WBEZ | Governor http://www.wbez.org/tags/governor Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en The Study Guide: Candidates on the big issues http://www.wbez.org/news/study-guide-candidates-big-issues-111034 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/sparknotes Quinn Rauner.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>With the election just days away, we gave Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and Republican challenger Bruce Rauner a questionnaire on five big topics: Education, the minimum wage, income taxes, pensions and jobs.</p><p>You can see the full questionnaires (and the candidates&#39; full answers) <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/study-guide-top-issues-candidates-own-words-111034#fullquestionnaire" target="_blank">below</a>, but we&rsquo;ve also worked them into a kind of SparkNotes guide for Illinois voters. We kept the negative barbs out of this guide, but as you&rsquo;ll see in the full questionnaire, both candidates couldn&rsquo;t help but take swipes at each other.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/174639538&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Income Tax</span></p><p>If you&rsquo;ve watched any of the <a href="https://soundcloud.com/wbez/sets/il-election-2014-raw-debate-1" target="_blank">three debates</a>, or even turned a television on in Illinois lately, you&rsquo;ve probably heard the candidates talking about income tax on the campaign trail.</p><blockquote><p><strong><a href="https://soundcloud.com/wbez/sets/il-election-2014-raw-debate-1" target="_blank">Listen to raw audio from the three Illinois gubernatorial debates</a></strong></p></blockquote><p>It&rsquo;s partly because the State of Illinois&rsquo; budget is in a bit of trouble. Take the backlog of bills, for example: State estimates can vary, but right now Illinois is dealing with more than $4.1 billion in unpaid bills.</p><p>Back in 2011, Gov. Quinn signed a bill that boosted the income tax rate up to five percent for four years, though it was scheduled to drop down to 3.75 percent at the end of this year.</p><p>Quinn&rsquo;s since said the state needs to &ldquo;maintain the state&rsquo;s income tax where it is today&rdquo; as part of his balanced budget plan. Quinn says his plan will help pay down Illinois&rsquo; bills, avoid cuts to education, public safety and human services, prevent property tax increases and provide additional property tax relief.</p><p>Meanwhile, Rauner says he wants to bring that income tax rate down.</p><p>&ldquo;We need to roll back the income tax hike if we want to attract high-quality jobs back to Illinois,&rdquo; he wrote. &ldquo;That&rsquo;s the ultimate way to fix the budget&mdash;by having more tax-paying citizens.&rdquo;</p><p>Though both candidates were asked what the &ldquo;right income tax rate&rdquo; would be for Illinois, Rauner didn&rsquo;t specify a number. In his campaign literature, Rauner says he would roll back the income tax rate to three percent over the next four years.</p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Minimum Wage</span></p><p>The minimum wage debate has been important not just between Rauner and Quinn but across the state and the country. We asked both candidates if they&rsquo;d raise the minimum wage, and if so, by how much, and when?</p><p>Rauner&rsquo;s gotten flack about moving back and forth on this issue. <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2014-01-09/news/chi-rauner-on-minimum-wage-flap-i-made-a-mistake-20140108_1_minimum-wage-federal-rate-bruce-rauner" target="_blank">Videos</a>&nbsp;and audio have surfaced that show Rauner calling for cuts to Illinois&rsquo; $8.25 minimum wage. But in our questionnaire, he says he is for raising the state minimum wage, with some caveats:</p><p>&ldquo;The state of Illinois should implement a phased-in minimum wage increase, coupled with workers&rsquo; compensation and lawsuit reforms to bring down employer costs,&rdquo; he wrote. He added that he&rsquo;d support an increase to the federal minimum wage so that Illinois remains &ldquo;competitive with our neighboring states.&rdquo;</p><p>Rauner didn&rsquo;t say how much he wants to raise the minimum wage, or when he would do it, if elected.</p><blockquote><p><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973" target="_blank"><strong>Citizens! Here&rsquo;s your homework: WBEZ&#39;s 2014 election coverage</strong></a></p></blockquote><p>Quinn&rsquo;s also been criticized on this issue: He&rsquo;s been for raising the minimum wage, but some have called him out for not boosting it during his time in office, despite having a Democratic majority in the General Assembly. Quinn wrote in our questionnaire that he&rsquo;s working on it.</p><p>&ldquo;Yes, I am currently fighting to raise the state&rsquo;s minimum wage to at least $10 an hour to help Illinois workers and working families,&rdquo; he said.</p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Tax Education</span></p><p>We asked the candidates to dig into two issues when it comes to education: Charter schools and funding. Right now, there&rsquo;s a limit on how many charter schools can be opened in Illinois.