James T. Ingram

The non-clinical definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting a different result or outcome. If that’s the case, then re-electing Gov. Bruce Rauner in the upcoming Illinois gubernatorial contest would be the craziest thing that Illinois voters could ever do.

Just imagine if you were the most inept employee on your job. Then, more than likely, you would eventually be fired.

Well, conservative magazine The National Review has described Rauner as the “worst Republican governor in America.” That’s pretty bad, but not surprising, given his track record or lack thereof.

Since his election, Rauner foolishly chose to pick a fight with Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan, the longest-serving and, arguably, the most powerful speaker in the United States, the equivalent of peeing into a 100 mph political headwind.

The result has been an abysmal failure for the state of Illinois, consisting of a budget stalemate in excess of two years, $16 billion in unpaid bills, halted afterschool programs, and shuttered mental health, rehabilitation facilities and services for senior citizens statewide.

Rauner has also demonstrated his insensitivity through his vetoes of minimum salary increases for public school teachers (to $40,000) and of a bill which would have required that corrections officials educate and provide ballots, registration forms and information to persons detained in jails.

The voters of Illinois can’t afford four more years of failure and a political standoffs with the state legislature.

It is time for new leadership in the person of challenger J.B. Pritzker, who is the antithesis and polar opposite of Bruce Rauner.

Pritzker’s key advantage is a cordial working relationship with Madigan, which would promote dialogue and, hopefully, progress between the executive and legislative branches of government.

Secondly, Pritzker is more attuned to the working-class voter, having founded 1871, a successful tech business incubator, which created over 7,000 jobs alone in the Chicago area. He also wants to create a $15-an-hour minimum wage, expand funding for public education and restore vocational education in our high schools.

In addition, Pritzker is an advocate of lowering the burden of excessive property taxes through the legalization of recreational marijuana, which would generate an estimated $700 million in tax revenues.

Finally, Pritzker, is a coalition builder and unifier. While Rauner is busy making Donald Trump-like claims that high crime and high unemployment in Chicago are the result of illegal immigrants (while research proves otherwise), Pritzker proudly speaks of his immigrant grandfather coming to America as a “penniless” refugee and, eventually, being given the opportunity to live the American dream.

And while Rauner the billionaire heartlessly states that an increase in teacher’s wages is an “inefficient way to compensate teachers,” Pritzker has been endorsed by the Illinois Federation of Teachers, the AFL-CIO, former President Barack Obama and Senators Dick Durbin and Tammy Ducksworth.

So as rapper Ludacris might say, “Move Bruce, get out the way”! Illinois cannot afford four more years of stagnation, gridlock, excuses and playing the blame game.

The state sorely lacks true leadership at the helm, and J.B. Pritzker may be just the antidote for the ailing state of affairs in Illinois.

Whatever you decide, please vote on November 6.

Email: jtingram_1960@yahoo.com; Twitter@JamesTIngram.

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