Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner addressed a variety of questions about the budget in a Facebook Live video.
From clarifying false rumors that he had never submitted a budget, to talking about his goals for the state, Governor Rauner spent about 35 minutes speaking directly to residents of Illinois.
After dozens of questions, the governor took a final question from Charlie of Moline. Rauner read the question that said,
“I am a 29-year-old biz owner, Governor Rauner, why can’t Illinois get its financial house in order?”
Laughing, Governor Rauner replied, saying, “Charlie, I share your frustration. We need to get our financial house in order. In democracy, politicians, generally they are elected to do what is popular. Democracy votes are based on what is popular.”
Governor Rauner went on to explain that what has been popular is spending money, covering it up by borrowing from pensions, and ultimately raising taxes.
“That’s the kicking the can way because that’s for politicians, that’s the easy way,” he continued. “That’s the cycle we have to break.”
He said he wants to stop the cycle by keeping the state’s spending ream and bringing down the cost inside government operations.
Comparing Illinois to neighboring states, Governor Rauner said if Illinois’ economic growth kept up with the national average, the state “wouldn’t have any unpaid bills” or “such a huge unfunded pension liability.”