NEWS-GAZETTE: A shift in fortune

By Editorial Board

”No news was good news for Gov. J.B. Pritzker, who has enjoyed smooth political sailing since he was sworn in to office in January.

But that changed — at least in perception — last week when the news hit that Pritzker, his wife, his brother-in-law and a Pritzker family employee are under federal criminal investigation for tax fraud.

The report has yet to be officially confirmed because the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago refused to comment on the story one way or the other. But given what is known about the Pritzker family's questionable tactics in securing a $300,000-plus tax refund in connection with a property assessment, a pending criminal investigation would appear to be in order…

“No wonder opponents of Pritzker's tax plan moved quickly to point out the obvious disconnect in the picture of the governor advocating state income-tax hikes on one hand while engaging in questionable tactics to win an undeserved $300,000-plus tax refund on the other.

‘Just shortly after Governor J.B. Pritzker proposed a crippling jobs tax on middle-class families in Illinois, we learned that Pritzker is under federal criminal investigation for dodging property taxes on his Chicago mansion,’ said Greg Baise, the former head of the Illinois Manufacturers' Association and a leading opponent of a progressive income tax.

The governor has characterized the proposal as a revenue generator that will permanently solve the state's financial problems. How ironic that Pritzker's pursuit of a questionable tax refund is undermining his prospects for persuading voters to approve it.”

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Evan Walker