SPRINGFIELD - Despite recent criticism of Bill Brady's budget plans, former Gov. Jim Edgar says he will vote for the Republican nominee for governor come November.
Edgar previously called Brady's across-the-board budget cutting ideas "naive" and had recommended he rethink his fiscal policies regarding bridging a $13 billion budget deficit.
But in speaking to students at the University of Illinois' Springfield campus Monday night, Edgar said he'll be voting Republican, arguing that Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn has not made the most of opportunities to get spending under control.
"The incumbency has not been as good to him as I thought it might be," said Edgar, a former two-term governor.
Edgar, however, said he likely wouldn't hit the campaign trail to help shore up support for Brady. He said he would rather sit this election out and spend more time in his role as an academic at the University of Illinois.
Edgar also said the U.S. Senate race is GOP Congressman Mark Kirk's to lose, but
political observers shouldn't underestimate Democratic state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias' advantage of having already run and won statewide.
Meanwhile, Edgar said the prospect of slots at Arlington Park racetrack were a logical way to help the struggling horse racing industry, adding that it makes much more sense to put slots at tracks than video gambling machines in bars.
"They need all the money they can get right now," Edgar said. "It's kind of a no-brainer."
Such a deal for electronic gambling at horse tracks is in the works at the Capitol. Horse racing interests have reached an agreement, but it has yet to be tested by lawmakers.