© 2024 NPR Illinois
The Capital's Community & News Service
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Illinois Union Attacks Rauner For Being Donald Trump-ish

Labor unions are attacking Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner for several vetoes issues late last week. The Republican governor rejected measures that would have raised wages for state contractors that take care of the elderly and disabled.

Thousands of the affected workers are represented by the Illinois Healthcare chapter of the Service Employees International Union. Keith Kelleher is president of the Illinois Healthcare chapter of the union. He said Rauner, like Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, is waging a "war" on working women, African Americans and Latinos.

Rauner has previously stiffened eligibility standards for subsidized child care and banned overtime for home health workers.

"This is what we saw at Donald Trump's convention this week," he said. "It was a blur of intolerance and division and these vetoes are showing how Bruce Rauner is really bringing the spirit of Cleveland to Illinois."

The legislation also would have mandated training for some child-care providers.

Rauner said he vetoed the measures because the state cannot afford the millions, if not billions, of dollars to implement them. He said Illinois must be financially responsible given the state's poor fiscal condition.

Contract talks between the Rauner administration and SEIU have been dragging on for more than a year.

The governor also used his veto power to suggest changes to legislation on prevailing wage. That’s a law that makes sure workers earn union pay rates on government construction projects.

Related Stories