Editorials

Jobless giving up, so are rest of Illinois residents

bweisenstein@bnd.com

Unemployment is an important measure of an economy’s health, but it is only part of the picture. Those who have given up on ever finding a job is a hidden, truer measure.

That number is improving across the nation. One in three of the jobless Americans have given up looking for work this year compared to two out of five last year.

Illinois? You guessed it.

Illinois has gone from one in three in 2015 to two of five in 2016 and was closing in this spring on half of the jobless giving up hope.

Express Employment Professionals CEO Bob Funk, who commissioned the poll, delivered what may be the understatement of the year: “Economic and political factors unique to Illinois may be at play here.”

Yup.

Those same political factors that can’t pass a budget after two years and think it is normal to have $12.6 billion in unpaid bills were also responsible for another delay tactic in the budget standoff between Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner and Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan.

State Rep. Jay Hoffman and others were appointed to work with Rauner on identifying areas of compromise, rather than the real players being at the table. Nothing happens in Illinois until King Mike says it does, which now appears to be after the 2018 gubernatorial election.

  Comments