SPRINGFIELD (CBS) — Governor Bruce Rauner tried his best to put a positive spin on his State of the State address.
“I am deeply optimistic about the future of our beloved Illinois,” he said.
But Illinoisans live in a state going on 19 months without a budget, which has forced social service cuts. People in the state also face the 5th highest tax burden in the US.
CBS 2’s Vince Gerasole reports.
“We all have a moral obligation to work together to bring change,” said Rauner.
The governor underscored his demand for a pro-business agenda, which he believes would create jobs. He would have to increase taxes to balance the state’s budget for his plan. Some members of the Senate have addressed this in recent weeks, saying his agenda could weaken state unions.
“What he painted was a much prettier picture than the one we really have,” said Rep. Lou Lang.
Democrats countered the picture Rauner painted. Some say cuts have led to crisis conditions in state education.
“This a massive disconnect for him to go and say things are looking peachy keen in Illinois, when anything is further from the truth,” said State Comptroller Susana Mendoza.
Governor Rauner also alluded to Springfield’s role in helping to stem the violence in Chicago.
“The violence occurring in Chicago very day is intolerable,” he said.
Rauner also mentioned the state’s increased highway patrols in the Chicago area. 26th District Representative Christian Mitchell wasn’t buying it.
“It sounds like crying crocodile tears, because he’s got blood on his hands, you’ve got anti violence programs that you canceled, the funding of which you cut off,” he said.
Governor Rauner also called for passing legislation to establish term limits. He said he wants to reform the way legislative districts are mapped for political advantages as well.