SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
The future isn’t looking so bright

Friday, Dec 18, 2015

* I usually run my weekly syndicated newspaper column on Monday, but I won’t be around Monday and Crain’s already has it posted, so

One of the realities of Illinois legislative politics is that our state’s system tends to discourage competition.

Byzantine ballot access laws, a highly partisan legislative district map-drawing process, heavily concentrated populations of partisan voters in Chicago (Democrats) and in the collar counties and Downstate (Republicans) along with often tireless work by incumbents and political parties at the state and local levels to “discourage” opposition all combine to help tamp down the number of competitive races.

The net result is that Illinois has some of the fewest numbers of challenged state legislative races in the country - just 39 percent in 2014, which put us in the bottom fifth of the nation. By contrast, nearby Michigan saw a 100 percent challenge rate in the 2014 general election, and the rates in both California and Minnesota were above 90 percent.

That’s simply unheard of here.

The state’s 2014 rate may be higher next year. Gov. Bruce Rauner’s vast personal cash reserves and his access to his many wealthy friends means the Republican Party can widen the playing field. The Democrats are also looking at doing the same thing, fielding candidates in districts that they have previously avoided (GOP Rep. Bill Mitchell, for instance, has a pretty decent general election opponent for the first time in a long while).

While that’s good for politics, is it good for government?

It almost assuredly is a good thing in the long run. Far too many people think they own their districts. Competition is good.

But in the here and now, these campaigns are just one more headache to deal with in the ongoing governmental impasse. Legislators who aren’t accustomed to challenges may not be all that willing to take the tough votes necessary if the leaders ever come to a deal.

Indeed, we could see a tail wagging the dog scenario. For instance, as a member of House Democratic leadership, Rep. John Bradley (D-Marion) has taken a ton of votes that his conservative southern Illinois constituents probably wouldn’t love, including a vote for the 2011 income tax hike.

But Bradley is now a Tier One target. And unless we see a massive political truce with pledges to not use tough votes against incumbents (as we did in the old days under Republican governors Jim Thompson, Jim Edgar and George Ryan) it’s probably safe to assume that Bradley and many, many others aren’t going to want to be a part of any tax hike solution.

The Illinois Republican Party compounded the problem the other day by blasting Bradley and Rep. Brandon Phelps (D-Harrisburg) for standing with Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan (whom the Republicans now refer to as “#TaxHikeMike”) against taxpayers.

The Republican Party accuses Madigan, and by extension Bradley and Phelps and others, of publicly favoring a return to the 5 percent state income tax. They conveniently “forget” that Gov. Bruce Rauner has said he will raise taxes once he gets his “Turnaround Agenda” passed.

And it’s not just the general election that’s complicating matters. Look at what happened not long ago when conservative activist Dan Proft examined GOP Rep. David Harris’ nominating petitions to see if he could kick the Arlington Heights legislator off the ballot. Proft pointed out that Harris had “previously voiced support for tax increases.”

Harris, in turn, noted Gov. Rauner’s support for hiking taxes to balance the budget, but the message was clear: Proft controls a big pot of campaign money and Republicans need to beware of crossing him.

The ILGOP’s “#TaxHikeMike” assault could even play out in Speaker Madigan’s own legislative district.

Madigan’s Democratic primary opponent Jason Gonzales has a campaign message that appears specifically designed to attract money from wealthy people who are fed up with the Speaker’s longtime dominance. Some Democrats (and Republicans) are speculating that forces allied with Gov. Rauner could spend millions of dollars on that one race alone.

Blanketed network TV ads with a solid message can move voters, especially with that kind of money behind them.

Madigan is a notoriously cautious politician. So, whether or not his enemies pull the trigger on a massive campaign assault, he’ll deploy enough foot soldiers to cover his district many times over.

Chicago and Cook County voters (and Madigan represents both kinds) are already up in arms about property and sales tax increases, so we can also probably expect Madigan to be at least reluctant to raise taxes before the March 15th primary.

What I’m saying here is that if you think a solution to this impasse has looked next to impossible for the past several months, the situation may have gotten substantially worse since the candidate filing period ended.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


13 Comments
  1. - Groucho Marx - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:13 pm:

    What a shame that the extremists of both parties have paralyzed our government on both the national and state levels. It seems as if a legislator dares to give a little on an issue (compromise) in order to move forward, the extremist will seek to destroy him. No organization made up of people with various interest and opinions can operate under those conditions. Thank You Tea Party. Thank You Labor. Thank You MSNBC. Thank You Fox.


