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Rauner Doing 'Everything Possible' To Prevent Veto Override — Except Calling Lawmakers

Gov. Bruce Rauner
Brian Mackey
NPR Illinois
Gov. Bruce Rauner is pictured in this file photo.

The Illinois House will meet Thursday to try to override Gov. Bruce Rauner’s budget veto.

At his first public appearance since nearly a third of the House Republican caucus decided to work with Democrats to pass a budget for Illinois, the governor reiterated his opposition to the plan.

"What we have is a continuing failure by elected officials in Springfield on both sides of the aisle," Rauner said.

So has he been trying to persuade, cajole or otherwise convince the Republicans who voted yes to change their position? Reporters asked if he'd even been in touch with them, and if so, what he's said.

"We are doing everything possible to make sure my veto stands and that it’s not overridden,” Rauner said.

"Like what?" a reporter asked.

"Everything possible," Rauner said.

"What does that mean?" a reporter asked, but she was interrupted by another question and the news conference moved on.

Here's the thing: At least two Republicans who voted yes say neither the governor nor his office have been in touch.

"The governor’s office has not contacted me," Rep. Steve Andersson (R-Geneva) said Wednesday morning, about two hours before Rauner's public appearance.

That was echoed by Rep. Sara Wojcicki Jimenez (R-Springfield), who'd previously worked as chief of staff to First Lady Diana Rauner.

"I have not heard from them since my vote," Jimenez said.

Both Andersson and Jimenez say they’re standing by their decision and will vote to override the governor's veto.

Brian Mackey formerly reported on state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. Before that, he was A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.
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