Oh Pat Quinn, you continue to amaze me. Yesterday Pat Quinn line item vetoed the budget section that defines paying Legislators.
On the surface this sounds really cool. Sounds like this is a Governor who is finally making a stand to say He has had it with the inadequacies of this General Assembly and their inability to get anything done. But lets face it, that’s not what it is. It is yet another sign of a desperate Governor who has been so ineffective that he is facing challenges from within his own party, grabbing at something he thinks will make him look like a leader. I for one say it is too late. Governor Quinn has had plenty of chances to do something on pension reform over the last several years. He has done nothing but feed lip service to a media that is looking for him to say anything on the subject. He has been rolled over up by the Speaker and Senate President who routinely ignore him. He has been anything but a leader. Most of the time he looks like a guy who inherited the job instead of earning it which in a way he did.
After it became obvious to Quinn that he was going to be challenged in his own Primary probably by his own Attorney General he started doing things like calling a special session that accomplished nothing. In fact I feel that members of the GA probably wouldnt even consider fixing the pension crisis during any session called by Quinn just to spite him.
Quinn did however see the writing on the wall. He could tell that the bipartison committee is making some headway on pensions and might even come up with a solution outside of Quinns demand for session. Quinn saw that if a solution comes out of it he would get no credit and he just couldnt have that. The desperation of wanting to be credited led to his grandstanding political move yesterday of threatening to withhold pay.
The ironic thing is that his move has probably delayed an actual deal getting done. Let’s face it, none of the committee is going to want to give any credit to Quinn for their solution. They are gonna wait to see if it is proven that Quinn doing what he did is illegal as our Comptroller Judy Barr Topinka suggested yesterday afternoon.
The legislators working on this certainly dont want the perception that the only reason they got the deal done was because of Quinns threat so they will wait and see if the threat is taken away then they can tell all of us that it was true compromise and statesmanship that led to the fix and not the desperate threat of the Governor that led to the deal.
The bottom line is that Quinns threat has probably delayed the outcome by several Weeks. In other words once again a Quinn plan has backfired and blown up in his and all our faces. Thanks again Pat Quinn for nothing.