Monday, July 4, 2016
Broken Illinois: It doesn't have to be this way
Rock Island County Republican Chair BILL BLOOM had this op-ed in the June 13 Dispatch/Argus. ..... marks paragraph breaks. " Illinois must change direction. We must become a place that welcomes businesses to our land, and which encourages people to succeed. ..... The Democrats try to blame Illinois' problems on Gov. Bruce Rauner. History disputes this assertion. Illinois has been in dramatic decline for almost 30 years. Manufacturing has been leaving. People have been leaving. According to Allied Van Lines, their No. 1 customer is families moving out of Illinois. ..... Before Gov. Rauner took office, Illinois had the worst credit rating in the United States. Before Gov. Rauner took office, we had the largest debt per citizen in the country. We already had lost much of our manufacturing and almost all of the steel industry. Caterpillar considered relocating its headquarters out of Illinois before Rauner was elected. ..... Before Rauner, Illinois was showing a net loss of people to every other state in the union. All of this puts the lie to the Democrat assertion that somehow Rauner is responsible. ..... Mike Madigan personifies the thinking that has put Illinois into a malaise. He tried to push through a budget with a $7 billion deficit. Democrats in the House voted in lockstep, passing a 500-page budget without reading it. ...... It doesn't have to be this way. ..... Gov. Rauner would make Illinois more attractive to businesses. He would like to see Illinois grow its way out of its economic mess. He would make it easier to start a company here. He understands that in order to have private sector jobs, you need a thriving business climate. A growing economy would raise tax revenues without raising tax rates. ..... Members of private sector unions need to consider the direction Illinois and the country are taking. ..... The United Mine Workers used to be a pillar in the Democratic Party. Now it has been cast aside in favor of the environmentalists. ..... Older members of the UAW can remember when the Quad-Cities was the farm implement capital of the world. Deere and Caterpillar have since built plants, just not in Illinois. ..... This is the legacy of the anti- business environment Democrats have created to "help" unions. Members of the building and trade unions should consider the volume of construction taking place in "anti-union" Iowa (or Indiana) and compare that to what is happening in Illinois. ..... A more welcoming environment would make Illinois more competitive. New business creation would return, and private sector jobs would grow. Growth would open opportunities for unions. Union jobs in Indiana and Iowa are growing. ..... They are shrinking in Illinois. There is an alternative approach to solving Illinois' problems. It's called growth and prosperity. We must stop the relentless rise of taxes in Illinois and choose another path.