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Question of the day

Thursday, May 15, 2014

* Kurt Erickson quotes Speaker Madigan

The powerful Democrat from Chicago chided reporters for suggesting he would be twisting arms in the coming days, saying that’s not how he plans to win support for what amounts to an election year tax increase.

“We’re not in the business of issuing threats,” Madigan said.

He doesn’t need to issue threats. People know what to expect.

* Meanwhile, Greg Hinz

So how seriously should you take Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan’s proposal yesterday to rein in the state’s main job incentive program, so-called EDGE tax credits?

The answer likely depends on just how many votes the speaker has — or still needs — to pass a permanent extension of the state’s “temporary” income tax hike in the waning days of the General Assembly’s spring session. And on who might be inclined to provide those votes.

According to a variety of well-placed sources, revamping the Economic Development for a Growing Economy credits is one of a series of still-moving pieces on the wider income tax chessboard. Also reportedly in play are a possible cut in the state’s corporate income tax rate, an increase in the earned income tax credit for working families, Gov. Pat Quinn’s proposed $500-a-home property tax “refund,” and a permanent extension of the tax credit for research and development.

* The Question: Will Speaker Madigan pass the tax hike extension? Take the poll and then explain your answer in comments, please.


panel management

- Posted by Rich Miller        


33 Comments
  1. - Norseman - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:00 pm:

    Yes. It’s hard to bet against da Speaker. He’s going to “leverage” the votes when needed.


  2. - RNUG - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:02 pm:

    Yes … Aside from it being the Speaker behind the push, the budget math doesn’t add up any other way.


  3. - boat captain - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:03 pm:

    I voted that he will pass the extension. That is his plan by voting on the budget first. You want it, you have to pass the extension to pay for it. The hammer that he will use to extend it. He knows that the state needs the revenue. And despite the posturing by some, I believe he has the votes when push comes to shove.


  4. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:17 pm:

    I took a gamble and said yes. The reason I think it’s a gamble is the sheer unpopularity of the thing during an election year. It also originally barely passed.

    One reason I voted yes is because the alternative is worse, the big reduction in revenue. Another reason I consider is that, as others have said, there are different moving parts to get this thing to pass, such as passing a budget first, corporate tax break proposal, municipal funding incentive, etc.

    It’s hard to disagree that we have major fiscal problems, but we can disagree in the means to correct them. I believe that we need the money, and the money will improve our fiscal situation.


  5. - Hamilton - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:17 pm:

    Of course yes. The question is when, not if.


  6. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:22 pm:

    “Don’t bet against the Speaker” is an old, true adage.

    The Speaker can count to 60. The Dan Proft wrinkle is an interesting sideline to all this, but you can’t beat somebody with nobody, and $1 million is instant credibility and a boatload of ammo for negativity, it comes done to one vote, 60 “Yes” votes. Can the Speaker just get the 60? Yep.

    Will the Speaker find those 60?

    Yes.


  7. - fed up - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:23 pm:

    Yes. He is in complete control, he could pass a resoulution praising Donald Sterlings humanitarion work if he wanted to.


  8. - Decaf Coffee Party - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:31 pm:

    The budget bills and probably even a capital bill that should please targeted legislators will show everyone what life could look like with the extension. That would make voting against the tax hike a bit harder for some folks because, as the Speaker said, “the bar will be set.”


  9. - lake county democrat - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:33 pm:

    Wait, there’s a box to vote “no”? I know it’s a little chilly outside Rich, but April 1st was over a month ago.


  10. - Precinct Captain - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:33 pm:

    ==He doesn’t need to issue threats. People know what to expect.==

    So there were enough beatings in the past that morale improved in the present!


  11. - Steve - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:38 pm:

    Who would vote against him? He’s the leader of the government aristocracy here.


  12. - HoosierDaddy - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:43 pm:

    Obviously, he will pass it. The question might be what it will cost him in terms of seats, or in terms of additional resources to keep those seats.


  13. - Arizona Bob - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:45 pm:

    Of course he will. With all the patronage and crony capitalism mouths he has to feed to stay on top, he needs the tax increase as leverage to keep getting ground troops and campaign cash.

    He’ll do it without a single GOP vote.

    As we found out in 2012 and will validate again in 2014, there are no electoral political consequences for Dems increasing taxes in Illinois.

    Perhaps if there was a less corrupt and better managed GOP in Illinois, the Dems could be made to pay a price for this tax abuse, but under current leadership that’s not going to happen.


  14. - Arthur Andersen - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:47 pm:

    Yes. The budget math doesn’t work without it and he’s proving that out first.


  15. - Just Me - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:49 pm:

    Polls on what the Speaker will or won’t do really are silly wates of time. Nobody knows and nobody can guess. The man is just too smart.


  16. - Jack Handy - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 3:59 pm:

    This is Madigan’s matrix and most have taken the blue pill. Of course it will pass.


