Green Room

Surprise: Illinois slapped with credit downgrade

posted at 1:02 pm on June 4, 2013 by

A state can’t drop any lower than 50th out of 50, but it can work diligently to pull away from its closest rival on the credit downgrade scoreboard (your move, California).  So congratulations, Illinois, on your unparalleled basketcase status:

One of the three major ratings agencies has downgraded the value of Illinois state government credit. Fitch Ratings said Monday it would drop the Illinois rating from “A” to “A-” based on lawmakers’ failure to enact a solution to the state’s public-employee pension crisis. Illinois already has the lowest rating in the nation. Lower ratings mean paying higher interest rates on borrowed money.

Hey, why spin this as being dead last?  Turn that frown upside-down, Illinois: You’re number one, in a certain sense!  Totally coincidentally, Illinois is home to Democratic super-majorities in both legislative chambers and a Democratic governor.  State Republicans are literally powerless to slow down their state’s cliff-bound freight train, but I’m sure this is somehow their fault anyway.  Moody’s is also threatening another credit downgrade for Illinois, which is already ranked 50th in their rankings as well.  The state boasts a $100 billion (!) unfunded pension liability for government workers, and a massive structural deficit that has resulted in piles of unpaid bills.  Illinois Democrats hiked taxes significantly on families and businesses in 2011.  Meanwhile, neighboring states governed by Republicans have (again, totally coincidentally) earned credit rating improvements in recent years.  Moody’s rated Scott Walker’s controversial budget reforms “credit positive,” Rick Snyder’s Michigan (fresh off passage of right to work legislation) received a credit upgrade by Fitch in April, and Mitch Daniels’ (now Mike Pence’s) Indiana has maintained its perfect AAA rating.

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Reminder: Democrats have complete control of the House and Senate and our Gov is a rabid Lefty.

Forward to Utopia!

visions on June 4, 2013 at 1:06 PM

Yup. See above: “Totally coincidentally, Illinois is home to Democratic super-majorities in both legislative chambers and a Democratic governor.” I sometimes miss living in Chicago, but these stories remind me how thankful I am to no longer be a subject of Springfield.

Guy Benson on June 4, 2013 at 1:09 PM

Aptly named state. Illinois sure is ill.

Bitter Clinger on June 4, 2013 at 1:11 PM

Just as a reminder to my fellow Cheddarheads, this is what the unionistas held up as a shining example for Wisconsin to follow.

Enjoy Happy Cheddar Freedom Day tomorrow as we celebrate the 1-year anniversary of Scott Walker’s (and Rebecca Kleefisch’s) re-victory.

Steve Eggleston on June 4, 2013 at 1:17 PM

My family and I just moved out of IL this past Friday. We had to rent out our home there since there was no way to sell without losing big bucks. We will soon move into our new home in Fishers, IN and we’re very happy to have left this mess. We’re only sorry that we couldn’t bring along all of our family with us.

kerrhome on June 4, 2013 at 1:28 PM

I live in Chicago. They tried to pass a bill making it mandatory to pay the pension liabilities. They will choke every last breath out of that golden goose but it’s looking a lot more like a rubber chicken. Illinois is fast on it’s way to becoming Detroit.

xrayiiis on June 4, 2013 at 1:29 PM

Keep voting democrat! Straight ticket!

tom daschle concerned on June 4, 2013 at 2:04 PM

Sometime in the near future:
“Fitch and Moody’s investigated by DoJ/SEC and audited by IRS”

weaselyone on June 4, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Low Information Democrats in the Illinois legislature:

“Hey! we got an A-, not bad at all.”

MichaelGabriel on June 4, 2013 at 2:28 PM

Yes We FIBs Can!

MNHawk on June 4, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Well obviously the answer in Illinois is to RAISE TAXES AGAIN!

GarandFan on June 4, 2013 at 3:52 PM


annoyinglittletwerp on June 4, 2013 at 8:03 PM