Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Here we go again playing Blame Game

It took Gov. Bruce Rauner about one hour following his drop-dead date threat of Noon on Monday to issue the order saying the General Assembly will have to return to Springfield on Wednesday and remain until they follow his demands.
Not happy unless there's infighting?

Those demands are to allow him to put his grubby paws all over the education funding bill that he's made it clear he hates, and wants to alter through his amendatory veto powers – something the General Assembly most certainly doesn’t want to have done.

RAUNER LAST WEEK set the Monday at Noon deadline, with the threats that there’d be a special session of the Legislature called to force them into action.

Monday morning, he said such session would begin Wednesday and could run through July 31 if legislators don’t act promptly.

Not that I don’t doubt Rauner was sincere in his threats. It’s just that they seem so ridiculous.

Because as we saw during the end-of-June special session mandated by the governor over the budget dispute, just because Rauner orders their presence in Springfield doesn’t mean that anything will get done.

HECK, EVEN AFTER the sides reached agreement (over Rauner’s objections) on the budget, the final action still had to wait a couple of days because not enough legislators were present for them to legally do any government business.

So the idea that something will happen by July 31 just because Rauner says it must? Hah! That’s such a laughable notion.

The fact is that Rauner wants alterations to the proposal for education funding spending because he officially claims it gives too much to the Chicago Public Schools – particularly in the aid it provides to help cover costs of pensions for retired school teachers from the city.
Are they really at fault?

Not that I think he really cares much about any such inequity. He’s playing the typical urban vs. rural game of Illinois politics, going around to rural communities and claiming he’s merely trying to keep Chicago from taking too much. Implying they’d get a little extra in funding if he succeeds.

THAT MAY GET him a few extra votes come Nov. 6, 2018 when he seeks re-election. But it will also harden the desire of Chicago voters to dump his sorry behind come next year’s Election Day.

Although one has to admit the touch of politicking being played by Democratic leaders of the Legislature with regards to holding back on the education funding portion of the budget, where the money exists but it is a matter of approving a measure allocating how it gets spent.

Schools are going to be desperate to have their funding by Aug. 10 if they’re to open for the new school year come mid-August. Legislators are hoping that by delaying Rauner’s ability to act, they will give him so little time and the pressure from public schools will be so intense that he’ll have to just go ahead and sign the bill regardless of what he really thinks.

Anybody who thought the politicking was over early this month when a budget agreement was finally put in place for the first time in over two full fiscal years is seriously misguided.

THE FACT IS that our political people, at times, only seem happy when they’re in a crisis mode and all hell threatens to break loose if they don’t act promptly on something – even though the crisis is usually one of their own making.

So for as much as I want to blame Bruce Rauner for being a hard-head and a pathetic ideologue, I also have to confess that the politicking is being aggravated by the people he opposes. Or maybe they’re being driven to their own hard-line stances by Rauner’s ideological leanings.

Or maybe it’s just like in that song “Blame Game” that includes the lyric, “At the end of it, you know we both were wrong.”

You have to admit we’re in a pretty sorry state of affairs when one can find words of wisdom in the lyrics of Kanye West.


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