By Nancy Thorner –
Governor-Elect Bruce Rauner celebrated a “No Cronies Christmas” with the Illinois Policy Institute at its annual “Gifts of the Free Market” party in the Library of its Chicago headquarters Wednesday. The group’s CEO John Tillman and Vice President Kristina Rasmussen, along with the 300 members and friends gathered to celebrate Christmas cheer, enjoy incredible company, and applaud the fantastic gifts of the free market system, the greatest force for good in the human sphere.
To wrap up 2014, the group noted three victories achieved in Illinois: the defeat of three tax-hike proposals, stopping a state-funded ObamaCare exchange, and helping thousands of Illinoisans opt out of union membership.
After winning his bid for governor in November, Rauner looked at every budget in every department, and found that things were a lot worse than he had originally thought them to be. It was then that governor-elect Rauner requested citizen help and investment to turn around state government. Presently Rauner is looking for talented individuals — 500 in the next 60 days — who will be true pubic servants. They must display talent, integrity, and principle and the willingness to treat Illinoisans with respect. Rauner’s final remarks, “I will run the government from Springfield.” Unlike Governor Quinn, Rauner will reside in the “The Governor’s Mansion” located in Springfield. Rauner stayed to shake hands and pose for photos after his comments.
Acknowledgments were extended by CEO John Tillman to Institute’s heroes from 2014. They included individuals, donors, and activists who took extraordinary steps to make Illinois a freer place to live and work.
Given the still fresh news of Judy Topinka’s unexpected death earlier in the day, within the room everyone was talking about who would replace her as comptroller.
Complimentary food and drinks were provided. Vocalist Lisa Sroka and Tony Jurich on keyboard performed Christmas carols and music of the season early in the evening, which likewise contributed to the festive mood experienced by those who participated in the 2014 Gifts of the Free Market Christmas party hosted by the Illinois Policy Institute.
Photos by Mark Weyermuller