IL Freedom Caucus Statement on Governor’s State of the State Addr

Springfield, IL – The Illinois Freedom Caucus says the Governor’s sixth budget State of the State is another fairytale that rivals even the Brothers Grimm.

“The Governor wants to call his critics Doom Grifters, or as normal people would say ‘realists.’ The rosy picture JB Pritzker is trying to paint is simply not based in reality. Not once did the Governor address the state’s continued population loss. If current trends continue, Illinois will lose not one but two Congressional seats in the next Census.

Nor did the Governor mention the state’s massive pension debt. He also failed to mention Illinois’s massive budget hole and what his plan is to address it. Massive fee increases have been mentioned in media reports as a means of plugging the budget hole, but he did not address the state’s fiscal problems nor a solution to fix them.

Instead, we focused, as he always does, on highlighting spending increases. We believe the addition of new spending at a time when there is a massive budget hole is ill advised. We are in this financial mess because we have had a long line of weak leaders who prefer to pander than they do to lead. It is easier to throw money around than it is to make tough choices.

No one is against spending money on education, but we need results, not more spending. When in one in 10 Black students in the City of Chicago can only read at grade level – something is clearly wrong. The solution is accountability, competition, and better allocation of resources. Spending money for the sake of spending money has been an unmitigated disaster. We need leadership, not additional unchecked spending.

The Governor also wants to spend another $182 million on people who are not supposed to be here legally. There is an easy way to solve this problem and it is to end the Sanctuary State status. This problem cannot be solved at the state level and we should stop trying to do something we simply can’t do. This spending on illegal immigrants is just not sustainable.

Finally, we can support the end of the sales tax on groceries. When the Governor called for the temporary elmination of this tax, we said then that eliminating the sales tax on groceries should be permanent. We believe in keeping our word and will support the Governor’s effforts to end this tax.”

The Illinois Freedom Caucus is comprised of State Representatives Chris Miller (R-Hindsboro), chairman; Blaine Wilhour (R-Beecher City), vice-chairman; Adam Niemerg (R-Dieterich); Brad Halbrook (R-Shelbyville); Dan Caulkins (R-Decatur); Jed Davis (R-Newark) and David Friess (R-Red Bud). The members of the Illinois Freedom Caucus are members of the Illinois General Assembly who are advocating for limited government, lower taxes and accountability, and integrity in government.

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