From gun control to the income tax rate, WBEZ asked Illinois' candidates for governor to take firm, easy-to-understand positions. But Republican incumbent Bruce Rauner and Democratic challenger JB Pritzker had little desire for solid stances.
Rauner didn’t respond. Pritzker only answered yes or no half the time, and provided written responses for the rest. Libertarian Kash Jackson answered all the questions with a yes or no. State Sen. Sam McCann, of the Conservative Party, answered yes or no to 16 questions, wrote a sentence for one, and didn’t answer one.
Election Day is Nov. 6. Illinois residents can register to vote up until then.
See how the candidates responded below — whether yes, no, written response (✎), or not at all.
|Bruce Rauner||JB Pritzker||Kash Jackson||Sam McCann|
|Do you favor maintaining Illinois’ flat 4.95% income tax rate?||✎||Yes||No|
|Do you favor lowering Illinois’ income tax rate to 3%?||✎||No||Yes|
|Do you favor increasing the flat tax rate to a level higher than 4.95%?||✎||No||No|
|Do you favor a graduated state income tax?||Yes||No||No|
|Do you favor an expansion of the sales tax to include services?||No||Yes||No|
|Do you favor legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes?||Yes||Yes||No|
|Do you favor freezing property taxes for all local taxing units?||✎||Yes|
|Do you favor expanding casino gambling in Illinois?||✎||Yes||No|
|Do you favor a casino managed by the city of Chicago?||✎||No||No|
|Do you favor slot machines at O’Hare and Midway airports?||✎||Yes||✎|
|Do you support requiring health insurance companies to not charge people higher rates if they have a pre-existing condition?||Yes||No||Yes|
|Do you favor the state licensing gun shops?||Yes||No||No|
|Do you favor banning the sale of bump stocks?||Yes||No||No|
|Do you favor banning the sale of high-capacity ammunition?||Yes||No||No|
|If the federal government strips organizations that receive federal money for abortions, would you support state funding of organizations that provide abortions?||Yes||No||No|
|Should the state admit negligence in its handling of Legionnaires’ disease outbreaks at the Quincy veterans’ home so that the 12 pending Court of Claims lawsuits can be settled?||✎||Yes||Yes|
|Do you favor changing the state constitution, removing the language that state pension benefits cannot be diminished?||No||Yes||No|
|Do you favor additional borrowing to help pay down Illinois’ $129 billion unfunded pension liability?||✎||No||No|
|See a PDF of JB Pritzker's answers||See a PDF of Kash Jackson's answers||See a PDF of Sam McCann's answers|
In the interest of transparency, Chicago Public Media (CPM) reminds its audience that we receive philanthropic support from The Pritzker Foundation. JB Pritzker, who is a candidate for Illinois governor, is not involved in The Pritzker Foundation and does not contribute to it. He and his wife lead a separate philanthropic foundation, the Pritzker Family Foundation, from which CPM has never received any funding.
Images via AP Photo, the campaign of Kash Jackson, and the Illinois State Senate.