ILLINOIS (WCIA) — Governor Bruce Rauner says he’s sorry for the budget impasse and wants voters to give him a second chance.
For some, the wounds from the two-year crisis are fresh. A lot of community services and jobs were caught in the crossfire.
With little-to-no money coming in from the state, places like domestic violence shelters wound up on the brink of shutting down. Wait times to see doctors skyrocketed. Thousands in construction lost work.
The director of the Laborers’ International Union says those were two years he’ll never forget and Rauner’s apology won’t be enough.
In a speech delivered in Chicago Thursday, Rauner says he took things too far and learned valuable lessons about compromise. He says, if re-elected, he’ll prove it. For some, the words fell flat.
The union is backing Pritzker in the upcoming election. It’s also backing Democratic Senator Kwame Raoul.
Right now, Rauner trails Pritzker by 17-points according to a poll published by the Illinois Broadcasters Association. It was done this week, before Rauner’s speech.
Rauner echoed his humble tone while at the Chicago Tribune’s editorial board meeting Friday. Pritzker was invited to the forum, but declined. The men will meet in their first debate Thursday.
In total, the budget impasse cost the state $1 billion in late payment penalties. At its peak, the state was in the hole $16 billion. The state sold bonds to reduce the backlog. Right now, it’s at more than $7.5 billion.