By Sara Burnett | The Associated Press
The public spat between Gov. Bruce Rauner and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel reached a new level Friday, as the mayor said the Republican should stop name-calling and “do your job” and Rauner responded with plans to send the Democrat a “dead fish.”
The two lawmakers — who have previously worked and vacationed together and describe themselves as friends — have been in a back-and-forth over a months-long state budget impasse, city finances and Rauner’s push to curb public-employee union influence.
Rauner’s office on Thursday criticized Emanuel for pushing through a record property tax increase and asking Springfield for financial help while being unwilling to back Rauner’s legislative agenda, including letting local governments opt out of collective bargaining with public-employee unions.
On Friday, Emanuel fired back.
“I would just say this to the governor and the governor’s office: You’re 120 days behind budget, $6 billion and counting in not paying bills,” Emanuel said. “Stop name-calling and just do your job.”
Hours later Rauner walked into a local meat market in Chicago for a press event and – after picking up some pork chops and a beef tenderloin – asked the owner if he also sold fish. The governor bought a $4.87 frozen tuna steak, which he proudly displayed to reporters, saying he planned to send it to Emanuel.