Proft: Good morning, Dan and Amy, and Jeanne Ives is up with her "Closing Argument" ads on television, you hear them on our station too when the breaks. But, a more interesting closing argument I think, or another interesting closing argument was made by Tom Morrison, who's been on the show before, he's a conservative Republican from Palatine, he's also one of the most respected legislators in the General Assembly, on both sides of the aisle, because he's a person of integrity. He's out walking for Jeanne Ives, and he filmed a little impromptu Facebook Live post.
Morrison (Tape): Hello everyone, it's Tom Morrison, walking door-to-door here in Palatine. We're not fazed by snow or sleet or any of this...we're trying to elect my friend for Governor, Jeanne Ives. And the information that we're passing out deconstructs all these shameful Rauner TV and radio ads, trying to take her words out of context, distort her record, it's so easy to deconstruct these arguments if you actually know the facts. Look, I'm supporting Jeanne Ives because she's the REAL conservative in this race, she has the endorsements of me and NINE other state legislators from across the state, Republican organizations, conservative organizations, are supporting Jeanne Ives. So many of us trusted Bruce Rauner in 2014 and he really let us down these last three and a half years, and that's why we're supporting her. There has been no greater fighter for taxpayers or families than Jeanne Ives.
Proft: Alright. And with that intro, we're pleased to be joined again by state Representative and Republican candidate for Governor, Jeanne Ives. Jeanne, thanks for joining us again, appreciate it.
Ives: Thank you for having me on, Dan and Amy. I'm just...Tom Morrison is such a blessing, he's just been a real leader in this campaign.
Proft: So what about...he's responding to the sole argument that Rauner has had against you for the past eight weeks, and 20 million dollar backing of that argument, that you're Madigan's favorite Republican?
Ives: You don't have to trust my words, trust what everybody else says, who's been watching my work down there. They all know it's laughable, I mean even Greg Hines said, you know, Rauner gets the Oscar award for the most deceptive campaign lie this season. So just listen to what others say, you don't have to depend on my opinion, it's just not flat out right...it's not true.
Jacobson: So, yesterday was the last debate before the primary, which is next Tuesday, and Governor Rauner, I noticed, was a no-show, you had the floor all to yourself. Any reason why he wasn't there?
Ives: Well, he doesn't want to talk about his record, because he has no record of accomplishment, and quite frankly, he doesn't want to answer policy questions because he'll be embarrassed, just like he was before the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board. That was a pretty scathing debate that I had with him there, and it...you know, the headline that came out from there said that I CRUSHED him. It's because he does not know his policy, and it matters to people.
Jacobson: Yeah, well one thing that he did do yesterday, he did veto the state's gun bill, but I noticed that he did it far far away from Chicago Media, he was at a radio station downstate, and said this.
Rauner (Tape): That gun dealers are already Federally licensed, that is true.
Jacobson: And I mean, obviously I watched you on Channel 7, and you agreed that the gun bill should have been vetoed, but do you think this is all political?
Ives: Absolutely. It's just political expediency on his part. He...this campaign, and me specifically, boxed him into a corner on that gun bill. He knew he had to veto it if he was going to even have any chance on March 20th, which we...we think he's done on March 20th, but this is what he's done all the time. He'll never signal to you what he's going to do. So, he refused to fill out the NRA Survey in 2014, he didn't fill it out in 2018. But what you see with me, though, it's like...I will tell you ahead of time exactly how I feel about an issue, and I'm not going to hide behind a downstate radio state, where media can't respond or ask any targeted questions. But this is Governor Rauner, he's just ducking and hiding from the voters at every turn. Never tells you what to do...what he's going to do, and I guarantee you...he WILL sign those other gun bills, so he's getting ready to betray everybody else on the Second Amendment.
Proft: Yeah, there was a change, because he said he would deal with the legislation after the primary initially, that was some of his offerings on what he was going to do on the topic of that gun bill, and then yesterday he hastily announced that he was going to veto it, and he vetoed it. So, this to me seems like it's another...because his internal numbers must be wobbly...this is a way for him to try and snow gun owners the way that he initially snowed so many people when he ran for office.
