socastcmsRssStartBy Cole Lauterbach | Illinois News NetworksocastcmsRssEnd
Illinois Democrats have returned to what experts call a “trifecta government” that can push through policies with little more than protest votes from a marginalized Republican Party.
Democrats defeated Gov. Bruce Rauner and all other statewide Republican candidates. In addition, House Speaker Michael Madigan has regained a supermajority in the state House of Representatives, giving him enough votes to override any potential veto from the new Democratic governor.
Add to that the 40-Democrat supermajority in the state Senate and you get what Sarah Rosier and her organization, Ballotpedia, call a "trifecta government."
“It’ll allow the Democratic agenda and the initiatives from the Democratic Party to pass more easily, more quickly, and [be] signed into law without as many hurdles,” Rosier said. “Education issues and a lot of the things that were up in the air, like pension reform, will no longer be as relevant to Illinois citizens because there is a trifecta government in place.”
This means that Republicans, come January, will be of little or no consequence in the face of a Democratic agenda that includes increased spending and, per Governor-elect Pritzker, more tax hikes.
Should Pritzker decide to buck his party and veto legislation passed by the Democrat-controlled General Assembly a unified House and Senate would be able to override him with no Republican support and a couple votes to spare, saving members facing competitive elections from having to cast a potentially unpopular vote.
Republican state Sen. Jason Barickman said that, upon learning of the newly elected governor and legislative supermajorities, his party is going to have a hard time blocking additional tax hikes.
“You’re already hearing Democrats outline spending priorities that are going to see record levels of spending in Illinois,” he said. “We’re certainly going to have a fight on our hands.”
Rosier said the number of states with one-party rule stands at 14 Democratic and 22 Republican, with Georgia left to be decided based on the too-close-to-call governor’s race.