The GOP candidates for Illinois governor — state Sen. Bill Brady, state Treasurer Dan Rutherford, state Sen. Kirk Dillard and businessman Bruce Rauner — participated in a heated debate March 4. According to the Chicago Sun-Times’ Politics Early & Often:
Rhetoric in the GOP gubernatorial primary intensified during a televised debate Tuesday after state Sen. Bill Brady accused venture capitalist Bruce Rauner of being “tied to more felons” than Rod Blagojevich.
State Sen. Kirk Dillard, R-Hinsdale, called Rauner the “king of all pay-to-play politics in the history of Illinois.”
The remarks came at a debate sponsored by WMAQ-Channel 5 and the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics. It was the first of two televised gubernatorial debates this week. The primary is just two weeks away — on March 18.
“We have a corrupt culture; we gotta change it,” Rauner said.
Brady, a Bloomington Republican, essentially said it was the pot calling the kettle black and raised an issue that has dogged Rauner during his campaign: Stuart Levine and state pension business. Levine sat on the Teachers Retirement System board at the same time that a Rauner company was paying Levine a consulting fee. The TRS board — along with Levine — voted to double the state’s investment in the company.