There’s an old saying that goes, “You’re entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts.”
Last Thursday, a column by R. Eden Martin relied more on rhetoric than reality. In it, Mr. Martin argued that the unions protect the status quo while everyone else fights for “major reform.” While Mr. Martin is entitled to his opinion, his assertions are patently false.
Here are the facts: The We Are One union coalition worked with Senate President John Cullerton this year to negotiate an agreement for pension reform. In and of itself, that’s “major,” considering House Speaker Michael Madigan was not willing to do the same.
The bill will likely save the state $26 billion immediately in health care costs. That’s major. Including health care savings, the bill will likely save more than any other plan, $134 billion over 30 years. That’s major.
The bill asks workers who contributed from every paycheck, who don’t receive Social Security, and who did absolutely nothing wrong, to give more. And we agreed to that in service of a solution. That’s major.
And, most importantly, the bill was built on a constitutional framework, so it would not get stuck in the courts and drag the state through costly litigation delaying the solution by years. More…