</p><p>Rauner, a long-time supporter of charter schools and a financial supporter of charters (including one that <a href="http://raunercollegeprep.noblenetwork.org/" target="_blank">carries</a>&nbsp;his name on the Near West Side of Chicago), says he&rsquo;d throw out that limit.</p><p>&ldquo;Public charter schools are not the only solution for parents looking for better educational options,&rdquo; he wrote. &ldquo;But they are an important resource for communities with no other option.&rdquo;</p><p>Meanwhile, Quinn says he&rsquo;d keep the 120 cap on charters.</p><p>&ldquo;I believe before moving forward with authorizing more charters, it&rsquo;s important to complete an impact study of how charter school policy has impacted the district as a whole,&rdquo; Quinn wrote.</p><p>An important note: No matter who gets elected, the state is far from reaching that 120 cap. So regardless of whether the limit gets thrown out, there&rsquo;s still room to grow in the charter sector.&nbsp;</p><p>Both candidates have talked a lot about the importance of funding education&mdash;and they&rsquo;ve criticized each other even more over that issue. But ask how much the State of Illinois should pay per child for public education and neither gives a number.</p><p>In Rauner&rsquo;s answer, he listed his experience on education boards, and the schools and programs he and his wife Diana have financially supported.</p><p>Quinn&rsquo;s answer is the closest we got to an actual number. He says his five-year blueprint will &ldquo;allow us to fund the foundations level up to at least 100 percent over the next five years.&rdquo;</p><p>Another quick note: the power to fund public education in Illinois doesn&rsquo;t just rest in the governor&rsquo;s pen. Right now, the foundation level of what&rsquo;s known as &ldquo;general state aid&rdquo; is currently set at $6,119. But no district gets that exact number from the state, as there&rsquo;s a formula for funding that includes local property taxes, grants and other funds. As the sausage gets made, that original per-pupil amount can be molded and changed into something different.</p><p>So no matter who is governor, the general assembly holds the key to what districts get per student. &nbsp;</p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Pensions</span></p><p>Ah, pensions. We couldn&rsquo;t have an Illinois voter guide without addressing this topic. The State of Illinois currently faces a <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/illinois-pension-problem-how-big-it-really-109659" target="_blank">$100 billion dollar</a>&nbsp;pension shortfall.</p><p>Quinn says the best way out of the pension mess is the pension reform bill he signed last December.</p><p>&ldquo;The comprehensive pension reform I fought for a [sic] signed into law will eliminate our unfunded pension liability and stabilize our pension system,&rdquo; Quinn wrote.</p><p>The reform package includes reductions to some workers&rsquo; benefits and boosts the retirement age. It&rsquo;s currently facing a constitutional challenge, but Quinn hasn&rsquo;t released any sort of plan B in case it&rsquo;s overturned. When asked, he commonly uses a familiar phrase that Quinn credits his father with: &ldquo;don&rsquo;t take an aspirin until you get a headache.&rdquo;</p><p>Rauner says he would also wait to see what the judge rules before constructing his own pension plan, but wrote, &ldquo;I have always maintained moving to a new, defined contribution system for future work is a critical component of true pension reform that would be constitutional.&rdquo; &nbsp;</p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 24px; line-height: 22px;">Jobs</span></p><p>The State of Illinois&rsquo; job market was the number one issue during the first gubernatorial debate. While the state continues to add jobs, it still <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-states-job-creators-1029-biz-20141028-story.html" target="_blank">struggles</a>&nbsp;in national rankings. We asked the candidates to pick one job sector that they think the state should focus on first to get the economy growing again. Neither candidate chose just one.</p><p>Rauner said the state&rsquo;s economy is in such dire straits that &ldquo;we can&rsquo;t afford to focus on only one sector.&rdquo;</p><p>&ldquo;From tech to manufacturing to energy development, we need policies that unlock the natural advantages of our state,&rdquo; he wrote.</p><p>Quinn&rsquo;s answer was similar.</p><p>&ldquo;One of the great advantages to Illinois is the state&rsquo;s diverse economy, and continuing to growing [sic] the economy requires a focus on multiple sectors,&rdquo; he wrote.</p><p>Quinn said the state could drive innovation by building research and technology hubs in sectors like manufacturing, agriculture, energy and IT.</p><p>Quinn and Rauner have both turned to their backgrounds as proof of their ability to create jobs. Quinn has held a lot of job announcement press conferences ahead of the election, like this week&rsquo;s news that <a href="http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20141028/NEWS07/141029791/amazon-plans-illinois-operations-1000-jobs" target="_blank">Amazon</a>&nbsp;will open a distribution center here. But even as <a href="http://www.bls.gov/eag/eag.il.htm" target="_blank">job</a>&nbsp;numbers continue to improve for Illinois, Quinn has faced criticism for the state&rsquo;s low overall employment <a href="http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20141021/NEWS02/141029953/how-the-latest-jobs-report-helps-and-hurts-quinn-and-rauner" target="_blank">levels</a>.