Smith support among local residents evident
A new 30-second spot for Michelle Smith, the Republican candidate for state Senate in District 49, aired recently.
In the commercial, which can be viewed here, residents of Joliet and Plainfield spoke of Smith's ability and determination.
Smith's platform focuses on six primary issues: education, jobs and the economy, pensions, term limits, property taxes and income taxes. She has said during her campaign that she is not afraid to make hard decisions. While serving as the local board of education president, Smith slashed the district budget by more than $45 million in five years. The drastic cuts were necessary to eliminate an $18 million deficit and balance the budget.
As a small business owner, Smith has watched other business owners leave Illinois. The onerous burden of business regulations, high taxes and a slumping economy have driven businesses and workers out of the state.
Smith said she intends to work with her colleagues in the state Senate to eliminate regulations and implement workers' compensation reforms to make Illinois a pro-growth state. Revenues will increase with new jobs, allowing legislators to increase funding for schools and social services, she said.
In addition to business-friendly reforms, Smith said she supports term limits in the legislature. Politicians who have been in office for decades have little incentive to implement reforms that could affect their own livelihood. Nearly 80 percent of constituents support term limits, yet each time a term limits bill is presented to the legislature, it has no supporters or stalls in committee. House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago), a 45-year veteran of the Illinois House, is among the lawmakers who would be affected by term limits.
“Term limits will rejuvenate our legislature with civic-minded officials who value good government," Smith said. "They will eliminate entrenched politicians whose interests too often align with those of their donors."
After the release of the trailer for "Madigan: Power. Privilege. Politics." Smith took to social media to urge voters to go to the polls in November. The trailer can be viewed here.
"Whether you are a Republican, Democrat or an independent this is a must see," Smith said. "The time has come to demand change, stand up and vote for those who will stand for you, not Madigan and his wallet. We deserve better, but change will not happen on its own. Together we can all make a difference. Vote Nov. 8."
Taxes are also an important issue for Smith. With the uncertainty of Illinois' economics due to the budget impasse that prevented full budgets in 2015 and 2016, and an attempt to pass an unbalanced budget that was $7 billion in the red, taxpayers face the possibility of increased income taxes.
Illinois had implemented a temporary income tax increase in 2011, which expired in 2015. The state collected an addition $31.6 billion in revenue, yet the state's backlog of unpaid bills was only reduced by approximately $1.5 billion. Before the temporary tax increase expired, Madigan and state Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) supported making it permanent.
In addition to warnings by State Comptroller Leslie Geissler Munger and Moody's Investment Services that taxes may increase to pay the state's bills, homeowners face increased property taxes. Illinois residents' property taxes are among the highest in the nation, second only to New Jersey. Smith said she supports a property tax freeze to protect homeowners from an even heavier tax burden.
Smith has pledged to support reforms that would create jobs and encourage economic growth. She continues to oppose the reckless spending that has been the norm for more than 45 years. She vowed to work for changes in the legislature that will benefit the residents of District 49 and the state of Illinois.
As Plainfield resident Brian Smith said in the 30-second campaign commercial, "Springfield, you'd better watch out because she's bringing the hammer."
Liberty Principles PAC was founded by Dan Proft. Proft is a principal of Local Government Information Services, which owns Will County Gazette.