Chicago poll: 57 percent say they’ll swallow the pension payment medicine
Monday, Mar 25, 2019
* I’m gonna disagree a bit with my good buddy Greg Hinz on this one…
After all the screaming over lo these many years by the pundits about the high cost of public pensions, the fact that 57 percent of Chicagoans say funding the pensions of city workers and public school teachers is “something you personally would be willing to pay higher taxes to get” strikes me as pretty darned good, particularly if a popular mayor is behind the push.
Also, infrastructure, mental health treatment and schools always score high. Everybody wants that stuff. Nobody supposedly wants to make pension payments. That’s usually seen as forcing an unwillling populace to ingest bitter medicine. The fact that 57 percent said they could stomach that medicine is, in this context, surprising to me.
* What also jumped out at me was that, after a decade of wall-to-wall reporting about Chicago’s crime problem, fewer Chicagoans, 29 percent, said they “strongly” support higher taxes for “more police officers patrolling city neighborhoods” than the 31 percent who said the same about pensions. Seems counter-intuitive, but numbers is numbers.
In the end, though, the 57 percent who backed higher taxes for pensions was within the +/- 4.4 percent margin of error of the 60 percent overall who supported more money for cops. Same goes for the strongly support and strongly oppose numbers for both categories, and for the overall opposition (40 percent for pensions, 38 percent for more police).