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Rauner ‘78 Wins Illinois Primary

Rauner3.jpgBruce Rauner ‘78 won the Republican primary in Illinois yesterday. One of his key positions reflects a longstanding belief expressed in this space:

Rauner says unions have “bribed” lawmakers with campaign cash to keep compensation and benefits unreasonably high compared to counterparts in the private sector, and he vows to push for a cut in pay for public employees.

At Dartmouth, the source of the staff’s overcompensation was not bribery, but rather Jim Wright’s attempt to curry favor with the College’s non-faculty employees, and his misguided notions of social justice that placed staff salaries and benefits over students’ education in his hierarchy of values.

Rauner also advocates the reform of Illinois’ pension system away from defined benefits:

The only way to fix the state’s fiscal woes, Rauner insists, is to effectively do away with the current pension system, though he would not seek to eliminate benefits already earned by public workers. Instead, Rauner says, going forward they all should be shifted into 401(k)-style plans that don’t guarantee minimum retirement benefits but give workers the option to invest the money.

Workers in the private sector were long ago shifted to the more volatile 401(k) plans, he argues.

Such a change was put in place at Dartmouth well over a decade ago.

Addendum: Scott Johnson ‘73, who writes for PowerLine, has a daughter who chose to go to a little school in New Haven (no, not Southern Connecticut State University). Despite such evidence of poor judgment, Eliana Johnson is now the media editor at the National Review Online, and today she wrote a thoughtful column about Bruce Rauner’s primary victory: Is This Illinois’s Scott Walker? Worth a read.

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