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The trend is not their friend

Wednesday, Dec 16, 2015

* This is a classic HDem campaign move

House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, wants to raise income taxes to close the state’s multibillion-dollar budget deficit, but he’s not getting support for the idea from local legislative candidates. […]

“I absolutely do not agree with increasing the income tax to 5 percent,” said Andy Skoog, a La Salle Democrat, who was named Thursday to fill out the remainder of longtime legislator Frank Mautino’s term. “People are struggling now. If you put a tax increase on them, you’ll take them over the edge.”

Skoog is the only Democratic candidate in District 76 in the 2016 election. […]

Skoog said he would target corporate tax loopholes and work in a bipartisan way to go through the budget line by line. At the same time, he said, he would seek to protect funding for middle-class families, the elderly, children and veterans.

Skoog, who is now La Salle County’s circuit clerk, said he would use his years of experience as a small-business owner to root out wasteful spending.

I’m sure his years as a small-business owner will translate so well into balancing a government budget.

Right.

But that’s one less vote for a tax hike.

Positions are going to harden fast, folks. Rep. Skoog isn’t going to be the only one to do this - and it will likely be at the urging of Madigan’s own staff.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

47 Comments
  1. - Commonsense in Illinois - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:18 am:

    I sense…just as the Speaker wanted…Your move Mr. Rauner.


  2. - RNUG - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:18 am:

    == Rep. Skoog isn’t going to be the only one to do this - and it will likely be at the urging of Madigan’s own staff. ==

    Since all the GOP lights will be green, Madigan will only need to deliver a few D votes … so everyone else will be able to vote and campaign against the tax increase.


  3. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:20 am:

    Boy, thus will be comical in miscalculating;

    The governor’s folks are going to need 12 HDems from #TaxHikeMike to pass the #RaunerTax and that #RaunerTax will be married to the Rauner budget.

    “No, Governor, you have Dunkin, I’ll put 12 more on these, but I’m going to have to insist that all 47 Rauner House Members be ‘green’, exactly like the FY2015. You’ll also sign it, as passed. Short term pain for the HGOP, Governor.”

    The revenue increase is required. It’s not optional.

    Madigan will give 12 for a deal. That #TaxHikeMike reinforces that…


  4. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:25 am:

    ===Since all the GOP lights will be green===

    Keep dreaming.


  5. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:31 am:

    If Rauner can’t deliver the required vote totals, whatever the number may be, that $20 million parked is now a “sham” in all these threats(?)


  6. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:32 am:

    This is like watching 17 year olds tell mainframe computer programmers how to query databases in DB2 using Angry Birds.

    This is like the scene in Airplane! when the stewardess tells everyone calmly not to panic, that they just experienced turbulence, then asks if there was anyone on the plane who knew how to pilot it.

    What Illinoisans should be figuring out with this governor, is that you cannot elect an outsider committed to destroying the process, and make the process better. You don’t take your car for routine maintenance to a junk yard.

    You don’t elect people who think running government is just like running a Mary Kay business.

    You don’t take legal advice from IPI - Lincolnshire.

    Multi-billion dollar governments need to be lead by elected officials who understand governments. Not venture capitalists or guys who want to go down a multi-billion dollar budget like they are shopping at Aldi.

    It is like we’re devolving into Paraguay.


  7. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:37 am:

    How exactly does this guy’s business experience make him an expert on the budget? Government budgeting isn’t anything like business finances.


  8. - RoPo Ranger - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:37 am:

    If there was a nickel for every time a candidate said “go through the budget line by line,” our budget issues would be fixed.


  9. - Anon - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:39 am:

    Any deal will likely require all (or nearly all) non-targets to be green - just like always. Madigan doesn’t have to gain seats. He just needs to keep most of what he has. This story is one potential “target” keeping the tax hike radioactivity away. So what. Yawn.


  10. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:39 am:

    The fantasy that all Dems would be on board for a tax hike is one of the weirder delusions of the last 11 months.

    Where did that come from, anyway? It has no basis in reality.


