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Graduated Income Tax Constitutional Amendment Question Fails

Jerry Nowicki, Capitol News Illinois

The vote requirement for constitutional amendments is either 60 percent of votes cast on the ballot measure or a simple majority of all of those voting in the election.

As of Tuesday night, unofficial results indicate voters opposed the constitutional amendment by a margin of 55% to 45%.

Supporters conceded on Wednesday morning. According to a statement from John Bouman, Chair of Vote Yes for Fair Tax:

Statement of John Bouman, Chair of Vote Yes for Fair Tax:

"Millions of Illinoisans supported tax fairness and funding fairness by voting Yes for the Fair Tax amendment that would cut taxes for the 97% of Illinoisans who make less than $250,000 a year, require the wealthiest top 3% to pay their fair share, and raise billions of dollars to invest in schools, health care and jobs in every part of the state.

"The opponents of tax fairness, the millionaires and billionaires who are desperate to protect their own special deal, poured millions of dollars into false attacks designed to frighten and confuse voters.

"Although the outcome is not what we wished, moving Illinois toward tax fairness while funding important priorities in every community is the work our coalition has been doing for years, and we will continue." 

According to reporting from Capitol News Illinois, strictly speaking, the amendment removes a provision from the Illinois Constitution that requires any income tax to be levied at a flat rate on any level of income – the current rate is 4.95 percent. Passage of the amendment would allow lawmakers to apply different tax rates on varying levels of income.

Major opponents to the measure included Illinois billionaire Ken Griffin, who put millions of his own dollars into opposition to the graduated income tax effort.

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