All Other Problems Solved, Chicago Democrats’ New Law Worried About Dogs Behind the Wheel

-By Warner Todd Huston

Having apparently solved all of the other debilitating problems Illinois is facing, Chicago Democrats have now turned their considered attention to making sure dog owners don’t let their puppies get behind the wheel of an automobile.

This important bill (HB1581) amends the Illinois vehicle code to ban drivers from putting their pooch on their laps as they drive. Presumably the Democrats understand it is the humans that are doing the driving, not the dogs–but we may need to launch a second legislative campaign to clarify that.

As Chicago-based Democrat and co-sponsor of the bill, Rep. Bully Burke, says, “Because I travel, I can’t help but observe the number of people with dogs on their laps.” And so, ol’ Billy is out to correct this egregious public safety issue. He’s all about solving the puppy-distracted driver issue.

This is a vital issue, to be sure.

Why? Well, it’s obvious that Illinois Democrats have solved every other nagging issue in the Land of Lincoln, right?

I mean, the pensions are now fully funded, aren’t they? Why, long ago–by long, I mean I heard it yesterday on the radio–reports noted that the mess the state’s pensions for unionized government workers had gotten into was costing the state a mere $17 million per day! A trifle, we all know. And back in December–you know, the distant past–Illinois was rated as having one of the worst funded teachers pensions in the country. All that has obviously been solved since the Democrats are now turning their attention to the doggie driver problem.


Thankfully, Illinois is rising above being identified in February as one of the worst states in the union for its oppressive, jobs-killing lawsuit climate, too.


And when Illinois had more home foreclosures than almost every other state? Heck, that must be fixed, now, too.


And that whole business of a January ranking of Illinois being the 49th worst debtor state in the nation? Clearly that has been fixed, right?


What about being ranked as the 48th worst state for business? Well, we must not have to worry about that. The state’s Democrats have surely cleared that little misconception up.


Speaking of business, I guess the fact that as of February, Illinois ranked 48th for unemployment making it among the worst five states for joblessness is a thing of the past, as well.


And, naturally, Illinois has one of the worst rankings for state transparency and accountability, too. Imagine that. But, pish tosh, not to worry, it’s…

Mondo success!

So, now the Chicago-controlled, Illinois Democrat Party has turned its diligent attention to doggie drivers.

Primo success!

I mean, if the state legislature has nothing left to do but get all worried sick over doggie drivers, then all these debilitating problems must have been solved by our wonderful, caring, serious-minded state Democrats… right?

Ultimo success!

Thank you, thank you Democrat Governor Pat Quinn. Thanks Democrat Speaker Mike Madigan. Thanks also to Democrat Senate President John Cullerton. You’ve all done yeomen’s work. And Rep. Billy Burke? Well you just keep your eye on the road and keep that steel-trap-of-a-mind focused on solving these important and vexing problems that the Land of Lincoln faces. We are all thankful for your attention and so, so proud of your hard work.
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
–Samuel Johnson

Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s,, and, as well as,,,,, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.

For a full bio, please CLICK HERE.

Copyright Publius Forum 2001