Chicago Sun-Times: Rauner’s State of State vow: ‘Time we do what the people of Illinois want’

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“It is time we do what the people of Illinois want. Halt the advance of taxes. Stop spending money we don’t have. Get our pensions under control. And give power back to the people.” – Gov. Bruce Rauner

From the Sun-Times:

Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner on Wednesday spoke calmly and optimistically about some of the state’s most dire faults, vowing once again to fight the state’s property tax system, while saying he’ll fight to make Illinois “the powerhouse job creator it should be.”

And he vowed to submit a “balanced budget proposal next month,” a declaration that had Democrats on their feet applauding, with Republicans soon joining them.

“And I hope you’ll pass it instead of ignore it,” the governor quickly said to Democrats.

“On this point I think we can also agree. It is time we do what the people of Illinois want. Halt the advance of taxes,” Rauner said. “Stop spending money we don’t have. Get our pensions under control. And give power back to the people.”

…He also spoke of criminal justice reforms, and his goal to reduce the prison population. Rauner, too, said, he’s helped to battle the state’s opioid epidemic by enacting a 24/7 helpline.

…Rauner’s speech began with a lengthy listing of state accomplishments. “Our history is rich,” he said.

“Today, we have an opportunity to turn yesterday into tomorrow, and make Illinois the powerhouse job creator it should be,” the governor said.

He spoke of collaboration in the state and Chicago’s bid for Amazon’s second headquarters. But noted it must be done on a bipartisan level.

“This is not a prize one wins alone. It takes a collaborative effort, a forget-about-the-politics-and-roll-up-our-sleeves kind of approach. It requires a laser-like focus on economic development and job creation and a bipartisan dedication to restore public trust,” Rauner said to applause from Republicans.

Rauner said he planned to sign an executive order on Tuesday to strengthen policies of reporting acts of sexual misconduct. The governor’s action came as legislators and government employees wore black in support of a #timesup movement.