Herald & Review: Davis, Caulkins Join Lieutenant Governor in Decatur to Condemn Pritzker’s Tax Breaks

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Yesterday, Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti held a press conference with Congressman Rodney Davis and State Representative Candidate Dan Caulkins to condemn JB Pritzker’s “scheme to defraud” Illinois taxpayers.

Take a look at the coverage from the Decatur Herald & Review:

Republican leaders on Wednesday said they were “appalled” to learn of Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker’s efforts to get property tax breaks on his Chicago home, and contended that he shouldn’t be elected as a result of the findings.

Lt. Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti, U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis of Taylorville and Dan Caulkins, the Republican state representative candidate for the 101st District, criticized Pritzker and rallied support for Gov. Bruce Rauner’s re-election campaign during a joint news conference at the Macon County Republican Party headquarters, 445 N. Franklin St. 

“No one, absolutely no one, is above the law,” Sanguinetti said. “Not even billionaires running for governor. Illinoisans, please, don’t be fooled. Mr. Pritzker is nothing more than another corrupt Chicago politician. A tax cheat.”

Rauner has repeatedly attacked Pritzker in debates and public remarks for ripping the toilets out of a home to get a $330,000 property tax break, which Cook County Inspector General Patrick Blanchard recently called a “scheme to defraud taxpayers.” Blancahrd’s office found that the assessed valuation of a mansion owned by Pritzker was reduced from $6.25 million to just under $1.1 million because the residence was “vacant and uninhabitable” with no working toilets, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. 

Blanchard’s review found that the toilets had been removed on Oct. 6, 2015, just 10 days before a scheduled appraisal of the property at the direction of Pritzker’s wife for the purpose of allowing the house to be declared uninhabitable. 

…Seven Republican congressmen, including Davis, asked the U.S. Attorney’s Office earlier this month for a full investigation into Pritkzer’s tax breaks. 

On Wednesday, Davis said he hopes that the U.S. Attorney’s Office is working to initiate an investigation, and said that the calls for it to move forward will not stop. 

“Let this sink in: The Cook County inspector general accused the Democrat gubernatorial candidate in the state of Illinois of committing a ‘scheme to defraud’ the taxpayers of the same state that he wishes to represent,” Davis said. 

“Cook County, let me remind you, is not run by Republicans. Cook County is run by Democrats. This is not a partisan hit-job. This is the truth.”

Caulkins, who will face Democrat Jen McMillin of Decatur in the November general election, said if anyone without Prtizker’s wealth and influence were to engage in similar tax break efforts, they would be tried and convicted almost immediately. 

“We can’t let J.B. Pritzker get away with this,” he said. “We need to support our ticket top-to-bottom, we need to get Gov. Rauner re-elected and that’s going to turn this state around. I will work hard, I will represent you. But we have to have the governor’s office.”