More Than a Year Later, Illinois Reporter’s Beard Just Keeps Growing Amid Budget Impasse

budget beard
Chris Kaergard

An Illinois political reporter's hairy situation just keeps getting hairier as the state's historic budget impasse continues.

Peoria Journal Star reporter Chris Kaergard has been growing his beard out for more than a year now after vowing to not shave until lawmakers reach a deal.

Unfortunately for him, lawmakers failed to come to an agreement before the end of the spring legislative session last month and the impasse is headed for its second year. 

Kaergard said it started as a bit of a gag last May when lawmakers adjourned in the spring without a budget for the 2016 fiscal year, which started July 1. But now Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and the Democrat-controlled Legislature are still at an impasse, with the one-year mark fast approaching.

The reporter's beard growing journey was posted online last summer alongside a timeline of lawmakers' actions on the budget.

The newspaper said it posted the pictures and timeline on "Day 85" as Kaergard's budget beard symbolizes a "testament to the egos" running the branches of government. 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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