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Rahm Says Rauner Uses 'The Donald Trump Playbook' As CPS Funding Tensions Build

By aaroncynic in News on Jun 2, 2016 8:51PM

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The next meetup at the $100,000-a-year wine club could be awkward for Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Gov. Bruce Rauner. Emanuel compared his one-time wine drinking buddy to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump after Rauner stood firm on the state education budget impasse. Rauner's latest comments, made downstate on Wednesday, have further driven a wedge between Chicago and the rest of Illinois.

“Bruce Rauner is following the Donald Trump playbook of demonizing one group of people for his political advantage,” Emanuel said in a statement, according to the Tribune.

Rauner called the statement from his friend of 20 years a “goofy personal attack” and compared him to Teachers Union President Karen Lewis. “That's not helpful. I'm starting to think Rahm is taking his speaking lessons from Karen or something,” Rauner told the Tribune. “This is not helpful. We've got to focus on the facts and what's constructive.”

While Rahm and Rauner are at odds, there’s also an escalating war of words between The Chicago Teachers Union and Chicago Public Schools CEO Forrest Claypool. The CTU blasted Claypool, Emanuel and Rauner for failing to pass education funding in Springfield in a Thursday press conference. On Wednesday, Claypool said without funding from the state legislature, schools might not open in the fall.

CTU President Karen Lewis and Vice President Jesse Sharkey at a press conference on March 23, 2016. (Photo by Aaron Cynic/Chicagoist)

"Running down to Springfield and begging for money is not a plan," CTU Vice President Jesse Sharkey told WGN.

Claypool and Emanuel were banking on a last minute deal between lawmakers and Rauner on a budget that would’ve funded education, a bet that given the last year of deadlock in the Capitol, was a poor one. The District is facing potentially devastating cuts without funding, which they say needs to include revenue raising options.

“The blame is in City Hall on the 5th Floor for not being consistent or being coherent or having a real plan for funding schools,” CTU President Karen Lewis said Thursday, according to the Sun-Times. Lewis also said that she’d be open to a contract that didn’t include annual raises, provided that Emanuel and the state consider other revenue sources the CTU has previously proposed.

“We still want our steps and lanes, and we could live maybe without a 2 or 3 percent raise. How about that?” Lewis said.