Afterward, union leader and lifelong Democrat Ruby Robinson, of Aurora, was furious. “Not one other vote will I cast for a Democrat who is posing as a Democrat but who’s actually acting out as a Republican, as a Tea Partier, and that’s exactly what Gov. Quinn and his group is doing today,” said Robinson, a longtime Department of Employment Security employee and head of an AFSCME local. “They’re carrying out the same kind of activities as Gov. [Scott] Walker did in Wisconsin.” -- Sun-TimesThere is no Chicago Republican Party and statewide the GOP is in shambles. So it's been left to the Democrats to lead the state's great pension grab on behalf of the corporate reformers. They may pay a big political price for their class loyalty.
I almost felt sorry for Gov. Pat Quinn, watching him practically get run out of the State Fair yesterday by thousands of pissed-off union members --almost, but not quite. I'm only sorry that I wasn't there to join in the festivities along with my brothers and sisters from AFSCME Council 31, the Illinois Education Association and the Illinois AFL-CIO, among others, as the Sun-Times reports, "all drilling Quinn for wanting to gut public employee pensions, lay off thousands of state workers and close state facilities."
Quinn, who I met years back as an LSC member at our daughter's elementary school, has gone from being a fairly progressive Democrat to a complete toady for the corporate interests. Oldest story in politics, I suppose. He's not the only one of course. But he and Democrats like Boss Madigan, with help from Rahm Emanuel, have been leading the leading the pension grab rather than taxing the giant corporations in order to balance the budget.
Quinn has even made up a cock-and-bull story about some alleged 87-year-old pensioner who's pulling down $120K in retirement payments, to make his case. MiC, posting on brother Fred's blog, does a pretty good job of debunking the guv's B.S.
Speaking of Brother Fred, he is heading down to Springfield tomorrow along with thousands of other union members, to raise even more hell in the pension fight. Fred is now featured in a great video put together by the CTU, called "Chicago Teachers Union Vs. Astroturf Billionaires." You get the idea. Don't miss it. You'll even catch a cameo appearance by Rahm himself, fronting for right-wing union bashers EAG.