Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has yet to officially announce he is running for re-election and his answer to that question Tuesday left more wondering if he might choose not to run again.
Last December, he forwarded $50 million of his personal fortune to his campaign committee, signaling to others who might consider challenging him within the Republican party. A campaign spokesman insists Rauner’s petitions are on the street now and will be filed in December.
However, when asked directly about his re-election on Tuesday, Rauner said, “If you just watch and see how I’m working, the one thing I can say to you is I will never give up on working to protect Illinois, working to create a better future for the people of Illinois. I will never give up, I will never back down, never give in. Our system is broken, it’s fundamentally broken and I believe that we can have a movement, a movement of all people in Illinois.”
“It doesn’t matter what political party, doesn’t matter what background, or what part of the state, we can have a movement to dramatically change Illinois and improve our state,” the first-term governor continued. “And I believe we can do this in the coming months, I will do everything I can to help lead that movement. We need to change, our system is broken. We need dramatic change.”
Rauner added that “this is not about Democrats versus Republicans, this is about the people against a corrupt system, that is failing the people, we will change it by being strong together.”
Since Rauner signed the controversial abortion bill House Bill 40 last month, conservative members of his own party have called for a primary challenger.
GOP State Rep. Jeanne Ives said she is “hoping that he decides on his own” not to run. The governor said “reasonable people can reasonably disagree, this was a very emotional issue,” adding, “I respect both sides; I tried to find compromise.”
A spokeswoman for Rauner said “there will be an announcement soon” on the governor’s re-election efforts.