In Illinois, lawmakers on Thursday approved a new state budget, ending a two-year stalemate that saw Illinois fall $15 billion behind on its bills. The deal came as the state House voted to override a veto by Republican Governor Bruce Rauner, who was increasingly isolated in his opposition to a state income tax hike. This is Governor Rauner speaking Wednesday.
Gov. Bruce Rauner: “This is not just a slap in the face to Illinois taxpayers, this is a two-by-four smacked across the foreheads of the people of Illinois. This tax hike will solve none of our problems. And, in fact, long run, it will just make our problems worse, not better.”
The budget impasse idled roadwork and infrastructure projects, left social service nonprofits unable to serve the poor and disabled, threatened to bankrupt public schools and threatened the accreditation of many universities. Even with passage of the budget, Moody’s Investors Service said Thursday it might still downgrade Illinois’s credit rating to junk status.