Huffpost Chicago
THE BLOG

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

David Ormsby Headshot

Dan Hynes' Tax Plan Would Shield Illinois Legislature, Governor From Tax Hike and Other Campaign News

Posted: Updated:

Here's the latest from the Illinois 2010 candidate and cow-pie trail ...

... Illinois Comptroller Dan Hynes' Democratic primary campaign for governor has a new income tax attack ad on Quinn airborne.

Hynes contrasts his tax plan with Governor Pat Quinn's by noting he'll raise taxes only on Illinois incomes over $200,000. Hynes claims that his plan will protect middle class incomes -- but that plan will also exempt the next governor and all Illinois lawmakers from a tax hike, too.

The governor's salary is $177,000 and lawmakers' base salary is $67,836.

In addition, the lieutenant governor, treasurer, comptroller, attorney general, secretary of state, speaker of the House and president of the Senate would all be shielded from an income tax increase, too.

If Hynes ultimately were to win the governor's office and enacts his plan, the entire Illinois governing class would be exempt from an Illinois income tax increase. Oops.

Meanwhile, Quinn's plan boosts the tax on the governor's salary and on all constitutional officers. Quinn's campaign spokesperson, Elizabeth Austin, notes that incomes above $60,000 would witness a "modest" increase. That includes legislators. Phew.

Under Quinn's plan of "shared sacrifice", the people -- lawmakers and the governor -- responsible for raising incomes taxes would feel the tax bite like everyone else. Under Hynes' plan, no.

Seems a wee bit unfair?

You gotta imagine the quintessential populist Quinn will sooner or later point out this "contrast" between the two plans.

... The latest installment of a CTA-threatened "doomsday" fair hike and service cuts has already wormed its way onto Quinn's campaign schedule.

Before arriving at a private fund-raiser on Tuesday night, Quinn met with anxious CTA bus drivers -- many of whom whose routes have been targeted for reduction as part of CTA Chairman Terry Peterson's plan to close a $300 million budget deficit -- and the governor noted it was a l-o-n-g meeting.

Mayor Richard M. Daley is looking to Springfield for money, but folks should expect no dollops of cash from the Illinois General Assembly during the fall veto session.

Anyway, Quinn said funding college grant assistance for 138,000 students during the spring semester -- the Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP) -- is his veto session priority.

... Quinn was feted by a Gucci-heeled crowd at the Lincoln Park mansion of Chicago attorney Jay Paul Deratany, who ran for a seat on the Cook County Board of Review in 2008 -- a seat once held by Quinn himself.

... Other candidates circulating among the progressive swells included Cook County Board Commissioner Bridget Gainer; U.S. Senate hopeful David Hoffman, Chicago's former Inspector General; Jeff Smith, who's angling for Julie Hamos' state House seat; and Todd Connor, 31, a former Navy officer and a former Illinois Inspector General, who's looking to grab a seat on the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District.

Hoffman worked the crowd and left no guest's hand unshaken and Connor left no guest unimpressed.

... Speaking of David Hoffman, he has a new poll out that says he's losing his U.S. Senate race -- but that he will win if -- and a big fat, tubby if -- enough Illinois voters hear that message he's crafted. Hope he lifted a few wallets at Quinn's event.

... Robin Kelly, current chief of staff to Illinois Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, added U.S. Representative Debbie Halvorson to her bulging list of endorsements to succeed Giannoulias.

... State Representative Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago) is co-hosting a fund-raising brunch for U.S 10 CD candidate Julie Hamos with Charles Stanford and Bob Messerly at their sprawling home in East Lakeview on October 25. GPS devices are recommended to find the dining room.

... Conservative columnist Michelle Malkin will be headlining the United Republican Fund's 75th Anniversary dinner gala at the Chicago Hilton and Towers on October 22. Vegetarians beware. The menu will feature only uncooked, raw, red meat. Yum.