  2. - Oswego Willy - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:15 pm:

    To the Post, and to my friend - RNUG -…

    I forget, I need to learn, I was learning, but… I need to remember this;

    ===- Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Oct 21, 15 @ 1:51 pm

    ===I think it is obvious that Rauner would support a tax increase bringing his budget into balance after some of his agenda was passed.===

    That’s a hostage for the budget. Nope.

    Further, after about 1,317 times it being pointed out, I’ve come to the realization, there ain’t gonna be a tax increase. That’s over. I’ve resigned myself to it.

    It’s comical how Raunerites think that’s the carrot. Welp, the carrot rotted next to the stick Rauner pretends he’s not leading with here.

    ===If there was no compromise before the budget is agreed to only a fool would believe there would be compromise after the budget is agreed to.===

    I wouldn’t call Rauner a fool as a way of persuasion, but if you feel that acknowledging that to try to make a point, you hace your reasons.

    ===Expecting a tax increase with no reform of state government is totally unrealistic.===

    That’s why, no tax increase.

    Rauner will own this mess. All governors own.===

    “Further, after about 1,317 times it being pointed out, I’ve come to the realization, there ain’t gonna be a tax increase. That’s over. I’ve resigned myself to it.”

    I forgot. My mistake.

    There won’t be a tax increase anytime soon, so no worry about those 67 “green”

    OW


  3. - Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:27 pm:

    Fa la la la la, la la la la.


  4. - Anon221 - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:27 pm:

    “…it’s probably safe to assume that Bradley and many, many others aren’t going to want to be a part of any tax hike solution.”

    *****

    Tax hikes are going to take many forms in the next couple of years as the fight continues. Whether or not it’s done on the floor of the ILGA or the village board room, there will be tax hikes simply because of the high levels of anxiety and the chaos created by the threat/promise of property tax freezes for instance.

    Some politicians, somewhere at sometime, are going to have to make unpopular votes.


  5. - Norseman - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:43 pm:

    It’s become obvious that if there is an FY 16 budget agreement and an FY 17 it will be “held together with chewing gum mand baling wire.” We can’t hope to see a more comprehensive approach to the budget until the new General Assembly is seated.


  6. - Anon221 - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:51 pm:

    Norseman-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qEEqwQmFrZs


  7. - Lucky Pierre - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:54 pm:

    One more reason for term limits. Legislators just do what they can to a wild the tough votes because they could be voted out of office for doing the right thing. They just focus on the short term politics not the long term ramifications. Deals like the early retirement under Ryan where legislators don’t know what the long term costs are , just that it got them through the year.

    That ended up costing billions of dollars in pension costs


  8. - Last Bull Moose - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:55 pm:

    For the short term I see no solution short of a scorched earth approach by both sides. It may take the stench of charred flesh to motivate compromise.

    Longer term, go back to cumulative voting for legislators. That allowed Judy Baar Topinka into politics. We need people like her.

    And today’s leaders need to find a common enemy. We lost 633 people to drug overdoses last year. L. McDonald was born drug affected and died with PCP in his system. Solve the illegal recreational drug problem, or at least try valiantly. The attempt would build alliances across regions and parties.


  9. - Beaner - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    Lame ducks will pass a revenue bill including income taxes. It will only pass with the majority of Rs supporting. Vendors will continue to have problems well into 2017 until the billions in junk Bond proceeds are received. Expect serious action sometime after November 8th. Big win for the 1%, tax free bonds rather than taxes. Who knew BVR was a magician?


  10. - X-prof - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 3:18 pm:

    Joining in the holiday spirit here, I’ve come to see the futility of discussing nuanced tax policy for the foreseeable future.

    So, without further ado,
    here’s two bits that’ll disappoint very few:

    I’ve put the nix to “fix the mix”; it’s
    over, kaput, done and done.
    Instead I’ll put the “ex” in X-Prof;
    I’ll be retired come Jan’ry 1.

    My best to all CapFaxers.


  11. - Norseman - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 3:30 pm:

    Thanks Anon221


  12. - Liberty - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 3:36 pm:

    Why think the next budget year will be any different? The blame game fits nicely with no budget.


