* The Daily Line’s Hannah Meisel…
A new poll commissioned by Ideas Illinois, a dark money group formed to fight a ballot question that would change Illinois’ flat income tax to a graduated tax, shows support for the idea is slipping, especially in a key central Illinois media market. […]
Ideas Illinois’ new poll, conducted by We Ask America on May 29 and May 30, found that support for a graduated income tax has fallen to 51 percent among likely voters — 8 percent below the minimum 60 percent threshold of voters needed to approve the measure. A similar poll in February had found a higher level of support — 59 percent — prior to a blitz of television advertising from both sides this spring as Pritzker rolled out his specific proposals surrounding a graduated tax.
The poll also found that opposition to a constitutional change to a graduated tax has risen slightly in the same time period
As more voters have heard from both sides — which featured Pritzker in ads from both Ideas Illinois and the pro-graduated tax group set up by a former Pritzker campaign staffer — Republicans registered the biggest drop in support for the concept of a graduated income tax. While 32 percent of self-identified Republicans supported a graduated tax in February, 21 percent of Republicans support the idea now, according to the poll.
* Jim Dey…
The poll revealed support for the Pritzker tax plan has fallen “despite nearly $5 million in spending by (pro-amendment) Think Big Illinois.”
Why the decline in support?
We Ask America attributed the decline to Ideas Illinois’ attacks on what Pritzker calls a “fair tax.”
“Voters see right through it. While voters right now are seeing the Pritzker messaging, they also don’t like it,” the memo states.
Sampling from the Champaign/Springfield areas, where pro- and anti-tax television advertising has been heavy, found 46 percent “agreed that the constitutional amendment is ‘just a blank check for Springfield politicians to spend more and will hurt Illinois’ economy and force businesses to leave the state.’” The poll indicated 32 percent of respondents disagreed with that statement.
The harder the critics hit that idea, We Ask America concluded, the more opposition there will be to the proposed amendment.
* Daily Herald…
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said opponents of the proposed graduated income tax plan are intentionally misleading voters who will ultimately decide its fate in November 2020.
“I think opponents of the fair tax certainly are trying to muddy the waters trying to come up with words to make it seem like something it’s not,” Pritzker said Thursday morning in a meeting with the Daily Herald editorial board. “The most recent silliness was a ‘blank check jobs tax,’ which I’m not sure I understand. It really is a crazy notion that they’re putting forward and an untrue notion.”
That phrase was used by former Illinois Manufacturers’ Association President Greg Baise, whose Ideas Illinois opposes the graduated tax and says it will push jobs out of state.
* From the polling memo…
A near majority (46%) agree that the constitutional amendment is “just a blank check for Springfield politicians to spend more and will hurt Illinois’ economy and force businesses to leave the state,” with 32% disagreeing. While 74% of Republicans agree with that assertion, just 25% of Democrats do, but among Independents, 46% agree versus 33% who disagree.
The key here is to persuade Republicans that this is a Democratic trick and to pull away enough indies to deprive the governor of a win.
* However, a big Democratic turnout in a presidential year could allow the proponents to take advantage of this highlighted constitutional provision…
A proposed amendment shall become effective as the amendment provides if approved by either three-fifths of those voting on the question or a majority of those voting in the election.
* Since 2010, the dropoff rate (those who took ballots compared to those who voted on the proposed constitutional amendment) has ranged from 8.1 to 17.15 percent. Here’s Scott Kennedy’s chart on the percentage needed to pass compared to the dropoff rate…
…Adding… Think Big Illinois Executive Director Quentin Fulks…
After trying and failing to prevent voters from having a say at the ballot box on the fair tax, opponents are now even more desperate to defend the current unfair tax system. This is nothing more than political posturing – Illinoisans want a tax system that works for everyone, not just the wealthy few. As voters continue to learn the truth about the fair tax, Think Big Illinois is confident they’ll vote for it next November.
Also, Idea Illinois’ memo about reaching 60 percent is here.