SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- They came from every corner of the state.
Thirty-eight Illinois unions demonstrated at the Illinois Capitol to speak out against Governor Rauner’s agenda. There were at least a couple of thousand people.
The unions first gathered at the old State Capitol before marching to the current one. Helping to lead the charge was Governor Rauner’s main political rival, House Speaker Michael Madigan. The governor is still trying to negotiate a contract with AFSCME, the largest state employee union. They’ve been without one for almost a year. Governor Rauner says taxpayers cannot afford the benefit increases AFSCME is seeking.
The unions also rallied to hammer the governor's larger agenda of curbing collective bargaining rights and workers comp reform.
This rally comes only days after Governor Rauner vetoed a bill that would have sent unresolved labor negotiations to a binding arbiter.
Governor Rauner was not present when the workers arrived at the Capitol. Concerns about the governor's union-weakening agenda is part of what’s up holding up a budget deal.