WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Rauner's Discarded Term Limit Initiative Mirrors Quinn's 1994 Effort

Jun 30, 2014
Originally published on June 27, 2014 5:53 pm

Governor Pat Quinn and his Republican challenger, Bruce Rauner, disagree about plenty -- everything from gun rights and restrictions, to what Illinois' income tax should be. But with Friday's ruling by a Cook County judge knocking a term limits initiative off the ballot, the candidates have something in common.

Though there has been a lot of turnover in the General Assembly in recent years, some politicians have been serving in Springfield for decades.

Chief among them House Speaker Michael Madigan, who has been a state representative since 1971.

It's a Madigan ally, lobbyist and attorney Michael Kasper, who successfully argued that two proposed changes to the Illinois constitution are, well, unconstitutional.

A Cook County Judge has ruled that citizens initiatives to change how legislative districts are drawn and another, to institute term limits for legislators, shouldn't be on the November ballot.

The term limits initiative has been largely funded by GOP gubernatorial nominee Bruce Rauner. That campaign's attorney says it's going to appeal.

In a statement, Gov. Quinn's campaign says Rauner has nobody but himself to blame, and says the proposal was "poorly drafted."

But courts didn't like Quinn's attempt at term limits either.

Back in 1994, when he was running for treasurer, Quinn also tried to get term limits before voters.

Like Rauner's version, that proposal was found unconstitutional.

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