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Quinn Downplays Veto-Proof Majorities For House, Senate Dems

Illinois State Capitol

Illinois State Capitol buillding in Springfield (AP Photo)

Mike Krauser Mike Krauser
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CHICAGO (CBS) – Gov. Pat Quinn said Friday he disagrees that the new veto-proof majorities for Democrats in the Illinois House and Senate next year will reduce his own authority.

WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports the governor was asked if the super majorities for House and Senate Democrats would mean legislative leaders could push through any legislation they want, and Quinn would have no say.

But the governor wasn’t buying it.

“I don’t know where you come up with that narrative. I am very good friends with [Senate President] John Cullerton, and with [House Speaker] Mike Madigan,” Quinn said. “I’ve spoken to them in the last couple days, as I do almost every day.”

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser Reports

Although both Madigan and Cullerton have veto-proof majorities in their respective chambers, Madigan would have to line up every single Democrat to override a veto, or get some Republican members to join in. Getting every single Democrat to agree on legislation isn’t always easy, and Republicans won’t always be eager to help Democrats get things done.

Quinn said he looks forward to working with the new lawmakers when they are sworn in next year.

“I think we have an opportunity – a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity – to do progressive things that strengthen the people of Illinois,” he said.

The governor has had his differences with Cullerton and Madigan on a number of key issues, including the state’s pension crisis, gambling expansion, and the state budget.

He wants pension reform passed before the new General Assembly is sworn in in January. It’s expected the current legislature will also take up a casino expansion bill the governor vetoed in August.