Governor to lawmakers: Save budget veto
CHICAGO — Gov. Bruce Rauner implored lawmakers Wednesday not to override his veto of a proposal to end Illinois’ unprecedented budget impasse, calling the plan that includes a large income tax increase a “disaster” that will not solve the state’s many financial problems.
“This is not just a slap in the face to Illinois taxpayers. This is a two-by-four smacked across the foreheads of the people of Illinois,” he told reporters at a bar on Chicago’s far South Side, not far from Indiana. “This tax hike will solve none of our problems. In fact, in the long run, it will make our problems worse, not better.”
The first-term Republican, who has been deadlocked with Democrats controlling the Legislature since taking office in 2015, said he would do “everything possible” to persuade House lawmakers, who are set to take a vote today. That includes 15 House Republicans who broke ranks and voted in favor of the measure last weekend.
Lawmakers have been in session for two straight weeks. On Tuesday, the Senate sent a $36 billion spending plan to the governor funded with a permanent 32 percent income tax increase. Rauner rapidly vetoed it, only to have the Democratic-controlled Senate just as swiftly override him.
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner speaks during a news conference Wednesday in Chicago.