  11. - Peoria Guy - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:43 am:

    It is the old “we will eliminate waste to balance the budget” gambit. Some things never change


  12. - Hit or Miss - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:50 am:

    ===“I absolutely do not agree with increasing the income tax to 5 percent,”===

    If he is not for a tax increase then what is his plan to balance the budget, payoff the billions of unpaid bills, and fund the pension systems?


  13. - Elo Kiddies - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 9:56 am:

    There will not be a tax increase until the governor asks for one. Especially in an election year.


  14. - Century Club - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:02 am:

    No Dem target is going to vote to support a tax increase, so Rauner is going to have to come up with at least a dozen votes on the tax increase. Though it does seem like Skoog gave himself some wiggle room saying he is not for 5%. Some other percentage, perhaps?


  15. - Norseman - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:04 am:

    === If he is not for a tax increase then what is his plan to balance the budget, payoff the billions of unpaid bills, and fund the pension systems? ===

    “Plan, plan? I don’t need no stink’n plan. Once I get elected I’ll come up with more phony baloney quotes to get re-elected while the leaders do the hard work of coming up with the smoke and mirrors to keep this train wreck going.” Faux Rep. Skoog


  16. - Anonyrick - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:04 am:

    This is all very depressing for me. Bond ratings will continue to fall as the debt grows. There is little political incentive to be the grown up to pay for stuff you need. Ultimately the plan seems to be to bankrupt the state and default on certain obligations. At some point can the courts force a tax hike to pay for mandated services and contractually agreed obligations? I don’t see it happening. I know the state can not formally declare bankruptcy, but we are on the verge of collapse in not paying certain vendors who have already extended credit.


  17. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:20 am:

    I don’t believe that raising the income tax back to 5% will push people over the edge in a manner so as to not raise the tax again. We have evidence of this with the 2011 income tax hike.

    A major problem is the budget. Huge. We really need a tax hike, but given our strong aversion to it, we will just keep causing harm by not passing it.


  18. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:28 am:

    Do the same trick enough times and it eventually becomes ineffective. The public either catches on or grows weary.


  19. - Steve - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:47 am:

    Can Mike Madigan eventually get California state income tax rates with Chicago style weather? Stay tuned. The reason I bring this up is taxes might have to go this high to pay for public pensions that many taxpayers will never get.

    https://www.ftb.ca.gov/forms/2015_California_Tax_Rates_and_Exemptions.shtml


  20. - low level - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:12 am:

    Steve- this is their social security. That they paid into.

    Also **key point**

    Public sector workers also pay taxes. The typical conservative rhetoric of distinguishing “taxpayers” from civil servants is nonsense.


  21. - mokenavince - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:18 am:

    We never seem to want to consolidate governments.
    More taxes is the only thing Madigan seems to want. Skoog is right as is his no vote. As far as the GOP all green dream on. My Rep. Margo McDermott will not be green.


  22. - Cassandra - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:18 am:

    Is fund sweeping and borrowing less politically toxic than a tax hike, even if “temporary.” If so, I suspect our legislators will go that route in the spring-for f6 2016 anyway. Corporate loopholes? C’mon. When have Illinois pols of either party ever closed a corporate loophole. It’s Illinois-land of untrammeled state campaign contributions-our pols may not know or do much, but they know where their campaign contributions are coming from.


  23. - Bill White - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:33 am:

    = = We never seem to want to consolidate governments. = =

    Nope. We perpetually “want” to consolidate government. We never actually do it because - in reality - there is very little actual savings to be had.

    #DanCronin


  24. - Nick Name - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:45 am:

    ““I absolutely do not agree with increasing the income tax to 5 percent,” said Andy Skoog, a La Salle Democrat…. Skoog, who is now La Salle County’s circuit clerk, said he would use his years of experience as a small-business owner…”

    As a small business owner, don’t you have to raise prices when costs go up?


  25. - JS Mill - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:48 am:

    =“No, Governor, you have Dunkin, I’ll put 12 more on these, but I’m going to have to insist that all 47 Rauner House Members be ‘green’, exactly like the FY2015. You’ll also sign it, as passed. Short term pain for the HGOP, Governor.”=

    Doh!

    =It is like we’re devolving into Paraguay.=

    VMan is winning the internet today!


  26. - Precinct Captain - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:53 am:

    ==- Steve - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:47 am:==

    Why does my generation have to pay off debt from yours for services I’ll never get?


