Bruce Rauner is unleashing another round of robo-calls slamming Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn.
This time, the Republican gubernatorial hopeful and multi-millionaire private equity businessman targets voters in seven districts with Democratic state representatives who are opposed to Quinn's pitch to make the state income tax hike permanent.
The calls come a day after Quinn met with House Democrats, including Speaker/Ringmaster Michael Madigan, in an attempt to curry support for extending 2011's temporary state income tax increase past its Jan. 1 expiration date. Madigan, who endorses the plan, said the House was "significantly" short of the 60 votes needed to maintain the tax rate at 5 percent. (On New Year's Day, the personal income tax will drop to 3.75 percent; with midterm elections on the horizon, it's no wonder that Democrats who'd otherwise vote "yes" are wary of approving a measure that could anger constituents and end their stints in Springfield.)
The robo-script, via Rich Miller: "Hello, this is Bruce Rauner. Yesterday, Governor Pat Quinn and Mike Madigan held a secret backroom meeting with State Representatives, pressuring them to raise your income taxes. Pat Quinn thinks you don’t pay enough in taxes – but I disagree. There’s still time to help me fight Pat Quinn’s tax increase – and to let State Representative [insert name] know you want [him/her] to protect you from higher income taxes. If you oppose higher income taxes and want to get more involved in my campaign, call me at 312-583-0704. Paid for by Citizens for Rauner, Inc."
Last month, Rauner made the mistake of getting on his old pal Rahm Emanuel's bad side when using a similar telephone tactic to slam the Democratic Chicago mayor's bill to raise property taxes by $250 million to shore up city pension funds.
"Bruce Rauner hasn’t even gotten to Springfield, and he’s already acting like a career politician who plays politics with people’s pensions and livelihood," barked Emanuel's spokesperson at the time.
Behold! Audio of Rauner's latest robo-call where he sounds less like a career politician and more like a "robot" politican with pre-programmed vocal gravitas.