Ives: But, Dan...this is a perfect example of who he is, and how we've seen him over the last three years. He's been back and forth on every major political decision. The Caucus, the Republican Caucus, who is closest to him and understands what's going in Springfield...first the Education Bill is a disaster, and then he signs it and his buddy Rahm says "I got everything I wanted, and more!" The Exelon Bill...the morning of, up to TEN AMENDMENTS, because Governor Rauner couldn't signal how he really felt about things and kept waffling and waffling. Finally, they get to the point where he's boxed in, and he signs the darn thing just to say he got something done. So the guy is...he has no CORE, so you don't know where he's ever gonna go on policy. He's just a transactional politician...just like Democrats have been.
Jacobson: Yep. So you're on the driveway home, this is the last weekend before the election. What are your plans, where are you travelling, where are you trying to get the vote out?
Ives: We're going down south today, I'm so excited, we're headed to the Metro East area, just outside of St. Louis so we're flying into Cahokia. We have a meeting there at 11:30, then we're headed to Marion right afterwards, meeting with some voters there at about 3:30, then we're flying up to Champaign, and we'll be there from 6:00 to 7:30 at the airport there, the finally we'll end up in Rockford at about 8:30, just connecting with voters outside of the Chicago area, just because we did Chicago media for the past two days, just trying to let people know who we are and where this campaign is headed.
Proft: Story out yesterday, there's been a number of stories by the Edgar County Watchdogs, that we talked about on this show but hasn't really been picked up in any significant way, Capital Facts picked it up yesterday, but it's about emails they have from Diana Rauner, and the latest is perhaps the most damaging, it prompted the Edgar County Watchdogs to file a complaint with the Office of the Inspector General, the Executive...the Executive Office of the Inspector General, against Governor Rauner, accusing him of essentially using state resources for political purposes, which is the bases on which a couple of former Governors went to prison. And I wonder if you have a comment on what Rauner's...Rauner's response is "Oh yeah, any OIG investigation we will comply with, but there's no merit to this." Based on what the Edgar County Watchdogs have from these emails, where you have political people directing state people, it would appear...what comment do you have in terms of what the Governor should do? ...or not do?
Ives: Every single email that has both a political staffer of Governor Rauner's and a paid state employee on the same email chain should be released immediately. I'm alarmed the fact that he would even put the same political staff in the same meeting room with state employees. That's alarming to begin with...I mean,as a state Rep, I would NEVER do that! I would never do it, I can't believe the Governor is open about doing it. And the emails, you know, and obviously they're also coming from his wife, I mean, she's even the one propagating some of this.
Proft: Well, and the interesting thing (Ives: It's very alarming!) thing...and the interesting thing about the email that the Edgar County Watchdogs used as the frame for their most recent story is that you have Diana Rauner as the emailER, and the recipients include both political consultants and state employees, but they're using state employees' private email. So this is a way they were trying to essentially end run a FOIA and discoverability, but the Edgar County Watchdogs got the email anyway, and if there's...if there's a handful of those, as has been reported, you know there are many more.
Ives: No doubt. And just the handful that we have already is actually cause enough for the complaint that the Edgar County Watchdogs put forward, and you know, even after Marasco wrote his memo saying "Look, you are really crossing the line here, potentially violating ethics laws in the state of Illinois," even after that, you find out when you look at the timeline, there's a report in the complaint that, sure enough, Rauner is officially signing the K-12 School Funding Bill, which is definitely something that Diana and political consultants weighed in on, to help save the Governor on that bill. And then he signs the Abortion Bill. And then he makes a comment about Repeal and Replace Obamacare, which for him is politically advantageous on HOW he responds to that.
Proft: He didn't want...he didn't...he didn't want...
Ives: So you see, even after he's warned, you see actions being taken. So there's a lot of missing emails there on what happened.
Proft: And on the Obamacare, he didn't WANT Obamacare repealed and replaced?
