BLOOMINGTON — When the state House takes up the governor's veto of the budget package, which includes tax hikes, Thursday, Bloomington-area lawmakers are likely to continue voting against it.
State Rep. Dan Brady, R-Bloomington, said he has been a “no” vote on the legislation. He said that's an indication of where he stands, but he also said, “We'll see what tomorrow brings and take it from there.”
State Rep. Tom Bennett, R-Gibson City, said he also will oppose overriding Gov. Bruce Rauner's veto.
“Everyone wants this to be done and over with,” Bennett said in an email to The Pantagraph, but he opposes the measures because the budget is not balanced and does little to pay down the backlog of bills. His other reasons include the tax hikes and a lack of “reforms needed to help turn the Illinois economy around,” he said.
State Rep. Keith Sommer, R-Morton, did not respond to an email from The Pantagraph.
State Sens. Bill Brady and Jason Barickman, both Bloomington Republicans, voted "no" when the Senate overrode the veto Tuesday.
Bill Brady, selected by Republican senators to be their next leader, acknowledged the Senate's bipartisan cooperation and complimented senators from both parties, but he said he could not support the package "because it is incomplete.
"We need a comprehensive solution for this state," he said. "We’ve negotiated in good faith, but I regret to say, that we have not come to a conclusion on that solution."
Barickman said in a statement, “It’s extremely disappointing that after all the progress we have made in negotiations, Democrats would simply ram through an unbalanced budget that doesn’t offer any fixes or reforms for the systemic issues that continue to plague Illinois."
He said: "This budget does little to nothing to pay down the massive bill backlog nor will it stop the constant exodus of people and jobs from our state. We need bipartisan solutions, not more of the same failed ideas and policies that got us here.”
No vote was taken Wednesday in the House because too few members attended to reach the quorum needed for action. Fewer than 60 of the 118 members were there.
Dan Brady said he did not attend Wednesday's House session because he was told Tuesday there would not be enough people present for a vote.
“I saw it as a waste of time, money and effort,” said Brady, adding, “For the life of me, I don't know why” the session was called.
Bennett and Sommer were at Wednesday's session. They and Brady also were in Springfield on Tuesday.
As for Thursday, Brady said, “It's widely anticipated there will be a vote and I will be there.”