Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has at least one non-negotiable item on his wish list for the spring legislative session: passing legislative term limits.
Rich Miller of Capitol Fax explains:
The new legislative "working groups" designed to hammer out compromises on Gov. Bruce Rauner's "Turnaround Agenda" finally began meeting in secret last week. At least one of them got a bit heated.
A working group tasked with writing ethics legislation hit a brick wall right off the bat when it came time to discuss Rauner term limits constitutional amendment. Two Democrats on the committee reportedly said there was plenty of time to deal with the amendment next year, since it couldn't be placed onto the ballot until November of 2016.
Nope, said the administration representative, according to sources. The governor wants that amendment passed by the end of the spring legislative session. When he was met with stiff resistance, the administration official reportedly became agitated and more than implied that if the constitutional amendment isn't passed by May 31st, then the governor would not support any revenue increases to patch next fiscal year's massive $6 billion hole.
The Democrats were shocked. Would the governor really threaten to crash the entire government over a term limits bill?
(Read the rest of Miller's take on Rauner and term limits at Reboot Illinois.)
Another amendment question that was planned for the 2014 ballot but didn't make it was the redistricting-reform measure. The push to see an independent commission, instead of legislatures, draw legislative maps also has seen a resurgence. A new campaign called the Independent Map Amendment launched last week. They aim to gather 600,000 signatures from Illinoisans who want to see redistricting reform, and to include an amendment question on the 2016 statewide ballot.
(Read more about the campaign and its goals at Reboot Illinois.)