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Hoffman: Here’s why the right-to-work vote went the way it did

From Illinois Business Journal news services

SPRINGFIELD – After leading a public debate and vote against right-to-work legislation that he says threatened to harm working class families, state Rep. Jay Hoffman, D-Swansea, issued a statement upon the bill’s defeat in the House Thursday.

“Today, the House voted down a measure that that the Governor has stumped for time and time again and used as a means to hold hostage any productive conversations about the budget. This ill-conceived plan would dramatically hurt middle-class families. It would mean dismantling the protections that have been put in place for the safety of workers, the prosperity of workers, and the future of our children. I led the debate in order to have an open and public hearing on this dangerous proposal and to make a clear statement about who is standing for middle class families in Illinois. I voted no, and I am encouraged by the strong message sent by the failure of this legislation.

“This proposal values corporate profits more than the livelihoods of middle class families. Driving down wages starts a spiral of economic destruction for families, communities and small businesses. It is the wrong way to go.

“As Chair of the House Labor and Commerce Committee, I have fought for the rights of working men and women across Illinois. Today’s vote is one more way I am making my commitment clear to middle class families. Our state will not turn its back on those who keep our communities afloat through service as teachers, fire fighters, carpenters and technicians.

“Those who voted no sent a clear message to the governor and to working men and women that we will not turn our backs on middle class families and allow Illinois to be driven to a race to the bottom. Unfortunately, several of my colleagues stood on the sidelines and failed to take a stand for middle class families. I still believe that we can find common ground moving forward, but we needed to put this behind us to be able to address Illinois real problems and find real solutions.”

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