Rauner, Pritzker begin campaigning for November election

CHICAGO -- After a short night of sleep following Tuesday night's primaries, Governor Bruce Rauner and J.B. Pritzker were back in campaign mode.

The general election is underway and the first campaign commercials came out.

On the Republican side, Rauner is working to unify the party after a primary scare from Jeanne Ives. Not helping matters, Rauner declared victory in Tuesday night’s election before speaking to Ives. It’s customary for the loser to call the winner, but Ives choose not to call Rauner.

“Primaries are very divisive but now is the time to move past that to come together,” Rauner said.

The fall campaign will feature Rauner, the multimillionaire verses Pritzker, the billionaire.

On Wednesday, Rauner seemed to downplay his wealth and resources.

“I will be outspent by Pritzker. Pritzker inherited billions of dollars. I didn’t inherit a nickel. My grandparents lived in a double wide trailer. He’s going to outspend us but he doesn’t have a message. He’s part of the culture of corruption,” Rauner said.

Pritzker, in a brief interview with WGN News, said he’s ready to spend whatever it takes to defeat Rauner.

“The biggest obstacle to making change in the state of Illinois is Bruce Rauner. Let’s go beat him and then let’s get the right campaign finance laws in place,” he said.

In a fresh line of attack, Rauner is labeling Pritzker a tax dodger. A recent Chicago Tribune investigation of Pritzker’s off shore trusts has raised questions about the billionaire’s finances. -à> LINK

“I’m pleased and proud that although those trusts were created generations ago and I had nothing to do with that that I’ve dedicated all of it to charity and none of it comes to me personally,” Pritzker said.

Rauner is calling Pritzker a tax and spend liberal. Pritzker said he wants to lower the overall tax burden for Illinoisans, but he’s not calling for a repeal of the income tax hike the legislature passed last summer.

“ Bruce Rauner has not proposed how he’s going to pay the bills of the state. All he wants to say is that he wants lower the property tax rates, he wants to lower the income tax rates, but he doesn’t say how he’s going to pay for the budget of the state of Illinoisans,” Pritzker said.

Pivoting to the general election, both men are fine-tuning their messages.

“He is corrupt at his core Pritzker is corrupt at his core, self-dealing at this core. And the people need to know the truth about Pritzker,” Rauner said.

“Let’s lower the cost of health care in the state – I’ve put out a plan to do that. Let’s lower the cost of university and community college tuition and let’s create jobs in the state and raise wages,” Pritzker said.

Pritzker and Rauner have already pumped more than $150 million into the election.