Governor replaces chief aide with conservative group’s CEO

SPRINGFIELD — Gov. Bruce Rauner is replacing his chief of staff with the head of the conservative-leaning Illinois Policy Institute.

Rauner announced Richard Goldberg is stepping down effective Monday. The new chief of staff will be Kristina Rasmussen, who served as president and chief operating officer of the Illinois Policy Institute. Rauner has previously donated to the group and hired other staff from the organization, which runs a legal center and a news service.

Rauner cites Rasmussen’s work “to defend taxpayers.”

Legislators recently approved a state budget that includes an income tax increase, over the Republican governor’s objections. Several Republicans backed the plan.

Goldberg has been a chief aide to Rauner for over three years, including during the 2014 gubernatorial campaign. He plans to return to foreign policy and national security consulting.

The Illinois Policy Institute is the owner of Illinois News Network, a syndication service utilized by this newspaper.

–Associated Press

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