  17. - Keyser Soze - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 4:04 pm:

    If the 60 votes can be gathered, the next question is how many will be ousted in the Fall?


  18. - Living in Machiaville - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 4:10 pm:

    As I listen to the House debating budget bills, I am struck by the sheer contempt the Speaker has for the majority of the citizens of IL. It’s mind-boggeling that one human can aquire so many minnions in such a diverse state.


  19. - Bill White - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 4:17 pm:

    Après moi le déluge

    It will pass and Illinois will be better off because it did. As others have said, the budget math doesn’t add up any other way.


  20. - OldSmoky2 - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 4:24 pm:

    Yes, because there is no realistic alternative except for slashing education and services that most people don’t want to cut.
    As for this:

    “As we found out in 2012 and will validate again in 2014, there are no electoral political consequences for Dems increasing taxes in Illinois.”

    That sounds like representative democracy at work to me.


  21. - Do Good - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 4:56 pm:

    Yes. Signs have been pointing to it all session. He always figures out a way.


  22. - A guy... - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 5:09 pm:

    My auto-response would have been “yes”. Then, I stopped myself. Even Ken Jennings eventually lost. The math equation Rich laid out earlier with 16 Dems promising to vote against the extension made me think. The old adage may be in question here. I didn’t vote against the Speaker, but I didn’t vote with him this time either. If I see a legislator without an arm, I’ll have my answer.


  23. - Ruby - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 5:18 pm:

    A review of state income tax rates throughout our country will explain why the tax hike extension is necessary and reasonable. A return to Illinois’ flat 3% state income tax will never be a solution to Illinois’ financial problems.

    State Individual Income Tax Rates, As of January 1, 2014

    http://taxfoundation.org/article/state-individual-income-tax-rates


  24. - Federalist - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 5:37 pm:

    Also reportedly in play are a possible cut in the state’s corporate income tax rate, an increase in the earned income tax credit for working families, Gov. Pat Quinn’s proposed $500-a-home property tax “refund,” and a permanent extension of the tax credit for research and development.

    This is why it will probably pass. A nod to the businesses, a nod to the poor, and a nod to homeowners. Of course, it still targets those who do not fall into these special categories. Even the homeowners exemption is a $500 flat provision ( wonder if this type of flat taxing will raise the ire of the liberals) and thus does little for those who pay a high homeowners taxes as well as high state income taxes.

    But, it it shrewd in a left leaning state and as others have stated “Don’t bet against Madigan” particularly if this is want he really wants.


  25. - Louis Howe - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 5:44 pm:

    I think many of the comments about Madigan border on sycophantic. The real power Speaker Madigan processes is stopping unwanted legislation. Enacting legislation is an entirely different matter.
    Making the current temporary tax increase permanent is not a new issue. Madigan has dealt with this problem many times over the last 30 years. He will want bipartisan support. At least a few Republican votes from downstate districts dependent on state funding. If the tax increase doesn’t pass, look for cuts in Republican controlled areas where state facilities provide significant employment.


  26. - Vibes - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 6:22 pm:

    The other variable is the collected pension reform requests, all of which have the ability to shift the cost revenue picture for most of the government entities … chicago, munis, Cook, universities, etc … Lots of asks on the table


  27. - Floor Monitor - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 6:29 pm:

    Tax increase WILL NOT PASS, there is not enough Democratic support either now or in lame duck. Increase needs to sunset, FY2015 is not in danger of the sky falling. FY2016 will be a very lean year, I would suggest providing each department head with a copy of Jack Welch’s “From Good to Great” we have been empire building for far to long, it’s time to do more with less.


  28. - Anon - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 7:06 pm:

    If Madigan wants it to pass, it will. When will tax extension vote take place: in May or in January?


  29. - VanillaMan - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 8:37 pm:

    I voted no. The time has come for us to see that Mr. Madigan’s magical power over the Illinois state government has over reached. Even if he succeeds, he will lose in November.

    Mr. Madigan has been making poor political decisions over the past year. This is another one, and he does not have enough ducklings to sacrifice this time.


  30. - Wumpus - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 10:23 pm:

    Yes, he has the votes counted and those who he allows to vote no will boast that they did so. Miraculously, it will pass with 2-3 votes above the minimum.


  31. - G'Kar - Thursday, May 15, 14 @ 10:59 pm:

    I voted yes.

    And nice Louis XV reference, Bill White @4:17


  32. - Walter Mitty - Friday, May 16, 14 @ 7:42 am:

    I had to go No…. I think the tide is changing.This is too much for the average person to swallow. Will the legislators who will lose if the vote yes, think of MJM or themselves and constituents… I am hoping for the latter….


  33. - Pensioner - Friday, May 16, 14 @ 8:06 am:

    MM passes what he sees fit to pass.


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