June 18, 2024

McHenry County residents protest Gov. Bruce Rauner at Crystal Lake appearance

Protesters called for Republican governor to end state budget impasse

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CRYSTAL LAKE – Members of the Democratic Party of McHenry County and McHenry County Progressives participated in a protest Saturday night protesting Gov. Bruce Rauner and the state budget impasse.

The protest was from 5 to 6 p.m. in front of the Holiday Inn, 800 S. Illinois Route 31, Crystal Lake. It was coordinated by Brett Bieder of the McHenry County Progressives. Robert Rosenberg, a member of the Progressives, was one of about 50 people in attendance.

“We’re protesting the need to have a budget in the state of Illinois. Not having one hurts working families, and it hurts small businesses. Bruce needs to get it done,” Rosenberg said.

“It’s been too long without a budget, the families are who really suffer while Michael Madigan and Bruce Rauner fight over the details,” Rosenberg added. “What we want is a clean budget with no collateral legislative issues, so Illinois can get on with its business.”

The protest was held in response to the Republican Party of McHenry County’s Lincoln Dinner, a special event held Saturday night. Rauner was at the event, according to a GOP official who was at the dinner.

Meanwhile, protesters stood outside the hotel to make their voices heard.

"This is for all the working people of Illinois right now. [Rauner] needs to do his one job, which is pass the budget," Woodstock resident Joe Galli.

“I’m really interested in Gov. Rauner passing a budget so our schools and social services can get the funding they need,” Crystal Lake resident Katie Kerley said.

Crystal Lake Sgt. Mike Bennett said the protest was peaceful and no arrests were made.

Illinois has been without a budget for nearly two years.

Future protests are a possibility until a state budget passes, Rosenberg said.

Editor's Note: This story has been updated to show that Brett Bieder was the organizer behind the event.