To the Editor:
A word of caution regarding politicians who promote the idea that a “progressive” income tax in Illinois is more “fair.” Remember that “fair” oftentimes is just a personal opinion, and it’s possible that not everyone would agree.
The Illinois Constitution calls for a flat income tax rate for all citizens. If your Illinois taxable income is $10,000, you pay $495. If you earn $100,000, you pay $4,950. If you earn $1 million, you pay $49,500.
So, someone who makes 100 times more pays 100 times more tax. I suspect that the person who makes $1 million is not getting back $49,500 of benefits from the state of Illinois.
I also suspect the real reason certain politicians believe a progressive income tax is more “fair” is they simply want more tax revenue and more government spending. They probably also believe income inequality needs to be eliminated by the government, and everybody should end up with the same amount of “after-tax” income.
A more pertinent question might be whether a public pension in excess of $100,000 a year (with a guaranteed 3 percent a year COLA) is “fair.” It seems that because of the career politicians in Springfield, we cannot get pension reform, “fair” legislative maps or term limits.
But some politicians believe we should amend the Illinois Constitution to allow for “progressive” income tax rates. Is it any wonder why our state has the highest level of “out-migration” compared to any other state in the country?