SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WLS) --You may be seeing a lot of Governor Bruce Rauner on TV. He's out with a new round of commercials, blaming Democrats for the state's financial problems.
Springfield has exactly two months to come up with a budget. While State Senate leaders continue to negotiate a deal, Democrats are blasting the governor for worrying about his re-election campaign rather than the state budget. Senate President John Cullerton is asking Rauner to hold off on the commercials.
Is he governing or campaigning? As Governor Bruce Rauner toured Illinois Science and Technology Park in Skokie Friday pushing his agenda to grow Illinois' economy, new TV commercials appeared this week featuring a plaid shirt Rauner blaming Democrats for the budget mess.
The governor says they are not campaign commercials. Instead, he says the ads are a way to communicate to the people of Illinois about the need for a balanced budget.
Illinois State Senate President John Cullerton doesn't buy it. The Democratic leader calls the commercials counterproductive.
"This is not governing. Cutting commercials and blasting people who are in the legislature who you want to vote for tough bills it's campaigning not governing and it's not helpful," Cullerton said.
Cullerton says is it's not helping negotiate a budget deal he and Republican Senate Leader Christine Radogno are trying to work out. The governor is leaving it up to them to come up with something by the time spring legislative session ends May 31 to get more on board. Radogno says it may be up to the voters.
"I think public pressure to encourage all elected officials to focus on the state and what is needed," said Radogno.
The state has been without a budget for almost two years. The credit ratings agency Moody's warned Illinois there will be long term damage of Illinois doesn't have a budget soon. Rauner says he is not worried about Moody's warning.
"Rating agencies work for bond houses. They love tax hikes, they love pension referrals, bonds not pensions," Rauner said.
Rauner made his comments Friday while answering employee questions at the technology park. He would not answer reporters' questions.
Meantime, Cullerton and Radogno say both sides have made tax increase and reform compromises. They are hopeful to hammer something out by May 31.