News Local/State

Rauner Sticks To ‘Turnaround Agenda’ Despite Facing Government Shutdown

Gov. Bruce Rauner and Decatur resident Annie Yarbary chat Wednesday as media looks on.

Gov. Bruce Rauner and Decatur resident Annie Yarbary chat Wednesday as media looks on. Hannah Meisel/WILL

At a stop Wednesday in Decatur, Gov. Bruce Rauner indicated he'd let the state go without a budget if Democratic leaders don't bend to his wishes ... and he’ll blame it on the Democrats too.

Last month, Democrats pushed through a budget that spends $4 billion more than the state has. Rauner says he won't sign it -- or talk revenue -- until his pro-business ideas are also passed. The governor told the crowd outside Decatur's Beach House Restaurant getting the five items on his agenda passed shouldn't be a big deal.

"Do you guys know how many bills they passed this spring? 500."

Then, crowd member Renee McAfee cut in.

"No, but I know there's going to be a lot of cuts that you're proposing for childcare and homecare," she said.

Rauner responded: "You know what? Caused by Madigan and Cullerton."

McAfee interrupting is referring to Rauner’s announcement last week that he plans to reduce low-income families’ access to subsidized childcare. 

After his speech, the governor squared off with Decatur resident and childcare provider Annie Yarbary, who told him she worries about July 1 arriving with no budget. At one point during their six-minute conversation, Yarbary asked Rauner to "stop fighting like two-year-olds and stand up for the people of Illinois."

"Rauner: I agree with you. And you'll help, help me, just these are--

Yarbary: What do you want me to help you with?

Rauner: Ask your senator and ask your representative--

Yarbary: I already have, I've talked to Senator Manar and I've talked to Sue Scherer--

Rauner: What did they say?

Yarbary: They're saying that we need to find revenue.

Rauner: *quietly laughs* All they want to do is force a tax hike then we're all going to lose in the long run."

(Sen. Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) and Rep. Sue Scherer (D-Decatur) are Democrats.)

Democratic leaders say while they won't push through a tax hike without GOP support, they also won't give in to the governor's legislative requests, which they call "extreme."