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Rauner says no comment on political cartoon as ‘white male’

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CHICAGO (AP) — Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner is sidestepping comment on a political cartoon critics have called racist, saying he doesn’t have anything to add to the discussion “as a white male.”

The Republican governor’s spokeswoman released a statement Tuesday about the image circulated by a Chicago-based conservative think tank he has ties to. The cartoon depicts a black schoolchild begging a suit-clad white man for money.

Lawmakers of both parties denounced it in the wake of the deadly attack at the white nationalist rally in Virginia. The Illinois Policy Institute later removed it.

Rauner’s spokeswoman, Laurel Patrick, says Rauner “would never try to talk anyone out of their reaction to any piece of art, political or nonpolitical, right or left, good or bad.” She says fixation on the cartoon has been “disappointing.”