CHICAGO (CBS) — Gov. Bruce Rauner made a brief but historic appearance before the Chicago City Council on Wednesday, offering to cooperate with the mayor and aldermen to help address the city’s financial needs, but he said there must be compromise from City Hall.

Minutes before Rauner became the first sitting governor in memory to address the City Council, aldermen unanimously passed a resolution rejecting his call to create so-called “right-to-work zones,” which would allow workers to choose if they want to join unions, or pay dues in jobs organized by labor unions.

The idea has been met with an ice cold reception in Chicago, as all 50 aldermen and the mayor are Democrats with strong union ties. The General Assembly also is firmly controlled by Democrats, who rely heavily on union support during election season.

“When we talk about creating a right to work, what we are really creating is a right for the employer to hire; to hire at a lesser wage, to hire at lesser benefits, to hire people who will take the jobs away that we have secured through collective bargaining,” Ald. Patrick O’Connor (40th), the mayor’s floor leader, said before the governor addressed the council.

Rauner said he doesn’t mind Chicago’s opposition to right-to-work laws, because local governments can do as they want, but in an eight minute speech in the City Council Chambers, the governor did say there must be give and take on other issues.

“I am eager to be your partner in a turnaround that benefits both Chicago and our great state, but to achieve that, we must be willing to work together, compromise, [and] accept things we might normally oppose,” he said.

Rauner refused to be specific about exactly what he wants from the city, and what he’d be willing to give to help Chicago address its own budget and pension woes.

The governor knew full well he was playing to a hostile crowd, joking that a friend asked him if he felt like Daniel in the biblical tale of Daniel in the lions’ den.

“I said, ‘No. Daniel had much better odds,’” Rauner said.

After the governor addressed the council, local labor leaders said Rauner’s agenda would lead to lower wages and less safety in the workplace.

Chicago Federation of Labor president Jorge Ramirez said Rauner’s push for right-to-work zones “is code for ‘You’re on your own.’”

“All he did was demonstrate how out of touch he really is with the problems facing Chicago and its citizens.”

When the governor talks about a state partnership with the city, Ramirez says, it’s not the kind of partnership the Chicago Federation of Labor can understand.

When reporters asked Ramirez if he’d approached Rauner about working out a compromise, Ramirez said, “I don’t know that we have a lot in common to discuss.”

Labor leaders have accused the governor of being an out-of-touch billionaire who is trying to dismantle the middle class.