Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner promised to sign a bill – simply allowing federal money to flow through – as is, and only as is.

So House Democrats stitched on an amendment that not only includes more federal dollars, but also spends almost $600 million from state funds. That angered Republicans on an appropriations panel, who reminded everyone the state does not have an agreed budget to begin with.

“The governor has said, you pass the bill with the $584 million, I'll veto it,” said State Rep. David Harris (R-Arlington Heights). “In other words, we are adding a poison pill to this bill.”

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State Rep. Fred Crespo (D-Hoffman Estates), presenting the bill, said the real problem is that the Senate-passed bill of last week does not go far enough, and some of the programs require state matching funds.

“We realized shortly after that that there are some federal dollars that were not appropriated through” the bill, Crespo said. “So we are including those, and those line items would be the federal home fund, adult education, career and tech ed,” and more.

Since the governor could have signed the original bill, and the other matters could have been addressed through another bill, Republicans accused Democrats of delaying things. One Democrat said something else is at work.

“It is indefensible that you would allow children to not have child care and seniors to not have food,” said State Rep. Carol Ammons (D-Urbana). “You cannot hide behind, 'why did you put this in, the governor's not going to like it.' He shouldn't like it, because he doesn't like anything that is for poor people.”


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