Ives calls progressive tax system proposal 'worst' idea in history of Illinois politics
Rep. Jeanne Ives (R-Wheaton) doesn’t think talk of a progressive tax system is just another bad idea to come out of Springfield.
“I actually think it’s one of the worst ideas to ever be proposed in the history of Illinois politics,” Ives told the DuPage Policy Journal. “All it will do is accelerate the flight from Illinois that we’re already witnessing.”
The Illinois Policy Institute (IPI) reports House Speaker Mike Madigan’s campaign to enact a progressive tax system to replace the long-established flat tax system didn’t end when a progressive-tax constitutional amendment failed in the General Assembly earlier this year. Soon after that vote, Madigan (D-Illinois) introduced House Resolution 1025, a non-binding endorsement of a desired progressive tax rate.
House Bill 3522, the legislation that failed earlier this year, was introduced by state Rep. Robert Martwick (D-Chicago) and would trigger higher taxes for individuals grossing as little as $17,300 a year, according to IPI.
The institute also claims that Martwick’s plan, known as the Friendly Act, would also mean higher taxes in the district of every legislator who voted in favor of it.
“No one is in favor of this except people that don’t understand or care about what’s going on,” Ives said. “Everyone I talk to, from business to regular people, are all staunchly against the idea and afraid of what it could mean for them.”
Some economists with IPI warn that an already fragile economy might not be able to survive all the uncertainty that comes with such a system of taxation.
“Democrats keep pushing this idea because they think it sells well with their base and they’re desperately trying to increase turnout for the general election,” Ives said. “They think the rich doesn't pay its fair share, which is totally untrue, and they’re hoping that the uninformed voter will buy into that.”
Illinois taxpayers would be much better served if lawmakers devoted more of their time to make a serious effort at curtailing all the state's wasteful spending, Ives said.
“We need real reforms to attract businesses back to the state and grow the economy,” she said. “Illinois is in desperate need of massive tax reform in every way.”