</p><p>Meanwhile, Rauner has spent a lot of time talking up his work with GTCR, a private equity firm he built (the R stands for Rauner), as well as explaining how his career in business could help him fix Illinois&rsquo; financial woes. But he hasn&rsquo;t escaped criticism either: Rauner&rsquo;s faced <a href="http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20141022/BLOGS02/141029923/what-one-rauner-business-deal-says-about-the-candidate" target="_blank">hit</a>&nbsp;after <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2014-01-25/news/ct-illinois-republican-governor-race-met-0126-20140126_1_gtcr-bruce-rauner-court-awards" target="_blank">hit</a>&nbsp;of &nbsp;accusations of mismanagement in some of the companies GTCR invested in.&nbsp;</p><p><font color="#333333" face="Arial, sans-serif" size="5"><span style="line-height: 22px;">Quinn&#39;s full questionnaire answers<a name="fullquestionnaire"></a></span></font></p><p><iframe class="scribd_iframe_embed" data-aspect-ratio="undefined" data-auto-height="false" frameborder="0" height="600" id="doc_76517" scrolling="no" src="https://www.scribd.com/embeds/245046312/content?start_page=1&amp;view_mode=scroll&amp;show_recommendations=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><font color="#333333" face="Arial, sans-serif" size="5"><span style="line-height: 22px;">Rauners&#39;s full questionnaire answers</span></font></p><p><iframe class="scribd_iframe_embed" data-aspect-ratio="undefined" data-auto-height="false" frameborder="0" height="600" id="doc_62842" scrolling="no" src="https://www.scribd.com/embeds/245051905/content?start_page=1&amp;view_mode=scroll&amp;show_recommendations=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-d822f4cd-673d-da73-c09f-937f1d4b2ed0"><em>Lauren Chooljian is a WBEZ Reporter. Follow her on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian">@laurenchooljian.</a>&nbsp;Education reporter Becky Vevea also contributed to this reporting. Follow her <a href="http://twitter.com/WBEZEducation" target="_blank">@WBEZEducation</a>.</em></p></p> Fri, 31 Oct 2014 11:47:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/study-guide-candidates-big-issues-111034 2014 Election Coverage: Citizens, here's your homework! http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973 <p><p>We&rsquo;re trying to make it a little easier for you to stay up-to-speed this election season. This is a hub for Illinois voters to study up on the issues and candidates before voting on (<a href="http://www.elections.state.il.us/votinginformation/earlyvotinglocations.aspx" target="_blank">or before</a>) Nov. 4.</p><p>On election night, we&#39;re hosting a live watch party in Chicago with hosts Niala Boodhoo and Melba Lara. If you can&#39;t make it to the party, join us that night <a href="http://twitter.com/WBEZPolitics">@WBEZPolitics</a>&nbsp;to get the latest updates.</p><p>Here&#39;s who we&#39;ll have covering races on election night:</p><ul><li><a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold" target="_blank">Tony Arnold</a> will cover Democratic incumbent <a href="https://www.quinnforillinois.com/00/" target="_blank">Illinois Governor Pat Quinn</a>.</li><li><a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian" target="_blank">Lauren Chooljian</a> will cover Republican gubernatorial challenger <a href="http://brucerauner.com/" target="_blank">Bruce Rauner</a>.</li><li><a href="https://twitter.com/MikePuenteNews" target="_blank">Michael Puente</a> will cover Democratic incumbent <a href="http://www.dickdurbin.com/home" target="_blank">Illinois Senator Dick Durbin</a>.</li><li><a href="https://twitter.com/yolandanews" target="_blank">Yolanda Perdomo</a> will cover Republican Senate challenger <a href="http://www.jimoberweis.com/" target="_blank">Jim Oberweis</a>.</li><li><a href="https://twitter.com/katieobez" target="_blank">Katie O&#39;Brien</a> will cover the 10th congressional district race between Democratic incumbent <a href="http://schneiderforcongress.com/" target="_blank">Brad Schneider</a> and Republican challenger <a href="http://doldforcongress.com/" target="_blank">Bob Dold</a>.