ILLINOIS | IL-gov

Rauner Attacks Pritzker on Finances

The attack opened up Rauner’s own vulnerability on the issue of tax evasion.

Danielle Bernstein
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Danielle Bernstein
Dec. 6, 2017, 11:09 a.m.

Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) went after billionaire J.B. Pritzker (D) for his finances on Tuesday, “suggesting that the only way the billionaire could have reported just $16 million in income last year was if he was a lousy investor or a sneaky tax dodger — or both.”

“The Rauner campaign released a statement on Tuesday morning, accusing the Pritzker family of a ‘history of off-shore holdings and avoiding taxes.’ At issue is the lack of information about Pritzker’s trusts.

“In response, the Pritzker campaign eventually denied the tax evasion allegations,” saying “the trusts involve ‘other people, businesses, etc and it would be improper to reveal this info because he is running for governor.’” (Chicago Sun-Times)

OFFSHORE ACCOUNTS. Even as Rauner attacked Pritzker for offshore assets, he admitted “that some of his own fortune could be socked away there as well. … Rauner had his own troubles explaining his tax bill in 2014, after his returns revealed that most of the millions he’d made in the years leading up to his candidacy had been taxed at 15 percent, less than half the top federal rate for the wealthy” by employing a tax avoidance strategy. “Rauner’s economic disclosure forms when he first ran for governor revealed that he was an investor in several of” the private equity form “GTCR’s investment pools registered in the Cayman Islands.

“Asked Tuesday about his current holdings in offshore investments, Rauner dismissed the question as ‘spin.’” (Chicago Tribune)

BISS BITES. While Rauner and Pritzker sparred over their finances, state Sen. Daniel Biss’ (D) campaign called the candidates “two sides of the same shiny gold coin,” adding that “success in business doesn’t equate to success in government.” (Capitol Fax)

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