Illinois Senate President Don Harmon wants a federal bailout worth at least $44.2 billion, but should Congress play along?

And, if they do play along, should Congress bail out Illinois with money that comes with no strings attached?

Here's what Mr. Harmon wants from the federal government:

  • $15 billion from an unrestricted block grant
  • A $10 billion pension bailout, structured either as a grant or a low-interest loan
  • $6 billion to bolster the state’s unemployment insurance trust fund
  • An increase in the portion of Medicaid paid for by the federal government to 65%, up from 50.96% in a typical year, worth an estimated $2.6 billion1
  • $1 billion in health care grants to poor and minority communities
  • $9.6 billion in direct aid to municipalities

Adam Schuster, Illinois Policy's Director of Budget and Tax Research, joined the WROK Morning Show to discuss the bailout request, whether it should be granted, and what the feds need to insist on if they do decide to bail us out here in Illinois:

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