Taxes: Which Dillard Are We Talking About?

Gubernatorial candidate Dan Proft Responds to Kirk Dillard’s Duplicity on Tax Increases

(Chicago, IL) – In response to State Sen. Kirk Dillard’s duplicitous comments on tax increases Monday, conservative Republican candidate for Governor Dan Proft released the following statement:
On Monday, Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass reported that State Sen. Kirk Dillard “insists that raising taxes during a recession, after thousands of private-sector jobs have left for Indiana and other neighboring states, would be economic suicide for Illinois.”

According to Kass, the two met on Monday night, the same day Sen. Dillard held a press conference to accept the endorsement of former Gov. Jim Edgar. When asked about tax increases during that press conference, however, Sen. Dillard said, “I think you have to keep every option open.”

Which is the real Kirk Dillard – the one who speaks to a conservative columnist about the “economic suicide” of raising taxes or the one who seeks to curry favor with the establishment media gaggle and insists you “have to keep every option open”? To answer that question, let’s do what Sen. Dillard does: Refer to his record.

Blagojevich’s $10 billion bond scheme. Sen. Dillard was one of only four GOP State Senators to cross party lines in order to vote for Rod Blagojevich’s $10 billion bond scheme in 2003. This deal doubled the state’s bonded indebtedness in one fell swoop.

Sales tax increase to bail out the RTA. Last year, Sen. Dillard was one of only three GOP State Senators to vote to increase the sales tax in Cook and the collar counties to bail out the mismanaged Regional Transportation Authority (which was really a bail out of the Chicago Transit Authority), an entity that is already subsidized by the state for half of its operating budget each year. In spite of that tax-financed bailout, it was reported this week that CTA is facing a $300 million budget deficit.

Gambling expansion. Sen. Dillard explained his vote for video poker gambling expansion as the result of having a metaphorical gun held to his head by special interests in Springfield. He argues that he spoke against gambling expansion before he voted for it.

State Spending. Sen. Dillard now talks about the need to make cuts. Over the summer, Sen. Dillard had plenty of opportunity to propose budget cuts, but what cuts did he propose? What specific cuts does he propose now? In fact, we have needed to make spending cuts and restructure financially unsustainable state government systems for the last 15 years that Sen. Dillard has been in Springfield.

So imagine a Gov. Dillard facing Mike Madigan and a Democrat-controlled General Assembly, which would love nothing more than to pass a tax increase and make a complicit Republican governor wear the jacket for it. Actually, you don’t have to imagine how this would play out. Sen. Dillard’s 15 years of going-along-to-get-along in Springfield leave little to the imagination.

Dan Proft’s Campaign Website.

Copyright Publius Forum 2001