FOX 32 NEWS - Down in Springfield, they're working on an education budget. Unfortunately, the governor is nowhere to be seen when it comes to being seen in Springfield doing his job with only a few days left in the session.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel and other Democrats Friday accused Governor Bruce Rauner of deserting his post, with only five days until the general assembly is scheduled to adjourn. The governor made a campaign-style appearance in the southwest suburbs. He ripped the Democrats right back, one more sign there will be no budget compromise.
Dressed as a time piece, a protestor marked the "695 days" Illinois’ been without a full state budget. In a nearby backyard, Gov. Rauner blamed that on Democrats who, he says, only want to raise taxes.
“For the majority in the General Assembly to pass a massive income tax hike and expansion of the sales tax and not provide true, lasting property tax relief -- that's just stickin' it to taxpayers. That is not solvin' our problems,” Rauner said.
The governor was in Orland Park with a retired couple angry about their property tax bill. The largest portion by far goes to local schools. At that very moment, state senate Democrats were trying to move a two-year freeze on school district property taxes. They did not have the votes, but Rauner said two years was not enough.
With digital ads, videos and robocalls, the governor's targeting Democratic legislators he thinks can be defeated next year.
“We need the members of the General Assembly to represent their districts, to represent their people and stand up to the speaker, not be afraid of his special interest groups and do what's right for the people of Illinois,” Rauner said.
The clock costume in Orland Park recalled Rauner's own use of such cartoon characters to mock rivals in his 2014 campaign. A staffer responded this time with a hand-scrawled sign blaming a rival.
Everyone at the state capitol is taking Saturday off. The Illinois House reconvenes late Sunday for a time. On the agenda, a bill sent over by the state senate, the one Gov. Rauner denounced for proposing to increase the state income tax by 32 percent.
Before next Wednesday night's adjournment deadline, the General Assembly may pass a budget by a simple majority vote. After that, it would require a 60 percent super-majority.