* The setup…
Illinois lawmakers have approved raising cigarette taxes by $1 a pack. It now goes to Gov. Pat Quinn, who supports the increase.
The state Senate approved the legislation 31-27 Tuesday in a vote that largely followed party lines.
Democrats argue the increase will help close a hole in the state Medicaid budget and also help prevent smoking. Republicans object to any tax increase.
Officials face a $2.7 million budget problem for Medicaid. They’ve already approved spending cuts of roughly $1.6 billion.
* The Question: What’s your opinion of the cigarette tax hike? Make sure to explain, please. Thanks.