Several of Illinois’ lawmakers from both sides of the aisle seem to be growing more disillusioned with how the state is handling the taxpayer’s business.
Just after the governor gave his State of the State speech Wednesday Republican Representative John Cabello questioned why lawmakers didn’t stay and finish the people’s work.
“There is no sides anymore,” Cabello said, “We’re grownups. We’re supposed to do a job.”
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“All I know is that we do good things together,” Cabello said. “We do horrible things when we’re apart or when it’s partisan and I’m embarrassed to be a state Representative right now.”
Meanwhile during floor debate Thursday Republican Representative David Harris said the state’s priorities are out of whack.
“We can’t fund our social services,” Davis said. “We can’t fund our universities. We can’t fund MAP, but we vote $55,000 to expose the youngsters in the state of Illinois to the game of golf.”
Also during floor debate Thursday one lawmaker said he’s ready to camp out and get the job while another decried political leaders for guiding followers away from compromise.
Democratic Representative Ken Dunkin presented a sleeping bag and a lunch box and put out a challenge to other lawmakers to stay in Springfield and get the job of a balanced budget done.
“Let’s not leave this chamber, skipping back up to our respective districts, coming up or looking up for another excuse of why we are not working of why this budget has not been resolved,” Dunkin said. “ Shame on all of us!”
Democratic Representative Scott Drury provided a different form of protest in not having lawmakers show up to play games.
“I’m convinced that there are not the majority of members here that are serious about doing anything other than being good politicians at the expense of being good legislators.”
Republican Representative Dwight Kay said legislative leaders are to blame for compromise being illusive.
“I think the art of it is gone,” Kay said. “I think we’ve lost it because we’re following the pied piper in some cases and the pied piper says ‘we don’t compromise, we don’t negotiate, it’s our way or the highway.’”
Without a balanced budget now for seven full months, the state has been funding programs through court orders and consent decrees and is on pace to spend billions more than it’s expected to bring in.