“Rauner breaks promise” is a regular headline. Here is Illinois State Rep. Jeanne Ives writing at The Federalist:
This is what ‘working together’ looks like in Illinois: submission to the agenda of the majority party and the entrenched interests who fund their campaigns.
When I first got down to Springfield after being elected state representative in 2013, I thought, “What have I gotten myself into?” The mess in Springfield was worse than I could have imagined.
Politics in Illinois is something akin to a modern-day Tammany Hall, defined by cronyism, waste, mismanagement, and corruption. Two of our last four governors were convicted of crimes and went to prison — George Ryan for what became known as the “hired truck scandal” and Rod Blagojevich for attempting to sell Barack Obama’s Senate seat.
So it was to no one’s surprise that Illinois politics made national news again last week. Gov. Bruce Rauner signed into law a bill forcing taxpayers to fund abortion at any time, for any reason. His signature made Illinois the first state in the nation to enact such a law. Legislation not even contemplated by prior Democratic governors and legislatures was signed by a Republican.
The clichéd diagnosis is that Illinois is broken and that the problems are so great that we cannot overcome them without a political savior—someone who has achieved an elite status. This defective tendency illustrates the real problem in Illinois, and how we have come to hold a bottom rank in every economic indicator (highest property taxes in the nation, heaviest overall tax burden, lowest bond rating, highest unemployment in the Midwest). Far from being broken, Illinois is operating exactly as those in charge intended.
Illinois Is In the Midst of Financial Collapse
As my first term ended in 2014, the state was collapsing. Illinoisans were finally waking up, and not a minute too soon. We found hope in Rauner’s candidacy. He was a political outsider who promised to “Shake Up Springfield.” We were impressed with his business acumen and galvanized by his reformist mission. So we were willing to give him the benefit of the doubt when he promised he had “no social agenda,” despite his generous donations to Planned Parenthood.
Read more: The Federalist
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