The appeal of Bruce Rauner… the phenomenon of Bruce Rauner… is that he will do things differently than have been done in Illinois politics. While that remains to be seen, he hasn’t even been inaugurated after all, many were convinced to vote on him in the belief that he will take Illinois away from its insider, good-ol’-boy ways. The plaid flannel shirts and cheap watches went far.
Full disclosure: I used to do work for Adam Andrzejewski’s organization For the Good of Illinois. If you believe that this clouds and invalidates my opinion, please stop reading.
While the campaign theatrics were successful for Governor-Elect Rauner, the time for substance over style has begun. The Rauner transition team is filled with insiders that would seem to run contrary with his outsider image. The news coming from his camp has made many, myself included, remembering the saying “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” In the tragedy of Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka’s death, the opportunity of positive change has come.
In Illinois we have two constitutional offices that control the purse strings: Treasurer and Comptroller. The Treasurer takes in the revenue; the Comptroller disburses payments. Judy Baar Topinka was re-elected to the office of Comptroller this past November, but passed away on December 10th. The least wasteful, and best outcome for the people of Illinois would be to combine the offices of Comptroller and Treasurer. Unfortunately, the Illinois State Constitution doesn’t allow for much that is good for the people of Illinois. Until a change to the state constitution is made, we will have a Comptroller. Outgoing governor Pat Quinn has appointed Topinka’s chief-of-staff to hold the office until the expiring term ends in January.
Back to Bruce.
This is Rauner’s chance to shake up Springfield. Founder of For the Good of Illinois and the Open the Books App Adam Andrzejewski has applied for the appointment that Governor Rauner will need to fill on January 21st. Appointing Andrzejewski would be the bold, status quo bucking move that Rauner’s campaign promised. Andrzejewski has worked hard to uncover corruption and government waste with his OpentheBooks App as well as his many appearances on television and radio. Among the highlights of the light his organization has shown:
- Corruption and waste at the College of DuPage
- SBA loans that were going to those that would seem to be too wealthy to need them
- Bonuses paid out by the scandal plagued Veterans Administration
- Corruption at the Center for Disease Control
- Suing the former Comptroller’s office for failure to comply with FOIA requirements
The last point should be kept in mind to remove any notions that Andrzejewski is a partisan pick. Anyone familiar with his work knows that Adam has many enemies on the Republican side of the aisle.
Bruce Rauner made news a few weeks ago when he said he found budget tricks that Quinn and the Democrats left for us in the last budget. I say let Adam Andrzejewski have at it. Is there a better steward to remove the clouds from Illinois’ mirky fiscal mess?