Senator Syverson Pledges to Fight Tax Hike
Senator Dave Syverson is sponsoring legislation that asks lawmakers to pledge not to raise taxes during the upcoming veto session.
“Democrat leaders are passing a budget that by their own words creates massive shortfalls in next year’s budget. The budget relies on accounting tricks, delaying payments to providers, and sweeping funds from programs to try to appear balanced,” Senator Syverson said. “This budget is clearly about putting off a tax hike vote until after the election. If other legislators don’t plan on voting for a tax hike, then they need to prove it by supporting this legislation.”
There is a brief window of time after the election, during the annual veto session, when lawmakers who have been voted out of office can still vote and pass bills with simple majorities. This is often referred to as a lame duck legislature. In January of 2011, at 2:30 in the morning, the lame duck General Assembly passed the single largest income tax hike in state history at 67%.
“It’s simply not right for the legislature to pass a budget they say will work, then days after the November election, ‘lame-duck lawmakers’, or legislators who did not run for reelection or were thrown out of office, turn around and vote for massive tax hikes,” said Syverson. “Major legislation like tax increases should only be voted on by those lawmakers who are still accountable to the voters, after the first of the year, and with the public having full involvement in the process”
Passing major legislation during veto sessions or late at night has unfortunately become an Illinois tradition, from tax hikes to pension changes.
“This is what happens when lawmakers want to vote for something that they know voters don’t approve of, such as tax hikes,” said Syverson. “They’re scared if they vote to extend the tax hike now, they will be thrown out of office in November. This fear is for good reason. Voters want this tax hike to end. If these legislators don’t have the guts to vote for it now, then they shouldn’t have the gall to vote for it later.”