Quinn defends legislative scholarship veto

October 13, 2011

City Desk

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn defended his efforts to end a controversial program that allows lawmakers to use state funds to award scholarships.

Earlier this year, the governor tried to abolish the program by using his veto power to tweak a bill that would have only barred lawmakers from giving the scholarships to relatives.

But a spokesman for Michael Madigan said the House speaker believes Quinn over stepped his power and wants to block the amendatory veto. Quinn says he's disappointed with Madigan's stance.

“This political scholarship program -- it's not based on merit, it's not based on need,” said Quinn “It's $13 million that is given to legislators to hand out scholarships in a way they see fit.”

Legislative leaders have previously blocked attempts to end the program.