CHICAGO – Governor J.B. Pritzker’s progressive tax amendment has been rejected by a margin of 55 to 45 percent, Illinois voters have made it clear that proposing changes to the Illinois Constitution during a pandemic as reckless and burdensome to an already hurting community.

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By rejecting the Fair Tax Amendment voters are saying that they aren’t willing to give more power to the Illinois government at this time. In a conversation with Adam Schuster, Senior Director of Budget and Tax Research at Illinois Policy, he weighed in on the amendment issue with this.

“Focus on the power that this Constitutional amendment grants to Illinois politicians, this was fundamentally a referendum on the taxing power of our state capital and whether they should have more taxing power or whether some protections should stay in place," Schuster said.

Schuster added: “The issue was those rates were not guaranteed, there was no limitation on how often they could change, whom they could go up for, and they could’ve changed with a simple majority by our General Assembly at any time…I think taxpayers frankly saw through that, and saw that they were being sold a temporary promise for a permanent new grant of taxing power which would have made it easier to come after them in the future.”

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By keeping a flat tax rate, it will continue to protect the people of Illinois as it is more difficult to raise taxes throughout the entire population. If the flat tax remains valid in the Illinois Constitution the government will need to address other issues pressing the state rather than hiking taxes to fix their mistakes.

Currently, we are facing six years of continual decline as Illinois residents continue to flee to other states. Both Schuster and the President of Illinois Policy believe that the major issue that must be addressed here is pension reform, not tax.

Matt Paprocki, president of Illinois Policy, provided the following statement: “Illinoisans made their voices heard and sent a clear message to Illinois politicians: ‘We want to keep our constitutional flat-tax protection.’ Illinoisans were able to recognize that this progressive tax amendment would be devastating for everyone in the state: for retirees, for small businesses, and for middle-class residents tired of shouldering yet another tax hike without any resolution to lawmaker corruption, overspending and a broken pension system.

“There is now more hope than ever that we can unite over solutions that will stabilize the state budget and put pension funds on a path to solvency. The first step is clear: Reasonable pension reform in the form of HJRCA 21.”

For more information on how to stabilize Illinois’ pension system and put the state on the path to fiscal solvency, visit

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