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Topinka, Kadner talk Illinois politics for Southland Chamber

Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topink(left) SouthtownStar columnist Phil Kadner moderator Thom Seraf(podium) took part post-electianalysis Tuesday Tinley Park. | Mike

Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka (left), SouthtownStar columnist Phil Kadner and moderator Thom Serafin (at podium) took part in a post-election analysis Tuesday in Tinley Park. | Mike Nolan~Sun-Times Media.

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Updated: December 15, 2012 6:17AM



What’s the Republican Party’s best chance for wresting control of the White House from the Democrats?

Run “a candidate with the charisma of Barack Obama,” Judy Baar Topinka, the state’s Republican comptroller, told Southland business leaders gathered Tuesday in Tinley Park.

In a dissection of the recent elections and a look at what might on the horizon for the Illinois General Assembly’s veto session, Topinka and SouthtownStar columnist Phil Kadner shared their observations at a meeting of the Chicago Southland Chamber of Commerce.

Regardless of whether it’s at the state or local level, “Republicans have got to reach out” to women, minorities and young people to broaden their support base, she said.

“This is nothing revolutionary,” Topinka told the audience.

To help resolve Illinois’ fiscal ills, Kadner said he fully expects legislators to eventually approve a measure that would shift pension obligations to school districts. Topinka said while Gov. Quinn has vowed such a move wouldn’t result in higher property taxes for homeowners, “common sense would dictate” it will.

Facing unprecedented debt levels, legislators are unlikely to agree to roll back the 2 percentage point increase in the state income tax rate, Kadner said. Approved in January 2011, the move increased the personal tax rate to 5 percent through 2015, after which the rate is expected to drop to 3.25 percent.



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