Democrats still don't have the votes to approve tax hike and minimum wage proposals

Apr 24, 2014

Two major Democratic initiatives are still short the votes needed to pass, as the General Assembly heads into the final stretch of its spring session. IPR'S Amanda Vinicky reports.

How to deal with Illinois' income tax rate is arguably the biggest issue looming over Illinois politics. The 5-percent rate is set to rollback in January, but Gov. Pat Quinn wants the higher rate extended permanently, an approach favored by the Democratic leaders of the legislature.

Given the party's supermajorities, there's some thought that Democrats would be able to muscle the hike through, despite Republican protests. House Speaker Michael Madigan says he hasn't yet surveyed his members, to see how much muscle and arm-twisting that would take.

"It's not going to be an easy vote. And it's going to require a lot of work," says Madigan.

Madigan says he has begun a roll call on another proposal: hiking Illinois' minimum wage to more than $10 an hour. But Madigan says he doesn't have the votes to pass it.