Let freedom ring!
The 2012 Illinois state budget is more than a billion dollars in the hole, the state cannot pay its bills, and as my mother would say, continues to rob Peter to pay Paul. Already, services from the state, counties, cities, towns and villages to Illinois' citizens have been cut and the debate continues, arguing for more cuts to vital services across the board. Unemployment and foreclosures continue to climb to shameful heights. More than ever during this long recession, government must be For the People.
Service cuts will require the state to find new and better ways to make government work for the people. Illinois cannot turn its back on needy families and struggling communities; Illinois must be a land of opportunity for everyone.
As Gov. Quinn says, "Everyone in and no one left out." Let's make Illinois the capital of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness by putting Illinois to work. We must reform Illinois, promoting a fairer and more just state, providing everyone the opportunity to dream, to have real hope for their families, and to have the opportunity to control their own future through the opportunity to work and pull themselves up by their own bootstraps.
Illinois must be just as concerned with struggling small businesses on the brink of closure as it is when big businesses make threats to leave our state. We must strengthen local Chambers of Commerce so that they can help to empower small businesses. Small businesses in Illinois create stable and vibrant communities and collectively create more jobs and pay more taxes in Illinois than big businesses.
Let freedom ring in every neighborhood of the home state of presidents Lincoln, Reagan and Obama! Illinois should lead the way, with independence for all Illinoisans on this Independence Day.
LaShawn K. Ford is the Illinois State Representative for the Eighth District.
Answer Book 2018
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