The progressive income tax is dead – again

Heather Weiner

Heather Weiner is formerly the Illinois Policy’s Government Affairs Staff Attorney.

Heather Weiner
May 4, 2016

The progressive income tax is dead – again

According to the Illinois Department of Revenue the progressive tax would've cost Illinois 20,000 private-sector jobs, 43,000 residents to other states on net, and $1.9 billion in GDP over the first four years.

The defeat of the amendment to change the Illinois Constitution’s flat-income-tax provision is a huge victory for Illinois taxpayers.

Illinois’ fair, flat income tax remains intact. To enact a progressive tax, politicians needed to pass an amendment to the Illinois Constitution, giving them carte blanche to set whatever rates they please. This was a dangerous prospect, given many politicians’ irresponsible tax-and-spend mentality, which is already leading to massive numbers of individuals and businesses leaving the state.

Today, the proposed amendment is dead, as Democrats could not rally the votes they needed.

Illinois Policy left no stone unturned in defeating this constitutional amendment. We used all of our advocacy tools: We strategically targeted lawmakers, engaged in one-on-one conversations, leveraged partnerships and media opportunities, and called on voters to contact lawmakers who were wavering on this issue.

Most importantly, we allowed Illinoisans to have their voices heard in this debate – and they spoke loudly and clearly against the politicians who again admonished, “Trust us.”

Illinois Policy will remain vigilant in its defense against tax hikes, and will continue advocating in favor of legislation that makes Illinois freer and more prosperous.

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