</li></ul><p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:18px;"><strong>Election Coverage<a name="elections"></a></strong> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#heygov" target="_self">Hey Gov</a> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#debates" target="_self">Full Debate Audio</a> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#links" target="_self">Links You Need</a></span></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="350" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/playlists/55986159&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:18px;"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#elections" target="_self">Election Coverage</a> |<strong> </strong><strong>Hey Gov<a name="heygov"></a> </strong>|<strong> </strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#debates" target="_self">Full Debate Audio</a> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#links" target="_self">Links You Need</a></span></p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/hey%20gov%20crop.PNG" style="height: 272px; width: 620px;" title="(WBEZ/Tony Arnold)" /></div><p>WBEZ reporters Al Keefe, Tony Arnold and Patrick Smith traveled <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/hey-gov-illinois-politics-road-trip-110657">around the state of Illinois</a> to understand <a href="http://www.wbez.org/tags/hey-gov">what&#39;s on the minds of voters</a> this November for the <strong>Hey Gov </strong>series.&nbsp;</p><ul><li><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/health-problems-facing-rural-and-urban-poor-illinois-110959">The health problems facing Illinois&#39; urban and rural poor</a></li><li><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/state-government-could-take-over-school-district-near-you-110943">How state government could take over your school</a></li><li><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/battle-over-state-facility-personal-political-110925">Picking up the pieces after budget cuts shut down a center for people with disabilities</a></li></ul><p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:18px;"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#elections" target="_self">Election Coverage</a> |<strong> </strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#heygov" target="_self">Hey Gov</a><strong> </strong>|<strong> Full Debate Audio<a name="debates"></a></strong> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#links" target="_self">Links You Need</a></span></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="250" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/playlists/55878303&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size:18px;"><a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#elections" target="_self">Election Coverage</a> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#heygov" target="_self">Hey Gov</a> | <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973#debates" target="_self">Full Debate Audio</a> | <strong>Links You Need<a name="links"></a></strong></span></p><ul><li><a href="http://www.elections.il.gov/votinginformation/RegistrationLookup.aspx" target="_blank">How to vote</a></li><li><a href="http://www.elections.state.il.us/votinginformation/earlyvotinglocations.aspx" target="_blank">Early Voting Locations </a></li><li><a href="http://www.cookcountyclerk.com/elections/2014elections/Pages/110414Candidates.aspx" target="_blank">Nov 4, 2014 Candidates (Suburban Cook County)</a></li><li><a href="http://www.cookcountyclerk.com/elections/2014elections/Pages/AllReferenda.aspx" target="_blank">Nov 4, 2014 Ballot referenda </a></li><li><a href="http://www.elections.il.gov/infoforvoters.aspx" target="_blank">Other voter information</a><br />&nbsp;</li></ul></p> Tue, 21 Oct 2014 14:21:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/2014-election-coverage-citizens-heres-your-homework-110973 Rauner, Quinn battle for African-American votes http://www.wbez.org/news/rauner-quinn-battle-african-american-votes-110940 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP911111007939.jpg" alt="" /><p><p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-6f97a6f2-1582-0782-483a-897455cafe20">As the clock ticks down to election night, Gov. Pat Quinn and Republican challenger Bruce Rauner continue to battle over what&rsquo;s best for Illinois&rsquo; future. The top candidates have now faced off in two televised debates.</p><p>The focus of Tuesday&rsquo;s debate, three weeks ahead of the election, was mostly African-American voters, and issues they&rsquo;ll be thinking about in the polling booth. The panel of journalists posing questions to the candidates focused on jobs, the economy, the minimum wage, public safety and the state&rsquo;s finances.</p><p>And it was obvious by their responses that both candidates on stage at the DuSable Museum of African American History realized the importance of getting those votes.</p><p>&ldquo;My investments and my donations to the African-American community have totaled tens of millions of dollars,&rdquo; Rauner said, when asked about his recent <a href="http://abc7chicago.com/politics/rauner-promises-$1m-to-south-side-credit-union-/231631/">million dollar donation</a> to a South Side credit union.</p><p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;ve opened up the doors to many more contracts&mdash;I think it&rsquo;s up to a thousand contracts&mdash;for African-American owned businesses,&rdquo; Quinn said, to a question about government hiring.</p><p>The two also wasted no time trying to cut their opponent down to size&mdash;a recurring theme in both televised debates and on the campaign trail. Quinn accused Rauner of not hiring any African Americans in his company.</p><p>&ldquo;My opponent had 51 executives in his company, no African Americans, not one,&rdquo; Quinn said.