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Illinois Gov. Rauner says Supreme Court decision striking down pension law 'right and fair'

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CHICAGO — Gov. Bruce Rauner says the Illinois Supreme Court's decision striking down the state's public pension overhaul was "fair and right."

The Republican governor says he has long believed that the 2013 law aimed at reducing a $111 billion shortfall was unconstitutional.

That was the view of the justices who unanimously ruled against it Friday. They said the measure violated the state constitution because it would leave pension promises "diminished or impaired."

Rauner argued in a statement Friday that the state now needs a constitutional amendment to clarify the distinction between earned benefits of existing employees and future benefits of new workers.

That could clear the way for a Rauner proposal to switch public employees to a 401k-style retirement system to reduce the debt.

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