Give Illinois six billion reasons to believe you, Mr. President

Dan Proft Feb. 22, 2009, 12:44am


We simply do not know what the impact will be.

This has never been tried before: government spending.

Somehow this nation is $10 trillion in debt and yet we are told that pitching another $800 billion into the furnace is some kind of policy innovation.

Ok, President Obama, I'll be your Huckleberry.

We are on the verge of economic Armageddon, correct?

We must get these so-called "shovel-ready" infrastructure projects underway to jump-start the economy, correct?

Then, Mr. President, give Illinois taxpayers the $6 billion that was set aside for us in the 2005 transportation bill.

As you know, Mr. President, because they are your friends, for the last four years, the idiocracy in Springfield has been unable to come up with the 20% state match we need to access the $6 billion we were allocated for roads and bridges. Maybe Illinois would not have lost 66,000 jobs last year if your friends had acted sooner. I suppose that too is simply unknowable.

What is known, however, is that if Illinois does not come up with its match this year, the state will lose that $6 billion.

Like you, Mr. President, your friends in Springfield are dusting off their old playbook and proposing an $.08 per gallon gas tax increase to come up with the matching funds needed to secure the $6 billion.

But I ask you, Mr. President, why should Illinois residents have a regressive tax inflicted upon them to make up for the incompetence of the Springfield idiocracy?

Your economic stimulus plan provides less than $2 billion in infrastructure funding to Illinois. So if, as you say, Mr. President, this is a crisis. If, as you say, government spending is the remedy but that remedy should not come on the backs of middle class, working people.

Then, Mr. President, abide your own rhetoric, prevent your friends from taking another whack at the people already shouldering the load in Illinois.

Wave the state match requirement (what's another $1.2 billion--what the state match would amount to--in the context of $800 billion going out the door?) to remove the predicate for a tax increase and send us our $6 billion.

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