By Michael Lucci -
Gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner publicly opposes the tax-hike plan championed by Gov. Pat Quinn and House Speaker Mike Madigan. Rauner claimed that raising income taxes again in 2015 will cause more businesses and people to flee the state.
Madigan fired back at Rauner with one of the most poorly-conceived statements of this campaign season. Madigan said: “People are leaving because they’re looking at the prospect of Rauner as the governor.”
That’s rich. Especially coming from Madigan, who as House Speaker since 1983, has overseen a historic out-migration of Illinoisans.
Migration data from the Internal Revenue Service runs from 1985-2010. In every year during that period, Illinois has lost more people than it has gained. And not only is Illinois losing people, but the average person who leaves Illinois also earns more money than the average person who comes into Illinois.
During Madigan’s speakership, Illinois has sustained a net loss of at least 1.3 million people to other states. And that’s after accounting for people who entered Illinois during those years.
The IRS migration data end with the 2010 tax year, before Bruce Rauner was a blip on the gubernatorial radar. If there is anyone in Springfield who should be self-conscious about the Illinois exodus, it’s Madigan.
Just consider the top states that gain residents from Illinois: Texas, Florida, Indiana and Wisconsin. Those states are run by leaders who would not see eye-to-eye with Quinn and Madigan.
Those states have had economic success by doing the opposite of the Quinn and Madigan agenda. They’ve worked to create a level playing field, low taxes and a favorable business climate.
And that’s what Illinoisans want here. The number one reason Illinoisans look to leave the state is because of the poor business environment and lack of work opportunities.
There’s one man who’s been calling the shots in Springfield for decades: Mike Madigan.
If Madigan really wants to learn why people are leaving Illinois, he need only look at the agenda of his own leadership.