The Chicago Tribune editorial board has endorsed millionaire venture capitalist Bruce Rauner in the four-way Illinois GOP gubernatorial race.
Here is an excerpt from their endorsement:
Look at how low this state has sunk. Yet, election after election, citizens sabotage their interests: They squander opportunities to reform their government and keep re-electing the Democratic and Republican oligarchs whose cozy relationships suffuse sclerotic Springfield.
Enough. Illinois is in desperate need of a change agent. Disrupting the risk-averse status quo won't be simple or pretty. But voters simply can't expect members of the entrenched political class to make state government spend fewer taxpayer dollars, or to reverse this state's miserable prospects for job growth.
With hope that independence and urgency will achieve what collegiality and timidity profoundly have not, the Tribune Editorial Board today endorses businessman Bruce Rauner as the Republican candidate who is best equipped to be governor of Illinois. We urge voters to nominate him in the March 18 Illinois primary election.
Rauner isn't campaigning to be elected Most Popular Pol, or Warmest Neighbor, or State Teddy Bear. During Wednesday's candidate debate sponsored by the Tribune and WGN-TV, he repeatedly pledged to be a disciplined governor who would "focus like a laser" on Illinois' economic crises and "not get distracted" by other people's issues. His blunt and ubiquitous ads evoke a simple theme: We have to rescue Illinois from broad decline and narrow self-interests.
Rauner, who has come under fire for his lack of political experience, alleged unsavory business practices and anti-labor rhetoric, is running against Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford and State Sens. Bill Brady (R-Bloomington) and Kirk Dillard (R-Hinsdale) for the GOP nomination for governor. The primary election is March 18.