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Rauner Veto Round-Up: Student Loan Bill of Rights, Wage Theft Law, Addressing Gender Wage Gap


by Daniel Johanson

Over the weekend, AP reported quite a few of Governor Rauner’s most recent vetoes on a few bills that local progressives have been keeping an eye on.

The first were a pair of bills that were sponsored by Illinois State Senator and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Daniel Biss. The first of the pair would have set regulations on screening questions for employers, particularly with regards to past salaries in an attempt to tackle the gender wage gap.

The second was a bill introduced to vault existing wage theft laws from a misdemeanor to a felony. This would apply particularly to any employer who is able to pay wages but refuses.

“This is why our state doesn’t work for us,” Biss commented. “It’s not because we’re broke, or because we don’t know how to fix the problems—it’s because we have an out of touch, arrogant billionaire for a governor who would prefer to see the rich and powerful prosper instead of the people of Illinois.”

The other prominent veto was that of Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s bill for an Illinois Student Loan Bill of Rights. Rauner called the bill “laudable,” but that it “encroaches on the federal government’s repsonsibilities.”

“Today Gov. Rauner failed to stand up for struggling student loan borrowers, their families and our state’s economy,” Madigan said. “His veto of the Student Loan Bill of Rights shows he doesn’t care about the financial reality that student loan borrowers face and has instead sided with large corporations that put their profits before their customers,” she added. “My investigation into the student loan industry revealed that student borrowers were forced into expensive repayment plans they cannot afford. These abusive practices prevent borrowers from achieving their goals, dreams and financial independence.”

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