With Bruce Rauner’s election in Illinois, the Republican Governor’s Association has checked this bluer-than-blue state off its Democrat tick list. It must feel good—but I’m less than sanguine.
For the better part of a year, powerful Chicago Democrats have been whispering in my ear, extolling Rauner’s virtues. I heard similar insider political “chatter” about Barack Obama from these same Democrats long before he ran for U.S. Senate. Even the left-leaning Chicago Sun-Times suddenly changed its no-endorsement policy to back Rauner — and only Rauner — without even the basic formality of a candidate questionnaire or interview.
You see, for decades, Rauner, a wealthy venture capitalist and former chairman of private equity firm GTCR, donated millions to the Democratic Party to help defeat Republican candidates. That “investment” has paid dividends.