Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Brady has taken some heat from agencies and politicians alike over his proposed 10 percent across-the-board budget cut plan, and on Friday he told reporters he never proposed it in the first place...even though he discussed the plan during a televised debate.
On Friday, Brady was asked how he could cut 10 percent of the budget without cutting personnel, and he told reporters he believed it was possible, according to video from the Capitol Fax blog. (Scroll down for the video)
From Brady's exchange with a reporter:
Reporter: "Don't you have to cut 10 percent of personnel if you're going to cut 10 percent across-the board? That's your plan."
Brady: "No, you don't have to cut 10 percent of personnel. My plan is to reduce government spending by 10 percent, like the private sector...I've never said across-the-board."
Reporter: "Yes you have."
Brady: "You find it on tape. What I have said is that every of state government is going to have to share in balancing the budget. There's not one area that's not gonna have to be part of the solution to state spending."
Well, Dan Weber from the Capitol Fax blog did find it on tape, and found Brady quoted in a newspaper article saying the same thing.
From an ABC7 Republican governor candidate's debate on January 13, 2010 (Scroll down for video):
"I call for 10 percent across-the-board cuts."
For several months, former Republican Governor Jim Edgar has openly criticized Brady's budget plan--making some wonder why he chose Friday to start denying the plan all together.
In a March interview with WBEZ, it appeared Edgar (along with everyone else in the state) also took Brady's "10 percent across-the-board" statement to mean "10 percent across-the-board:"
"I don't agree with across the board," Edgar told WBEZ. "I think that's a naïve approach. There are some more essential [programs] than others. It's a difference of life and death... we don't want to make a cut that will result in somebody dying. There are some programs in state government that [can mean] the difference between life and death. Those programs you can't cut."
While Brady's budget plan is more confusing than ever, he continues to blast Gov. Pat Quinn for his proposed tax increase, telling a central Illinois radio station last week that "we cannot raise the tax burden" in Illinois.
WATCH Brady's denial of the across-the-board cuts:
WATCH Brady talking about his cut-across-the-board plan here: