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Illinois Senate Democrats Say They've 'Hit Their Limit' In Budget Negotiations

Senate Democrats attempted a series of test votes on items in the so-called “grand bargain;” but Republicans refused to go along, saying more negotiation is needed to reach a deal they can support.

Senate President John Cullerton says his Democrats have gone as far as they can go in meeting Gov. Bruce Rauner’s non-budget demands and charged that Rauner and his team “don’t know how to govern.”

“At some point in time, you have to just agree, ‘OK, let’s make a deal,’" Cullerton said, "and you have to understand the other side and understand how far they can go. And what’s at stake here is a disaste after the next 20 days, if we don’t have any revenue.”

Republican Senate leader Christine Radogno says she thinks Democrats and Republicans are close to settling their differences on issues like workers’ compensation, a property-tax freeze, and an income-tax hike. This year's legislative session ends May 31.

Brian Mackey formerly reported on state government and politics for NPR Illinois and a dozen other public radio stations across the state. Before that, he was A&E editor at The State Journal-Register and Statehouse bureau chief for the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.