IT'S CALLED RENT SEEKING. The Illinois state budget is signed. It passed with a simple majority ahead of the deadline before a super-majority rule takes effect.

[Democratic Governor Rod] Blagojevich, however, said that he thinks the budget negotiations with Democrats benefited all the state's residents.

"I think the winners in this budget and in this session are parents and children, senior citizens, working people and taxpayers, business, doctors and their patients," said the Chicago Democrat, who is expected to sign the budget.

The pork projects are just part of the deal, he said.

"There's a process here that's an imperfect process," Blagojevich said. "It's called democracy."

If you say so.

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