Pritzker Makes Campaign Stop In Champaign


Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker addresses questions after a campaign speech in Champaign.

Anna Casey/Illinois Public Media

Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker made his pitch to voters on Wednesday at a campaign stop at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers union hall in Champaign. Pritzker was joined by his running mate, State Representative Juliana Stratton, and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois.

Speaking to a room of about 80 union members and Democratic supporters, Pritzker, a Chicago multibillionaire, played up his downstate credentials by taking aim at Governor Rauner.

“Four years ago, there was a candidate running wearing a dry-cleaned Carhardt jacket,” Pritzker said. “Then when he got elected we found out that underneath that Carhardt jacket was a hidden agenda.”  

Pritzker went on to express his support for passing an infrastructure bill, which he said would create jobs.

“We’ve got an intense amazing agricultural economy. We’ve got to invest in that infrastructure to make it all work so that we can continue to be that supply chain,” Pritzker said.

During the stump speech, the Democratic candidate did not address his graduated income tax plan, which has drawn criticism from his opponent for not being detailed enough. Republicans have charged that without being given the specifics, it's possible the plan could raise taxes. 

Asked about the plan, Pritzker said the first component would raise taxes on wealthy people like himself and Governor Bruce Rauner.  

“We need to lower taxes... on the vast majority of taxpayers in the state of Illinois,” Pritzker added, without getting into specific numbers or income bracketts. 

Pritzker said his tax plan would result in more dollars raised for public education from state funds, instead of local property taxes. Currently the state of Illinois provides about a quarter of school funding dollars.

Story source: WILL