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Rauner Praises Trump Admin on Friday, Pretends It Did Not Happen by Monday

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What happened to Bruce Rauner this weekend?
At a press conference today, Governor Bruce Rauner repeatedly dodged questions about his support for President Donald Trump, despite having spoken at a pro-Trump rally just days ago with Vice President Mike Pence. After deflecting two questions today, Rauner was asked if he supported President Trump. Rauner replied that he’s “very supportive of many things.”
It was a different story at Friday’s pro-Trump rally. Rauner praised the Trump White House by saying, “Mike Pence did it for the Hoosiers, and now Mike Pence along with President Trump are doing it for every American right now.” His speech was seen as an “embrace” of the Trump administration:

(image via Chicago Sun-Times)

  • Chicago Tribune Headline: “Rauner embraces Trump White House in Rosemont, calls Pence among the ‘greatest leaders in American history’”
  • Chicago Sun-Times Headline: “Gov. Rauner in Rosemont with Vice President Pence, ends cold war with Trump”
  • Crain’s Chicago Headline: “Rauner edges a little closer to Trump camp”
  • WGN TV: “As Vice President Mike Pence appeared at a hotel near O’Hare to talk up President Trump’s accomplishments Friday, he was joined by Gov. Bruce Rauner in a rare but strong public embrace of the administration.”
  • Daily Herald: “Rauner, who’s been reluctant to align himself with Trump, heaped praise on many of the administration’s policies in his introduction of the vice president — the governor’s closest association to the Trump administration to date.”

“Bruce Rauner sang Donald Trump’s praises on Friday and is now pretending like it never happened on Monday,” said DGA Illinois Communications Director Sam Salustro. “Unfortunately for Bruce Rauner, Illinois voters will not forget all the times he’s failed to stand up to President Trump’s reckless agenda or embraced Trump’s policies.”
Watch Rauner Dodge Qs about his Support for Trump

Transcript (via Capitol Fax)
REPORTER: “Governor, I want to ask you about your embrace of Vice President Pence on Friday. That action and several others you’ve taken recently have led some people to say that you are purposely trying to veer to the right to attract some of those conservative votes that you lost in the primary. Is that a conscious decision that you’re making?”
RAUNER: “No, I don’t know that that’s — I don’t think that’s an accurate characterization. Mike Pence has been a long-time, good friend of mine. I have supported him for years, he supported me for years, and it was an honor for me to introduce him at an event.”
REPORTER: “Can you support him without supporting the president he works for?”
RAUNER: “Mike Pence is a good friend, I think he’s done a very good job as vice president, he was a very good governor of Indiana, and he was a six-term congressman.”
REPORTER: “Do you support President Trump then, if you support him?”
RAUNER: “Well, [laughs] we can talk about issues of where the administration has done great things like tax cuts, regulatory relief, working hard for fair trade. I’m very supportive of many things. And where I’ve disagreed with the president, for example comments on Charlottesville, or separating families at the border, I have spoken out very forcefully where I disagree with the president.”