If the battle in Springfield over pensions and Medicaid gets hot, the governor says lawmakers will have to deal with it. The state can’t withstand a temporary fix or any delay in addressing these multi-billion-dollar problems, Gov. Pat Quinn says.
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“We cannot take this moment in history and squander it,” he said. “I’m very grateful to all the business groups, the economic groups that have stood for us and come forward and helped us out here. We have to tell Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate, there is no time for delay or denial. We have to address these issues.” Quinn says Medicaid for sure must be resolved soon, because the 2013 state budget will depend on closing a gap of $2.7 billion. The governor says there is a “delay lobby” in Springfield, but this is no time for a short-term deal to relieve the pressure and skate by for another year. Asked whether the pension and Medicaid crises, which took years to develop, can be resolved over a period of years, “the answer is no,” the governor said.