Bruce Rauner; who? Rich Miller’s column on Aug. 20 titled “Rauner has a Rahm problem in campaign” is a bit premature.
The GOP party activists and the rank-and-file electorate are still learning about the state of Illinois candidates for governor, their messages, and who they are. Two days ago, the Associated Press ran a story on Bruce Rauner, the new boy on the block. The near half-page story was that the big donors are beginning to throw their support for him.
Money isn’t everything in politics. If it were, Steve Forbes would have been president in 1996.
This is the identification stage of the campaign. Rauner has the lowest name recognition. The known factors in the state race, state Sens. Bill Brady and Kirk Dillard and Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford, will be revisiting their past. Brady either lacked the fire-in-the-belly, or his arrogance cost him the election the last time around. He lost to Gov. Pat Quinn, who is running for re-election.
Dillard has a twofold problem. Not only did he jump ship to cut an ad for Obama in 2008, but he has to lean on former Gov. Jim Edgar instead of standing on his own two feet.
Now we learn that Rauner has aided and abetted the enemy by helping Rahm Emanuel launch his business as an investment banker. Then Rauner, a venture capitalist, retained Emanuel’s firm.
And these two men are running on the Republican ticket? For Republicans, this will be a values campaign.