  27. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 11:57 am:

    ==public pensions that many taxpayers will never get==

    I’ve never understood that argument. What pension somebody gets is not my problem. If a person doesn’t like their pension then get another job. Why is it that people whine about what somebody else has and feel the need to say that they don’t deserve it because they don’t happen to get the same thing? Stop whining and get a different job if you don’t like your pension.


  28. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 12:24 pm:

    Barb Wheeler hasn’t said she will vote against an income tax hike.


  29. - El Duderino - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 12:29 pm:

    ====== If he is not for a tax increase then what is his plan to balance the budget, payoff the billions of unpaid bills, and fund the pension systems? ====

    Would’ve been nice if someone could’ve nailed the governor down on the specifics of that one prior to election


  30. - cdog - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 1:59 pm:

    Important dates ahead as listed on ilga.gov

    January 27, 2016 — Gov. Rauners’ State of the State

    February 17, 2016 — Gov. Rauner’s Budget Address

    December 15, 2015 — from the Comptroller homepage THE LEDGER BILL BACKLOG $ 7,688,585,404

    So will Rauner throw higher ed completely under the bus during the State of the State, or do we have to wait until the Budget Address?

    Will Rauner pitch b.s. savings from fantastical and impossible methods, like his previous address to the GA?

    smh. (shakin’ my head)


  31. - MOON - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 2:10 pm:

    Serious question.

    I would be interested in knowing what Corporate Tax Loopholes exist regarding State Income Taxes?

    I realize there are many regarding Federal Income Taxes but I am not knowlegdeable about the State Income Tax Loopholes for corporations.


  32. - RNUG - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 2:49 pm:

    == I realize there are many regarding Federal Income Taxes but I am not knowlegdeable about the State Income Tax Loopholes for corporations. ==

    I think there is one specifically for the newspaper industry. Good luck closing that one.


  33. - X-prof - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 2:51 pm:

    This seems a good place to say, “Fix the mix.” Short of a constitutional amendment, increasing income tax and simultaneously reducing sales and/or property tax seems a good way to generate more revenue while limiting the pain for over-stressed middle and lower-income taxpayers. Their main tax burden is sales and property, not income tax. Raising income tax is the only way to bring the effective tax rates paid by the top 10% and, even more so, the top 1%, closer to the rate paid by most IL taxpayers.

    The top 10% now receives half of IL personal income, the top 1% one quarter. Yet their effective tax rate is 2 to 3 times lower than the rate paid by middle-income taxpayers. You cannot reach that income by increasing the rate or expanding the base for sales tax. No surprise, Rauner supports increasing revenue via sales tax, not income. Why don’t the Dems propose an alternative solution?


  34. - Juvenal - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 3:00 pm:

    ======Since all the GOP lights will be green======

    === Keep dreaming. ===

    Spot on, Rich.

    The House Republicans have 16 yes votes for a tax hike by my count. 16.

    And while people focus on Madigan and Rauner and the hopes of a “grand deal” that might include some elements of the turn-around agenda, nobody has been able to pin Leader Durkin down on how many votes he might be able to put up on the board for a tax increase even if Madigan were to give EVERYTHING that Rauner is asking for.

    The Answer? 16.

    Amazing to anyone who follows this blog, but not if you stop and think about Joe the Plumber.

    If you asked 100 Republican Primary voters:

    “Would you be willing to pay 50% higher state income taxes as long as the general assembly approved legislation for a constitutional amendment reforming legislative map making and implementing term limits?”

    The answer MIGHT be 16%.


  35. - X-prof - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 3:04 pm:

    Some knowledgeable commenters think Madigan can insist that all GOP lights are green? Rich disagrees. Based on Rauner’s behavior to date and his “I don’t care because I don’t have to” attitude, my gut call is to agree with Rich.

    Honest question to OW and RNUG: Isn’t Rauner’s strategy to do enough damage to things Dems care about and to put out enough propaganda to make Madigan come begging to him for a tax hike? He might be right or wrong on that, but isn’t that his mindset? What leverage does Madigan have with a man that thinks wealth entitles and doesn’t seem to care at all whether governors own?


