Two weeks ago, Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner told us the state’s financial condition was worse than he thought. Tuesday, he said it’s even worse. Both appearances with reporters in Springfield coincide with veto-session meetings among Rauner, lawmakers and other state officials, and members of Rauner’s transition team. Rauner, who defeated Gov. Pat Quinn in last month’s election, is sworn in Jan. 12.
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Sounding like someone about to roll out a statewide tour of editorial boards and talk shows, Rauner says the Quinn administration has shifted money around to create booby-traps that will explode after the next fiscal year begins July 1.
“Our financial condition here in Illinois is dire. It’s very bad; worse than has been reported, worse than has been discussed publicly,” Rauner said. “Every time we look under the hood and look at different departments, look in different issues, the problems, the deficits, the overspending (are) more significant than has been discussed in the past. So we’re getting to the bottom of it right now. We want to make sure we understand it.”
After a year of promising to reduce taxes, will Rauner have to revisit what he said during the campaign?
“We will be discussing solutions in the coming weeks and months,” Rauner said. “We need to become a growth state again.”