Ives: That's right. (Proft and Jacobson react with stunned surprise.) That's right.
Jacobson: So when you travel, and when you meet people throughout the state of Illinois, and DuPage County and Cook County, what's their number one concern, what's their point of contention?
Ives: Well, for Republicans it's largely the Sanctuary State bill, taxpayer funding of abortion, and just...people don't trust Rauner anymore. He's not somebody that he said he was going to be, and...you know, this wholesale disregard for what he's been doing to the state. So, it's a trust issue for Republican voters on March 20th.
Proft: You mentioned the Education Funding Bill, and how Diana Rauner intervened to help prop him up. But that was a bill you voted against, why is that? Explain to people your perspective on that Ed funding bill that he counts as a success.
Ives: Well, there's a couple things. One, Chicago got a massive bailout, and they have $17B in debt. And what's going to happen over time, really, is downstate schools, suburban schools, are gonna see their school money actually siphoned off through the state funding formula, and it's gonna go to Chicago to bail out their massive debt. The other two...the other thing is they never corrected the assessment problem. Chicago is hiding massive amounts of property wealth from the Education Funding Bill, and we told Rauner three years ago, you have to fix this assessment system. It's foundational to a fair education funding formula, and if you don't fix it, you fix NOTHING with Education. And he didn't do it. He didn't lead on the issue even though we gave him a PROGRAM to do so, and he hasn't fixed anything in Education, he just basically bailed out Chicago.
Proft: What...one of the political arguments that Rauner and the kind of defenseless Rauner supporter makes against you is that Rauner is the only one that can beat JB Pritzker, because he's the only one with the big checkbook. How do you respond to, you know, you...Jeanne Ives can't win a general election.
Ives: Well, first of all, we're gonna win March 20th, and Rauner had a big checkbook, and we're gonna spend a fraction of what he has in his war chest. So, I think that people are ready for the truth, and when it comes to JB Pritzker, and what he's selling, and what the Democrats all want, which is higher taxes, more spending, and they're gonna continue the corrupt nature of Illinois politics as it's been for years, we're gonna message that past their money and past their money spend. And people are just gonna look past the fact that...you know, here's the deal. With me, you know where I stand on every issue...with JB Pritzker, you have no idea. You know, all you know is that he likes to pull the toilets out of his second mansion to get a property tax break. And he's buddies with Blagojevich and he's got all these other nefarious contacts with state government that has destroyed the Illinois economy. So, we think we can message that, you don't...we're going to prove that the grassroots can actually take back the state, and it's not gonna take a billionaire to do so.
Proft: Tell me, so this is what...something like I want to say...and this...this is about stoking the revolt against the ruling class, like we've seen throughout the Midwest.
Ives: Precisely, and if you...nobody believes that any of the Democrats, or Rauner for that matter, is really going to transform Illinois the way that we need to, look. Worst run state in the country, second year in a row. Largest outmigration, second year in a row. And you know, look at the Florida job creation. Florida has gained, since 2000, well over a million jobs. Illinois' growth in that time? 21K jobs. That's pathetic for the 5th largest economy in the United States. So, you know, people are leaving Illinois, and nobody's talking about the real issues except for this campaign, except for me. And nobody, and nobody believes that any of the other candidates are going to actually transform Illinois and really lead the revolt, like you talked about, against the political ruling class. I've already done that.
Proft: So, what's the question you want to implant in Republican voters minds when they go to the polls on March 20th? What do you want them to be asking themselves and answering affirmatively, Jeanne Ives.
Ives: They should ask themselves "Are you proud of this Republican governor? Are you proud of the job that he's done?" And then, "Are you proud of the way he's run his campaign, with lies and deception?" Those are two important questions for Republican voters to answer. And I think on March 20th when they go into the ballot box...go to the ballot box, they're going to vote for Jeanne Ives.
Proft: Alright, she is Jeanne Ives, Republican candidate for Governor, state Rep from Wheaton, Jeanne thanks so much for joining us, appreciate it.
Ives: Thank you!