We’re now at the part of the program in which the governor and speaker are having dueling news conferences.
In the back yard of the governor’s mansion, Gov. Bruce Rauner acted as if he did not mind people protesting him around the state. “The insiders in government,” Rauner said with a smile in his voice, “who are making a lot of money from government, are going to be cranky about the changes” he intends to unleash, particularly when union negotiations reach a conclusion toward a new contract for state workers to replace the one expiring June 30.
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As for how the budget will fit together, “It’s not reasonable to expect that the Democrats on their own will pass a tax increase,” House Speaker Mike Madigan said at the Capitol. “Functioning in moderation is a joint effort,” he added, reiterating his belief the governor is acting “in the extreme.”
While the General Assembly, on an all-Democratic vote, passed an unbalanced budget, Madigan said something was wrong with the budget the governor introduced in February.
“There’s an element of deceit,” Madigan said, “because he predicated $2 billion in spending on a pension plan that was never filed as a bill.”