</p><p>Rauner shot back that Quinn was &ldquo;taking the African-American vote for granted. He&rsquo;s talking but not delivering results.&rdquo;</p><p>Rauner also accused Quinn of kicking Stephanie Neely, Chicago&rsquo;s city treasurer who is black, off the list of running mates. Neely was rumored to be on the short list of Quinn&rsquo;s choices for lieutenant governor. Quinn later countered that his choice of Paul Vallas was due to Vallas&rsquo; experience with schools and budgeting.</p><p>&ldquo;African-American families are suffering in Illinois: brutally high unemployment, deteriorating schools, lack of proper social services and rampant cronyism and corruption that&rsquo;s taking away job opportunities from African Americans,&rdquo; Rauner said.</p><p>The candidates spent a lot of time in this debate talking about public safety and gun control. Rauner wouldn&rsquo;t say if he supported a ban on assault weapons. He said he believed the conversation about gun control should instead be on getting guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill, and creating jobs. Rauner said it was the lack of opportunity that has lead to the state&rsquo;s issue with crime.</p><p>Quinn came out in support of banning assault weapons and called for a limit on high capacity ammunition magazines.</p><p>The ongoing conversation about the minimum wage also surfaced in this debate. Rauner was pressed by the panel to explain his position, as there has been much back and forth about whether he wants to <a href="http://politics.suntimes.com/article/springfield/rauner-admits-he-once-favored-eliminating-minimum-wage/thu-09042014-113am" target="_blank">ditch</a> the minimum wage all together, or raise it.</p><p>Rauner reiterated he wanted to see a national hike to the minimum wage, so Illinois could remain competitive, but he would support raising Illinois&rsquo; minimum wage (currently at $8.25) if it came with &ldquo;tort reform, tax reduction [and] workers comp reform.&rdquo;</p><p>Quinn said he&rsquo;d work to raise the minimum wage to $10 by the end of this year, though he faced questions from both Rauner and the debate panel about why he hadn&rsquo;t boosted it in his six years in office. Quinn responded that &ldquo;you have to build a majority for anything in life&rdquo; and brought up President Barack Obama&rsquo;s tactics with passing the Affordable Care Act as an example.</p><p>The end of the debate featured a special opportunity for the candidates: Rauner and Quinn were able to ask one question of their opponent. You can listen to that exchange here:</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="20" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/172278238&amp;color=ff5500&amp;inverse=false&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_user=true" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>The candidates are scheduled to face off in at least one more debate before the election on November 4.</p><p><em>Lauren Chooljian is a WBEZ reporter. Follow her on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenchooljian" target="_blank">@laurenchooljian.</a></em></p></p> Wed, 15 Oct 2014 15:28:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/rauner-quinn-battle-african-american-votes-110940 The winners and losers of primary day in Illinois http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-03-19/winners-and-losers-primary-day-illinois-109886 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Teemu008.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>A wrap-up of primary day and what each party plans to do to ensure its candidates win in November. We&#39;ll also examine Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in civilians. And, a critical look at recent film and TV portrayals of Chicago.&nbsp;</p><div class="storify"><iframe src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-chicago-on-the-silver-screen-and-the/embed?header=false" width="100%" height=750 frameborder=no allowtransparency=true></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-chicago-on-the-silver-screen-and-the.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-chicago-on-the-silver-screen-and-the" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: The winners and losers of primary day in Illinois" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Wed, 19 Mar 2014 08:49:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-03-19/winners-and-losers-primary-day-illinois-109886 Quinn, Rauner set to clash in Illinois governor race http://www.wbez.org/news/quinn-rauner-set-clash-illinois-governor-race-109885 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/rauner-quinn.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The race for Illinois governor is shaping up as a battle of vastly different visions on how to revive a lagging economy in one of the Midwest&#39;s last Democratic strongholds.</p><p>While the incumbent Democrat has increased taxes and pushed for raising the minimum wage, the multimillionaire Republican facing him this fall wants to curtail government unions and run President Barack Obama&#39;s home state like a business.