State of Illinois Archives: on Budget & Economy

Darren Bailey: We're going to demand a zero-based budget

[On Illinois budget]: "We're going to demand a zero-based budget. Every department in the state is going to start at zero and build their way back up. Forever we've been simply passing these budgets without any accountability. The money that's spent, government regulation is killing us, our work comp is too high. If we reel back these regulations, these unfunded mandates on our schools and communities for years. It's going to lower our property taxes, it's going to lower our tax burden in general."
Source: Central Illinois Proud on 2022 Illinois Governor race Mar 29, 2021

J.B. Pritzker: Entrepreneurs create most of the jobs in our state

Entrepreneurs are the folks who create most of the jobs in our state. Their businesses are key to our economic revitalization, and they're the most immediate way for us to help those that are shouldering the heaviest burden from COVID-19. While the federal government writes billion-dollar checks to big businesses, here in Illinois we're standing up for small businesses--or as I like to say--the big businesses of the future.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Illinois legislature Feb 17, 2021

J.B. Pritzker: Illinois pays billions more in federal taxes than it gets

For decades, Illinois has been forced to send billions more tax dollars every year to the federal government than we receive back from them in support of our citizens. Federal spending is rigged against Illinois. We've been subsidizing public services for other states, like Iowa, Kentucky, Indiana, and Missouri. So far, not a single Republican Congressman from Illinois has supported you getting back what you paid for. If not in a national crisis, when will they stand up for us?
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to the Illinois legislature Feb 17, 2021

Mark Curran: Balanced budget via combo of increased revenue & budget cuts

Q: What government spending would you reduce in order to balance the budget?

A: It is a hard truth that balancing the budget-with the budget deficit we now have-is not possible without some sort of raise in revenue. I am very much in favor of curtailing government spending and eliminating redundant bureaucracy and wasteful spending. But in order to accomplish a balanced budget, it will take a combination of increased revenue and budget cuts. I do not believe that the middle class or upper middle income earners should have their taxes raised to achieve this.

Source: AFA iVoterGuide on 2020 Illinois Senate race Nov 3, 2020

J.B. Pritzker: A balanced budget reflects our values as a state

We passed a bipartisan, truly balanced budget on time, with renewed investments in job creation, cradle to career education, and physical and mental healthcare. Even the credit rating agencies and financial analysts described a "distinct improvement" in our fiscal stability, and investors took notice and lowered our state's borrowing rate. A balanced budget is an important accomplishment, but it's more than just about fiscal discipline. It's a moral document that reflects our values as a state.
Source: 2020 Illinois State of the State address Jan 29, 2020

Mark Curran: Would support and lead on Balanced Budget Amendment

The budget is out of control and a higher and higher percentage of the budget will go toward interest on the debt. President Trump increased military spending approximately 100 million dollars. We must honor our promise to seniors regarding Medicare and Social Security which comprise approximately 40 percent of the budget. Since we must honor those promises nothing else can be considered a sacred cow. I would support a balanced budget amendment and would lead on one.
Source: Chicago Sun Times on 2020 Illinois Senate race Jan 22, 2020

J.B. Pritzker: Time for honest budgeting instead of game-playing

Illinois has a $3.2 billion budget deficit and a $15 billion debt. Last year the state paid out more than $700 million in late payment penalties, enough to cover free four-year university tuition for more than 12,000 students. Budgeting will not be done any more by court orders, consent decrees and continuing appropriations but instead by debate and compromise. The budget I present to you today is an honest proposal--the costs are not hidden, the revenues I propose are not out of reach.
Source: 2019 State of the State address to the Illinois legislature Feb 20, 2019

Ameya Pawar: A New Deal for Illinois

FDR'S New Deal helped our state and country climb out of the depths of the Great Depression by creating living wage jobs that built our national parks, roads, bridges, libraries, schools, post offices, and other transformational infrastructure. The New Deal also invested in the arts and culture through the Federal Art Project. Ameya believes it is time to make such investments again through his New Deal for Illinois. Ameya will champion a public works program for the whole state.
Source: 2018 Illinois Gubernatorial website Sep 1, 2017

Chris Kennedy: Invest in economic incubators; create jobs for our kids

If we invest in economic incubators, we can keep our children close to home. They will not need to leave our state to find jobs, they will not be forced to leave their families to seek work, they can stay in the towns they grew up in, and they can rely on their parents and uncles and aunts to help raise their children and pass on the values that they learned there as well. Governor Rauner's cuts to these incubators are destroying our ability to create jobs in the future, which is critical to restoring the American Dream in our state. Rauner and his Republican allies fooled us once in 2014, and shame on them. Let's not let the Republicans get away with fooling us again in this year's election. He's cut off funding for tourism agencies and convention bureaus, shrinking our economy as he does so. He has gutted funding for higher education and economic incubators all around the state."
Source: 2018 Gubernatorial campaign website, Jan 31, 2017

Bruce Rauner: Reduce regulatory costs & economy will take off like rocket

Our state's economy could take off like a rocket ship if we could just come together on major pro-jobs legislation. Lawmakers from both parties deserve credit for working to reduce regulatory costs and property tax burdens that make businesses in Illinois less competitive than our neighbors. Hopefully we can build upon these initial proposals to ensure they drive big results on job creation. And hopefully we can work together to cut the red tape even more--reducing filing fees and costly licensing barriers that prevent hard-working Illinoisans from qualifying for good, high-paying jobs.

When it comes to the budget, we all can agree Illinois HAS to do something different. Our Administration has offered many proposals to achieve a truly balanced budget with changes that fundamentally fix our broken system. We must remember that to keep budgets balanced in the future, our rate of economic growth must be higher than our rate of government spending growth. It's just simple math.

