Illinois lawmakers focused on their personal political needs recently when they passed their make-believe budget filled with revenue trickery. No permanent income tax increase, no expense cuts, no backlash from the voters, they figure.
Unfortunately for state offices and private agencies that depend on state funding, lawmakers' self-serving actions have them trapped in limbo. They don't want to cut services if the lame-duck lawmakers plan to extend the tax increase after the November election. But they also know it would be risky to assume that will happen.
What's most annoying is that this is all so unnecessary. Democrats have super-majorities in both houses; they have total control. They could balance the budget but they choose not to do so.
State government is unsettled not because it's better for the taxpayers but because the politicians think it will be better for them at the polls. Let's hope the voters see through lawmakers' game.