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Democratic Organization Targets Gov. Rauner in 2018

Brad Palmer, WSIU Radio
Left to right: Tonya Luciano; Casey Cavinder; Sheila Simon; Beth Malone and Nicholas Delaney at Heartland Apartments in Carbondale on Tues., Sept. 19, 2017.

The Democratic Governors Association is going after Republican Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner ahead of next year's election.

The association launched its Rauner's Broken Record Tour Tuesday in Carbondale and Springfield.
In Carbondale, former democratic Lt. Governor Sheila Simon says she gave Rauner the benefit of the doubt after his election in 2014. She thought the wealthy businessman would be good at managing the state's money, but she says a nearly three-year budget stalemate proved that assumption to be wrong.
"It's not just that he's a republican because we've had mixes in the House and Senate and the governor's office. We've been successful in getting a budget every time. So, it really is easy to put the blame on Governor Rauner here."
Wesley Tartt is a representative with the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union. He says instead of working on the budget, Governor Rauner insisted on trying to break the backs of unions.
"People want to work and they want to work good jobs that are worth having. Our unions are what make those jobs possible. Jobs that let us raise families. Jobs that build good communities."

SIU Law School student Beth Malone - who is a person with a disability - said Illinois will lose over nine billion dollars in federal Medicaid funds by the year 2027 if the Graham-Cassidy bill to repeal Obamacare becomes law. She says Governor Rauner needs to fight against the legislation.
"Considering the financial situation in Illinois, I don't see how we can possibly absorb this loss. We need you to stand up for your constituents and your state and make a firm statement against Graham-Cassidy."
SIU graduate and Law School student Nicholas Delaney said Governor Rauner's inability to craft a budget with the Illinois General assembly for over two years has hurt the university terribly.
"When I first got here, SIU was a bright, vibrant campus, full of students, full of different people. Although it was tougher to find a parking spot than now, it helped students like me build a better future for ourselves."

Home health care workers say the long, drawn out budget stalemate nearly crippled their industry. 

Jeff Pool is a caregiver in southern Illinois. He says Governor Rauner does not understand the needs and desires of people with disabilities.

"When I go home and sleep at night, that's wonderful. When I hear my alarm clock go off, I say I wish I could sleep another hour. It's opposite for them. They're thinking I wish I could get up. But, they're stuck in bed. They have to wait. They need somebody to help them."

Pool cares for Casey Cavinder. The SIU graduate says he doesn't like the term "special needs." He says he has human needs.

"When we don't get those human needs met, it amounts to a human rights violation, whether it's couched that way or not."

Cavinder and Pool joined others during Rauner's Broken Record Tour in Carbondale.

As a news producer and news anchor on All Things Considered, Brad provides the listeners with a recap of the day's top local and state news as well as breaking news at any given time. Contact WSIU Radio at 618-453-6101 or email wsiunews@wsiu.org
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