Comptroller candidates spar in debate

The two candidates for Illinois comptroller traded barbs on who would have stopped lawmaker pay first.

Comptroller Leslie Munger and Chicago City Clerk Susana Mendoza did their best on Tuesday night to tell Chicago’s WTTW that each was the one who came up with the idea of placing lawmaker pay in line with the rest of Illinois’ back-order of bills.

Incumbent Republican Leslie Munger said she followed the law on lawmaker pay until she figured out a way to send them to the back of the multi-billion dollar line of bills.

“There’s been a lot of criticism from my opponent on that, but frankly, she didn’t come up with the idea before I did. I enacted it and now she’s trying to claim it in her commercials dishonestly saying that she would put legislators in line when I did it in April,” she said.

Ex-Democratic lawmaker Mendoza criticized Munger for waiting to stop pay and said she would have stopped legislator pay sooner, although she did not provide any examples of her making such statements prior to April.

“It’s not being dishonest to say that legislators shouldn’t get preferential treatment,” she said. “I would continue that policy.”

Mendoza made every effort to tie Munger to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

“It shouldn’t take you a lot of thought to decide whether or not you support Trump,” Mendoza said.

Moderator Phil Ponce pressed Munger on whether or not she supports or will vote for Trump. Munger admitted that there was a lot of division at the top of the GOP ticket and said that her vote is a private issue.

Munger was quick to take Mendoza to task for supporting years of unbalanced budgets in her decade as a state representative.

“While I was working in human services Susana was in the legislature voting for all the unbalanced budgets, pension holidays and tax increases that put us in this place under Speaker Madigan.”

The comptroller is responsible for cutting the state’s checks and managing the state’s backlog of bills.

–Illinois News Network

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