Gov. candidates react to state's lowered credit rating

December 9, 2009 5:08:11 PM PST
The Moody's Investor Service downgraded Illinois' general obligations from A1 to A2. The only state with a worse credit rating is California. Moody's cited the state's nearly $12 billion budget deficit as the reason for the downgrade. The downgrade will make it more difficult for Illinois to borrow what it desperately needs to maintain services at their current levels.

Our financial position has gotten worse than it was a year ago," said Andy McKenna, (R) candidate for governor.

McKenna spoke at least three hours before Moody's downgraded the state of Illinois' debt. He is one voice in a chorus of would-be governors of both parties who accuse Governor Pat Quinn of downplaying the seriousness of the state's financial problems.

"Governor Quinn is not being straightforward. We could run out of cash," said McKenna.

The Dan Hynes' campaign called it a rebuke of Governor Quinn's leadership.

Quinn's campaign responded Tuesday in a statement saying, "Union leaders have praised Governor Pat Quinn's vision of economic development and his effective leadership in passing Jobs and Growth for Illinois, the state's first comprehensive public works program in more than a decade. Over the next six years, Illinois Jobs Now! will create and retain more than 439,000 jobs, helping to revive Illinois' economy.

On Monday, Quinn indicated the state would pay its bills even later. Quinn said the state would survive his Democratic primary opponent Dan Hynes' refusal to sign off on a $500 million short term loan to pay state bill through the end of the year.

"If we don't do the cash flow loan, there is delay. There's delay until the month of January, roughly a month from now," said Governor Pat Quinn.

Elsewhere in gubernatorial politics, Republican Senator Bill Brady of Bloomington launched an ad campaign on cable television.

McKenna has already spent over a $1 million on broadcast television ads. McKenna said Governor Quinn is his opponent, not Brady or the other five Republican candidates.

"He can say what he wants and he can spend a lot of money but his ads haven't resonated very well with the voters," said Senator Bill Brady, candidate for governor.

On Tuesday, another development in the Democratic primary campaign for governor- the Illinois AFL-CIO decided not to make an endorsement.


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