Governor Bruce Rauner and Speaker Mike Madigan will be on everyone's mind when we gather at the Hideout to talk politics. Credit: DERIK HOLTMANN/BELLEVILLE NEWS-DEMOCRAT, VIA AP (RAUNER); AP PHOTO/SETH PERLMAN (MADIGAN)

As the state’s budget impasse heads into its third or fourth month—it’s hard to keep track—Mick Dumke and I will be searching for clues to what it all means when we gather tomorrow for our First Tuesdays show at the Hideout.

First Tuesdays is the monthly political talk show that Mick and I host at a bar on the grounds that true enlightenment can only be achieved with a little liquid stimulation.

Though I don’t think all the liquids in the world can make sense of the latest remarks by Tim Nuding, Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget chief.

Nuding thanked Donna Arduin, the governor’s “superstar” $30,000-a-month budget adviser, for helping “engineer the elimination of  an inherited $1.5 billion deficit.”

Arduin left her post last week.

I don’t know how can anyone—even a paid flack—can say the deficit has been eliminated when the state still hasn’t passed a budget and the state comptroller’s in court telling a judge we’re too broke to pay therapists to treat disabled toddlers.

As lawyers for state comptroller Leslie Munger are doing right now.

Disabled toddlers, people. That’s pretty shameful.

I mean, I’ve heard of social promotions. But praising anyone who had anything to do with this morass is absurd.

On hand to try and help us make sense of the madness will be state reps Will Guzzardi and Pamela Reaves-Harris, who have had front-row seats for the lunacy.

Also, this will be Mick’s first show since he moved down the hall—as he puts it—to make the big bucks writing for the Sun-Times.

Though I can assure you that whatever big bucks Mick makes at the Bright One won’t be anywhere near $30,000 a month.

Congratulations on the new gig, Mick.

The show starts at 6:30 PM. It’s $5 at the door. And the Hideout is at 1354 W. Wabansia.