Here is my Letter to the Editor of my hometown newspaper, The News-Progress. When I was in high school, I actually wrote sports stories for them, as well as co-writing an exposé with a classmate regarding the costly maintenance problems with our elementary school. That story was actually distributed to all registered voters in Moultrie County.
Local newspapers are one of the only sources remaining that provide local news about your government, education, criminal justice, and other vital resources of information.
The state’s problems are beyond party. We don’t live 25 years ago, either. This is 2017, and there is bipartisan consensus on a state budget today. The Governor simply stands in the way of any budget becoming law.
Governor Rauner is constitutionally mandated to submit a balanced budget each year. He never once has. The State House and State Senate are the only elected bodies trying to pass a budget and actually deal with our state’s budget crisis. Any budget deal must be able to overcome a Rauner veto, as he demands to get 100% of what he wants. He actually doesn’t want a budget deal because he wants to use this issue in next year’s gubernatorial election.
Meanwhile, the Governor is off vacationing and campaigning, has made at least three bad lease deals with his buddies using our taxpayer money, and continues to hire his friends and business associates into taxpayer funded, six-figure salary positions that most are not even qualified to fill. That’s not good governance and certainly it’s not good business.
As downstate Illinoisans, we also don’t vote for Mike Madigan. We do vote for our state representatives and senators, our Congressional Representatives and Senators, and all of our locally elected officials. Yet, we send the same Party and the same people to Springfield and D.C. every election.
Aren’t we all tired of doing the same thing and expecting a different result? I’m frankly tired of the excuses. It’s all I’ve heard for decades. The blame game doesn’t solve anything and doesn’t help one single family here. It does help incumbents continue to be reelected despite not having any significant results to show for their time in office.
For a Party that lauds their responsibility and accountability credentials, there seems to be a vacuum of both when it comes to getting the real work of the People done. We all deserve so much better than we’ve been receiving for decades. The people we’ve sent to Springfield and D.C. haven’t helped our communities and families. Let’s send different people.
-Running for Congress in the 15th District of Illinois