Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, in my mind, has been a political fraud for his entire career. The favorite refrain of his campaign ads was that "you know me," and evidently more people than not bought it hook, line and sinker. Of course, the majority of his votes in the Democratic strongholds around the state, were what is considered the "machines controlled vote." Machine politics are so ingrained in our culture that there is a high percentage of local and state workers that literally owe their livelihoods to the machine. Between the connected and their extended families, there is a guaranteed vote total in most wards.
That is the way it is and the way it has always been.
The only way to beat this game, is to come out in force on election day, but, a funny thing happened along the way - people have grown frustrated with the state of our politics and have withdrawn from the process. Apathy has become the norm and that suits the machine politicians just fine. The fewer people in opposition to their politics that show up, the better for the machine.
Sure, there are people who have remained loyal to the Democratic Party through thick and thin. God forbid entertaining any other ideology that doesn't fit in with the family tradition. In some ways I even understand it all. Being a Democrat meant being for the people as opposed to the corporate interests and political blue bloods that profit off them. Unfortunately, being a Democrat today just doesn't hold the same weight as it once did. Look how Rahm Emanuel, the Democrat, has profited mightily from corporate interests, or Gery Chico, Bill Clinton, Harry Reid, etc.. And yes, there are plenty of Republicans that profit the same way. Candidates on both sides of the aisle use their political connections to help themselves and their sponsors. The people? Well, take a number.
During the gubernatorial election, I nicknamed Patrick Quinn "the huckster." Simply put, I felt that if you put his picture in the dictionary next to the word you would have a clear image of "one who uses aggressive, showy and sometimes devious methods to promote or sell a product." In our case, it was an Income Tax Increase that would not come close to solving the financial ills of the state. Financial experts warned that even with the proposed increase, that the state would be unable to do what it says it could with the money generated. As we have found out - it was true.
What "the Huckster" fails to grasp is that the State of Illinois needs to cut spending, not increase it every chance it gets. The fact that Pat Quinn has claimed to be a reformer just hasn't been true over the years and since ascending to the governors mansion has shown how embedded he is with the machine politics. The only reason Quinn ever brought up the reform moniker is because most people in his own party have looked down at him with disgust. They never believed he was really "one of them, just a wannabe."
Quinn told the people of Illinois that he would end business as usual, but he needed that tax increase to pull the state out of its financial mess first. He would limit the increase and not ask for more than he needed while making the necessary cuts that a governor needs to make. Well, what have we really gotten? Quinn refuses to cut spending and now wants to add another 945 jobs, to an already bloated bureaucracy. Of course, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) applauds the measure.
Hey, didn't they endorse the Huckster for governor?
Quinn has also left hundreds of former Governor Blagojevich's political appointments in place so that they can earn more towards their ultimate pensions while drawing insane salaries. Yes, there are "some unpaid appointments" but not as many as you think. Besides, unpaid doesn't mean uncompensated. Forget about the the stipends and expenses? This is Illinois, remember?
The Huckster, after receiving the largest tax increase in state history also wants to borrow another $8.75 billion dollars on top of that tax increase to pay the backlog of unpaid bills, but, wasn't that tax increase supposed to do that? I have to ask the people that voted for him, did you really believe that Quinn was going to reform state government or cut spending? Well, okay, I will give you this much. The Huckster will cut spending, but it will involve essential services that you, your children, your parents and grandparents will probably need. The cuts are many too. Click here for a list of cuts published by a downstate newspaper.
I hate to say I told you so, but hey, I did tell you so.
Quinn sold you down the river!
Watch Out! The Boat Is Leaking!