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items tagged with Jim Edgar

Governor’s Strategy Finally Seems to Be Backfiring
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2015-10-25 11:55:01

Governor Bruce Rauner took it on the chin for several days in a row this month.

The Paul Simon Public Policy Institute’s recent poll of southern Illinoisans showed Rauner’s approval rating absolutely tanking in a region he swept last year. Just 37 percent of voters in 18 southern counties approved of his job performance, while 51 percent disapproved. The media usually reacts negatively when there’s real blood in the water, and that poll most definitely showed blood.

In both a Chicago speech and during a follow-up interview, former Republican Governor Jim Edgar called on Rauner to stop holding the budget “hostage” to his anti-union Turnaround Agenda demands, claiming the lack of a state budget is hurting Illinois. Edgar remains a popular figure with political reporters, and his statements were a cold bucket of water on the governor’s “things are going great, and if they’re not, it’s all because of House Speaker Michael Madigan” mantra.

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Edgar Gives Rauner an Unexpected State-Fair Boost
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2014-08-17 16:30:02

I’m not sure why, but the surprise appearance by former Governor Jim Edgar at the Illinois State Fair’s Republican Day last week didn’t generate much media coverage.

Despite the fact that Edgar is a Republican, this was not an easy “get” for Republican gubernatorial nominee Bruce Rauner. I’m told it took weeks of careful wooing and negotiations through one of Edgar’s cronies. Edgar backed state Senator Kirk Dillard in the GOP primary against Rauner, and he has also expressed public and private concerns about how Rauner is portraying himself on the stump and about how that confrontational attitude could manifest itself if he’s elected governor.

Another reason why I’m perplexed by the lack of coverage is that Democratic Governor Pat Quinn has repeatedly gone out of his way to praise Edgar since Dillard’s Republican-primary loss. Quinn consulted with Edgar before his post-primary budget address, seeking his advice on keeping the income tax at current levels and providing some property-tax relief. Quinn then mentioned Edgar by name during his actual address, saying the former governor was right to keep a tax hike in place.

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One Republican Invokes the Good Ol’ Days
Written By: Jeff Ignatius
Section: Commentary/Politics

Category: Illinois Politics

2009-08-23 12:37:19

Kirk DillardRepublicans, as a class, tend to pine for the good ol' days -- mainly, the eras when they were in power.

That's been especially true in Illinois as the Republicans, uniformly blown out of power by George Ryan's scandals and George W. Bush's leadership style, have tried repeatedly to use the good ol' days to convince voters that they should be returned to stewardship status. For instance, every chance they get they trot out former Governor Jim Edgar -- one of the few living historical Illinois figures who still represents moderation and good governance in many voters' minds.

But Jim Edgar wasn't even at last week's Republican Day event at the Illinois State Fair. I ran into him earlier in the week, after Wednesday's rain storm. He was walking alone through the fairgrounds, heading for his car. He had a horse in a race, but the race was canceled because of the storm so he was leaving.

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