Gov. Pritzker's time as governor marks one of the most negative business climates in Illinois history. In the spring of 2020, Pritzker ordered Illinois businesses closed. Many remain closed today, and some will never reopen. The price of Pritzker's actions was demonstrated in Illinois' high unemployment rates. At its peak last year, unemployment topped 1 million; today, too many Illinoisans remain unemployed.
To make matters worse, Pritzker recently proposed a $1 billion tax increase on businesses. This includes reversing the repeal of the corporate franchise tax, one of the most loathed taxes in Illinois. In fact, Pritzker had previously looked at the franchise tax and decided "it didn't need to be there, for small business especially." But now he's reversing himself, along with the phaseout.
Instead of raising taxes on businesses, Pritzker and state lawmakers should focus on reopening the economy and addressing the long-standing and systemic problems with Illinois' finances. The state's budget was in terrible shape long before the pandemic due to decades of fiscal mismanagement, unaffordable pension costs and corruption. These long-standing problems are where the governor and state lawmakers should focus.