Come Election Day, many of us will be voting one-handed – because we'll be holding our noses with the other hand. Incumbent Gov. Pat Quinn, a Democrat, and Republican challenger Bruce Rauner have each given voters plenty to dislike, says University of Illinois Springfield political science professor Kent Redfield.
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In six years in office, “Quinn's negatives are already very high,” Redfield says. As for Rauner, “He's got some vague things out there about what he might do; a lot of the numbers probably don't add up. It doesn't, in terms of the affirmative vision for Illinois, sometimes it's a little hard to find that in this campaign.”
Whether Rauner understands how to run state government – which is not a for-profit business and from which the governor cannot, for example, fire the lawmakers or judges Donald Trump-style – from the executive branch is the unknown quantity in his prospective victory.
Redfield says similar questions arose about a governor some in Illinois fondly remember: Jim Thompson. As a campaigner, though, Redfield says Rauner reminds him of an old quote about former Pres. Bill Clinton: “He could make you believe anything for at least ten minutes.”