IL Dems seek to put millionaire tax on November ballot

The powerful speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives, Michael Madigan, announced that he would ram through the legislature a constitutional amendment that would increase taxes on those making more than $1 million a year by 3%.

Of's for the kids.


Illinois' powerful speaker of the House of Representative on Thursday unveiled a plan that would slap a tax surcharge on millionaires in the state in an effort to raise $1 billion a year for schools.

Chicago Democrat Michael Madigan's plan surfaced just two days after voters in the Republican primary election chose multi-millionaire venture capitalist Bruce Rauner to face incumbent Democratic Governor Pat Quinn in the November general election.

Chip Englander, Rauner's campaign manager, said economic growth was needed to boost education funding.

"We need to take a look at our entire tax system to make Illinois more competitive and lower the tax burden on the people of Illinois," Englander said in a statement.

Under the speaker's plan, annual incomes topping $1 million would be taxed an additional 3 percent over the state's flat income tax rate, with the additional revenue distributed to schools on a per-pupil basis.

"This plan brings long overdue fairness to the state tax structure and provides a needed boost to education funding to help give our children more of the resources they need to succeed," Madigan said in a statement.

The proposed constitutional amendment would need approval from the Democrat-controlled House and Senate by May 5 in order to be placed on the ballot for the November general election, according to the statement.

This guy dares talking about "fairness" and taxes in the same breath? This fellow and his Springfield cronies jacked up personal income taxes by 67% and walloped businesses with an increase from 7.3% to 9.5% in 2011. The budget still isn't balanced and won't be even with this tax on the rich.

That's because Illinois politicians of both parties don't cut the budget when they raise taxes. They spend the tax increase - just like they're going to spend this one.

As Breitbart points out, the move is likely to start an exodus of the rich:

Madigan is unfazed by research that proves that taxes on millionaires encourage them to leave the state, as has been the case in New Jersey

"Well, if they’re in Illinois today, they’re probably so much in love with Illinois that they’re not going to leave," he said, according to the Tribune--a backhanded acknowledgement of how poorly the state is already doing. 

Madigan may also be encouraged by California's example, where millionaires have largely stayed put, even though Gov. Brown's tax increase on those earning more than $250,000 has helped the state achieve the second-highest tax rate in the nation. However, Illinois does not enjoy California's comfortable climate.

Also, as Breitbart notes, the millionaire tax is a direct slap at GOP gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner, a hedge fund manager. Rauner wants to cut taxes - especially business taxes which are the third highest corporate tax in the nation behind Minnesota and Pennsylvania. Thousands of Illinois companies have fled across the border to Indiana, Wisconsin, and Missouri where taxes are far lower and a much friendlier climate for business exists.

Madigan's gambit may actually fail at the ballot box. Illinois residents are sick to death of high taxes and fiscal mismanagement. It may be that the class warfare theme won't resonate quite as much with people who are already overtaxed.

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