November 5, 2016
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Chicago, IL – With his attempts to slash state workers’ pensions and decimate their collective-bargaining rights stymied by the Illinois legislature’s Democratic majority, Gov. Bruce Rauner has spent more than $45 million trying to break it.
According to state campaign-finance records, the billionaire governor has supplied more than 70% of the $29 million the Illinois Republican Party had raised as of Oct. 22. He and billionaire hedge-fund founder Ken Griffin have also provided nearly all the $18 million in state House Republican leader Jim Durkin’s campaign fund, including a $9 million contribution from Rauner and his wife Oct. 20. After that donation, Durkin gave $5 million to the House Republican Organization, the state House GOP’s campaign arm, and $3 million to the state Republican Party. Rauner, Griffin, and fellow billionaire Richard Uihlein have also supplied more than 90% of the campaign war chest for state Comptroller Leslie Geissler Munger, who is outspending her Democratic opponent by more than 4-1. The result is “insane amounts of money” being injected into local elections, Common Cause Illinois director Brian Gladstein told the Chicago Reporter, with spending topping $1 million in eight legislative races. Read more