</p><p>By winning the Republican primary Tuesday night, venture capitalist Bruce Rauner advances to a November matchup with Gov. Pat Quinn, expected to be one of the hardest fought and expensive in the nation. As Republicans attempt to reclaim the state&#39;s top office for the first time in more than a decade, labor unions &mdash; traditionally aligned with Democrats &mdash; are trying to avoid another blow like they&#39;ve felt under GOP governors elsewhere.</p><p>Rauner has labeled as role models Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, both of whom pushed anti-union policies. Those comments prompted organized labor to spend millions trying to derail a Rauner nomination.</p><p>The Winnetka venture capitalist, who sunk more than $6 million of his own money into his campaign to defeat three veteran lawmakers during his first bid for public office, targeted the &quot;career politicians&quot; and government &quot;union bosses&quot; he says have caused Illinois&#39; woeful financial situation.</p><p>Speaking at a victory celebration at a Chicago hotel, Rauner called Quinn a failure and said he wants to &quot;bring back Illinois&quot; by giving working families a chance to increase their income, get a good education and raise their families in prosperity. He has said he&#39;d do that by lowering taxes, cutting spending and making Illinois friendlier to business.</p><p>&quot;The voters are going to face a stark choice in November, a major decision about the future of our state,&quot; Rauner said. &quot;It&#39;s a choice between failure of the past and a new day, a bright future.&quot;</p><p>At a union hall a few blocks away, Quinn wasted no time in framing the race, renewing his call for a higher minimum wage, calling working people &quot;the real everyday heroes&quot; and drawing attention to Rauner&#39;s wealth.</p><p>&quot;I&#39;m here to fight for an economy that works for everyone. Not just the billionaires, but for everyone,&quot; said Quinn, who easily won the Democratic primary against a lesser-known challenger.</p><p>Quinn also launched a campaign ad late Tuesday showing video clips of Rauner saying he wants to cut the minimum wage and is &quot;adamantly, adamantly&quot; against raising it &mdash; a position Rauner flip-flopped on during the primary.</p><p>Quinn has pushed for years to raise the state&#39;s minimum wage to $10 per hour, from $8.25. Rauner now says he doesn&#39;t want to cut the rate, but that it shouldn&#39;t be raised unless the federal rate also increases to be equal to Illinois. He says hiking it will force employers to eliminate jobs.</p><p>Republicans see Quinn as vulnerable because of the state&#39;s budget problems, a 67 percent income tax hike he pushed for and signed, and the Midwest&#39;s highest unemployment. Rauner frequently calls the Chicago Democrat &quot;the worst governor in America.&quot;</p><p>But Quinn, who served as lieutenant governor to Gov. Rod Blagojevich, later convicted of corruption, points to the bleak situation he inherited when he took office five years ago &mdash; when the state was in a recession and had one governor in prison and another on his way.</p><p>He says he&#39;s gotten Illinois back on track, passing a massive capital construction bill he says created hundreds of thousands of jobs and approving legislation to address Illinois&#39; worst-in-the-nation state pension shortfall. He&#39;s also expected to tout the approval of legislation to allow gay marriage.</p><p>&quot;We know in this election campaign it&#39;ll be a tough fight,&quot; Quinn said. &quot;And I&#39;ve been in a lot of tough fights.&quot;</p><p>Illinois&#39; influential labor unions are expected to continue their attacks on Rauner in the general election.</p><p>Their efforts appeared to help make it a tighter-than-expected race Tuesday between Rauner state Sen. Kirk Dillard, who picked up the endorsement of three of the state&#39;s largest public-employee unions. Dillard bested Rauner in several counties that are home to a large numbers of state workers.</p><p>Ed Kline, a farmer from LeRoy, said he was turned off by Rauner&#39;s spending. He cast his ballot Tuesday for Quinn.</p><p>&quot;I think he&#39;s honest and he does the best he can do with what he&#39;s got to work with,&quot; Kline said.</p><p>But other voters responded to Rauner&#39;s outsider status and his push to establish term limits for legislators, a move he says will help root out corruption.</p><p>&quot;I&#39;m all about voting out the old guard,&quot; said Kevin Yessa, 53, of Downers Grove</p></p> Wed, 19 Mar 2014 08:06:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/quinn-rauner-set-clash-illinois-governor-race-109885 Vallas says he's OK playing 'second fiddle' http://www.wbez.org/news/vallas-says-hes-ok-playing-second-fiddle-109134 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/AP93819347138.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Former Chicago schools CEO Paul Vallas says he&#39;ll have no trouble playing &quot;second fiddle&quot; to Gov. Pat Quinn as his 2014 running mate.</p><p>Vallas and Quinn appeared together Tuesday for the first time since the governor announced last week that Vallas was his pick for lieutenant governor.</p><p>Vallas sought the 2002 Democratic nomination for&nbsp;Illinois&nbsp;governor but lost to now-imprisoned former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.