Shared Sacrifice? Not for Casten and Illinois Democrats - Jeanne for Congress


“How much more do they think people can take?”

May 26, 2020 – Over the weekend, Illinois Democrat lawmakers in the state legislature voted themselves a $1800 pay raise. They believe they deserve it. Never mind that this is the most mismanaged state in the nation. The attitude is consistent across the board – state, local and federal. After his inauguration, Congressman Sean Casten (IL-06), lobbied for Congressional pay increases telling MSNBC  it’s “horrible” that they “work for peanuts” ($174,000 per year). 

Additionally, in voting for Nancy Pelosi’s HEROES Act, Congressman Casten signed off on a bailout for Illinois, to ensure the legislators who drove the state to insolvency can continue to fund their pay increases and benefits without ever reforming their mismanaged systems. They all cover for each other. It is part of the game. And it’s nothing new. 

Legislators from the most mismanaged state in the nation funding their lavish lifestyles on the backs of working families and businesses is always galling. This year, however, it is particularly egregious. In the past 2.5 months, our economy has been devastated, unemployment rates have reached all-time highs, many of those who remain employed are faced with pay cuts, and our health care system and social service organizations are desperate for the resources to survive the damage caused by COVID-19. 

“This is a slap in the face of all the people in this state trying to cope with the economic hardship that has been suddenly forced on them in the past few months,” said Jeanne Ives. “How much more do they think people can take? Removing pay increases for legislators from the budget would have been an easy modification. But this is Illinois, where Democrat politicians rule over the people they are supposed to serve. And nothing – not even the greatest health and economic disaster in a generation – is going to change that until voters start to make different choices on election day.”

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