Source: 2017 State of the State address to Illinois Legislature Jan 25, 2017

Mike Bost: Focus on "what to cut" instead of "how much to spend"

Money doesn't grow on trees but those in Washington often think it does. For too long, legislators went to Washington with a focus of "how much to spend" instead of "what to cut." Because of that mindset, federal spending is out-of-control with growing deficits that place the burden on future generations.

Just as Americans must balance their own household budgets, Congress should be held to the same standards. The next Congress must balance our federal budget in a reasonable, responsible way.

Source: 2014 Illinois House campaign website, Nov 4, 2014

Ameya Pawar: Pushed economic development projects totaling $300 million

My office passed ten major pieces of city-wide legislation, which includes:
Source: Illinois 2018 Gubernatorial campaign website, Nov 1, 2014

Sharon Hansen: Free enterprise is the key to national prosperity

Question topic: Free enterprise and the right to private property turn mankind's natural self interest into the fairest and most productive economic system there is, and are the key to national prosperity.

Hansen: Strongly Agree

Source: Faith2Action iVoterGuide on 2014 Illinois Senate race Sep 30, 2014

Pat Quinn: Hardest Hit: affordable homeownership in Great Recession

Building the middle class means keeping families in their homes. Thousands of hardworking Illinois families were in danger of losing their homes in the Great Recession. But we worked to fight foreclosure and promote affordable homeownership.

We launched the Illinois' Hardest Hit program to help working families keep their homes. More than 11,000 families, in nearly every county, have received the foreclosure prevention support they needed.

We also launched Welcome Home Heroes to give military families an opportunity to buy a home after sacrificing so much to protect our freedom. Thanks to Welcome Home Heroes, 1,150 military families have accessed more than $140 million to help buy their homes.

And we haven't forgotten about our neighbors with developmental disabilities. That's why we financed more than 2,100 new supportive housing units to provide individuals with disabilities more choices in their communities.

Source: 2014 State of the State speech to Illinois legislature Jan 29, 2014

Pat Quinn: Restrain spending by $220B by Budgeting For Results

We have taken the first steps to stabilize our budget--with a comprehensive plan to restrain spending and reform state government. The first part of this plan is budget restraint--finding new ways to reduce unnecessary state spending. Since taking office, I have reduced our spending every year. No area is above review. Last year, we enacted a landmark pension reform law--the most far-reaching public pension reform in our nation's history.

Over the next generation, we will save the people of Illinois $220 billion. Our commitment to taxpayers is simple: we will only use tax dollars to provide necessary state services. All unnecessary state spending will be eliminated. We are looking at programs in a new way--saving taxpayer dollars while improving the services we deliver. This new approach is called 'budgeting for results'. The spending reductions and program reforms I am talking about today are the result of our budgeting for results process.

Source: Illinois 2011 State of the State Budget Address Feb 16, 2011

Alexi Giannoulias: Bush-Cheney policies bailed out banks & created crisis

The large banks that caused the near-collapse of the global financial system were bailed out by taxpayers and have used the money on bonuses for their executives.

Voters of Illinois will be faced with a clear choice: go back to the reckless Bush-Cheney fiscal policies Mark Kirk supported that cost this state hundreds of thousands of jobs and created the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, or move forward to fundamentally change our economy and create the next generation of good jobs.

Source: 2010 Senate campaign website,, "Issues" Dec 25, 2009

Richard Durbin: Doing nothing in economic crisis abdicates responsibility

Sauerberg didn’t mince words when asked why he wanted to change careers and go to Washington: “Ineptitude in government.”

Sauerberg said that other steps could have been taken to shore up the economy in the wake of a $700 billion rescue plan passed by lawmakers.

Durbin was quick to defend his vote in favor of last week’s economic rescue package. “The alternative was to do nothing and doing nothing I think would have been an abdication of responsibility,” Durbin said.

Source: 2008 Illinois Senate Debate reported in Chicago Sun Times Oct 7, 2008

Steven Sauerberg: Opposes $700 billion rescue plan

Sauerberg didn’t mince words when asked why he wanted to change careers and go to Washington: “Ineptitude in government.”

Sauerberg said that other steps could have been taken to shore up the economy in the wake of a $700 billion rescue plan passed by lawmakers.

Durbin was quick to defend his vote in favor of last week’s economic rescue package. “The alternative was to do nothing and doing nothing I think would have been an abdication of responsibility,” Durbin said.

Source: 2008 Illinois Senate Debate reported in Chicago Sun Times Oct 7, 2008

Barack Obama: Bush’s economic policies are not working

Obama believes that there is no such thing as a “jobless recovery.” When millions of Americans aren’t working, neither are the Bush Administration’s economic policies. As US Senator, Obama will champion policies that get our economy moving and people working instead of short-sighted tax-cuts for the rich that have failed to spark a recovery.
Source: 2004 Senate campaign website, May 2, 2004

Barack Obama: Supports federal programs to protect rural economy

Our rural communities are the backbone of Illinois. Yet, factories have closed, jobs have disappeared, and homes and farms have been foreclosed upon. Effective federal programs are necessary to protect the rural economy.
Source: 2004 Senate campaign website, May 2, 2004

  • The above quotations are from State of Illinois Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Budget & Economy.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2020 Presidential contenders on Budget & Economy:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
Please consider a donation to!
Click for details -- or send donations to:
1770 Mass Ave. #630, Cambridge MA 02140
(We rely on your support!)

Page last updated: Oct 13, 2021