Illinois Republican gubernatorial candidates grill Quinn in forum

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Four Republican gubernatorial candidates took the stage Wednesday, December 11th, 2013 at the i-Wireless Center in Downtown Moline.

The candidates were as follows: Illinois Senators Bill Brady and Kirk Dillard, Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford, and businessman Bruce Rauner.

Among topics discussed were jobs, the state's budget, medicaid, and the recent pension reform.

All candidates shared similar viewpoints on how the state is currently being operated by Governor Pat Quinn.

"I love Illinois and we are going down the drain, we have entered a death spiral," said Republican candidate and Illinois businessman Bruce Rauner.

The general consensus among candidates seemed to be that the state was spending money it did not have resulting in an increase in debt.

Senator Bill Brady focused his main argument Wednesday on the discussion of lowering the property and personnel taxes that were passed by the General Assembly in 2011.

"Lowering these taxes would bring jobs back to the state and this area," said Brady.

Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford believes medicaid is the biggest obstacle the Illinois government needs to overcome.

"The biggest financial tackle that we need to take on is in regards to medicaid," said Rutherford.

Sen. Kirk Dillard had a similar stance on the state's medicaid system.

"Medicaid, in terms of a chunk of our states budget, is twice as big a problem as pensions payments are to the are to the state of Illinois," said Dillard.

Finally, businessman Bruce Rauner made his statement clear if he is elected governor.

"I want to run this state like a business," said Rauner.

The candidates will continue their campaign throughout the winter season. The general election will decide which Republican candidate will represent their party against Governor Quinn.

Governor Quinn was invited to the event, but was not in attendance.

The primary election will be March 18, 2014.