Why shouldn't Illinois tax retirement income?

“Leading” senior citizen groups are upset because opponents of Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s graduated income tax shakedown are suggesting that it could lead to an Illinois tax on retirement income.

Older people will get confused, the groups say. But this is one older person who sees clearly that, indeed, the graduated income tax, while not making a tax on retirement income inevitable, sure makes it easier.

Once a graduated income tax is in place, calling for a tax on “rich” seniors will be a lot easier than imposing the existing flat tax on all seniors, including seniors who are living off meager pensions or social security.

And why not?

Illinois is one of only three  states that doesn’t tax  retirement income. It’s especially gratifying for unionized Illinois government workers, whose retirement income eclipses more modest private sector workers.

Democratic politicians here see additional “revenues” (i.e. taxes) as a major solution to Illinois catastrophic budget crisis. That they won’t touch one of the most obvious sources of additional revenue reveals a truth about them: Cowards.

Related: Pritzker revenue director sponsored bill to tax retirement income.  

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  • No, because that would undercut many people who are struggling to make it, especially now.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    Everybody must share in the struggle, comrade. Including well-off public employee pensioners. They must pay their fair share (back) to the communities that supported them.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    From what I’ve read, the tax would start at $75,000 in retirement income and gradually get higher. Do you struggle at $75,000/ year? Oh, I forgot, you sure will in IL, not a lot of other states.

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  • This discussion has absolutely nothing to do with the graduated income tax amendment. Tax exemptions are not mentioned in either the old or the new versions of Article IX Section 3. They are and will continue to be matters for the General Assembly.

    This is a classic red herring.

  • In reply to jnorto:

    You can't separate the two: the authorization of a graduated income tax and what the legislature would do with the power. Do you really think that the legislature, which has demonstrated its incompetence for lo these many years, will stick to whatever pipe dream promises of low taxes are made? Would you like to buy a share of the Chicago Skyway?

  • The legislature could have taxed retirements at any time at least since 1970. They didn't. Why? Maybe because they thought that such a tax would be unpopular among retirees, who tend to vote.. I know you Republicans are not big on democracy, but isn't this the way it is supposed to work?

  • In reply to jnorto:

    What happened to the idea of doing what's right? Isn't that the way a republic is supposed to work?

  • In reply to Dennis Byrne:

    Yes, including doing what the voters think is right.

  • If you lived and worked for any public sector agency in Illinois and you retire but decide to move to another state then you must forfeit your pension. You are not entitled to it.

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