SPRINGFIELD - With six days left until the May 31st session deadline, and bi-partisan budget working groups still meeting, House Speaker Mike Madigan called the chamber into session and plopped down a 500-page budget before members.
"I was going to say this is a phony bill, but I don't know what's worse than phony," Republican Minority Leader Jim Durkin said in floor debate.
Within 90 minutes, Madigan's FY2017 budget was voted upon, passed and the House adjourned for the night.
Republican House members, surprised and stunned by the Speaker's move, began reaching out to constituents via Twitter, text and Facebook with photos of the bill and comments about the action - breaking all of the Speaker's own House rules.
Next to the photo above, State Rep. Peter Breen (R-Lombard) posted on Facebook, "Here's the 500-page $40B spending bill the Dems dropped on us 90 minutes ago. We'd need a 47% increase in the income tax to pay for this trash."
Within minutes, the GOP caucus learned that Madigan's budget exploded next year's Illinois state budget by $7 billion - a deficit that would force the taxpayers of Illinois to hike the state's income tax to over five percent in order to balance.
"Speaker Madigan filed a 500 page spending bill 1 hour before calling it for a vote tonight. What we know about this bill is that it would push state spending over $40 billion for FY17. That is $7 billion more than projected revenues, and according to the Governor’s Office of Management and Budget the measure would require an income tax rate of 5.5% to balance the budget," Durkin posted on Facebook with the photo above.