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Governor makes record bid of $104K for steer at Illinois state fair

Bruce+Rauner+is+sworn+into+office+at+the+Prairie+Capital+Convention+Center+on+Jan.+12%2C+2015+in+Springfield.+%28Zbigniew+Bzdak%2FChicago+Tribune%2FTNS%29
Bruce Rauner is sworn into office at the Prairie Capital Convention Center on Jan. 12, 2015 in Springfield. (Zbigniew Bzdak/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

Bruce Rauner is sworn into office at the Prairie Capital Convention Center on Jan. 12, 2015 in Springfield. (Zbigniew Bzdak/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

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Bruce Rauner is sworn into office at the Prairie Capital Convention Center on Jan. 12, 2015 in Springfield. (Zbigniew Bzdak/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

By Kim Janssen | Chicago Tribune

Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner on Tuesday night became the proud owner of a $104,000 steer at the Illinois State Fair.

Rauner, who has made winning auction bids for prize cattle at each of the last two state fairs, defeated his personal best of $61,000 and the previous record purchase of $100,000.

Wearing blue jeans, cowboy boots and a red and blue plaid shirt, Rauner fended off rival bidders to scoop up a 1,324-pound cross-breed named “David L.”

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The governor acknowledged the audience at the state fairgrounds in Springfield with his trademark “thumbs up” gesture.

Rauner got a big cheer for setting a new record at the charity auction, which benefits 4-H clubs and the Illinois Future Farmers of America.

“David L,” raised by 18-year-old Lucas Wisnefski of Wyoming in downstate Stark County, comes from a family of high-achievers.

His twin brother was reserve champion steer at the Wisconsin State Fair, Wisnefski said.

By custom, David L will be slaughtered. Rauner will donate the meat to the University of Illinois, as he has in the past, he said.

The governor, who famously belongs to an exclusive wine club that reportedly costs $140,000 to join, was not tempted to bid for a case of Illinois’ finest wine, which sold for $675 at the auction.

A trio of meat rabbits ($4,550) and a prize pig ($41,750) also did not catch his eye.

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(c) 2016 the Chicago Tribune

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