Jeanne Ives: Candidate Profile
42nd District Representative (Republican)
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.
Office sought: 42nd District Representative
Family: Married, five children
Occupation: Senior Tax Advisor for individuals and businesses, Bookkeeper for a law firm
Education: BS in Economics from the United States Military Academy Various tax, accounting and finance courses from NIU
Civic involvement: Cross Country Coach for St. Michael School Parent Volunteer for St. Michael School and CUSD 200 St. Michael Church Volunteer
Elected offices held: Wheaton City Councilwoman, currently serving, elected 2011 Milton Township Republican Committeewoman, currently serving, elected 2004
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: no
Key Issue 1
Businesses across the state are mandating we control our unfunded pension liability.
Some are threatening to leave over it.
Moody's downgraded our credit rating to the lowest of any other state. They have no confidence that our current leaders will control pension spending and pay our liabilities.
Immediate and comprehensive pension reform must happen. Rhode Island is an example of the type of reform we need in Illinois.
Pension reform must occur for both current and retired workers, especially in the area of eliminating COLAs and asking retirees to contribute more to their healthcare costs.
We need to strike a new deal with current state employees.
Failure to make significant reforms in this area soon will lead more businesses and individuals to leave the state.
Key Issue 2
Budget Cuts and a Restructuring of Government Spending.
Increase Medicaid eligibility rules and annually verify eligibility to eliminate fraud. b.
Wage and hiring freeze for all state employees c.
Reduce legislator salaries.
End legislative pensions, a perk offered for part-time employment. Elected state officials need to lead on this issue. d.
Implement pension reform as described in campaign issue 1. e.
Re-evaluate every state grant issued.
Especially look at pass through grants offered by the DCEO which can tend to go to favored businesses and sectors.
Until the budget is controlled, end all state grants to other governments that are not related to public safety or infrastructure, such as park grants and energy grants, and real property development grants that are not currently in progress.
Key Issue 3
Repeal the 2011 Tax Increase.
This tax increase was a fraud. Passed in a lame duck session, late at night, with legislators who had not been re-elected, the tax increase failed as sold to Illinois residents.
They did not use it to pay off unpaid bills, now at $8.5 billion.
Almost all of the money went to make a pension payment and then Governor Quinn borrowed more.
The tax increase delayed the discussion of serious pension reform. We have lost an over 100,000 jobs and tied with New Jersey for the greatest out-migration of 2011. People are voting with their feet.
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?
I do not favor corporate carve-outs or special tax incentives for the large connected corporations.
I appreciate their investment in Illinois, but the individual and small business then ends up picking up the slack when tax favors are handed out.
We often do not get any reward for tax breaks given.
All taxes should be flat and fair, applying to businesses in the same manner.
At this point, the state's responsibility is to provide the right infrastructure and climate that allows all businesses to flourish.
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?
Party leaders should comply with the same contribution limits and disclosure requirements that political action committees have to comply with in both the primary and general election cycles.
The Republican party has many talented leaders.
I am open to a leadership change in our caucus but would want to evaluate all possible candidates before committing to who that may be or whether it stays the same.
The military often moves their leaders around after 2 or 3 years.
They realize that you have to develop younger leaders and that no one person is indispensable.
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?
Budget cuts begin with pension reform. Please see my answer above as too specific cuts I would like to see.
We are a deadbeat state.
And it is not honorable, but this is what decades of the same people in power get you.
Other states have expanded job creation, reduced state spending and reformed pensions.
We do not need original ideas to turn this state around.
We just need to elect new leadership and then call up states who have cut spending, reformed pensions, and expanded business opportunities.
I am not in favor of casino gambling expansion.
I believe that gambling operations should be located in places that capture a market that looks for this type of entertainment.
Slots at race tracks that have a long established gambling presence makes sense.
Locating a casino in Chicago where tourists are present also makes sense.
I would advocate, not for expansion, but for the relocation of a current casino to a Chicago location to capture that market.
Gambling should not be looked at a source of new revenue that legislators can spend.
Our focus needs to be on reducing spending and expanding government revenues through real business growth.
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?
I support SB 512.
I do question whether that bill will be enough to cover our unfunded liability in a timely enough manner to calm investors and restore confidence in our state government.
Rhode Island recently reformed their pension system to include suspension of colas for retirees, a hybrid benefit plan and increased retirement age.
We should consider all of the reforms that Rhode Island did as well.
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?
I am not in favor of gay marriage. Illinois has a DOMA statute that properly prohibits the marriage between two people of the same sex.
Life does begin at conception.
Our state legislature can not overturn Roe v. Wade.
That said, Attorney General Madigan should stop blocking the enforcement of the parental notification law that passed the General Assembly over 15 years ago.
I am in favor of concealed carry laws.
We are the only state without some form of right-to-carry provision for law abiding citizens.
While serving in the military I had the right to defend myself, but in Illinois I do not.
I would not vote for reinstatement of the death penalty.