Letters to the Editor

June 8, 2014

Remember Edgar and taxes

Illinois Sen. Kyle McCarter opposes the extension of the temporary income tax increase and blames Democratic rule since 2003 for driving our state deeply into debt.

Republicans like to forget that in 1990, Jim Edgar ran for governor on extending the temporary income tax surcharge. Edgar now supports extending this increase.

Illinois revenue increased to five years of surpluses from 1997 through 2001, after President Clinton's 1993 tax increase. In 2001 and 2003, the Bush administration gave the wealthy huge tax cuts. Federal tax cuts adversely affect state revenue through the adjusted gross income. In 2002, under Gov. George Ryan, Illinois deficits returned because of a $727 million revenue shortfall.

We have a revenue problem thanks to President Bush's tax cuts and his 2008 Great Recession.

McCarter's articles in local newspapers often boast about the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), as if it were a credible organization of legislators.

ALEC is a corporate-funded bill mill, cross-dressing as an association of state legislators. Eighty-two percent of its annual budget is funded by its corporate members such as Koch Industries and Exxon Mobil. Many of its corporate members pay little or no income taxes. To pay for this multi-billion dollar tax dodge, Republicans insist the poor and the middle class must sacrifice.

ALEC's goals include union busting, cutting unemployment benefits and privatizing education, the postal service and prisons.

McCarter indulges his corporate masters in ALEC by opposing any tax increases on them and minimum wage increases.

Gene Robke


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