The governor-elect sounded like he was still on the campaign trail at the annual meeting of the Illinois Farm Bureau. Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner repeated some of his familiar lines when he spoke to farm delegates in Chicago. He promised to make the state friendlier to farmers and agriculture once he takes office next month, and credits farmers with helping Illinois make it through some tough economic times.
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“We’re struggling as it is, but it’s farmers that have kept us going,” Rauner said, “and I’m all in for you. I am going to be the strongest farmer advocate of any governor ever here in America, I’m all in for you guys.” Rauner asked delegates to come to him with recommendations on who should run state agencies, including the Department of Agriculture. Rauner echoed earlier comments from Illinois Farm Bureau President Rich Guebert in saying the next director of the agency should be a farmer. As for what farmers should expect once Rauner takes office, the Gov.-elect warned that the next two years “would be rough” as he implements some of the changes he promised during the campaign. “I ain’t going to be Mr. Popularity for a little while,” Rauner said.