A man who should know predicts the new governor, Bruce Rauner, will have a better relationship with House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago) than the outgoing governor, Pat Quinn, ever did. Former Gov. Jim Edgar, who endorsed and is now helping Gov.-elect Rauner, says Madigan froze him out the first four months he was governor in 1991, but developed a closer working relationship once the men had earned one another’s trust.
“You can have a relationship with the speaker, you can disagree, you can fight,” Edgar says, “but if he respects you and trusts you, in the end, I think you can find some common ground and get some things done.”
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Rauner’s background as chief executive of a private equity firm should help him, Edgar says, in communicating a positive attitude to the state’s business community. “A lot of this is psychological,” says Edgar. He says the business leaders “want to know they’ve got a governor that they can talk to (and) that understands their problem. They know there are not a lot of things state government can do for a Caterpillar, but they can provide them with a stable state government and good communications.
The subject of how Rauner will operate with the legislature and its leaders has been, needless to say, ongoing.