</p><p>He says he was initially surprised when Quinn approached him about the job. But he says the Chicago Democrat &quot;wants to assemble the strongest team possible.&quot;</p><p>Vallas also says he&#39;s OK with playing second fiddle, &quot;or whatever instrument in the orchestra Pat wants me to play&quot; because he believes in Quinn.</p><p>Both men say addressing&nbsp;Illinois&#39; pension crisis will remain the administration&#39;s top priority.</p><div>&nbsp;</div></p> Tue, 12 Nov 2013 12:45:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/vallas-says-hes-ok-playing-second-fiddle-109134 Lisa Madigan to not run for governor; will seek re-election http://www.wbez.org/news/lisa-madigan-not-run-governor-will-seek-re-election-108060 <p><p dir="ltr">Lisa Madigan has decided she will not be running for Illinois governor. In a statement released Monday, the three-term attorney general announced she will instead run seek re-election.</p><p dir="ltr">Madigan previously said she was considering a run for governor, but in her statement she explained she would not pursue the executive office as long as her father is the speaker of the Illinois House.</p><p>&ldquo;For the last several months, I have considered the best way to continue serving the people of Illinois,&rdquo; the attorney general said in a written statement. &ldquo;Deciding whether to seek reelection or to run for Governor has not been easy. I love my job as Attorney General and continue to be excited about the important work we are doing and what we can do for people and families in the years ahead. I considered running for Governor because of the need for effective management from that office and the frustration so many of us feel about the current lack of progress on critical issues facing Illinois.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;Ultimately, however, there has always been another consideration that impacts my decision. I feel strongly that the state would not be well served by having a Governor and Speaker of the House from the same family and have never planned to run for Governor if that would be the case. With Speaker Madigan planning to continue in office, I will not run for Governor.&rdquo;</p><p>Michael Madigan has been the powerful House speaker for more than 30 years and is also the chairman of Illinois&rsquo; Democratic Party.</p><p dir="ltr">That leaves incumbent Pat Quinn and former White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley as those Democrats who have announced they are running for governor.</p><p>In a statement, Daley said, Madigan&rsquo;s decision not to run for governor, &ldquo;gives voters a clear choice between a proven leader who gets things done and a governor who can&#39;t seem to get anything done.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">State Sens. Bill Brady and Kirk Dillard, Treasurer Dan Rutherford and venture capitalist Bruce Rauner have all announced they are running for governor on the Republican side of the aisle.</p><p>&ldquo;This is as big a political earthquake in Illinois as I can remember in an awful long time because it has implications up and down the ballot,&rdquo; said Dave Lundy, a political strategist with Aileron Communications, Inc. &ldquo;Everybody has been waiting and everybody has been assuming that the attorney general was planning to run for governor, I think including the attorney general.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">Lundy said several other potential political campaigns are now halted with the attorney general&rsquo;s decision. Republican House Leader Tom Cross was considering a bid to replace Madigan as the state&rsquo;s top lawyer, but now he could sit that campaign out. State Sen. Kwame Raoul and Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon, both Democrats, were also thinking about running for attorney general if Madigan didn&rsquo;t seek reelection.</p><p>Lundy also singled out the line in Madigan&rsquo;s statement saying should wouldn&rsquo;t run because her father plans to continue in office, remarking it, &ldquo;really just was stunning for a family that has always been incredibly discreet and incredibly private.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">Indeed, the powerful House speaker and popular attorney general often choose their words carefully when speaking publicly and rarely talk off-the-cuff.</p><p>A spokesman for Speaker Madigan did not immediately return calls for comment.</p><p dir="ltr">Meantime, despite the attorney general&rsquo;s misgivings about members of the same family serving in powerful positions in public office, not everyone was bothered by the possibility of close kin running the executive branch and one chamber of the legislative branch of state government.</p><p>Former Republican Illinois Gov. Jim Thompson said he was surprised and &ldquo;a little shocked&rdquo; by Lisa Madigan&rsquo;s decision.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;What this state needs is a governor and a legislature that gets stuff done and the relationships are secondary,&rdquo; Thompson said.