Democrats Ponder Rauner's Contender As Budget Impasse Continues

Jun 13, 2016

Illinois US Senator Dick Durbin continues to tamp down speculation that he might run for governor in 2018.

Credit BRIAN MACKEY / NPR ILLINOIS

Illinois is approaching a full year without a budget — owing largely to the stalemate between Republican Governor Bruce Rauner and the Democrats who control the legislature.

That has some Democrats looking ahead to 2018 — whispering about Durbin as a possible candidate.

“They should stop. Because as far as I am concerned, that is a waste of time and a waste of breath. I’ve got a great job representing this state in Washington. My plans do not include running for any other office, and I’m going to do the best I can in Washington,” Durbin said.

Other Democratic names being floated Iinclude former governor Pat Quinn, former U. of I. Board of Trustees chairman Chris Kennedy, and state treasurer Mike Frerichs.

Durbin suggested people speculating about the 2018 election should redirect their energy into solving the budget crisis.