Republican Governor Bruce Rauner and Democratic House Speaker Michael Madigan may not agree on much when it comes to the Illinois budget.
But as they negotiate, both men apparently find it helpful to accuse the other of pushing for a tax increase.
Rauner, Madigan and the legislature’s other top leaders discussed the budget privately in Chicago.
After, Madigan said it will be difficult to pass any tax hike before a new crop of legislators are sworn in next month.
"Gov. Rauner wants to do a lame duck tax increase. So he wants to raise taxes between now and Jan. 11. That proposal is not doing well because both Democrats and Republicans are against it in a lame duck session,” Madigan said.
Last week, the Illinois House took a symbolic vote that put a majority of state representatives on the record as opposing a lame duck tax increase.
The governor did not speak after Tuesday’s meeting. But his spokeswoman issued a statement that says Madigan is the only one who has suggested a higher income tax.
Illinois has been running up a deficit since a temporary higher income tax expired in 2014 at Rauner’s suggestion.
Rauner wants Democrats to pass term limits and a property tax freeze in exchange for his signing on to a temporary spending plan.
A current stopgap budget expires at the end of this month, which will leave universities and many social services without state funding.