  13. - logic not emotion - Friday, Dec 18, 15 @ 3:36 pm:

    I hope you’re wrong. I fear you’re not.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* AFSCME to announce strike authorization vote results tomorrow morning
* HGOPs fight back against Dem messaging on Rauner budget
* The appearance of access
* Today's number: $12,401,195,168.60
* It's just a bill
* Question of the day
* STI death rates on the rise here, but we're way down the list
* Local reaction to new immigration order
* *** LIVE *** House session coverage
* Is a sales tax on food really regressive?
* *** UPDATED x1 *** 14 of 16 CPS Latino Advisory Committee members resign in protest
* Not surprisingly, local governments hate permanent property tax freeze idea
* *** UPDATED x1 *** SIU's Dunn: "We need to acknowledge that FY16 is now lost"
* Mystery solved on Rauner's whereabouts
* Would term limits make much of a difference?
* Study looks at how race of prez delegates may influence GOP primary voters here
* Kennedy fundraises off of proposed budget cuts
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's stories

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Loading


* Senate urged to leave state’s PE requirements a.....
* Lake Ellyn improvements moving ahead thanks to .....
* Rauner pledges to stay course during Normal tri.....
* Budget Impasse Could Hit Student Workers..
* AFSCME to announce strike authorization vote re.....
* Kadner: New education head in Illinois defends .....
* Excerpts from recent editorials in newspapers i.....
* Letters: Profiteering drives up workers' comp c.....
* Governor brings call for business-friendly budg.....


* Not-for-profit owner pleads guilty to bankruptcy fraud
* Republicans who won after rowdy town halls now avoiding them
* Immigrants change up their routines, brace for arrest
* Experts: Science behind 'abortion reversal' is flawed
* Immigrants change up their routines, brace for arrest
* Illinois education board vote settles 2008 funding lawsuit
* Hoopeston dealer gets life for cocaine and meth distribution
* Central Illinois woman gets 3-year term for baby's death
* Principals to bar immigration agents from Chicago schools
* Rockford man going back to prison after murder acquittal

* Senate urged to leave state's PE requirements alone
* AFSCME will announce results of strike-authorization vote Thursday
* Luciano: State lawmakers fiddling while Illinois burns
* Illinois education board vote settles 2008 funding lawsuit
* Municipal League opposed to permanent property tax freeze
* Illinois State University seeks public input on its future
* AFSCME strike authorization vote outcome to be revealed this week
* Cheri Bustos won't run for Illinois governor
* Illinois bill would rein in pro athletes' worker comp claims
* GOP criticizes Illinois comptroller for buying used $32K SUV

* Many Fed officials see rate hike 'fairly soon'
* Is Warren Buffett going to buy an airline? ​
* Is Warren Buffett going to buy an airline? ​


* ‘Monster’ ex-USA Gymnastics doctor charged with sex assault
* Mitchell: Ald. Carrie Austin’s voice needed on gun violence
* CPS students take to the ‘Hamilton’ stage
* 66-year-old man reported missing from Glendale Heights
* Eloy Jimenez to Cubs young core: There’s more core on the way
* Jordan Peele relies on Chicago lessons in directing horror film
* Man shot to death in Maywood
* I-57 lanes closed in south suburbs for shooting investigation
* Dead Writers Collective closes after harassment allegations
* Letters: Profiteering drives up workers’ comp costs


* Republicans who won after rowdy town halls are now avoiding them
* Bears hire Zach Azzanni as receivers coach, complete coaching staff
* Many Dakota pipeline protesters leave as remnants of camp go up in flames
* Emanuel's changed plan for tax rebate money avoids further resistance
* Shots fired on I-57 near Calumet Park, no one hurt
* Man accused of killing mother '99 percent' certain he'll testify at trial
* Woman finds husband of 40 years fatally shot in garage: 'He did no harm to anybody'
* Blackhawks tie franchise record with 7th consecutive road victory
* Rick Renteria opens up on losing Cubs job to Joe Maddon
* Skokie trustees take action in support of immigrant rights


» City Council Delays Vote On Street Performing Ordinance
» Retired Generals Oppose Grand Bargain's Lower Phys Ed Standards
» Emanuel Reworks Plan For $15M Tax Rebate Money
» Immigrants Change Up Their Routines, Brace For Arrest
» Illinois Budget Impasse Jeopardizes Hundreds Of Student Jobs At Northeastern Illinois University
» State Board Of Education To Adjust How It Distributes Money
» New Immigration Enforcement Policies Worry Some Chicago Attorneys
» Top Cop Defends His Promotion Of Commander With 90 Complaints
» Mayor, Top Cop Defend Promotion Of Commander With 90 Complaints
» How CPS’ Lawsuit Against Rauner Could Play Out


