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Rauner: Government Union Donations To Elected Officials 'Should Be Illegal'

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Gov. Bruce Rauner, a close friend of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, has suggested mayoral hopeful Jesus "Chuy" Garcia's relationship with the Chicago Teachers Union ought to be against the law.

Rauner told reporters the Chicago Teachers Union's support of Garcia's bid for mayor in the upcoming runoff election in Chicago is an example of an unhealthy relationship between labor and politicians.

"When a government union leader can give significant campaign cash to a politician, and then after they get elected, then negotiate whether it's their salary or their pensions or the healthcare, it's a conflict," Rauner said.

The governor wasn't exactly singling out Garcia.

"I see that from any politician. I don't care who they are. If they take government union money, I believe it should be illegal for anyone in elected office to take money from the people that they then contract with, and negotiate pay from. It's a conflict of interest for the taxpayers," he said.


Rauner had just finished telling the Illinois Economic Development Association that his efforts to weaken the power of labor unions have not been a distraction from the state's budget woes, but rather a part of the solution to them.

The governor said his push to create "right-to-work" zones in Illinois, and his move to block some state workers from having to pay union dues are both part of his drive to make the state more competitive for business.

As for the state budget, Rauner said the goal is to cut nonessential expenses, raise vital spending, and do so without hiking taxes or borrowing.

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