Parts of Illinois Democrats' $36 billion budget have now been approved by the General Assembly. But that doesn't mean they're going to the governor - at least not yet.
Think back civics class. You know the drill: in order for a bill to become a law, it has to first pass the legislature, and then be signed by the executive branch.
The first part is getting done - by Democrats, who control Illinois' General Assembly.
Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's office has lampooned that spending plan; it's expected he may reject all, or parts of it. It has Republican Senators like Matt Murphy of Palatine thinking that Democrats are going to wait before sending it to him. “If you pass a budget and don't give it to the governor, it's like a tree falling in the forest. You didn't really do it."
What Murphy's getting at - is a potential pressure point Democrats could put on the governor.
As with all legislation, Democrats get 30 days to send the budget bills to Rauner - which is right about when that spending plan should take effect; the new fiscal year begins July 1.
A veto from Rauner then could send affected programs and agencies that depend on that state money into a tailspin.
There's no telling when Democrats will forward the budget bills to the governor for him to take action; however Sen. President John Cullerton has put a parliamentary hold known as a motion to reconsider on the nine budget measures the Senate took final action on today. His spokeswoman says that's because some pieces of the budget haven't been acted on yet, and the plan is to put it all together.