Chicago Tonight. In the pension discussion where were the Democratic Party pension thieves?

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Carol Marin with Republican state Rep. Thomas Morrison, University of Chicago professor of law Julie Roin, and president of Illinois Federation of Teachers Dan Montgomery.

I watched the pension discussion on Chicago Tonight.

I’m not sure anyone who was not really invested in the issue stayed with it. It was kind of dry.

What was interesting to me was who was not there.

No Democrat Elaine Nekritz. No Democrat Dan Biss. Or Democrat Don Harmon. Certainly no Mike Madigan or John Cullerton.

These are the leaders of the state House and Senate who led the charge on cutting public employee pension benefits.

And likely will again.

Republican Tom Morrison, who was there, simply repeated his party’s talking points: A constitutional amendment to erase the pension protection clause and changing our defined benefit pension to a 401K.

But Republican solutions are mostly irrelevant.

Unless those solutions get adopted by Democrats.

Morrison plays the useful idiot for Democrats. And, frankly, for our union leaders as well.

By having him as the only politician on the panel, his proposals appear to be the main threat.

And  they provide our leadership with a reason to compromise on our constitutional protection, as they did with SB2404.

As they did with their endorsement of ALEC Chair Kirk Dillard for governor and now Pat Quinn.

If, as expected, the Supreme Court rules that Senate Bill 1 is unconstitutional, Plan B will not be coming from Tom Morrison and the Republicans.

It will come from the Democratic Party leadership in the state.

So far, they have been the pension thieves.

What is their Plan B?

They’re not saying.

8 thoughts on “Chicago Tonight. In the pension discussion where were the Democratic Party pension thieves?

  1. Thanks for the updates and comments. HOW ABOUT SOME information that will invite comments from retired teachers who are experiencing their first year in the United Health Care “Medicare Advantage” PPO, in place of regular Medicare A & B plus Cigna. Many of us face decisions about re-enrolling for 2015, and have to do this in a little over 3 months.
    I was not happy to hear that Northwestern Hospital in Chicago was not in the network, but I’d like to hear from others about their experiences elsewhere.

    1. Medicare eligible in October, and decided not to enter TRAIL for that very reason. Talk to a Senior Heath Care Counselor (SHIP), at a senior center or program and you will get more information on what is happening:. other hospitals in the area are also opting out.

      1. I’d rather receive my “health care subsidy” and take the money to purchase my own coverage rather than continue in a Medicare DIS-ADVANTAGE plan, but that isn’t an option. Didn’t we pay into the system to receive subsidized health insurance? This whole thing is starting to smell.

  2. Many doctors and hospitals won’t take anything related to United Healthcare. They won’t even fill out the forms.
    Some of them also quit taking Cigna if it was State of IL active employee, TRS,SURS, or SERS, because they were not getting paid for over a year or more. I have heard the payment delays are shorter now, but the doctors still don’t take them. They ask what will happen when Rauner crashes the state budget? They think the delays will go up again worse then before.

  3. When I’ve talked about the pension theft issue with my Democratic friends, they always respond by talking about Republicans. They, the Democrats, are simply stabilizing my pension plans. When I talk about rights, I get no response. The Republicans are the problem, they tell me. Usually something about unions follows. Either the unions have agreed to pension cuts, or else Quinn and Madigan are fighting “union bosses,” who don’t have my welfare at heart. The Democrats are on my side, my friends tell me.

    Our pensions are much too high, they say. I ask what they think I should get. They say they don’t know, but that I shouldn’t expect to continue living on “subsidies.” We have learn to compromise, I’m told. This is where I tell them I’ve already made huge compromises. I accepted a job which paid noticeably less than its private sector equivalents. I thought I could do some good, help others. The pension plan made the whole thing do-able. There would be enough.

    I should vote for Quinn, they tell me, to keep Rauner out. I tell them that Quinn has been quite clear on this point: He doesn’t want my vote. I couldn’t tell you what the Republicans are thinking, there aren’t many living in the City. With the Democrats I know, Republicans would be superfluous.

  4. When I attended my informational health care meeting last winter we were told the Northwestern Hospital was in the network for Medicare Advantage. As far as people being unhappy, is anyone surprised? I think that the goal is to get us off the program anyway.

    Chicago Tonight continues to host these forums during which guests casually talk about cutting income to retirees. If the situation in Illinois is so dire then everyone should be taking an income cut. Why are teachers expected to fund education deficits and not everyone else?

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