. - Precinct Captain - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 12:23 pm:

    So let’s get this one straight, the same crowd that whines and cries about bills and proposals popping up out of nowhere now wants a quickie special session to ram through unseen so-called “reforms.”


  7. - Elliott Ness - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 2:20 pm:

    Let’s see, Halbrook and Miller are involved, what they lack in credibility they do not make up for in brains. Nothing to see here…move on. Bailey out with a sick or personal day? He is usually among this bafoonery


  8. - OpentoDiscusssion - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 2:40 pm:

    Brady is increasingly a non force in GOP politics and for good reason. He lost an election he should have won and he is far too willing to go along with Democrats on far too many issues. Fine for one to do that if you are in power but when out of power you had better establish some clear differences- assuming you have any.

    As to ‘reforms.’ Republicans need to establish their own proposals first, then seek meeting with Democrats and insist they be taken into account.
    We have waited a long time. March is not too early and there is no need for ‘hurry up’ before that.


  9. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 5, 19 @ 2:54 pm:

    ===… willing to go along with Democrats on far too many issues.===

    Example?

    === Fine for one to do that if you are in power but when out of power you had better establish some clear differences- assuming you have any===

    Yeah, ‘bout all that…

    After Radogno was hung out to dry by Rauner, Brady held serve really well, with only ONE voting to override with the Brave 15 and the Perfect 10. That’s… one.

    The “Party of No” ain’t gonna get ya seats. You find ways to get your priorities the best you can, without purity driving the wedge. Otherwise, what, after everyone seemingly turning on Radogno, the play going forward is “no, obstruction, stand for our beliefs”… all 19 of them.

    === As to ‘reforms.’ Republicans need to establish their own proposals first, then seek meeting with Democrats and insist they be taken into account.===

    LOL, or what, you’ll hold your breath? They have 40, 4-0, and that’s 4 over veto-proof. The goal of the exercise is work to get bipartisan support to get above 20, no one is in a position to demand… anything.

    === We have waited a long time. March is not too early and there is no need for ‘hurry up’ before that.===

    Use your words. What are you saying?

    Be clear, be honest, be pointed.


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