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A much better response

Friday, May 2, 2014

* One of the problems with some Republican opposition to House Speaker Michael Madigan’s bill to appropriate $100 million to help fund the construction of an Obama presidential library was that the GOPs set a rhetorical trap for themselves. For instance

“We’re not opposed to the library, but we have lots of other needs,” [Republican Rep. Ed Sullivan] said, citing, for example, Emanuel’s push to outfit more city schools with air-conditioning.

“Do you want to pay for air conditioning in schools or a library? Do you want to pay for cops on the streets to stop the killing or do you want to pay for a library?” Sullivan said.

Statements like that made it appear that they could support big, new spending for Chicago.

* Sen. Bill Brady’s idea to allow Illinois taxpayers to contribute via income tax checkoff is much better

“We absolutely want future presidential libraries to be built in Illinois. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library has proven to be a major tourist destination, bringing people from around the country and world to visit Springfield,” Brady said. “However, simply put, Illinois doesn’t have $100 million to spend on a presidential library. State funds are already spread too thin to pay off our debt, make upgrades to our roads and provide essential services.”

If approved, the tax check-off would appear on tax returns in 2015 with any proceeds going toward the construction of the library. If less than $100,000 is collected, the check-off would be eliminated.

* Even Madigan’s mouthpiece couldn’t say a whole lot in response

Madigan spokesman Steve Brown said contributions to tax check-offs have been “spotty.” But he said the speaker welcomed the additional fundraising option.

“We thank Senator Brady for his endorsement,” Brown said.

Discuss.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


23 Comments
  1. - RonOglesby - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 9:49 am:

    “Even Madigan’s mouthpiece couldn’t say a whole lot in response…”

    They setup a trap. And while it looks sexy now it could detonate in the wrong direction and catch them also… That whole “Front toward enemy” thing.


  2. - RNUG - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 9:50 am:

    Smart move by Brady.


  3. - wordslinger - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 9:50 am:

    –“Do you want to pay for air conditioning in schools or a library? Do you want to pay for cops on the streets to stop the killing or do you want to pay for a library?” Sullivan said.–

    Definitely AC in schools and cops on the street. Draft the bill, call the roll, we have a winner.


  4. - Grandson of Man - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 9:57 am:

    As much as I would like to see the Obama presidential library in Illinois, the state still owes state workers their back-pay. I don’t have the number, but I believe it’s upward of $100 million. That’s real money for work already completed.

    Part of the back-pay was issued already, but more must be issued, I believe for FY 2011. This must be done via legislative appropriation, and there is no indication that it will be issued either now or in the near future.

    That’s my take on the Obama library situation. I have mixed feelings about it. I definitely want to see the Obama library in Illinois, but there are other fiscal issues to be considered.


  5. - OneMan - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 9:58 am:

    If the checkoff is good enough for other things, it is good enough for the library…


  6. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 9:59 am:

    Brady is genius on this;

    No discussion on any dollar amount, gives an avenue to be “active” in assisting in funding, and by even suggesting this, it allows positive optics of support for an Obama Library.

    Well well done!


  7. - Formerly Known As... - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:01 am:

    Smart move by Brady. Keep it going.


  8. - 47th Ward - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:06 am:

    Miller, you’re not helping.

    With kindest personal regards…


  9. - Upon Further Review - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:08 am:

    This is the best idea from Brady in ages.

    It blunts the Madigan rhetoric and allows those who want to fund the library an option for doing so while others can choose not to.


  10. - AFSCME Steward - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:14 am:

    “This is the fourth Illinois governor in a row to be investigated by the feds. Before Quinn, governors Rod Blagojevich and George Ryan did time, or still is doing time, for selling their offices. Even Jim Edgar was probed in the MSI scandal, but survived the search.

    Jim Thompson was not investigated, but he was the feds, having been the U.S. attorney who sent another governor to prison, Otto Keener, in a race track stock scandal. Governor Dan Walker did time, not for corruption, but for bank fraud after he was out of office.”

    Something in the water?


  11. - downstate commissioner - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:16 am:

    Think One Man and Willy described Brady’s move exactly; excellent compromise solution to the “wants” vs “needs” arguments; if it doesn’t bring in the money, then Madigan can always come back for the remainder. He can have his cake and eat it too..


  12. - Wumpus - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:21 am:

    I am leaving IL. Republicans being smart, strategically! I’ve had it. I am not use to this non-disfunctional thinking. We’ve had Rauner make several good moves, Oberweis has not blown it yet and now this!


  13. - AFSCME Steward - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:26 am:

    My comment about the governors ended up in the wrong thread due to a computer issue on my end.


  14. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:44 am:

    A political move like Madigan’s warranted Brady’s political move to counter Mr. Speaker.

    Neither moves any ball forward, however.


  15. - Norseman - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 10:53 am:

    Brady and/or staff read CapitolFax and learned from what folks have been saying here. Another example of CapitolFax impacting the legislative process.


  16. - Federalist - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 12:04 pm:

    Is the ‘tax checkoff’ a contribution by individual taxpayers in addition to what they owe or is it merely taking a part of your tax bill and earmarking it to this issue.

    If the former, OK. If the latter, it is a total charade for obvious reasons.

    Anybody out there know the answer?


  17. - Jacob S - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 12:27 pm:

    It is in addition to what is already owed if it will be the same as previous check offs.


  18. - A guy... - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 12:30 pm:

    I wouldn’t call it “brilliant” or new thinking. It’s just a better approach. That being said, it wouldn’t raise nearly enough. These check offs are really not much less gimmicky than any of the rest of these poor formulas.


  19. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 12:39 pm:

    ===I wouldn’t call it “brilliant” or new thinking. It’s just a better approach. That being said, it wouldn’t raise nearly enough.===

    Um, that’s why it’s brilliant. If anyone is concerned about Obama funding his OWN library, well, this isn’t going to fully fund it, and it’s up to citizens, not Illinois Government to give, “what it can”. Genius.

    ===These check offs are really not much less gimmicky than any of the rest of these poor formulas.===

    Thus, a proportional response, to a gimmicky vote to fund $100 million to make the GOP FA members look anti-Obama.

    Proportional, zero funding, state actively involved in Private Funding, and no “trick bag” of the $100 million being agreed to, but not agreeing to spend money on schools, or being seen as against the Native Son.

    Well played.


  20. - Befuddled - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 1:18 pm:

    Nice move by Brady. For the library, against the use of taxpayer funds for it. Totally blunts Madigan’s race play. Best of all worlds.


  21. - Bill White - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 1:26 pm:

    I agree with V-Man at 10:44

    A political move is countered by a political move.

    At least a few Republicans acknowledged that there are essential services that are underfunded, before Brady discovered the antidote.


  22. - Formerly Known As... - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 1:27 pm:

    I also liked Sullivan’s offer to personally donate yesterday. It further blunts Brown’s ludicrous comment.


  23. - Just The Way It Is One - Friday, May 2, 14 @ 4:26 pm:

    Sen. Brady has an idea there–at least to fund a good part of it, if it ever DOES even land here, and then far fewer millions would need to be appropriated for the Project in the long run…!


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