</p><p>Lisa Madigan&rsquo;s decision comes on the heels of tales of political patronage in Metra, the troubled rail agency that serves Chicago&rsquo;s suburbs, involving Speaker Madigan.</p><p dir="ltr">Last week, a memo from Metra&rsquo;s ex-CEO, Alex Clifford, was sent to a House committee, in which Clifford alleges the board of directors wanted a new CEO, in part, because Clifford would not comply with personnel requests from Speaker Madigan.</p><p>Clifford said Madigan wanted a Metra employee whose family supported Madigan politically to receive a pay raise, but Clifford refused. Speaker Madigan later withdrew the request.</p><p><em>Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics for WBEZ. Follow him <a href="https://twitter.com/tonyjarnold">@tonyjarnold</a>.</em></p></p> Mon, 15 Jul 2013 17:39:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/lisa-madigan-not-run-governor-will-seek-re-election-108060 Morning Shift: Let's get political http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-27/morning-shift-lets-get-political-107878 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/Capitol-Flickr-Teemu008.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Today we get the down-low from Illinois State Senator Bill Brady about his current campaign to be governor. He is hoping the third time will be the charm. But will it?&nbsp;</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-let-s-get-political.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-let-s-get-political" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Let's get political" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Thu, 27 Jun 2013 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-06-27/morning-shift-lets-get-political-107878 Governor Quinn heads to China to boost exports http://www.wbez.org/story/governor-quinn-heads-china-boost-exports-92008 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-September/2011-09-15/4149352541_be57f2ca75.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Illinois Governor Pat Quinn is scheduled to depart for China on Friday to lead an delegation of Illinois business and educational leaders. The governor told reporters this week he hopes his eight day mission will help improve trade relations with the country - and boost the Illinois economy.</p><p>Quinn said an increase in exports will create more jobs in Illinois.<br> <br> "I don't think any state in the union that really wants to get more jobs should miss the opportunity to interact with other countries that either want to invest in our state or want to buy our goods and services," said Quinn. "That's part of the job of a governor nowadays, especially in the 21st century."</p><p>The delgation is scheduled to stop in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, where Illinois first opened a trade office in 1983.</p><p>Quinn said he plans to sign an agreement with China that would increase soybean exports. China, according to Quinn, is the third largest exporter for Illinois, behind Canada and Mexico.&nbsp;</p><p>According to the governor's office, Illinois exports to China have grown recently, totaling more than $3 billion dollars last year.&nbsp; Key exports include machinery, electronics, chemicals and agricultural products. &nbsp;</p><p>During his mayoralty, Richard M. Daley made several visits to China to promote business and tourism in Chicago.&nbsp; And Quinn hopes his visit will further encourage Chinese tourism to Illinois, which grew to 97-thousand visitors in 2010.</p><p>The governor also plans to visit Japan for a conference at the end of his trip to China. He is scheduled to return to Illinois on September 24. This is Quinn's second trip abroad this year -- he visited <a href="http://www.wbez.org/story/governor-quinn-week-long-trip-israel-89378">Israel in July.</a><br> <br> <br> &nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 14 Sep 2011 21:56:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/governor-quinn-heads-china-boost-exports-92008 Quinn defends tollway hikes http://www.wbez.org/story/quinn-defends-tollway-hikes-91066 <p><p>Illinois Governor Pat Quinn is defending the state tollway board's decision to hike prices. He said the plan will help fund construction projects, reduce traffic times and keep drivers safe.<br> <br> "We have to invest in these roads in order to make sure they're safe--we don't want to be the shock absorber capital of the United States with all kinds of potholes, when people drive over the potholes and they're car gets broken down and they're not very happy I wouldn't be either," he said.<br> <br> Quinn said the extra funds will pay for projects like expanding the Jane Addams Tollway and connecting Interstates 294 and 57.<br> <br> The Tollway board voted yesterday 7-1 to increase the rates. Most I-Pass rates will see a spike from 40 cents to 75 cents, while drivers who pay cash will pay twice that amount. Quinn said county board chairmen from DuPage, Lake, Will and Kane counties, among others, came in front of the tollway board to support the raises.</p><p>The new toll prices will take effect on January 1st.</p></p> Thu, 25 Aug 2011 21:54:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/quinn-defends-tollway-hikes-91066