  36. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 3:10 pm:

    If it books down to only 16 “green”, the that $20 million was an utter disaster and the 47 were hostage of “their own device”.

    - X Prof -

    Now, only Rauner himself coming out for a tax hike will bring that bill to a vote, and Rich speaking on that today makes the Madigan Mistake change the discussion now to “Only when the Governor asks” for the Tax Increase which could be the second Tuesday of never.

    Governors own budgets and their agencies.

    That won’t change.


  37. - Cassandra - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 3:18 pm:

    From a practical perspective, what are the chances of lowering either the sales or property tax in Illinois, especially in tandem with an income tax increase. Voters would be rather suspicious, I imagine. And local government officials would be more than annoyed.

    No, I fear the plan for both parties is to hit up Mr. and Mrs. Working and Middle Classes for a disproportionate chunk of the cash to pay for decades of bad governance,through an increase in our regressive income tax. It’s easier. Leaves those rich contributors alone, too. The only thing left is how to ensure the other side gets the blame. Both parties are busy working on that part. Your government at work.


  38. - Langhorne - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 3:39 pm:

    Andy skoog–peel off the labels on your notebooks, and you will find they came from sue scherer.


  39. - RNUG - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 3:40 pm:

    == What leverage does Madigan have with a man that thinks wealth entitles and doesn’t seem to care at all whether governors own? ==

    At some point, Rauner needs a budget bill and he needs more revenue. Rauner needs more votes than he has bought in order to pass either one.

    The real question is why does / when will Rauner HAVE to have a budget bill or a revenue bill?

    Rauner needs a budget bill to spend money on non-court mandated items. Does he care about any of those items? Maybe not, but the public does. That will be one point of pressure.

    The FY17 budget will be coming up. Failure to pass it also will increase the public pressure. You can only blame other people for so long before you have to own it … although I will admit on the national scene some people are still blaming Bush 7 years in.

    If a budget does get passed, I don’t expect it will be able to live with current revenues. And if a budget never gets passed, the courts will keep weighing in with more ordered spending … which will eventually require more revenue. So, one way or the other, some kind of revenue bill will be required, which is another pressure point.

    The biggest pressure point will be one that I sincerely hope never happens. One or more people who did not receive needed state services or in state care ends up dying. The public reaction will vary depending on the circumstances, but in the current environment it is likely to be overwhelmingly negative. At that point, Rauner will no longer be able to pass the impact of no budget off as collateral damage / short term pain. He’ll need Madigan’s cooperation even more than he has (but didn’t realize it / want to admit it) to date.

    I would also refute your point that Rauner doesn’t seem to care at all whether governors own. If he truly didn’t care, Rauner would not have reversed course multiple times when public opinion ran against him on so many issues. About the only thing Rauner hasn’t reversed course on is trying to destroy the unions; that seems to be his only core desire.

    I’m no fan of Madigan, but when it comes to holding the cards (votes), I’m pretty sure Madigan has the better hand AND is the better poker player. I will also agree that Rauner is the rich guy who is just trying to buy the pot this round because he suspects he doesn’t hold as good a hand.

    And even though I said Madigan would insist on all the GOP being green (and Rich called me on it), I realize the only way this ever gets resolved is with grand deal and a structured roll call that will let some people on both sides off the hook. But as long as Rauner insists on his union destroying agenda, I don’t see how a grand deal gets done.


  40. - Timmeh - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 3:55 pm:

    ==I fear the plan for both parties is to hit up Mr. and Mrs. Working and Middle Classes for a disproportionate chunk of the cash to pay for decades of bad governance,through an increase in our regressive income tax.==

    It’s those people who should bear some of the blame. How many of them believe that our problems can be solved by sticking it to pensioners or “removing corruption” without any tax increases? Until they learn differently, politicians like Rauner can say they’re not for raising taxes during the election and Madigan can tell his legislators to campaign against a tax increase.


  41. - Cassandra - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 4:11 pm:

    Well, as one of those people, what I have learned over the past decade of Democratic rule is that neither party is interested in progressive state taxation.The Democrats, supposedly representing the common man, have made only the feeblest passes at it. Will that change now that Hillary has come out for middle class tax cuts at the national level? Or does neither party represent the middle class in Illinois.


