War of Words Continues in Springfield as End of Fiscal Year Looms

The state is roughly two weeks away from the end of the fiscal year, and as each side of the aisle blames the other, Illinois remains without a budget.

On Wednesday, House Republican Leader Jim Durkin blamed the Democratic supermajority.

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“Illinoisans will not put up with a second year without a budget, let alone one that is not balanced and one that is also $7 billion out of balance. You'd think they'd learned their lesson after last year, which was $4 billion out of balance. Apparently they haven’t,” Durkin said Wednesday.

Durkin said K-12 education, higher education and social services will “suffer greatly” if the legislature cannot agree on a stop-gap budget measure. Gov. Bruce Rauner currently has an emergency spending bill for social services sitting on his desk, but he has stated his preference is to pass the stop-gap plan that would fund education and other services for a full year.

House Speaker Michael Madigan originally scheduled legislative sessions during the summer, but Madigan has cancelled the previous two sessions.

“It is becoming abundantly clear, to myself and also my colleagues, that the Democrat leadership in Illinois is not interested in solving the budget crisis,” Durkin said. “Rather, they are more interested in maintaining their power in the majority and also ensuring that the governor will not receive any victory or any type of success in solving this budget crisis. It's irresponsible and it's reckless.”

Durkin joins “Chicago Tonight” to talk more about the budget impasse. 

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