- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 7, 2015

CHICAGO (AP) - Illinois’ Supreme Court is part of a “corrupt system” because of the campaign donations justices receive from attorneys who argue cases before the court, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner said Tuesday.

Speaking before the editorial board of the Daily Herald in Arlington Heights (https://bit.ly/1NSu3j7 ), Rauner’s comment came as the high court considers arguments about a 2013 law that cut retirement benefits for state workers, teachers and retirees.

Rauner noted Illinois elects its judges, allowing trial lawyers who argue cases in front of those judges to give them campaign cash.

“I don’t trust the Supreme Court to be rational in their decisions,” Rauner said. “I think they’re activist judges who want to be legislators.”

The governor said he favors merit selection of judges rather than elections. Currently, high court justices are elected to a first term then face recall elections every 10 years.

A spokesman for the Supreme Court declined to comment on Rauner’s comments.

Rauner’s appearance before the Daily Herald’s editorial board came as the Winnetka Republican tours the state to promote his agenda during the final several weeks of the legislative session.

Rauner has proposed having teachers’ and state workers’ future benefits go into 401(k)-style plans, leaving retirees’ and workers’ accrued benefits alone. Rauner says he would like to amend Illinois’ Constitution to ensure his plan wouldn’t be tossed by the courts.

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Information from: Daily Herald, https://www.dailyherald.com

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