Illinois Victories May Fuel Pritzker’s Graduated Income Tax, But It’s Easier Said Than Done

To change how income taxes in the state are collected is a three-step process

The signature issue for J.B. Pritzker has been changing the state's flat tax rate to a graduated tax rate. It's easier said than done, but Tuesday night's victories pave the way for Pritzker and Democrats to move forward.

During the campaign, Pritzker refused over and over to say what rates he prefers. Bruce Rauner constantly said Pritzker will raise taxes, and Pritzker countered that only the wealthiest will pay more.

To change how income taxes in the state are collected is a three-step process.

First, both Houses in the Legislature must approve -- by a three-fifths vote in each chamber -- a referendum to be placed on the next state-wide ballot.

Voters will then have to approve the referendum, which then goes back to the Legislature for yet another vote.

It's a long process that could take up almost the entirety of Pritzker's term.

Still, with substantial Democratic victories Tuesday night in the Illinois House and Senate, it is doable without Republican support.

So with the Democratic gains, what happens?

The Democrats will have super majorities in both the House and the Senate, and they will control all statewide offices.

The Illinois Republican Party will need a long and careful analysis on how to go forward.

For the last four election cycles, Republican candidates have made House Speaker Mike Madigan the poster child for all things bad in state government.

That strategy has not worked.

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