Rauner’s back to his old anti-corruption campaign theme again. Maybe if he keeps saying it, GOP voters will buy it, or so his campaign brainiacs believe.
In 2014, Illinois voters were fed up with Governor Pat Quinn. After 16 years of Democrat rule and destruction, we will willing/desperate to give Bruce Rauner a chance. He bragged that he wasn’t a politician. He was a business builder who would “shake up Springfield.”
The night of his gubernatorial victory, he asked his supporters: “Are you ready for a new direction? Are you ready to bring back Illinois?” We were.
Four years later, Rauner no accomplishments to speak of. What campaign promises has he kept? Has Illinois become a better place to live and do business? The answer is no.
In 2014, Townhall.com wrote this about Rauner’s challenge:
Illinois is the worst-governed state in the nation. It has high unemployment, poor economic performance, billions in unfunded pension liabilities, billions in unpaid bills, failing schools, the worst credit rating in the country, and rampant corruption and cronyism. According to a recent Gallup poll, a whopping 50 percent of respondents would even choose to move out of state if they had the chance.
None of that has changed under Rauner rule. If anything, it’s worse. Illinois has sunk deeper. We’re more desperate than ever and where is the light at the end of the tunnel?
Rauner pledged to root out “waste, fraud, and corruption” in Illinois government and turn Springfield upside down. Where is the evidence of that attempt? How much waste, fraud, and corruption has Rauner cut from the executive branch of Illinois government, the part that he actually controls and manages? None that we can see.
Arguably Illinois is worse off under Rauner than it was under Quinn.
The Illinois comptroller reported these numbers in February:
-$2.3 billion of deficit spending in the form of unappropriated liabilities held at state agencies as of Dec. 31
-$8.4 billion of unpaid bills as of Feb. 7
-$1.03 billion of late-payment interest fees incurred as of Dec. 31, 2017
Note: At least $143m has been paid
-$1.7 billion general fund deficit, according to the governor’s office of management and budget
Rauner’s lack of accomplishment hasn’t stopped him from parroting the same anti-corruption message in 2018. On Monday’s Fox & Friends, Rauner sounded like he was the newbie on the block, the same as he was in 2014, instead of an incumbent governor:
“I’m not a politician. I’m a business builder. I want to take on corruption, the career politicians, and restore good government in our state…[The Illinois Democrats] are just like the mafia protection racket – totally corrupt.”
Ahem, Governor, you aren’t the new kid on the block anymore. What in the heck have you been doing for the last four years?