This budget impasse has gone on far too long and now we truly know why. The only legislative body in Illinois that has yet to contribute any ideas or proposals to the ongoing back and forth over budget negotiations is Speaker Mike Madigan and his House Democrats. Madigan’s House left town on May 31 without passing any sort of budget, a complete failure to do their jobs as legislators.
Senate Democrats, on the other hand, participated in bipartisan negotiations with their Republican colleagues for many months, but walked away from the negotiating table and passed their own partisan budget plan that included a tax hike with very weak reforms. Some argue that their plan was out of balance as well. Unacceptable.
Fortunately, Gov. Bruce Rauner and Republican lawmakers picked up where the Senate Democrats left off. Republicans rolled out their bipartisan, compromise plan and Rauner has called a special session to force lawmakers back to Springfield to vote on the plan. The plan included many ideas proposed by Senate Democrats, but with larger spending cuts and stronger reforms to protect taxpayers and grow Illinois’ economy.
Mr. Madigan, you have the power to end this impasse. For years, you have refused to negotiate on a bipartisan, balanced budget, choosing tax hikes over reforms. Well, the people of Illinois are demanding reform. It’s time to stand with Illinois taxpayers and pass Gov. Rauner’s compromise balanced budget and reform plan.
Cindi McDonald, Belleville