* As I told you Friday, eleven House Democrats co-sponsored a bill to completely roll back the 2011 income tax hike. One of those House members was Rep. Willis, who now says she’s undecided about making the tax hike permanent…
State Rep. Kathleen Willis is “totally on the fence.”
“I’m totally undecided still. I’m talking to the people in my district to see,” the Addison Democrat said.
“I’m talking to the people in my district” more likely means “I’m waiting to hear from the Speaker.”
Freshman Rep. Willis is currently unopposed.
* Rep. Marty Moylan was the bill’s chief sponsor...
“Right now I’m leaning ‘no’ unless there’s some major reason or change of my mind on it,” Moylan said.
Moylan is most probably a “No.” But what he said is still pretty interesting.
* Rep. Carol Sente is still a solid “No” vote…
“I was a firm ‘no’ in 2011, and I continue to be a firm ‘no’ on making the temporary income tax permanent. What we really need is bipartisan, long-term economic development plans and major budget reform,” said Sente, who has outlined such plans in a proposal that’s been stagnant in the legislature since March.
* Meanwhile, Kurt Erickson had this to say over the weekend…
One theory for how this will all play out began emerging last week. Rather than take the tough vote, Madigan will ask his members to vote for Quinn’s preferred budget — one that doesn’t include the drastic cuts — but not take a vote on making the income tax permanent.
State government operations would continue as they are now. But, come January when income tax rates roll back from 5 percent to 3.75 percent, the state won’t have enough money to continue on its current track.
Such a move would turn the race for governor into a referendum on whether voters want the tax hike to stay permanent.
A vote for Quinn would be a vote for keeping the tax intact, thus avoiding the doomsday budget scenario he and his agency heads have been laying out this spring.
A vote for Republican businessman Bruce Rauner would be a vote for allowing the tax to roll back and the possibility of major cuts in state spending.
Subscribers know my take on that.
* An insightful take…
Rep. Elaine Nekritz, a leading Democrat, says members are split on the best approach.
“I’m not making any predictions right now, it’s all in such a state of flux and every legislator I talk to about the budget and what they’d like to see, how they’d like to see it resolved, has a different idea,” Nekritz says. “Until we get 60 that are on the same page, it’s going to be a real challenge.”
* Cullerton: Downstate should be wary of political posturing over tax rates: I don’t believe decimating downstate Illinois will make our state stronger. I can only hope others share my view.