News Local/State

Does Rauner Support Trump? Governor Continues To Be Cagey

Governor Bruce Rauner.

Gov. Bruce Rauner, during a visit to Champaign in 2015 to announce the launch of Uber in C-U. (Jeff Bossert/WILL)

He may be the state's highest-ranking Republican. But Governor Bruce Rauner continued to be cagey during an appearance in Springfield Thursday about where he stands on Donald Trump.     


Rauner has been asked about Trump by reporters time and time again. He usually answers something like this:

"I'm not going to talk about politics, per se, or the Presidential election. I've made my statements clear."

But it's not really clear.

Rauner in May said he would back his party's nominee; at the time Trump hadn't locked up the nomination, but he was close.

The governor has never backed away from that statement.

This is as close as it got: "I have not endorsed, I have not endorsed, not supported. And I've said that, that's my position."

Rauner also said he's "outraged" by the rhetoric in the presidential election, and that he condemns sexual assault.

“I condemn in the strongest possible way sexual assault, sexual harassment in any form,” said Rauner.  

Trump has denied sexual assault allegations published in the New York Times and other outlets.

Rauner's cautious approach regarding Trump comes as Illinois Republicans try to diminish Democrats' supermajorities in the Legislature. Some contested races are in conservative areas of the state where voters are likely to favor Trump.