SPRINGFIELD-Even while the two were once roommates, Gov. Pat Quinn was anything but chummy Wednesday toward Texas Gov. Rick Perry and his media campaign to lure Illinois businesses to the Lone Star State.
“I know him. I can give you three reasons why he’s wrong – one, two and three,” Quinn told reporters Wednesday after announcing a transportation improvement plan. “I was his roommate, and we went to Iraq and Afghanistan. He’s a big talker, and I think people saw that in the presidential campaign.”
Perry has launched ads on multiple Chicago radio stations and has bought ads in Crain’s Chicago Business this week to “help businesses learn more about the Lone Star State’s low taxes, predictable regulations, fair courts and skilled workforce,” a statement from Perry’s office said.
A marketing firm called TexasOne paid for Perry’s ads, which Perry’s office said cost more than $80,000 in total. The Texan governor plans to travel to Chicago on Monday to meet with business leaders in the biotechnology and financial industries.
“This is Texas Gov. Rick Perry, and I have a word of advice for employers frustrated by Illinois’ short-sighted approach to business: you need to get out while there’s still time,” Perry said in a prepared statement. “The escape route leads straight to Texas, where limited government, low taxes and a pro-business environment are creating more jobs than any other state.”
On Wednesday, Quinn begged to differ.
“Companies are coming to Illinois…because of our highly skilled, educated workforce, because of our excellent transportation, because of a government that works with companies,” he said. “Those are all good things, and we know how to do it in Illinois. We don’t need any advice from Gov. Perry.”
But after taking a couple of political jabs at Perry, Quinn refused to answer an equally, if not less, political question regarding potential Democratic primary challenger Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s substantial funding lead over him.
“I’m not going to get into political things,” Quinn said. “I said that the other day.”
Instead, Quinn took the opportunity to remark on Monday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon, saying “public safety is really what we should focus on.”
“…I think all of Illinois, all of America, we’re with the people of Boston and the people who were at that race. So I think that’s the important thing to keep in mind right now.”