Yesterday, Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford, a Republican candidate for Governor, appeared in Lake County for a series of events, including the Lake County Fair. Rutherford strongly condemned the language inserted into HB 2418 which creates a new Lake County Electoral Board Commission. This unfunded mandate, if Governor Quinn signs the bill as enacted by the Democratic majority in Springfield, will cost lake county residents over $600,000.00 annually through the creation of an unnecessary additional layer of government. Springfield will not contribute a dime to this new government.
I have written extensively on the topic here, here, and here.
Mr. Rutherford went so far as to issue a press release reiterating his public comments on the issue.
The press release, issued late yesterday afternoon, reads as follows:
Rutherford Calls on Quinn to Veto Provision of Election Bill Forcing an Election Commission on Lake County.
"State Treasurer and GOP candidate for Governor Dan Rutherford called legislation dealing with elections 'a partisan power grab by the Democrats in Springfield.' Buried in the pages of a large omnibus elections bill (HB2418) is a provision that will strip the Office of Lake County Clerk of the authority to supervise elections. If the Governor signs it into law, Lake County will be required to establish a 5 member election commission chosen by the Chief Circuit Judge. This provision will cost the taxpayers of Lake County upwards of $600,000.00 to implement."
"'Without a doubt, the provision to change the election authority for one county in Illinois is being done for political purposes. If such changes are to be made, it should be up to the voters of Lake County not the politicians in Springfield. I encourage Governor Quinn to use his veto power to remove this provision from the legislation,' said Rutherford."
It is refreshing to see this stand taken by such a prominent Illinois figure.
Rumor has it, Governor Quinn will sign the legislation today without such an amendatory veto. A Daily Herald article is in today's paper about this and can be read here. Most interesting are the comments which follow this article, especially those by Democrats who claim this will not cost Lake County a thin dime to implement. Makes you wonder what they were smoking before they posted their comments.
If Quinn signs this legislation, his "reformer" credentials which he has burnished over the years, will be proven false.
What say you Governor Quinn?