Thursday, October 04, 2007

Relationships 101

Rep. Tom Cross, the Republican leader in his chamber, had the quote of the day from the House floor before lawmakers finished their first week of the annual fall session.

“Perhaps, at least at the higher level, we’ve had an inability to communicate to get the budget done, to take care of capital, to take care of RTA, to take care of gaming. And I have a suggestion,” he said.

He cited psychologist and author Kate Wachs, who’s been interviewed by such media entities as the Chicago Tribune and Oprah Winfrey.

“She’s a nationally acclaimed relationship expert, and she’s written a book, Relationships for Dummies,” Cross said. “And she has a very good chapter on good communication, the bolts. One of the things she talks about is finding compromises that work for you and your partners. And I thought maybe she could come to a leaders’ meeting.”

Lawmakers return to the Capitol Wednesday, October 10 for three more scheduled days of the fall session. What do we have to look forward to? Lots or little, depending on whether the legislative leaders decide to hold off on major actions until the House holds committees on gaming and mass transit later in October. Until then, we wonder:
- Will Senate President Emil Jones decide to do the same as the House and let his members vote to override some of Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s $460 million in budget cuts?
- Will Jones decide to act on the House version of a property tax assessment cap that phases out in three years or continue to side with the governor and advance language to make the cap permanent?
- Will House Speaker Michael Madigan allow budget implementation bills to be processed so schools can get their delayed state aid payments by November?
- And will the governor make a public appearance in the Capitol before the scheduled last day of the fall session, October 12?

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