Republican lawmakers are excited about working under a Republican governor—and at least one Democrat thinks that arrangement can work. State Rep. Lou Lang (D-Skokie) has worked under several Republican governors during his 27 years in the Illinois House, and says having that party split between the executive and legislative branches has sometimes been better than having dominance by his own party.
“We had a Democratic governor named Rod Blagojevich who couldn’t work at all with the members of the legislature,” Lang said. “We had a Republican governor named George Ryan who worked very well with the members of the legislature, and so, progress in Illinois will not come based on party. Progress in Illinois will come based on the governor’s desire to work with lawmakers to make it a better state, and if he does that, we will be a better state.”
To Republicans who have never worked under a governor from their own party, such as State Sen. Sue Rezin (R-Morris), there’s excitement about what life will be like under Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner. But Rezin believes both parties will have to compromise to get bills passed. “So you’re going to see a lot of negotiation going on. If you get 60 or 70 percent of what you want, what we want—you know, we need to take that and move on,” Rezin said. The new General Assembly will convene on Jan. 14, two days after Rauner is sworn in as governor.