SOUTHERN ILLINOIS (KFVS) - Illinois needs a leader who can improve the state’s reputation.
Several people are running for governor, but the two main candidates are Democrat J.B. Pritzker and the incumbent, Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner.
Harvard did a study several years back, before Rauner was elected and researchers put Illinois as number two on its list of most illegally corrupt states and number five on its list of illegally corrupt states in politics.
So which candidate can change that perception?
“We need term limits on our elected officials so nobody's getting rich from political power and office for too long and we need fair maps, meaning we need districts that aren't drawn to lock in an incumbent, but we have competitive general elections,” Rauner said. “That's good for to party democracy and that will help and a lot of the corruption. I'm fighting against a very broken machine Madigan's been in power for 35 years he's become rich from high property taxes. He owns a property tax appeal law firm on the side and my opponent this guy named Pritzker he's part of that corruption."
"Currently we have a governor who bad mouths the state of Illinois wherever he goes - he invited governors from other states to go on TV and badmouth the state of Illinois, said Pritzker. “So I think you want a governor who knows what's great about the state of Illinois, that's going to extoll the virtues of the state of Illinois - our people are the best thing about this state. We have some of the most educated, dedicated people in the world, and that's what's going to bring jobs to Illinois and help us grow the economy.
What can the candidates do to create economic opportunity in southern Illinois where jobless numbers show 6.6 percent unemployment in Hardin and Johnson counties?
“Here in southern Illinois, it’s extraordinarily important to attract businesses to areas where that happened in some time now, but growing small business,” said Pritzker. “That’s where most jobs come from, so we’re gonna make sure we create small business loan programs, make sure we have technical assistance and mentorship for people who’ve got creative and entrepreneurship to grow jobs.”
"I'm fighting to help businesses grow here in southern Illinois in order to get this job done,” said Rauner. “We need to cut the regulations and cut the taxes we have twice as many business regulations as the states around us. Have we also have some of the highest taxes income taxes and property taxes. That's why this election is so important. I'm striving to bring down taxes and the corruption help businesses grow here."
Here is what the candidates said about enrollment at SIU.
“We’ve been under funding our universities for decades," said Rauner. Madigan and his machine have cut states support for schools in that higher ed. Now in my second term I want to have record funding for SIU and our state schools, just as I did for K to 12. And again, we’ll get that done, not by raising taxes but by growing the economy faster and getting government reforms. through pension reform, and health care reform, we can save billions of dollars and put that money into education."
"I put forward a plan that will expand the map grant program that's the scholarship program for kids here in Illinois,” said Pritzker. “I want to expand it to 70,000 more kids under worse round or that program was frankly under siege people didn't know whether they get their map grant lots of kids chose not to go to school 72,000 kids in fact chose not to go to school in the state. They didn't know if they get map grants."
A Paul Simon Public Policy Poll conducted more than a month ago showed Pritzker up 22 points.
Governor Rauner is not giving up the fight as he’s campaigning across the state in the final days leading up to the midterms including a rally Nov. 2 in Harrisburg.