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Letter: Rauner's 'fix' would be disastrous

Published: Tuesday, July 22, 2014 10:00 p.m. CST

To the Editor:

On Wednesday, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner visited DeKalb and with the Daily Chronicle editors. 

I wonder if anyone asked him why a man with nine homes and $500 million thinks that it is a good idea to cut the minimum wage?

As a venture capitalist, how many American jobs did he destroy or outsource to foreign countries for profit? Did they ask him about working at Bain and Company with “corporations are people, my friend” Mitt Romney?

It is no surprise that Rauner would have a pro-business agenda. He opposes worker safety, environmental laws, and access to the courts for anyone other than corporations. When corporations steal employee wages or injure the public, shouldn’t the average person have access to our courts? 

Rauner says that he wants to close corporate loopholes. Really? He used the fee waiver loophole at his investment firm to avoid paying millions of dollars in taxes himself. 

Rauner thinks workers should have a 401(k)-style retirement plan instead of pensions. Those 401(k)s allow investment managers like himself to skim a significant part of workers’ retirement savings. Half of all American 401(k)s have balances of less than $10,000. What kind of retirement security does that afford?  

Illinois government leaves a lot to be desired, but many of our “rust belt” states’ problems stem from our flawed tax and trade policies. “Free trade” has killed millions of good jobs and has replaced them with low-paying service ones. There have been 60,000 U.S. factory closures since the North American Free Trade Agreement was implemented in 1994. 

Meanwhile, the tax code has so many loopholes for the wealthy and corporations that we aren’t collecting sufficient revenue. I hope Illinoisans see that if a corporate raider wears a flannel shirt it doesn’t make him an average guy. He may still be a sociopath.

I believe Rauner’s “fix” of Illinois would be a disaster for the majority of our residents.  

Stephen Reid

DeKalb

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