* Senate urged to leave state's PE requirements alone
* AFSCME will announce results of strike-authorization vote Thursday
* Luciano: State lawmakers fiddling while Illinois burns
* Illinois education board vote settles 2008 funding lawsuit
* Municipal League opposed to permanent property tax freeze
* E.J. Dionne: The death of a hero
* Michael Gerson: America’s sacred fire must not be doused
* Esther J. Cepeda: Betsy DeVos may be the least of public education’s worries
* Their View: Editorial: Remembering Bob Michel
* Illinois State University seeks public input on its future


* Cocaine offense puts Alton man in jail for more than a decade
* O'Fallon District 90 board casts final vote on boundaries issue
* Texas man pleads to trying to distribute cocaine in Southern Illinois
* Godfrey’s Crystal Stevens’ healthy lifestyles book hits shelves
* O’Fallon 90 School Board opts for ‘Plan D’ to accommodate growth
* PODCAST: Elizabeth Hess goes to Springfield
* Godfrey Women’s Club sponsors Godfrey candidate forum March 9
* East Alton murderer Corey Fox found fit to stand trial by judge
* Where can you find great margaritas in the metro-east?
* Godfrey preparing for final phase of Stamper Lane project


* Lake County Board chairman chooses diversity event to reveal he's gay
* District 87, teachers OK 3-year contract extension
* Grayslake North's Connolly earns MVP acclaim
* Kaneland's Martens earns MVP acclaim
* IN Current Conditions

* Majority of IL Congressional Delegation Op...
* Group upset with Trump wants Town Hall mee...
* Voters Shame Cowardly Reps with Town Halls...
* US Representative Randy Hultgren visits ne...
* Hultgren to participate in veterans forum ...
* Hultgren criticizes immigration ban, Roska...
* Hultgren guides STEM scholars through pres...
* US Congressman tours new Aurora Specialty ...
* Hultgren will be at veterans' forum March ...
* Rep. Hultgren visits Aurora Textiles plant...

* Two US Lawmakers Back Lethal Weapons For U......
* Medical, dental schools encouraged to impl......

* Illinois Senators vocally oppose Trump on ......

* Federal investigation shows Pakistani bros secretly took $100k from Iraqi source
* Hinz: Chicago's leaders are to blame for Seaway Bank's failure
* Forty-fives go mobile on the gig poster of the week
* The OnEdge experimental performance series questions traditional theatrical norms
* Retired military leaders express concern over effort to lower Illinois PE requirements
* Basketball Thursday Night - Cops And Community
* New Trier race seminar to continue as planned, school board prez says
* Basketball Wednesday Night - Cops And Community
* CPS sues Illinois over ‘unequal’ and ‘separate’ school funding, and other Chicago news
* Buzzfeed media editor Craig Silverman on the impact of fake news, what’s next for it, and what, exactly, it even is


* Governor Addresses State Board of Education to Emphasize Importance of Strong Accountability Standards
* Stars and Legends to Perform at 2017 Illinois State Fair - First Round of Grandstand Headliners Announced for Springfield Fair
* Earthquake Education Kiosk Unveiled at University Mall in Carbondale - IEMA, Central U.S. Earthquake Consortium project will help southern Illinois residents reduce damage, injuries from earthquakes
* Governor Takes Bill Action
* 2017 Budget Address

  
* [Deal] T-Mobile is running an unbelievable sale on the Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, LG V20
* Evan Blass shows Verizon’s Moto G5 Plus launching soon
* Packing photos and videos into one Instagram post is now possible
* Apple SIM Partner AlwaysOnline Wireless Drops Data Prices for UK Users
* This is the best look yet at the LG G6 from all angles
* The LG G6 has a hidden face, and it’s impossible to unsee
* Wattpad debuts Tap, an app for reading chat-style short stories

* Holland brings loose, fun personality to White Sox clubhouse
* Frazier to miss several days of camp with sore side
* Geo Soto, Gio Soto share bond beyond name
* Giolito feels work from offseason paying off early in camp
* White Sox earn praise for reshaping club
* Giolito feels work from offseason paying off early in camp
* White Sox content with group of catchers entering 2017


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress




Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller