Wehrli says graduated income tax is 'kicking the can down the road'
House Rep. Grant Wehrli (R-Naperville) asked House members to vote no on a constitutional amendment that would change the income tax structure in Illinois from a flat tax to a graduated tax.
Wehrli said the national economy is doing well and businesses are flourishing, but not so much in Illinois.
"Illinois is ill-prepared for the next recession," Wehrli said. "Under this proposal, I’m not sure Illinois could survive (the next recession)."
Wehrli said the graduated tax structure would eventually tax, and harm, the middle class.
"All you’re doing is you’re kicking the can down the road and you’re going to hit (the middle class) when they can least afford it," Wehrli said. "This is a bad policy that will have devastating effects for years."
Senate Joint Resolution Constitutional Amendment 1 passed the House on Monday with 73 yes votes and 44 no votes. It will now be on the November 2020 ballot for Illinois voters to decide. Every single Republican voted no on the bill.
Many businesses and individuals have spoken out about their disapproval of a graduated income tax structure. Critics of the structure suggest because rates aren't nailed down in the amendment that it will eventually be a tax on the middle class.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker has been adamant about his preference for a "fair tax" since running for governor last year.