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Senator Haine reacts to leadership meeting

haine lgdfSPRINGFIELD – In response to the meeting Governor Bruce Rauner held with legislative leaders today, State Senator Bill Haine (D-Alton) released the following statement:

“I am happy to see this meeting happen. This is an important first step in getting a constructive dialogue going in order to compromise on tough issues. It is extremely important we take concrete steps to end this impasse. There is still much to be done to bring Illinois to its rightful place as a leader in manufacturing, agricultural production and shipping.  

“Illinois has always been a leader in education and infrastructure, such as highways, bridges and levee repairs. We need to ensure that Illinois fights its way back into a leadership role in the industrial, financial and agricultural sectors. Our economic base is at stake and we need to get down to business. We need to deemphasize the agendas and move toward cooperation for the common good.”

Delgado: Leaders' meeting needs to pave way for solution

Delgado senior cutsSPRINGFIELD- Illinois has been without a budget for months, and the public’s patience is wearing thin. Following a meeting between the four legislative leaders and the governor Tuesday afternoon in Springfield to discuss the budget, state Senator William Delgado (D-Chicago) issued the following statement.

“Having a face-to-face meeting should bring about positive discussions and work us closer to a budget solution,” Delgado said. “I’ve said it before. People in my communities are suffering more and more with each passing day, and they’re wondering why meetings like this haven’t been happening for months.”

“If this proves to be even marginally productive, then meetings like this need to be held on a regular basis until our budget problem is solved. Let’s move our state forward,” said Delgado.

Biss Statement on Leaders' Budget Meeting

biss snapSPRINGFIELD — Sen. Daniel Biss (D-Evanston) issued the following statement about Tuesday's scheduled budget meeting between Illinois' legislative leaders and Gov. Bruce Rauner:

"For the first time in more than six months, Gov. Bruce Rauner will convene a meeting with Illinois’ four legislative leaders on Tuesday.

It's easy to be cynical about such a meeting — painfully easy, in fact. But as we enter the sixth month of the fiscal year with no budget in sight, those of us who are focused on the devastating human consequences of this situation need to hold on to whatever hope we can find.

This prolonged situation has already inflicted untold harm by destroying the state’s vital human services network, by worsening its already bleak financial picture and by marring its fiscal reputation so severely that it will take years to recover.

The damage is evidenced each time a human services provider closes its doors, each time a teenager has nowhere to go to be safe after school and each time a family is turned away for counseling services.

All of this is happening because Gov. Rauner has steadfastly refused to negotiate about the budget until the General Assembly capitulates to his demands to enact a radical anti-worker agenda. The fact of the matter is that this agenda can't pass because a majority of legislators simply don't think support his ideas. That's how democracy works — and Gov. Rauner will only get his way by convincing those of us who disagree with his ideas to change our minds, not by taking innocent hostages.

It’s time for Gov. Rauner to end the stalemate and start negotiating with the state’s elected lawmakers. Illinois needs a budget now. Everything else, including the governor’s anti-worker agenda, must wait."

Collins calls for appointment of special prosecutor, accountability for state’s attorney and anyone involved in McDonald cover-up

collins laquanmcdonaldmarchCHICAGO – State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-Chicago 16) issued the following statement calling for a bold, swift response to revelations about the death of Laquan McDonald and the year-long delay in prosecuting Officer Jason Van Dyke:

To be effective, our outrage must be focused, our demands specific and sharp. Charging Jason Van Dyke with first-degree murder is not enough. There was a cover-up, and anyone involved in it must be held accountable. If we do not tear down the blue curtain of silence once and for all, Laquan McDonalds will continue to die in our city. We must never forget that the video – and the truth – were not simply handed to us. Instead, they were ripped from reluctant hands by journalists, citizens and the courts.

Policing reform legislation I co-sponsored this year provides a pathway to the appointment of a special prosecutor in cases such as this one. The law takes effect in January, and it must be used to help bring to justice rogue cops and those who cover for them. In the meantime, we need a fresh start. State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez must step down. She has failed in her responsibility to timely, openly prosecute a heinous crime that not only took a life but betrayed the public trust.

I am immensely proud of all who have protested peacefully in Chicago, and on Friday, I was honored to march alongside young people and veterans of the Civil Rights Movement alike on Michigan Avenue. I am more confident than ever that apathy and self-absorption will not succeed in suppressing the human bent toward basic fairness. Not only people of color, but all people who respect justice should be outraged and engaged, and that is the unity I have witnessed since the release of the video last week.

But if these protests do not result in top-to-bottom change, we will be here again – perhaps a month from now, maybe six months or a year from now. Our voices must not die away. We must not stand by while police officers act as judge, jury and executioner on our streets. We will remain united for justice.

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