Chance the Rapper Discusses Education With Illinois Governor | NBC New York

Chance the Rapper Discusses Education With Illinois Governor

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    Judging by their comments after the meeting between Chance the Rapper and Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner, it's clear the two had far different sentiments. Mary Ann Ahern reports.

    (Published Friday, March 3, 2017)

    Judging by their comments after the meeting between Chance the Rapper and Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner, it's clear the two had far different sentiments.

    "I'm here cause I just want people to do their jobs," Chance, whose real name is Chancellor Bennett, told reporters after leaving the meeting.  

    Gov. Rauner had agreed to meet with the Grammy-awards-winning rapper to discuss education funding in Chicago. Initially scheduled for Wednesday, the meeting was postponed to Friday after Illinois was hit by a number of tornadoes. 

    "I asked him about funding [Chicago Public Schools] with that $215 million that was discussed in May of last year and was vetoed in December over, you know, political arguments and s---," Chance said. "The kids are on the table right now and we spoke, for a second, it sounded like we were going somewhere."

    Rauner vetoed a bill in December that would have injected the district with an additional $215 million in state funding to meet its June 30 teacher pension payment. Based on that veto, CPS announced the institution of a spending freeze on $46 million of non-salary funds on Feb. 6.

    At the time of the cuts, a spokesperson for Rauner said financial assistance for CPS would be dependent on "comprehensive pension reform."

    "He asked me where the $215 million is going to come from," Chance said. 

    "He gave me a lot of vague answers so we’ll see what happens," he added. "Springfield is in session next week."

    Soon after, Rauner told reporters he thinks the pair should work together. 

    "I said, 'It’s an incredible opportunity to change our system and if we stood together Chance -- I have some power, I have power in some ways and you have great power in other ways -- if we stood together, work together to figure this out, I think we can get big things done,'" Rauner said.

     

    Gov Rauner speaks after meeting with @chancetherapper

    A post shared by Mary Ann Ahern (@ahernnbc5) on

    Chance later tweeted, "Chicago Public Schools and I did not lose today."

    "Please don't let that become the narrative," he wrote. "Monday morning I'll have a plan."

    The meeting was first planned after Chance won three Grammy awards last month and Rauner took to Twitter to congratulate the rapper on his historic haul.

    “Congrats to @Chancetherapper for making history as an independent artist and taking home 3 grammys,” Rauner tweeted at the time. “IL is proud that you’re one of our own.”

    Bennett responded, requesting a sit-down with the governor.

    “Thank you Governor,” he tweeted. “I would love to have meeting with you this week if possible.”

    Rauner quickly accepted Bennett’s invitation, noting that he was “looking forward to the conversation.”