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Durbin: State Had No Choice But To Raise Taxes

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CBS) -- U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) says he is concerned that many large companies have threatened to leave his home state due to higher taxes, but he says Illinois lawmakers had to take action to pay the state's vendors.

As WBBM Newsradio 780's Alex Degman reports, the most recent entity threatening to leave due to high taxes was the CME Group, parent company of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Board of Trade. It joins companies such as Caterpillar, Sears and Motorola that have thought about leaving due to increased corporate tax rates.

Durbin says the state had no choice but to raise revenues.

"The legislature and governor faced an impossible situation, he said. "If they didn't find a way to come up with revenue, to pay the vendors of the state of Illinois, then businesses and hospitals and doctors all across the state would be carrying the state debt, which they're doing."

LISTEN: Newsradio 780's Alex Degman reports


Durbin says the income and corporate income tax increases are temporary, and he suggests lowering corporate taxes as much as possible afterward to make Illinois more business friendly.

As for the CME Group, Durbin doesn't think it's going anywhere.

Durbin also talked about the newly drawn state and federal legislative maps, the fourth such map redrawing he's seen in his political career.

"The first one, in 1982 drawn by the Democrats, gave me a chance to defeat an incumbent Republican congressman, which I did," Durbin explained. "Ten years later, the congressional map drawn by the Republicans, Denny Hastert, did everything it could to defeat me."

"We've seen this movie before," Durbin said of the map drawing process.

Illinois Republicans complained through much of the redistricting process that Democrats weren't being transparent enough, the maps were inherently unfair to Republicans, and not enough minority districts were drawn to accommodate state and federal laws.

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