The Economy

Building an Illinois that works for all of us

State law has long favored the wealthy and disadvantaged ordinary citizens. Major corporations receive massive tax breaks, labor laws don’t protect Illinois workers, small businesses can’t grow, and the flat state income tax strips a huge chunk of income away from the middle class.

Daniel believes in creating an Illinois where everyone can prosper, and that means an economy where the wealthy pay their fair share and resources are available to everyone. Illinois needs a progressive state income tax, less red tape impeding small business owners, and labor laws ensuring that workers in the state are treated fairly and can earn a living wage. And the state needs a long-term budget solution that fully invests in programs helping everyday people.

Fixing the budget

Illinois has now gone years without a sane, sustainable budget, and as a result people across our state are hurting. A permanent solution to the budget requires a permanent change in the state constitution; this is the only way to achieve long-term fiscal stability. But while that work is under way, we must make immediate changes to provide for the state and end this terrible nightmare.

Tax reform

Illinois is one of only four states with a constitutionally mandated flat tax. Despite clear evidence from across the nation that Illinois is doing something wrong, Springfield has continued to force the middle class to pay more than their fair share. This decades-long mistake is hurting working families and is jeopardizing Illinois’ future. Until millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share, Illinois will continue to suffer. This is why Daniel has introduced and fought for a constitutional amendment to create a progressive income tax in Illinois, so that people who earn more pay more—just like they do for their federal taxes. Read more>>

Protecting workers and increasing wages

Governor Rauner has made attacks on working families and labor unions the centerpiece of his agenda, because for some reason he believes that cutting wages in a race to the bottom is the path to prosperity. In fact, the opposite is true: in order to be economically successful, Illinois must raise wages and lift all workers up. Here is how Daniel has fought for workers:

  • Expanding workers’ rights. As chairman of the Senate Labor committee, Daniel fought Governor Rauner’s dangerous attacks, and supported legislation that expands worker’s rights to negotiate for better pay and working conditions. Read more>>
  • Fighting for paid family leave. Workers should be able to earn sick days to care for themselves OR a sick child or family member, and deserve paid family leave. That’s why Daniel sponsored the Illinois Family Leave Insurance Act in 2016. Read more>>
  • Raising the minimum wage to $15. The minimum wage should be a living one, and that’s why Daniel fought for a $15-per-hour minimum wage. Worker’s rights must be protected, and available to all—that’s why Daniel has passed bills to crack down on wage theft and finally close the wage gap that still leaves women earning less than 80 cents on the dollar compared to their male counterparts. Read more>>

Leveling the playing field

To grow the economy, Illinois needs to level the playing field and give small businesses and entrepreneurs a fighting chance at growth. The state must stop handing out special tax breaks to friends of the machine and greedy corporations. Daniel has fought for full transparency of corporate tax breaks and repeatedly voted against special tax deals.

Many regulations that protect safety and make businesses play by the rules are important. But government must also cut red tape that makes it hard for Illinoisans to start new businesses, prevents fair competition, and impedes access to capital. Daniel has passed legislation tripling the state’s investments in Illinois-based entities without costing taxpayers a dime. This is the kind of work that must make Illinois a better place to invest in.


Click here for a downloadable version of Daniel’s platform on The Economy.