  42. - X-prof - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 4:30 pm:

    Cassandra - From a practical political perspective, the chances are not great. This is in no small part because I doubt the Dem leadership’s commitment to the middle class. It would take a brave move and lot’s of voter education, also not easy. But it’s good policy that middle-income voters and local governments should embrace if they understand it.

    The state sales tax rate, 6.25%, can be lowered without reducing local sales tax rates. So there’s no harm to local government revenue in this. This cut would mostly benefit middle and lower income people who spend a much larger portion of their income on taxable items than the wealthy. A sales tax cut would also stimulate local and state economies.

    Property tax reduction is more complicated. It would depend on using increased state revenue to increase the state’s support for education and general revenue sharing with local governments. This would allow local governments to cut local taxes, including property tax. This is a complicated story to sell the public; cutting state sales tax is easier to explain.

    I mostly agree with your second paragraph, except our flat income tax is not regressive. It’s close to neutral. However, it does make the overall tax system in IL more regressive than systems in other states with a progressive income tax (I think this is what you mean). Currently, we’re stuck with choosing a mix of one neutral tax and several regressive taxes. So, for now, the best we can do is make the IL system less regressive by increasing dependence on the flat tax and decreasing our use of the regressive taxes. That’s what I mean by “Fix the mix.” A progressive income tax would be better, but it can’t happen in the short term.


  43. - X-prof - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 4:38 pm:

    OW: == “Only when the Governor asks” for the Tax Increase which could be the second Tuesday of never. ==

    I think that’s been the case all along. I agree with “governors own,” but this governor doesn’t care now and never has cared whether he owns or not. He believes wealth is all he needs to get what he wants.


  44. - Mama - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 6:19 pm:

    “It is like we’re devolving into Paraguay. ” Dear mother of God, not Paraguay!


  45. - Timmeh - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 6:45 pm:

    Cassandra: The problem is that the progressive income tax isn’t polling well in Illinois. Rich has given numbers before; I don’t think we even had 50%+ support.
    As for Clinton, I doubt she’ll be able to get real middle class tax cuts passed on the national level. Both national parties seem extremely weak at the moment.


  46. - blue dog dem - Wednesday, Dec 16, 15 @ 10:01 pm:

    Vanilla…”multi-billion.dollar governments need to be run by elected officials who understand govt.”if your referring to Illinois elected officials,that statement is beyond pitiful.I actually feel sorry for you if you truely believe that.republican,democrat it doesnt matter.


  47. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Dec 17, 15 @ 6:43 am:

    ===And even though I said Madigan would insist on all the GOP being green (and Rich called me on it), I realize the only way this ever gets resolved is with grand deal and a structured roll call that will let some people on both sides off the hook. But as long as Rauner insists on his union destroying agenda, I don’t see how a grand deal gets done.===

    - RNUG -

    I am of the same belief, and have come to the same conclusions.

    Speaking only for me on my belief, the FY2015 Fix is more of a traditional thought of Caucus Politics, the reality is what Rich said in his speech; there will be no tax increase, there will probably be no FY2016 budget until it’s so late the damage will be devastating, and I need to learn, like with “Goldberg” that my thinking is wrong, and move on and embrace it.

    The speech yesterday has changed my mind. Finally.


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* Governor issues state disaster proclamation for flooding in Iroquois, Kankakee, Vermilion Counties

  
* Samsung Galaxy S9 (dual SIM) going for $660 in US
* Apple’s recycling robot disassembles 200 iPhones an hour
* The future of SMS - RCS messaging - to be called "Chat", Android is all in
* North Korea’s freeze on nuclear testing isn’t a victory — it’s negotiation
* Deleting your Facebook account won’t keep it from tracking you
* OnePlus 6 Avengers Edition rumors, LG V40 rumors & more – Pocketnow Daily
* AT&T launches its “5G” to more markets

* Farquhar faints in dugout, taken to hospital
* Rodon drops in, still hopeful for late-May return
* White Sox Minor League Update: April 20, 2018
* Farquhar faints in dugout, taken to hospital
* Shields, White Sox stumble vs. Astros in opener
* Astros romp in 10-0 laugher
* Farquhar faints in dugout, taken to hospital


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