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updated: 2/10/2012 4:42 PM

Carole Pankau: Candidate Profile

23rd District Senate (Republican)

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  • Carole Pankau, running for 23rd District Senate

    Carole Pankau, running for 23rd District Senate




Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.

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BioKey IssuesQ&A



City: Itasca


Office sought: 23rd District Senate

Age: 64

Family: Married to John for 45 years, 4 adult children and 11 grandchildren

Occupation: State Senator & Small Business Owner

Education: University of Illinois Chicago, Bachelor of Science, Accounting

Civic involvement: Bloomingdale Township Republican Origination Bloomingdale Township Republican Women's Organization Chamber of Commerce Member (Ten local chambers) The Conference of Women Legislators -- Co-Chair American Legislative Exchange Council

Elected offices held: Keeneyville school board member 1978-1986 DuPage County Board Member 1984-1992 State Representative 1993-2005 State Senator 2005- Present

Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: NO

Candidate's Key Issues

Key Issue 1

Creating good paying local jobs

Key Issue 2

Immediate pension reform

Key Issue 3

Repealing the 67% tax increase

Questions & Answers

What can you do specifically to help the economy in your district? What is your view of the tax breaks granted to companies like Motorola Mobility, Navistar and Sears? For incumbents, how did you vote on the Sears plan in this fall's veto session?

To begin to help companies, large and small, we need to remove onerous fees associated with setting up or renewing a business in this state.

For example, if you choose to renew a business license online, there is an automatic fee assessed that is not charged if you were to renew a license on paper -- this is a needless fee, and discourages efficiency in state government.

There are dozens of other small fees and fines that add up and cost business millions of dollars each year.

Having a reliable and predictable business tax system, where businesses know their costs in this state, will result in more businesses staying in Illinois, or possibly returning from other states.

We must repeal the corporate tax hike that is driving business out of our state.

One of the most important issues that business owner's mention to me is that we must bring some level of predictability to our state's business environment.

Most business owners understand that they need to pay taxes, and the overwhelming majority are okay with paying their fair share.

However, the General Assembly keeps tacking on fees, new taxes and other 'revenue enhancements' that do not allow a business to plan for their future.

I was unavailable for the final vote on the Sears legislation, but I initially voted no on the bill that was originally passed by the Senate.

I voted for Navistar. I voted for Motorola.

Do you favor limiting how much money party leaders can give candidates during a general election? If elected, do you plan to vote for the current leader of your caucus' Why or why not?

I would support capping donations from state party leaders to candidates during a general election.

I think it is a privilege that I was able to cast a vote for the first Woman Republican Leader, and I intend to do so again.

Leader Radogno has done an excellent job working within our caucus to present ideas and legislation that generates debate and discussion across our state, I am proud to have an opportunity to spearhead some of these initiatives.

How, specifically, would you cut the budget? What does Illinois need to do to fix its status as a "deadbeat state?" How have you or will you vote on future gambling bills' What is your view of slots at racetracks' Casino expansion?

The Senate Republican plan that is highlighted at is a detailed overview of a plan to balance our State's budget.

I helped draft this plan, and believe it will work.

If we want to fix our status as a deadbeat state, we must stop spending more than we take in.

Expansion of gaming seems to come up every single year in Springfield, and yet, none of it has passed.

In light of the current economic crisis in our state, we need to aggressively explore all options that will help put Illinois families back to work.

Before moving forward with any expanded gaming, however, I believe that we need to increase funding for the Illinois Gaming Board to ensure that they have the staff and resources to properly oversee all aspects of gaming in Illinois.

I voted in favor of the recent gaming expansion law.

I support slots at racetracks.

What do you specifically support to deal with the state's pension gap? Would you vote for House Republican Leader Tom Cross's three-tier pension plan? Why or why not?

At this moment, the sustainability of our pension system is the single greatest threat facing our state.

I believe we must act swiftly to reduce our unfunded pension liability by reforming the pension system.

However, we cannot reduce pension benefits of those workers who have already earned them.

One reform idea that I believe has some real potential is the ?Cap -- And -- Age? proposal brought forward by Senator Chris Lauzen.

This legislation caps the total payout that an individual can receive from state backed pension systems, and prevents individuals from taking any pension benefits until they turn 62.

The ?Cap-And-Age? proposal, Leader Cross's proposal, and the reforms outlined by the Civic Committee are all reforms that we should be debating down in Springfield.

Should gay marriage be legalized? Should Illinois define life as beginning at conception as others have? How would you vote on a concealed carry firearm plan? Should the death penalty be reinstated?

Currently, civil unions are the law in Illinois.

I do not support gay marriage.

Life begins at conception.

I support conceal carry with reasonable safeguards.

We are the only state to not have concealed carry.

We should reinstate the death penalty.